2009-01-05, 03:16 PM
I mickey-moused myself a "better-than-nothing" bias light for my HT over the weekend, and I'm trying to come up with an inexpensive way to control it with my Harmony 550. I'm reasonably handy with a soldering iron and I'm not afraid of a little DIY project if that's what it takes... My searches haven't come up with anything so far, so I figured I'd ask here. I thought about using a "smart" power bar to have it come on with the TV, but it just looks weird when it's on during daylight hours or when I'm watching TV or gaming with the room lights on.
I'm probably going to get one of those RF-controlled fake lightswitches as an interim fix, and if I can't come up with a better option, try to replace the RF portion of the receiver with an IR sensor & controller.
2009-01-05, 06:18 PM
Lutron Maestro. Ir controlled, and you can control it with your 550. Under 50 bucks at HD and CT! I put on in my theater to control ten pot lights, and it is great. Press play, and the lights dim. Press pause and the lights come up :)
2009-01-05, 06:46 PM
How 'bout his...I have two of those dimmers in a 2-gang box. They both have the same remote. One dimmer controls 6 pots in the ceiling, the other controls 2 wall sconces. If I'm using either remote, it operates both switches...ie. "on" and they both go on, "off" and they both go off etc.
Is there a way to control each seperately thru my Harmony 890Pro? Sorta like the above example...play and they go down, pause and they come up...possibly at different levels?
2009-01-05, 06:50 PM
I mickey-moused myself a "better-than-nothing" bias light for my HT over the weekend, and I'm trying to come up with an inexpensive way to control it with my Harmony 550.
I did mine last weekend. Right now I'm just reaching behind the TV to turn it on.
I think the best option is to put one of the Lutron switches into a box with an outlet and have the switch control the outlet. I'll probably keep an eye out for a somewhat less expensive one.
I need a grounded outlet since I went for an electronic ballast flourescent to eliminate any hum. All in all, I quite like the results.
2009-01-06, 11:41 AM
I have 3 Lutrons in a triple gang box and its all or nothing when putting them up or down. The other goodie is that the switches can be reached from the couch : ) so I can tinker with whats on or just on low
I believe Lutron's "Spacer System" allows individual control of up to a three ccts if you install 3 dimmers.
2009-01-07, 09:42 PM
Man, I feel such an amateur. I just use an electronic ballast fluorescent plugged into an X10 appliance module, with the X10 IR interface module for on/off (also controls other lights in the room, and a fan for the big amps JIC...) using my universal remote. No fluorescent level control, this is also high tech: I figured out what level was "correct" from the DVE BD bias light test pattern and fixed it using a cut paper towel tube over the fluorescent bulb. :) Nobody can see the backlight fixture itself, so it doesn't really matter.
2009-01-07, 11:51 PM
I'm working on setting up my 2nd home theater, so I'm also looking into lighting control. I have the Lutron Maestro for my current set up but I'm hoping to expand and didn't want to consider the Grafik Eye (too much). Discovered 3BM Smart switch from a wholesale distributor on craigslist in Vancouver. With the remote it can handle up to 3 dimmers. Dimmers are $30 each and the remote is $5. For $90, it sounds like a good deal for controlling 3 sets of lights. ebay sells it for a lot more.
2009-01-14, 07:47 AM
My stuff is quite old.
I have my bias lighting plugged into the switched outlet on my 10-year old Kenwood AVR. Whenever my Harmony 880 turns on the AVR, the bias lighting turns on with it.
Not the best, but it's acceptable.