You May Never Want to Go Back Inside With These High-Performance Solutions
The Rocky Mountain spring is here in Aspen, and we get to spend even more time outdoors in our slice of mountain paradise. Of course, spring might feel like winter one day and summer the next, but that never stops us from enjoying all the nature that our area has to offer.
The great thing about Aspen is we can enjoy the outdoors any time of year. Even in winter, what feels better than a soak in the hot tub after a day of skiing or snowboarding? With all that we can do outside, why not make that time even more enjoyable with an outdoor audio-video system? We can relax to favorite tunes in the hot tub, and with an outdoor TV, we can cheer on the Nuggets in the NBA playoffs. Come summer; we can enjoy a great movie night under the stars in the cool mountain air.
Sound tempting? Read on to learn about some great outdoor audio-video solutions for your Aspen abode.
Take Control of Your Home, Hands-Free
Home automation technology continues to march onward, and it seems that every month there's a new smart device to control something in your house. Everything is getting smart, with software connected to the Internet that allows unprecedented control and features that would be a dream just a few short years ago. Smart thermostats, smart TVs, smart speakers, and smart appliances are all available to make daily life more comfortable in the home.
The real power of all these intelligent devices is when they start working together, doing things for you with very little or no input. While having an app to control a device is good, it's even better when you have a system to coordinate all those things. That's what Savant home automation is all about, integrating your myriad of smart devices and home functionality into a cohesive whole in your Aspen home. Effortless control is about more than reaching for your smartphone to turn on a light. True home automation integrated a variety of functions to accomplish a goal - be it for convenience, increasing safety, or managing energy more wisely.
Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant has become extremely popular because it brings easy voice control to many smart devices. As Alexa employs sophisticated voice recognition technology to provide information, answer questions, and many other functions, Savant has brought that advanced technology to its home automation solutions to add a new dimension in home control.
Read on to learn more about what Savant and Alexa can do in your home.
Comparing Popular Music Services
Music consumption has always been a function of the available technology. Before recorded music became possible with Edison’s invention of the phonograph in 1877 (yes, over a century ago), there was no music business as we know it today. The phonograph begat vinyl records and the modern recording industry. Vinyl records, using the same underlying technology as the first phonograph, are still with us, and are, in fact, enjoying a nostalgic resurgence in the past few years. After several decades, vinyl gave way to the convenience and resilience of digital CDs, and they are still with us too. Today, the most convenient way of accessing a vast library of music and listening to it anywhere – in our cars, our portable devices, and our homes – is music streaming over the Internet.
The old Apple iPod slogan of 30,000 songs in your pocket has given way to 40 million songs in the cloud that you can hear anytime, anywhere - as long as you have an Internet connection. As we know, several popular music services that offer the capability of hearing your favorite tunes on demand. But are they all just different peas in the same pod?
The short answer is that there are many similarities but also sharp differences between the popular streaming services. If you are looking to invest in a whole-house audio system in Aspen, you might want to know a little more about how they differ. The streaming technology built into most smartphones and tablets give you different options for directing music to different parts of your house, and whole house systems like those from our partner Savant make it especially easy to have the endless variety of streamed music in high-fidelity throughout your home.
Without further ado, let’s do a brief overview of five of the most popular services and some of their distinguishing traits and wrinkles.
New Technology Enables New Choices
It used to be that a home theater evoked thoughts of a scaled-down movie theater. Or perhaps a mini-version of the small town Strand or Bijou movie theater from a bygone era. While we maintain that small town atmosphere here in Aspen, most of those nostalgic theaters have all but disappeared. Much of our rustic Colorado architecture and our active, outdoor-oriented lifestyle lean toward a more relaxed approach to home theater design. Today, we do more than watch movies in our home theaters – we’re binge-watching Netflix shows, multiple college and NFL games on weekends and playing music videos as background in a multipurpose media/game room.
Home theater design is evolving to meet today’s evolving entertainment purposes. Of course, you can still build that traditional theater in the lower level of your Red Mountain retreat with movie-themed décor and comfortable theater seating. But now, the theater can be in practically any room you want to make it, and today’s technology allows more flexibility than ever in designing the perfect media room.
Let’s explore current trends in home theater and media room design to make any room into a state-of-the-art entertainment oasis at your Aspen-area house.