DTS Project House Partners with Axiom Design

The DTS Project House has partnered with Axiom Design of the San Francisco Bay area and Los Angeles, California, to design and advise on how best to implement the DTS Project House’s low voltage and Home Automation systems.

The Owner’s and mills studio’s due diligence included investigating multiple scenarios for implementing the desired Home Automation system for the DTS Project House. The explored scenarios included working with vendors providing both design and installation; working with vendors providing design and installation based upon the manufacturer’s product they sell (including vendors offering varied products including from Crestron to Control 4 to Savant); working with vendors who design and install using the KNX protocol; and working with a consultant providing a design and documentation (but no product) that could be competitively bid by potential installers.

The Owners decided to engage a Low Voltage / Home Automation design consultant and not a design / installation company. This decision was based upon the Owner’s desire that the Home Automation system be relatively non-proprietary so as to take full advantage of the best technology an entire industry has to offer instead of a single or limited number of manufacturer’s products that a design / installation company could offer.

The Low Voltage / Home Automation design consultant had to meet several critical criteria: ability to work with an Owner with definite general ideas regarding technology and extensive specific requirements; willingness to incorporate possibly untried innovations; flexibility to incorporate ever changing technology as the design develops; a willingness to incorporate the KNX protocol; and a commitment to detailed documentation. And maybe most importantly the Owner desired to work with a consultant that would share his vision of the engagement as a partnership with each party contributing to a unique and forward looking Home Automation design.     

The Owner’s and mills studio’s multiple interviews with Robert Kranson of Axiom Design discussing working process, philosophical attitudes, and even specific installation details such as color coding and labeling of cabling, convinced the Owners Robert Kranson and Axiom Design was the choice to engage in this all important partnership. Axiom Design’s commitment to thorough documentation aligns with the need to complete thorough pre-planning in order to properly integrate Home Automation infrastructure into a building structure of concrete, glass and steel.

Axiom Design’s custom designed Graphical User Interfaces with an emphasis on graphic  presentation versus text information were also of great interest to the Owners. The Owner’s directly experienced one such interface in its home setting and experienced how Axiom layered the Interface for multiple user experiences: one for easily accessing the basic house functions and one for accessing more complicated functions. The Owners were impressed with the way that complexity was provided for when desired, but not at the expense of everyday simplification.

The design process with Axiom commenced with a Discovery Phase that refines mills studio’s eighteen page memo summarizing the Owner’s general and specific requirements for development of the DTS Project House’s Home Automation system. How the efforts of DMC Technology (KNX integration) and Robert Singer Associates (Lighting Designer) will be integrated into Axiom Design’s process is also determined.  What is to be achieved is thoroughly defined and documented prior to determining how it will be achieved. The subsequent Design, Construction Documentation, Construction Administration Phases and possible software development will be tailored to best implement what the Home Automation design is to accomplish. 

Integrated Disciplines – Low Voltage

Axiom Design – San Ramon, Napa & Los Angeles, California