Knowing the difference between Installation and Integration can certainly help you in creating successful AV project.
According to the Merriam Webster dictionary:
Basic definition of Installation:
Clean wires bundle installation by Monaco Audio Video Pasadena, serving Los Angeles, La Canada, San Marino, Arcadia and Orange County
Definition of Integration:
There are the two most important aspect of any successful Finish Stage for any AV project: the installation and integration phase.
Installation phase: physically connect or install all the electronic equipment, for instance hang the TV on the wall, running the wires and installing the in-ceiling speakers (there are literally thousands of AV companies are fully capable doing this. Due to flat panel booming, flat panel installation business is becoming more popular, and a lot of companies take advantage of this situation)
Integration phase: After all the electronic components are being installed, the Integrator will make sure all the electronic components will communicate and function properly based on your needs and desire. The Integrator will try to set up the AV Receiver, Television, calibrate the system, adjusting all the setting, programming the control system and more. This is the most complex procedure and the most important phase that can’t be skipped (Unfortunately, only a few AV companies that understand and capable doing the Integration phase)
Typically, when customers called us and telling us that they have problem with the AV installation, 99% of the time technically they don’t have Installation problem, what they have is Integration problem. Unless the TV fell off from the wall, or the speakers came off from the ceiling, technically that is not an Installation problem. If the system is not function or operate like your desire and needs, chances are you have an Integration problem.
Interview the company that you would like to hire for your AV project and ask them the right questions:
Asking the right questions can and will save you headache down the road. Proper planning and doing your research is everything. Check the proposal line by line. Typically, in any AV project, you will see products categories such as Television, Speakers, AV Receiver, Furniture, Wires and Control System. Control System is the one that integrate all your electronics components. See if there is a control system from the Big 5 companies: Crestron, AMX, URC, Control4 or Savant. If you can’t find any Control System categories, chances are your system will not functioning properly or seamlessly integrated.
MONACO® is a full service audio video company; we are the expert in Custom Installation and Integration (C2I™)
Remember, if it is too good to be true, it is too good to be true. Read Buyer Beware
When you can’t operate your system or your system can’t function properly, most likely it is caused by Integration issue, not Installation issue.