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Smart Fabric?!

Once you start thinking the future finally here, from AI to autonomous vehicles, something new comes along that makes you think otherwise. There are so many new ideas out there that have yet to be developed and it's exciting to see what's next.

Image Credit: Microtron-3d via TechStory

Image Credit: WeaveUp via Dwell

Smart Fabric? Are we in Back to the Future II? A fabric that can sense environmental changes, send tactile or audible signals to visually and hearing impaired users, or track a wearer's vital signs? A fabric that interweaves strands of fiber optics, nano-electronics, or other conductive or semi-conductive threads in it? Sounds almost like science fiction.

What's really intriguing to us is the ability to control devices wirelessly. Gives a whole new meaning to smart home, doesn't it?! A recent patent made by Apple hints the fabric control technology could be integrated into other devices, including their MacBook, iPad and Watch, but also even chairs, sofas, airplanes and more. What could you imagine seeing smart fabric being used for?

Thanks for the great articles Dwell and TechStory.

Digital Solutions for All

At Home in Southwest Montana feature by Bozeman Daily Chronicle

Recently, a frustrated Bozeman couple wandered into the showroom at SAV Digital Environments on North Wallace Avenue. The couple had purchased an internet package from a local telecommunications company that ended up leaving their home with several dead zones. They attempted to solve the problem themselves by buying Wi-Fi extenders. No good. They consulted a local retail company that inevitably pushed more product on the couple, but that still did not solve the problem either. Finally, they made their way to SAV where they met Scott, the director of quality and customer.

Scott spoke with the couple for an hour that day and for another hour on the phone the following day before touring their home and providing a consultation. As he informed the couple of several potential solutions, they then asked how much this consultation is going to cost them. He said, “Our goal is to help you find the best solution to fit your needs, not to squeeze every last penny out of you.”

SAV is synonymous with seamless design, cutting-edge technology, and quality customer service. The company was formed as Studio AV in 2005, when owner Cory Reistad dreamt of creating the best audio and video environments possible. As technology progressed, so did business. They now outfit homes and businesses with not only A/V systems, but climate control, shades and lighting, security systems, and more, all of which can be automated with a press of a button on your smart phone, or even with voice. Wireless capabilities are also an in-home advancement we have seen take leaps within the last four or five years.

“What’s really important to us is clean, reliable, good-looking technology,” Scott says. “We hide wires to help preserve the aesthetics of the environment, we use flush details to help eliminate bulky components, and we sell appealing products that complement the environment.”

Though typical integrations involve visible products, if requested SAV is able to install “invisible” electronics, including speakers built into walls, pin-hole cameras, shades that roll up into concealed pockets, and even mirrors that transform into televisions.

“Smart mirrors are really cool,” Scott says. “You can get your agenda, morning news, or a movie in your bathroom or living room. And it’s all in the mirror!”

SAV is known for servicing some of the most beautiful and luxurious homes in southwest Montana, but a lot of people should know SAV values all integrations, large and small alike. “Most everyone likes the idea of cutting-edge technology, but they don’t necessarily know how to get it,” Scott says. “People who would want a cool audio system or a good security solution, it’s within arms reach and we’re here to help.”

The couple that wanted to kill their dead zones was presented with an option to achieve flawless internet connection. During their in-home consultation, Scott saw instruments laying around. Noticing music is important to them, he said, “We could create an immersive audio experience in here too that you could turn it off in one room and on in another from your phone.” Their faces lit up when they heard the word “immersive.” The solution was a mesh of overlapping wireless access points throughout the couple’s home with an end result being fast, reliable internet and then audio streaming from anywhere. And they can control everything from their phones, including shutting off internet to certain devices.

Stopping by the SAV showroom is a great way to find out what’s possible within your budget, not to mention getting a glimpse at some premier technology. You will see the fogging glass, camouflaged sound systems, automated shades and lights, and soon the latest in voice AI. It’s exciting to think that not only is this high-tech industry in our backyards, it could also be in our homes.

“This is the age of evolving design and technology,” Scott says. “Though we base our hearts in Bozeman and Big Sky, we have clients from Flathead to Paradise Valley to Missoula to Jackson, Wyoming.”

SAV Awarded Home of the Year

Photos ©William Abranowicz

Hidden Magic

In addition to the architecture and interior design, the cutting-edge digital component of the home contributed to its winning status—many amenities are invisible when you enter the home, which helps create the home’s tranquility. SAV worked with WRJ Design from the beginning of this project to provide lighting control, automated window treatments and AV throughout the home, amongst more.

“This home took dedication and devotion to precision at every level from the entire team. Working with the iconic vision of WRJ on this project was a delight for us. We have become adept at weaving technology into homes while retaining design aesthetics, the marriage of the two, and that’s where technology and design align to maximize efficiency, convenience, and enhanced levels of comfort for our clients.” – Cory Reistad, SAV Digital Environments

Cory shares a behind-the-scenes look at technological components in the home:

Flush details: To eliminate bulky components and preserve the aesthetics of the home, such as wall outlets and switches, SAV used a trimless and flush mounting solution throughout for wiring devices and automated controls such as lighting and shades.

Automated shades & drapes: Electronically controlled and hidden within pockets, or recessed into the window casement when up, SAV integrated shading solutions that a create a seamless appearance throughout as well as automated drapery that opens and closes with a simple push of a button.

Invisible speakers: SAV installed invisible speakers in the walls and then finished over them with the surrounding surface to deliver ambient music that emanates throughout the space with no visual footprint. It’s almost as if the walls become the speakers themselves.

Lighting control: SAV knows that lighting has a significant impact on not only the aesthetics of any given space, but the occupants as well. In order to achieve enhanced levels of comfort, they added high-performance lighting and control throughout the home for smooth and continuous dimming. Not only does this approach save energy, it helps maintain a visual quality for the occupants without compromising the building’s electrical infrastructure.

Read the whole article on Mountain Living

Gateway to the Big Sky
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Taking in the beauty of Montana’s Gallatin Gateway on the drive to Big Sky from Bozeman arguably primes ones senses for this project of SAV's we call "Wilderness Ridge." The first view of this modern home of stone and wood, contained within an elegant steel structure, presents itself as an artful fusion of unique, contemporary features with a “touch” of Western character.

As you approach this immaculate home, it seems to invitingly guide one in with illuminated down lights spotting from a wood ceiling, highlighting the entry and soft stone wall to the left, getting an overwhelming feeling of being welcomed. Entering, a visitors first “handshake” is with the lights, slowly dimming to off, as the west-facing shades reveal the gorgeous views and bright blue skies.

Although filled head to toe with technology - audio, video, security, automated lighting and shades – there is no clutter. The only visible signs of technology are well-placed keypads, decretive LED fixtures, thoughtfully placed down lights, and mid-day, down-positioned shades.

In the evening, as the sun begins to glare in from the west, the lights slowly illuminate and the strategically placed semi-transparent shades (or blackout depending on which room you are in) reveal themselves from custom pockets in the ceiling. SAV's automated programming is what makes this happen. In the moment, it was as if the lights and shades were talking to each other, congruent for the common good of creating calm. The aesthetics are uncompromising in these rooms.

As you continue through the home, the use of subtle, ambient lighting enhances the space, from under bathroom counter tops, to the impressive stairway, offering soft-lit safety. Once in the downstairs, lighting and shades are manipulated by simple, custom-labeled buttons to enhance the environment. “Rec Room” brought everything to life, while individuals like “Entertain” lit only select features – the pool table, bar and wine cellar. The room simply transformed per your request, whether you just want to relax and watch a movie or chill with music streaming from all angles.

SAV Digital Environments orchestrates various technologies to work in concert. Though the structure itself, the materials used, the design elements throughout, and the attention to detail were very intentional and impressive, the customized integration of environmental enhancements brings this home to life. The lighting, the shades, the control, the feeling... This home is perfectly fit for an enhanced lifestyle, designed to work seamlessly with advanced technologies, bringing intuitive control to the environments throughout. 

SAV Digital Environments New Showroom

For over a dozen years SAV Digital Environments flagship office at 618 North Wallace in Bozeman has been the central hub for housing employees, meeting with partners and clients, parking the fleet, vetting and testing the latest and greatest technologies, building racks and so much more.

As SAV grew over the years, we opened 2 new locations; a showroom in Big Sky and an office space in Four Corners. Inspired by the new showroom in Big Sky, our eclectic Bozeman space was recently transformed into an additional SAV showroom where visitors are able to walk through the front door and immediately experience some incredible examples of audio/video systems, automation, lighting and shade control, security and more.

Explore Big Sky: On May 10, the innovative automation technology company SAV Digital Environments welcomed Earth Elements, a multi-faceted interior design and supply company, into their N. Wallace location with a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the grand opening of their new Design & Technology Showroom, a collaborative space at 618 N. Wallace St. in Bozeman. 

“It just made sense,” said Cory Reistad, president of SAV. “We share some of the same clientele, and this location is convenient for the Bozeman community.”

“I’m pleased with how it all turned out,” said Steve Taylor, owner of Earth Elements. “This will end up saving our employees and our customers time and fuel.”

Audiophiles were treated to an extremely rare Steinway Lyngdorf Model B loudspeaker demonstration as they explored the new showroom and collaborative space enjoying hors d’oeuvres, refreshments and conversation.

Photography: ©SAVAlexandra GilbertsonExplore Big Sky & Bozeman Chamber of Commerce

Steinway Lyngdorf Model B Demo at SAV
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Steinway Lyngdorf unveiled two new products – the Model B loudspeaker and the new P100 processor – at Integrated Systems Europe (ISE) 2018, the largest AV and systems integration show in the world. ISE took place February 6–9 2018 at Amsterdam RAI Exhibition and Convention Center.

The first free-standing speaker from Steinway Lyngdorf since the LS Concert, the Model B answers market demands for a compact full-range speaker capable of detailed reproduction and powerful performance.  The open-baffle dipole Model B not only borrows design inspiration from the flagship Model D speaker, it uses some of the same exceptional materials such as the specially designed fiberglass bass drivers.

Attendees at ISE were able to experience the Model B for the very first time paired with the new P100 processor. The P100 features three HDMI inputs and one output with 18 Gbps bandwidth allowing 4K@60Hz passthrough with HDR. As with all Steinway Lyngdorf processors, the P100 features fully digital processing, RoomPerfect™ room correction, intelligent bass management, and seamless level alignment + a custom voicing tool.

As part of our Design & Technology Showroom opening a few weeks ago, SAV is the first custom integration firms in the US to demo them. To schedule a demonstration, email marketing@savinc.net or swing by our showroom anytime.

Summer Home Automation Trends
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Summer is around the corner which means the kids are out of school and the temperature heating up. The kids are involved in activities to keep them busy while you go to work. You may have a few family vacation trips scheduled.

Summer can sometimes be as chaotic as the rest of the year, which means that home automation can come in handy in making your family’s life easier.

If you’re a techie who’s into the latest and greatest home automation technology, here are some summer home automation trends to be on the lookout for:

Climate Control and Efficiency

Power and electric bills can skyrocket during the heat of the summer as you’re A/C works overtime to keep your home cool and comfortable. Besides setting the thermostat to an energy-saving 62 degrees during the day when no one’s home and warming up to a comfortable 70 during the chilly nights, home automation such as those installed by SAV can now do much more, making your home comfortable, while making it more energy efficient.

Some home automation systems can sense movement in different rooms. When someone leaves a room, the lights are turned off and the A/C is shut off. Similarly, there are systems where your home can prepare itself for your arrival home after a long day at work, turning on lights, opening up the blinds and shades and adjusting the inside temperature to your preference. In the morning, tiles in the bathroom heat up to take away that cold shock in the morning.

The most sophisticated systems can even show you your family’s energy consumption for the day, week, month or year including your carbon footprint and how much your family’s energy consumption is compared to the national average.

Home Security

Home security was one of the features that brought home automation onto the map. Many home automation security systems utilize an app such as Apple’s Control4 My House, whereby you can lock or unlock your home, view activity in and around your home via live video feeds and get alerts of unusual activity all remotely.

More sophisticated home automation products can be customizable and  allow you to set timers during the day whereby the home is unlocked. This is handy for when you have children coming home from school or sports practice or when the housecleaner or gardeners arrive.  These systems are especially useful for when your family is away on vacation.

Home security systems now can even save lives. Certain systems can be inserted into the flooring of the home and can recognize and detect the footsteps of the inhabitants. These foot-sensing systems can also send alerts when an irregularity in the person’s gait is detected or when there is less than normal movement or activity in the home, making these systems great for those with elderly parents living alone or with the family.

Home Theater

During the summer, trips to the pool will become routine. However, one can only be at the pool for so long  and it likely isn’t possible to go to the pool every day. It can be hard to keep children occupied and cool during the summer.

The long dog-days of summer are a great time to escape to a cool  movie theater. Even then, you can’t go see a movie every day. Movies are time-consuming and can be expensive.

With home theater technology continually advancing, watching movies in the comfort of your own home is getting closer to rivaling that of a movie theater.

Watching movies at home on a home theater can keep your kids occupied, safe and comfortable during those days when you go to work.

Home theaters are more than fancy, large TVs with excellent 4K technology. Home theater systems such as the Kaleidescape’s Terra Movie Server, can save and store thousands of your favorite movies to the cloud, making the need of keeping all those DVDs unnecessary. The system also provides movie recommendations and has parental controls, enabling you to block certain content, such as movies that are rated R or PG-13.

Lights, sound, temperature control and TV/screen projection can be controlled with a touch of a remote.

A lot has happened in home automation regarding climate control, home security and home theater. These components come in handy especially during the hot, lazy days of summer when kids aren’t in school and you take a vacation or two.

Automating Your Home Theater

Installing a home theater is a big undertaking that results in many years of family enjoyment. It can be daunting on where to start. You need the space, design the space and get furniture and equipment to make your home theater a reality.

Home theater technology has greatly improved over the last few years as has become more accessible and convenient to watch blockbuster movies in the comfort of one’s home. Some of this home theater technology includes automation.

Home automation has been around for years and more homeowners are opting for converting their homes into smart homes where everything from lighting control, shades and blinds, temperature control and home security are all controlled automatically with a simple press of a button on a smartphone. And home automation can now be used for your home theater, giving you and your family an enhanced, stress-free movie viewing experience.

How Automation Enhances Your Home Theater

Temperature and Climate Control
Home automation controls the temperature inside your home, making it comfortable and more energy efficient. Many home automation climate control systems can be controlled using a remote so you don’t have to make your way to the thermostat.

Have you gone to a commercial movie theater and got chilled from the air conditioning? Many movie theaters crank their AC up meaning that for some movie patrons, a sweater is essential for a pleasant movie experience. At home with temperature and climate control automation, you can keep your home (and home theater) at the ideal temperature for you and your family. You can now enjoy a family movie night without needing to wear a sweater or jacket.

Lighting Control
The ability of controlling the lighting in your home offers convenience, and enhanced home security and electrical efficiency.

In movie theaters, properly-timed lighting is crucial. Lights are needed before and after the movie to allow guests to navigate their way out of the theater. It is also crucial the lights are turned out during the movie to make the experience enjoyable and captivating. With a home theater that is controlled by automated lighting, you can brighten and dim the lights with a simple press of the button on a remote or even have the lights go on and off automatically.

Surround Sound Control
Speakers are an important component of a home theater system. Having high-quality speakers strategically placed and tuned properly will give you and your family the feeling of being in the movie.

Setting up speakers, however, can be tricky, especially if you have many. High-quality speakers with more complex settings and abilities are ideal for a home theater. Setting these up properly and fully using them correctly and fully taking advantage of all they have to offer can be frustrating to figure out.

With an automated home theater system, the technologically advanced components can be easily set up and the settings saved so all you need to do is simply press a button or two on a remote and the speakers will work properly in sync with each other every time, giving you that ideal surround sound.

Projector and Ultra 4K TV
Being able to visually see the movie on the screen is what a movie is all about. Not just any screen will do. People spend money to see movies on big screens. Large screens make for better picture quality which enhances the viewing experience.

With the increased popularity of home theaters, TVs, projectors and movie players get more and more technologically sophisticated. The large screen, bulky TVs of the past with the equally bulky DVD player are no longer good enough. Large, flat-screen TVs with 4K ultra HD picture quality, with small wireless movie players such as Kaleidescape’s Strato Movie Player, are now the new home theater standard.

With the advancement in technology, one can play movies from their nearly limitless online cloud movie storage. No more unsightly racks of DVD movie cases. The new way of watching movies online allows people to watch their favorite movie wherever with superb image quality.

Home theater TVs can play your favorite movie automatically by being downloaded from Internet or cloud storage. With a few clicks of your TV remote, you can watch and record your favorite TV shows, watch YouTube videos and enjoy a family movie night.

For those with large home theaters that can accommodate a movie screen and projector, you’d be happy to know that home automation can make setting up the projector and the automatic opening up and turning up the screen quick, easily and convenient. A few buttons on a remote enables you to automatically play and stop the projector as well as roll up and down the blank movie screen.

A home automated home theater will not only give you and your family unforgettable movie nights, but also carries additional benefits including increasing your home’s resale value, additional level of security, and make your home the ultimate entertainment spot on the block.

Whether it’s your first attempt at a home theater or you’ve moved into a new home and would like to install another home theater, using home automation will enhance the home movie viewing experience and remove the stress and frustration of equipment not working properly or being ill-timed.

At SAV Digital Environments, our team of experts can design, install, and manage home automated lighting, speakers, AV, climate control, and automated blinds in your home theater and throughout the rest of your house to give your family the perfect, enhanced movie viewing experience. Contact us today to schedule an installation or to get a quote.

Best of Big Sky 2017

Published December 22, 2017

With more than 3,000 votes cast, locals and visitors recognized the restaurants, retailers, artists, architects, nonprofits, builders and bartenders that make this place we know and love tick. Some of our readers may be visiting from afar, and others might be lucky enough to have called Big Sky home for a decade or more, but we can all agree that this is a pretty special spot. Dig into the write-ups that follow as we celebrate the finest Big Sky has to offer.

"SAV is a newcomer to the Big Sky business scene but has history in the Bozeman area dating to 2004. Cory Reistad and his team offer the most cutting-edge technology and service for Big Sky homes. From AV systems and lighting to home controls and energy management, SAV is a welcome addition to the Big Sky landscape." – Explore Big Sky

We are humbled and excited to have taken 2nd place in Best of Big Sky 2017 "Best New Business." Thank you to everyone who voted for us and we look forward to continuing to help Big Sky grow.

SAV opens an office in Big Sky's Town Center

By Amanda Eggert
Published August 7, 2017

After 17 years of regular trips through Gallatin Canyon, SAV Digital Environments has set up shop here in Town Center, closer to the bulk of their Montana clientele.

SAV sets up integrated digital systems for homes and businesses. They design tailored audio and lighting systems, immersive video-viewing areas, and window treatments that can allow a pre-determined amount of natural light into a space. They also design climate control, security and surveillance systems.

At a July 28 ribbon cutting with the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce, Cory Reistad, president of SAV, said the new space in Big Sky makes sense.

“We’ve been in Bozeman for 17 years and we’ve been serving this community almost exclusively,” Reistad said, adding that SAV has new employees living in Big Sky. “[We wanted] to be at the forefront of the growth here.”

They’ll be joined in that space by Energy 1, an 8-year-old renewable energy solutions firm.

Energy 1 owner and co-founder Leo Crane said opening a space in Big Sky with SAV makes sense given that they’re both in the design/build industry and have many overlapping clients.

“We crossed paths enough on past projects that this was a very natural fit for us to have a space up here,” Crane said. Both SAV and Energy 1 also keep offices in Bozeman and Jackson, Wyoming.

Energy 1 works on mechanical, electrical and plumbing projects with a focus on renewable energy. They design solar and solar-electric systems for clients, as well as high-efficiency heating and cooling using smart thermostats and geothermal technology.

Crane said the bulk of Energy 1’s business in Big Sky focuses on geothermal systems, which take advantage of the more consistent temperature of the earth underneath a building for heating, cooling and hot water. But they also work on installations like oxygen enrichment to help people coming from lower altitudes acclimate to Big Sky’s elevation.

Crane added that Energy 1 is the only company in the state of Montana that has partnered with electric automaker and solar panel manufacturer Tesla on their charging stations. “That’s an exciting part of our business that we’ll be able to offer Montana clients—Tesla products,” he said.