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    HACS AB8SS Speaker Switcher Plug-In

    I don't know how many of you know of the cool HACS AB8SS speaker switcher, but it's a wonderful device. If you're looking for a controller that can switch 8 sets of stereo speakers (that's 16 speakers) on/off individually and be hooked up to an old amplifier (it provides impedance matching), this is the best thing out there. It can be controlled by:
    * X-10
    * IR
    * Serial port

    We installed ceiling speakers around the house and have them all hooked up to two AB8SS's. They work very well, and the quality is excellent.

    Here's a link to a page about it: http://www.hacs.com/ab8ss.html It was written by the engineer who designed the device and isn't described all that well. Don't be scared by the price, I got mine much cheaper.

    Anyway, I wanted HomeSeer to have control of the box directly, instead of through X-10 or IR so I would get the fastest response time and always know the status. Here is a plug-in to do just that.

    Best wishes to all,

    --David

    #2
    Where did you get yours "much cheaper"?

    Comment


      #3
      Rob,

      I got mine directly from the HACS owner (Ray Newman) when he introduced them more than a year ago. Since then, he hasn't really ramped up manufacturing, so I think it's worth just asking him if he'd offer them at a lesser price. Today, I sent him a note asking him if he would consdier lowering the price.

      It's a really good product, and it has so much versatility with the different ways it can be controlled. This is made by the same fellow who designed a good portion of the Xantech product line, as I recall.

      --David

      Comment


        #4
        I'd be interested if it could be obtained "much cheaper". Keep us posted David.

        Cheers,
        Paul

        Comment


          #5
          I've been looking at this for a while, but I'm not ready to spend that much either.

          gk

          Comment


            #6
            <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by David Kindred:
            I don't know how many of you know of the cool HACS AB8SS speaker switcher, but it's a wonderful device. If you're looking for a controller that can switch 8 sets of stereo speakers (that's 16 speakers) on/off individually and be hooked up to an old amplifier (it provides impedance matching), this is the best thing out there. It can be controlled by:
            * X-10
            * IR
            * Serial port

            We installed ceiling speakers around the house and have them all hooked up to two AB8SS's. They work very well, and the quality is excellent.

            Here's a link to a page about it: http://www.hacs.com/ab8ss.html It was written by the engineer who designed the device and isn't described all that well. Don't be scared by the price, I got mine much cheaper.

            Anyway, I wanted HomeSeer to have control of the box directly, instead of through X-10 or IR so I would get the fastest response time and always know the status. Here is a plug-in to do just that.

            Best wishes to all,

            --David<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

            Comment


              #7
              David,

              Is there some way I can use your plug-in to support two AB8SS's? I went ahead and bought two of these great units and would love to have support for both of them via your plug-in. Thanks again for taking the time to develop this!

              Thanks,
              Brad

              Comment


                #8
                David,

                I have one of these on order. Where can I get a copy of your plugin?

                Thanks,
                Bill

                Comment


                  #9
                  Did you get them for a "much better price"? If so how much? TIA.

                  -Rupp

                  Hum ... If man evolved from monkeys and apes, why do we still have monkeys and apes?
                  -Rupp
                  sigpic

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Rupp,

                    At one point they were asking about $250 for one. Now the price on the website (what I paid) is $149 plus shipping.

                    Bill

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Bill and other HACS AB8SS guys,

                      I'm sorry, I've been a slacker and still don't have the plug-in ready for the Updater. I've been a bit overwhelmed lately. I'll try to get it out this week, if I can. Sorry!

                      --David

                      Comment


                        #12
                        David,

                        I just got an email from Ray, mine still isn't built, so it could be another day or two before he ships. So you have a little more time :-)

                        When I looked at these a couple of years ago I was going to control it with X10, since all I had was a StarGate. But now that I can hook it up serial with a HS plugin that is the way I want to go with it.

                        Bill

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Howdy, guys.

                          I've finished work on the AB8SS plug-in, packaged it up, and sent it off to Rick and Rich to be placed in the Updater. Hopefully, you'll see it there sometime soon. It's a fairly straight-forward plug-in. It will enable you to control the AB8SS by serial port to...

                          - Turn on/off individual speaker pairs
                          - Turn all speakers on/off
                          - Switch between the two input amplifiers
                          - Automatically polls the AB8SS every 5 seconds to see if the relays have been changed by IR or X10

                          It creates devices for each of the speakers, input selector and all on/off functions, so you can treat them, more or less, like appliance modules. It's really easy!

                          As with the WAF-NetCallerID script, I'm selling this one to try to raise money to take my loving wife out to dinner. I want to prove to her that there are some tangible benefits to our hobby.

                          Best wishes to all,

                          --David

                          Comment


                            #14
                            The timing is perfect, my AB8SS should be delivered on Monday, now I wish it had shown up yesterday.

                            Bill

                            Comment


                              #15
                              David,

                              i tried the plugin, and it functions well. However, I have a couple of suggestions...

                              1) Update the status text with on/off instead of 1/0 for the speaker relays, and A/B for the Input A/B. I'm not sure if there's anything better to put in the status for the All Speakers On.
                              2) While it doesn't look like it creates a significant load, it would be nice to be able to select a poll time - 5 seconds is a bit too frequent for my use.
                              3) Publish the scripting interface functions (if they exist), so we can access some of the functionality in scripts.
                              4) wishlist item - have the plugin support multiple (at least 2, since that's how many I have!) units

                              I haven't installed the AB8SS yet, still on the test bench until I get all the wires where i need them, but you can count on at least one purchase in the near future.

                              jim

                              Has anyone learned the IR for the AB8SS into an ocelot/leopard (or pronto) yet, and can provide the IR commands?

                              [This message was edited by Jim Cirillo on Sun, 08 June 2003 at 04:34 PM.]

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