When I first decided to try LMCE I wanted to keep costs to a minimum until I proved that I could actually get a system up and running. My system so far is:
- Hybrid Core with HDTV capture (OTA)
- 330G internal storage for videos and music
- Denon Receiver with in-wall speakers
- Insteon modem (1 light switch but more planned)
- 1-wire temp sensor (1 sensor but more planned)
- Gyration remote
It hasn't always been easy, but with help from the forums I've been able to get most things working (Insteon and 1-wire aren't up yet, but I'm working on it). Now I'm looking for input on the most cost effective ways to make the system more fun and more usable.
- Orbiters. Currently, my only control is the Gyration remote. My wife has an iPhone and an eeePC notebook (Windows) that I plan to set up as orbiters, but I've heard one of the best upgrades is to get a web pad with a touch screen.
- Telephone. This could pay for itself because I'm now paying 45US for a landline that I could eliminate. I checked into Broadvoice which looks like it is about 11US. I'm no expert on phone systems, but it looks like there are roughly two paths. I could get a VOIP phone like the Cisco 7970, or I could get an analog telephone adapter like the SPA3102 and use the phones I already own (I'm leaning this way).
- Security system. GE Caddx has rs232 connection and is inexpensive.
What do you think? Am I considering good upgrades? Are there better products than the ones I'm listed? Are there cost effective upgrades that I'm overlooking?
I can confirm that adding a touch based device to your system is definitely a great upgrade. You could use one of the Android Orbiters that have been developed or the .net Orbiter...but since your Wife has an iPhone you could download the Dianemo iOrbiter App from iTunes (its free by the way - just search for 'dianemo' in Apps section of the iTunes Store). Since you have the hardware for the iOrbiter I'd give that a try first.
All the best