Backyard Living and Options for Improving Your Tech Outside
Summer is here and these are definitely different times right now with restrictions and recommendations for having to stay within our own properties as much as possible. Anyone who has a backyard must feel very fortunate right now. You can spend as much time out there as you’d like while grabbing some fresh air and some sun. So, if you love tech, what can you do to improve your outdoor living experience?
Landscaping is something that many people have loved to invest in. Making your property look great lets you personalize your home to stand apart from your neighbours and friends. But a common afterthought when designing your landscaping is the tech that we all love and use daily. What options are available other then bringing out a Bluetooth speaker and hoping for the best? Actually, there are many! Here are a few options for you to consider:
- Audio- If you’re looking for more then just a Bluetooth speaker (and you should be) then you need to first think about what you’re trying to achieve. You can either have a couple of wall mounted speakers around a patio area, Speakers that look like rocks in the garden bed or you can take the next step and get a landscape audio system. Landscape Audio system like the Garden Oasis from Paradigm typically have 4 or more speakers and a Subwoofer which is buried in the ground with a mushroom looking cap sticking out. These system sound phenomenal and they look great too as they are designed to blend in with landscape lighting
- Wi-Fi- Like it or not we live in a connected world. While some might try escaping their phones and laptops when they are outside, many people are choosing to either work from their backyards or they just still want to have their tech outside with them. A common issue once you go outside from your home is Wi-Fi. Your signal and reception can drop significantly outside of your home and usually it’s due to the location of your Wireless Access Point (WAP) or it could even be the materials that your home was built with. Many of the fancy large windows people get installed have coatings on them to help the materials inside the house from fading in the sun, but they also affect the wireless signal going outside. The Best thing to do is put an outdoor rated Wi-Fi access point somewhere outside in the backyard. This would help your devices run better and load websites and content even faster.
- Video- Not everyone cares to watch TV when they’re relaxing in the backyard or on the Patio, but there are many that do. With the weather elements being so unpredictable, it can be a nice sunny day one minute and 5 minutes later we can be in a torrential down pour. If you’re thinking of placing your TV under a covered Patio, you can probably get away with using a regular TV, but you must have the understanding that the TV might not last and you probably will need to replace it much quicker then the ones you have inside. The proper solution is getting an actual Outdoor rated TV. There are a few on the market such as Sunbrite, Seura and even Samsung has released a new line of outdoor TVs. These TVs come at a premium price point but they also have many benefits over regular TVs such as they’re sealed to prevent insects from going inside. Some are waterproof or water resistant and then biggest advantage is they are designed to be brighter so that even if the sun is shining on them, you can still see the image much better.
Don’t make the common mistake when planning your new landscaping job or back yard extension, start thinking about it as early as possible. Sticker shock is very common in any industry and the AV industry is no different. If you are looking for quality equipment that will last you a long time, these items tend to cost more then the entry level stuff you can find at the big box stores. The same way you requested a drawing and a design for the backyard, your backyard audio/video requirements should never be an afterthought. Let’s be realistic, as beautiful as the tress, flowers and stone you can purchase are, sitting in a backyard with poor Wi-Fi that “never works” has poor sound sucks. You use your technology everyday so it should always be at the forefront of anything you do to your home, especially your new Backyard Oasis.