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The Four Step Guide to Selecting a Home Automation System

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Westcoast AV Highlights Some of the Stand-out Features of Control4 and Crestron

The world of home automation is constantly evolving and can feel overwhelming if you’re trying to research the many different systems available on the market. At Westcoast AV, we hope to remove stress from the equation by providing you a quick 4-step guide to evaluating two of our favorite smart home companies, Control4 and Crestron. Read on to learn more about the different features of each system and how you can transform your White Rock, BC residence.

Step 1: Get to Know the Company behind the System

With over three decades in the automation space, Crestron is the more senior of the two companies building complex systems that support the integration of ventilation, lighting, power, fire, shades, elevators, and security. A Creston system allows for expansion in the future and can be refreshed and reprogrammed to include additional capabilities.

  • Top choice for corporate boardrooms and large custom homes
  • Highly customizable solutions that are scalable and repeatable
  • Forged deep, long-standing partnerships with the world’s technology giants, such as Apple®, Cisco Systems®, Microsoft®, Intel®, and Texas Instruments®

Control4 was founded in 2003, and while they are the newest kid on the automation block, the company focuses on delivering elegant and more affordable ways to control and automate your home and business. Based in Salt Lake City, Utah, the company also has offices in York, England; Shanghai, China; Bangalore, India; Belgrade, Serbia; Melbourne, Australia; Huntington Beach and San Jose, California.

  • More than a decade of home automation experience
  • Offers lower price points than Crestron
  • Integrates with nearly 10,000 third-party consumer electronic devices including Amazon Echo, Nest, Sonos, Kwikset smart locks and Lutron

Step 2: Evaluate the Differences

At Westcoast AV, we continually assess the latest trends in home automation, and we like each system for different reasons.

Control4 is the most popular mid-level home automation system and a great entry-level platform for those new to the automation space. The price point is, well, on-point at about $800 for a small controller and around $300 for a remote it’s easy to get started controlling a single room. The system offers flexibility and can manage audio, video, lighting controls, whole-house controls, security systems, motorized shades and a long list of third-party devices.

SEE ALSO: What’s the Latest in Home Automation?

Crestron offers the most robust and highly customizable system and encompasses from lighting and music to security and video distribution. The systems are scalable, integrating a single room through to a multi-building campus with the most complex of integrations. The higher-end price point is well worth the extra spend. Many third-party devices can be integrated with the system thanks to some sophisticated programming.

Step 3: Review the Details


  • Offers the closest solution to an out-of-the-box product available, allowing for faster set-up that can be installed in minutes versus weeks
  • Most robust third-party device integration including thermostats, speakers, locks and an array of Internet of Things devices
  • Great for retrofit projects; add home technology without rewiring a home
  • High-resolution displays are intuitive, and the system allows for audio/video control from a TV


  • Offers the greatest level of customization and integration; requires a degree of programming to personalize the system
  • Top choice for luxury homes and Fortune 500 companies
  • Offers an array of interfaces for complete control including in-wall touch screens, handheld remotes, and iPads
  • More costly system but offer higher degree of flexibility and scalability

Step 4: Choose the System that is Right for You

We admit this can be the hardest step of our 4-step guide. Surely we can’t cover everything in one blog post about all the amazing features of a Crestron and Control4 system. We do believe that both systems offer a personalized lifestyle that you’ll surely want to take advantage of and that regardless of the system you choose, it’s more important who installs it for you. A poorly configured system will drive you mad, but once you experience the ease of working with an experienced technology professional like Westcoast AV Gallery, you’ll never look at technology the same way again.

Contact us to learn more about home automation and the features most important to you and your family.

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