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emo777

motorized drapes

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I recently put in Somfy roller shades -- 5 shades in one room (14% see thru fabric) and 2 shades in another room (black out). Due to the width/height of the shades I was able to go with the 24V motors which makes it a lot easier to run wire as it's low voltage. You just provide power to the motors - no wires are needed to send up/down/stop commands - it's all RF (not Zigbee though).

I also bought a Somfy Universal RTS interface (1810872) that hooks up via RS-232 to my HC-300 controller. There's drivers for it in Composer but the way they appear on touch screens etc isn't too great. The only real issue I've had is that the range of the RTS interface (looks like a small wireless router with an antenna) is a bit weak. I do have a lot of walls etc so I'm still trying to figure out the best positioning of the interface. Just using the standard Somfy RF remotes works great though -- I'm just still trying to perfect the integration into Control4...

As for pricing, I got some local quotes and they were in the $20k range. I ended up buying all shades online (they came completely assembled with motors and fabric etc.) and just installing myself for a quarter of the cost.

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I have always complained about the range of the RTS interface. Somfy says about 50 ft. but that is kind of misleading. MechoShades 2 zone C4 zigbee interface is the way to go so as not to have to worry about that issue. Although th driver is lacking, through programming you can get a lot more control.

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I hate it when I get pricing as follows:

Your total costs for installation and programming are $645.00.

-----

Thats's all I get, no info on what hardware or what work is involved. So I have no idea if I am paying $200 for hardware or for programming. Sigh! I guess the search for another dealer will continue...

ac

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Would you want the itemized, so that you can price shop the dealer and nickle and dime him?

I have heard in the pro- forums that the reason some people bid for the job complete, is to prevent that.

Good luck on finding a better dealer

Brent

Edit:

I am not implying anything, I am just mentioning why some people may want to quote "all inclusive"

Edited by dogdvr

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No, I want it itemized. I like to know what I am paying for. People bid for complete jobs to give the customer a fixed price for a job, which usually means that if it takes more time, the service provider eats up those costs. Alternatively, they simply charge for the hardware and then charge by the hour for installation, configuration, etc. I consult on IT projects and do the same. My clients pick what they prefer.

I pay for quality work. A detailed quote tells me that a service provider is a professional, dedicated to providing service, and able to support my needs and requirements. Typically, this also means that they are costlier than the average provider.

My 'regular' dealer gives me a spreadsheet with hardware, install and config costs. When the job is done, they update the same spreadsheet with any changes and actual costs for install and config, ultimately reducing the costs if they did it quicker. They stand by their estimates and do NOT charge more if they took longer. I have spent over $25k with them over the last 1.5 years. They don't do shades/blinds so I am looking for someone else.

I compare pricing when I shop for certain things. But I also look for other things that make me comfortable as a buyer.

ac

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