AWE holds Smart Home Expo 2019 at its UK HQ in Epsom
Last week, AWE Europe held its annual Smart Home Expo at its headquarters in Epsom, UK, giving integrators the chance to see the latest technology from AWE’s brand offerings.
The Show Apartment featured a variety of brands distributed by AWE, highlighting product portfolios including the latest in 8K TV technology, home control and networking, and multiroom audio.
Representatives were on hand at the event to talk integrators, electrical retailers, and electricians through the products and technology being demonstrated throughout the apartment.
Prior to AWE’s Smart Home Expo, the distributor has upgraded the entire apartment to feature the latest technology offerings.
AWE’s managing director, Stuart Tickle commented: “The reason we created the Show Apartment is the reason we have the AWE Expo – as a business, although we ultimately sell boxes to make money, our industry actually sells experiences that excite people and provide benefits to families in their homes.
“The run-up to AWE Expo was pretty intensive because of the scale of the event – with some people working weekends and late nights. But you can see how much technology is in every area.”
He continued: “The Show Apartment evolves every year and truly sets us apart. If we’re asking integrators, retailers, and electricians to spend a day with us, we recognise they they’re giving up a day’s income, so we always ensure that there’s plenty of new kit for people to see and briefing sessions to engage with.”
One of the main refurbished features in the Show Apartment is the Reference Cinema Room. The eight-seat room has been reconstructed to give visitors a more immersive experience to show what homeowners can have at this price point.
Reference Cinema Room
The room now features Sony’s flagship VPL-VW5000 4K laser projector which projects onto a four metre wide ALR Euroscreen. A Sony VPL-VW870 projector is also in the room and, by using URC’s control system, switching between the projectors, screen ratios and lens memory setting is totally seamless.
KEF THX & REFERENCE in-wall speakers provide the high-performance immersive audio for the Reference Cinema Room, delivering an incredible reproduction of both music and movie content.
Combined with KEF’s in-wall speakers, four of the Definitive Technology SuperCube 8000s are used to deliver 6000 watts of bass. Classé pwer amps deliver 400 watts per channel to the main speakers and a Marantz MM8077 drives the height speakers. The Marantz AV8805 performs 13-channel processing.
KEF's LSX line up
The next key area at the show is the smaller Performance Cinema. The upgrade in this room allows visitors to experience an IMAX Enhanced demonstration, using a 4K Sony VPL-VW570 projector with a Euroscreen 113-in acoustically-transparent, fixed-frame screen.
To complement the visuals, AWE Exclusive Reference In-Wall speakers from Definitive Technology have been used in an immersive 7.4.4 configuration. The speakers are fully enclosed units with a depth of less than 10cm, meaning they will fit into standard stud walls. This also includes the subwoofers, each of which houses two 10-in drivers. The Marantz SR8012 AVR has enough amplification to drive all 11 speakers, with the subs powered by dedicated KEF KASA500 amplifiers.
The Living Room
Set up as a mid-budget offering, the Living Room is an easy to install 7.2.2 media room, featuring high-performance immersive audio from Definitive Technology BP9060 tower speakers and matching height speakers, as well as in-ceiling surrounds by the AWE Exclusive Marantz SR-5014 AV amplifier. The room also features Sony’s flagship 65-in AG9 OLED TV, using the Sony OLED’s Acoustic Surface technology to act as the centre speaker.
New to the Show Apartment is The Den, a space designed to be comfortable, cost and relaxing while enjoying the sound of a pair of KEF R Series speakers, driven by the new Marantz NR1200 two-channel receiver.
Other highlights in The Den include an electric 104-in Euroscreen in-ceiling projection screen, the new Epson EH-TW7100 4K PRO-UHD projector and the new EH-LS500 ultra-short throw 4K PRO-UHD laser projector, Philips Hue and QMotion blinds. This is all activated and controlled using the URC TDC-7100 desktop controller.
The updated Study area features Samsung’s QLED The Frame 3.0 TV which displays artwork when switched off. In addition, KEF’s compact award-winning LSX wireless speakers provide high-performance sound to the area. The miniature models are clad in a choice of coloured industrial fabric finishes by Danish textile design company, Kvadrat.
Sound United demonstrated its multiroom capabilities with its HEOS platform in an impressive graphic representation of a house. HEOS is a key component within a wide range of Denon and Marantz products. The new Denon Soundbars were also being demonstrated in the Show Apartment and were used a strong solutions alongside the wide range of AVR’s and systems.
AWE also showed its UK exclusive Drive and Superlink professional HEOS models and the packages offered with Definitive Technology speakers and Kinetik Fire Hoods. Demonstrations were from both the native HEOS app, but also from the URC TDC-7100 touch panel, which was showing URC’s integration model.
URC Total Control 2.0 was the heart of the Show Apartment, providing complete control to all the technology throughout. New additions to URC include the TRC-1480 remote control with Alexa voice control and Siri for Apple TV, and the MRX-30 system controller which runs the entire HQ building, as well as customisable graphical user interfaces across the numerous touch panels and controls.
Automatic window treatment company, SilentGliss was also at the show demonstrating its new smart motorised curtain track and roller blind system, which comes with a nationwide onsite survey, design, installation, and support service. It was also showing its new Gateway control system, providing a simpler and more seamless way of integrating SilentGliss, which was demonstrated at the show with URC.
The Gallery areas of the Show Apartment have also been updated to showcase 4K OLED TV models from Sony, LG and Panasonic, as well as 4K QLED from Samsung, and 8K models by LG (75-in 75SM9900PLA), Sony (85-in KD85ZG9BU), and Samsung (65-in QE65Q950).
The Gallery Area
Sanus was also at the show to demonstrate its new TV brackets and 19-in AV rack cabinet solutions. The Sanus Black Series is a dedicated range of large-screen TV mounts for integrators.
Finally, a 65-in LG Wallpaper OLED now takes pride of place in the Games Room. Mounted to the wall, it is fed by an HDANYWHERE matrix, as are all the TVs throughout the Show Apartment. When switched off, the TV can show artwork to complement the interior décor of homes.