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ELAN "Killer Combo" Home Control Solution First Look

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Elan HR2 Remote and HC4 Home Controller

Elan HR2 Remote and HC4 Home Controller

Summary

  • Product Name: HR2 Remote and HC4 Home Controller
  • Manufacturer: ELAN Home Systems
  • Review Date: May 21, 2011 10:15
  • MSRP: $1860
  • First Impression: Pretty Cool
  • Buy Now

HR2 Remote

Screen Size 2.4" diagonal
Viewing Angle 180° up/down, 180° left/right
Operating Temperature 32° F-104° F / 0° C-40° C
OLED Display Type 18 bit, 2.0" Active Matrix Organic LED (AMOLED)
OLED Display Colors 262K
OLED Display Resolution 240 W x 320 H
Download Port Mini USB
Power Requirements 16V DC/1.87A
Dimensions (Remote) (in.) 2-1/4 W x 9-1/8 H x 7/8 D / (mm) 57 W x 232 H x 23 D
Dimensions (Cradle) (in.) 4 Diameter x 3-13/16 H / (mm) 102 W x 97 H
Product Weight 6.4 oz./0.18 kg
Charging Cradle Weight 6.4 oz./0.18 kg
Shipping Weight 2.3 lbs./1.04 kg

HC4 Home Controller

  • Compact can or wall-mount
  • Integrated IP, Serial, infrared control and sense inputs in a one-box design
  • Easy plug n’ play with TS2 Touchpad, TS7 & TS10 Touch Screens, HR2 Handheld Remote
  • Supports iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad Interface devices
  • High-res on-screen display (OSD) with included simple clicker, HR2 Handheld Remote or other third party universal remote controls
  • Easily installs behind TV to add discrete OSD
  • Built-in single-output music player with online content
  • Compatible with network attached storage (NAS) drives to access photos, music and store security camera video
  • Support for one phone line and eight voicemail boxes with optional USB modem
  • Two on-board relays provide additional automation capabilities
  • On-board IR generation and decoding
  • Two Sense Inputs for triggering automated events
  • Solid State Memory for Operating System (OS) storage increases reliability
  • Fan-cooled case increases system reliability
  • Wall & can mount brackets included
  • External Power supply

If you are a home theater integration company you've got to hate one phrase more than any other - "There's an App for that." To introduce a product these days that doesn't have some sort of app support for either Android or iPhone is risky at best, perhaps suicidal. But the fact is that, no matter how much the kids these days may protest, not everyone has a smartphone. You need to provide an interface that work not only with smartphones but also comes with a remote that will provide all the functionality that, at the same time, doesn't introduce any additional complications. ELAN Home Systems has a new "Killer Combo" that looks to do just that.

The problem with custom install products has, traditionally, been cost. It can be a huge barrier to the common consumer who is used to paying maybe a couple of hundred dollars for a remote control system. But the ELAN Killer Combo is much more than that. It is a home control system and it runs only $1860. That means you'll be controlling not only the volume and channel, but also the lights, heating, security systems, and more.

First, the remote. The HR2 is more than a traditional remote. It is a combination multimedia and home control unit. It features not only backlit buttons but also a 2.4" OLED touch screen. The remote weighs a scant 8 ounces and ELAN says that nearly a year of development went into the remote's shape and button layout.

Of course, the remote is for those that don't already have their their smartphone surgically connected to their hand. ELAN hasn't ignored you as they have a g! (their control system interface) g!Mobile app for both for all i-devices.

The HR2 remote connects to the HC4 Home Controller. The HC4 comes standard with the capability for MP3 and Internet Radio Streaming, a new and improved iTunes feature that allows for simple integration of your iTunes library, 720p video for a g! On Screen Display control interface, climate control, lighting, security, IP cameras, phone integration/messaging, email, Text-To-Speech and screen-saver photo albums. This small box can be wall or shelf mounted and is small enough to be mounted behind a display. The "4" in the HC4 designation indicates the ability to control up to four sub-systems. It is designed as a single room solution though can be easily expanded to enable whole home control of every room appliance.

Of course, that'll cost you a bit extra. How much depends on what you want/need.

ELAN g! provides users with the most uniform and intuitive icon-based control from their favorite devices, including TVs, touch screens, touchpads, PCs, iPhones, and iPads. The standardized interface works across platforms, so that the trendy g!Mobile app users love on the iPhone appears and works similarly on ELAN touch screens, valets and handheld remotes as well as users' televisions and mobile devices. And the system's IP backbone makes it just as easy to control the system from across the room - or across the globe.

Conclusion

If you are looking at home automation systems, the ELAN "Killer Combo" looks pretty attractive. The price, compared to quotes you've probably gathered, is probably very low. If you are looking at this as a DIY'er, well, you're probably shaking your head in confusion. Believe us, a well designed home automation system is a thing of beauty and takes a professional. ELAN is looking to entice you into their fold with this combo and it just might work. Just remember, as you're needs expand, so will the number of devices you'll need. But if you only really want to control one room and no more than four systems, definitely look into the new ELAN combo.

For more information, please visit elanhomesystems.com.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

About the author:
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As Associate Editor at Audioholics, Tom promises to the best of his ability to give each review the same amount of attention, consideration, and thoughtfulness as possible and keep his writings free from undue bias and preconceptions. Any indication, either internally or from another, that bias has entered into his review will be immediately investigated. Substantiation of mistakes or bias will be immediately corrected regardless of personal stake, feelings, or ego.

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