First posted: Sun, Feb 24, 08
Typically you’d have to get into the details to see the differences since the concepts of what you want the systems to do are the same.
The biggest things customers notice are the keypads. Lutron and Lite Touch have the nicest engraved keypads. Vantage’s newest are too contemporary for me and I dislike the different LED colors. Touch Plate keypads are at the bottom of the heap.
While the systems sound similar in general, in details they operate differently which makes some things easier or harder to do. Lutron has one of the only central processor based systems with scene-saver which means you can design a system to allow a homeowner to readjust and capture new light levels onto their scene buttons without getting into any software. Lutron’s latest remote power modules can be programmed to shed and bring loads back on in steps after a generator has started up and stabilized. Lutron’s car visor receiver can work with the existing buttons in your car or with their longer range transmitter. Lutron has the best shade interface in the business because they make smart shades, too.
For resale value of the home, if a high end home, no one will be excited to find that it has a TouchPlate system. You’ll take points off for that. Consumers like to see name brands that they themselves know, or their friends or any other person they may consult. You’ll get all thumbs down even it out of ignorance.