The DTS Project House has chosen to install Sentido touch sensitive keypads manufactured by Basalte of Belgium.
The DTS Project House was conceived to integrate art and technology and home automation was targeted as one of the most important aspects of the project to achieve this integration. The design of the home automation system is intended to be both visually simple and simple to use. Installing Basalte keypads are among our most important design decision toward this end.
It was a fortuitous accident that the Owners were introduced to Basalte products. The Owners were attending a party at a grand spec house in Santa Monica, hosted by Sony Corporation for their “Sony Cierge” program. The Owners were invited to take a tour of the house and its impressive home automation system. On the Master Bedroom wall, the Owners spotted a beautiful glowing plus shaped light. They touched various parts of the glowing keypad, but nothing happened. After asking around, the Owners were told that it was a keypad that controlled the lights, shades and sound in the room, but that it was locked out as protection against prying fingers. More research lead to the fact that the product was manufactured by the Belgian company Basalte and although it could be used with Crestron and Lutron systems, most interestingly it was specifically designed to take advantage of the protocol and networking system called KNX. The Basalte products introduced KNX as an option for the DTS Project House and the non-proprietary KNX will be used to take advantage of many manufacturer’s products with Basalte as the key product decision.
The beauty of the Basalte product was what first attracted our attention, but the state of the art technology incorporated into their products made Basalte Keypads perfect for local control of the DTS Project House. Although all Basalte keypads use touch sensitive technology, including the exposed edges, there are design options such as square or rounded corners, four buttons versus two buttons, and digital display. Although there are four buttons on each keypad, many more devices can be controlled because of the multi-touch function which activates a different control sequence when you touch multiple buttons at once. There is also an RGB sequencer functions that allows each keypad to control multiple local or global scenes in addition to the individual buttons. There are options for each button to use a short and a long press to activate different control.
The Basalte Keypads control the Lighting, including dimming, shades, fireplaces, motorized doors, skylights, audio, and art pieces with individual buttons and scenes that include these items plus video, pool and spa, water feature, and HVAC. One of the most impressive features of the Basalte keypads is their ability to act as temperature sensors, thus eliminating the need for mounting visible thermostats and directly facilitating energy management.
Basalte keypads come in several different designs. The Deseo contains digital readouts, with square corners Sentido providing 2 and 4 touch buttons. The Enzo line provides two and four touch with rounded corners. The Keypads come in many finishes from metals to plastics to leather and in various colors.
Basalte’s stated goal of “uniting design and technology” perfectly aligns with the DTS Project House intentions to integrate design, technology, and sustainability.