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14


KEF Ci200RR-THX in-wall/ceiling speakers for custom installation.


A cinematic media room installation by ConnectedWorks in Bristol.


Concealing home cinema technology is popular. “Typically, clients don’t want to see speakers, projectors or acoustic panels,” Maddock of ConnectedWorks explains. His view is echoed by James Ratcliffe, managing director and founder of award- winning home technology integration company Homeplay. “Totally invisible speaker systems, such as those from Amina, have come on a long way and can sound incredible when done right,” he says. “When Dolby Atmos dictates that you need upwards of eight speakers in a room - and sometimes as many as 15 or more - having the ability to make them completely disappear helps keep designers and architects on side.” Voice control is the biggest talking point in


consumer tech at the moment, due to the popularity of smart speakers from the likes of Amazon and Google – but some industry experts are not convinced they are useful for the user interface in a home cinema set-up. “Personally, I’m not a fan. Although it’s


better than it was, it’s still got a long way to go,” says Homeplay’s Ratcliffe. “It’s not what most people would think of as intelligent. It’s pretty good at converting speech to text, but how that text is interpreted is where it falls down. It’s quite good for things that would otherwise require inputting via a keyboard – ‘watch Game of Thrones’, for example – but that’s about it. Technology that frustrates our clients is the exact opposite of what we’re aiming to deliver.” Evans of NV Integration adds: “We work


with an interior design company with over 65,000 Instagram followers and recently they put it to a vote – ‘to voice control or not


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