🎥 Device Control and AVA OS

AVA Cinema Remote resets expectations about what a remote control can look like, but what devices can it control…and how?




Most AVA systems start with an AVA Cinema Remote.

Many systems also include at least one AVA Nano Brain.

And AVA Home Remote is often used in rooms without a TV screen, where touch screen control of lights, music, comfort and other amenities still matters.

Whichever of these is in a system, AVA OS makes them all work together and enables control of the various devices in a modern home.


Components (Terms)

AVA OS uses these main components: Devices, Rooms, and Flows

Devices are things like TVs, projectors, AV receivers, streamers, and such…that’s what we’re focusing on in the rest of this video.

Rooms organize the system and all its devices.

And Flows are kind of like macros for AVA OS. They run the logic that coordinates turning devices on and off and adjusting their settings to a homeowner’s needs.

Together, these are the WHAT, WHERE, and WHEN & HOW of AVA OS.

There are also android Apps, but for this video we’re focusing mostly on Devices and how they are controlled.


Protocols & Device Support

AVA OS uses three main control protocols.

Internet Protocol, using the home’s wired and Wi-Fi network.

Infrared, or IR, the most widely-established and reliable form of device control for decades

And HDMI CEC, available when a an AVA Nano Brain is connected to an AV system.

As an integrator, you add devices to the system directly from the remote control.

But you can look up supported devices when you don’t have a remote, on AVA’s “Works With” page.


Live “Works With” Demo

For example, if you want to know whether Kaleidescape works with AVA, you can see here that there is an IP driver for Kaleidescape as well as several different models supported by infrared.

You can even request AVA to add a device if you don’t find it.

We typically turn around IR drivers in a matter of a few days.

IP drivers take a little longer, but with either type, you can expect us to let you know when a device you requested gets added to the list.


IP Control: Two Types

There are two ways that AVA OS controls devices over IP.

Direct IP

Direct IP is when AVA OS sends commands to devices over the network as part of a Flow.

For example, a Flow could tell Sonos to queue music in the Living Room at 25% volume.

Or a Flow could turn on an AV Receiver and switch it to the “Media Player” Input.

We call it “Direct IP” because AVA OS is sending the commands directly to the device.

Using Direct IP requires that there is a supported IP driver, as you saw with the Kaleidescape driver.

Direct IP commands are always sent from whatever device is running the Project for AVA OS.

When the project is running on Cinema Remote, the remote sends the Direct IP command.

When the project runs on from a Nano Brain, the brain sends the Direct IP command.

App IP

“App IP” is when an Android app running on an AVA remote send the commands.

And this is something to understand about the capabilities of the whole AVA experience.

You might ask: Does AVA work with Lutron?

In most automation systems, if there isn’t a driver, then the answer is no.

But AVA Cinema Remote and Home Remote are both Google-certified Android devices.

They can use apps from the Google Play Store .

So for Spotify, Nest, Ring, and other apps, the answer is typically, yes.

If a device is not listed in Works With list, it probably still has an App that can run on an AVA Remote.

So you can have the whole rich interface of the Lutron app, or even answer the doorbell with Doorbird or Ring…just by using the native app.


IP Terms

Neither of these two terms, Direct IP and App IP, are actual technical terms.

They’re just helpful for understanding the two different ways that AVA OS might use Internet Protocol.

By “Direct IP,” we mean that you can build Flows in AVA OS that send commands directly to a controlled device.

And by “App IP,” we mean that you can have AVA OS launch an Android app, and then that app can control the device.

No other smart home platform currently has this powerful combination.

And an important concept here is that App IP commands always get sent…from the remote that is running the app.

You can create a Flow icon for launching an app with AVA OS, but once you start the app, the app works exactly as apps work for a phone or tablet.

AVA OS doesn’t tell the app how to do it’s job; once launched, an app’s capabilities are its own.


IR Control

IR control in AVA OS gives you access to tens of thousands of devices.

Three AVA devices can transmit IR: AVA Cinema Remote, AVA Nano Brain, and the AVA Flat IR Emitter.


Cinema Remote & IR

When you use Cinema Remote without a Nano Brain, the AVA OS “project” run on the remote.

So if the remote runs any Flows in AVA OS, the remote sends the commands.

For IP devices, the remote uses its Wi-Fi connection.

But for IR devices, AVA Cinema Remote uses a built-in array of 3 IR LEDs.

You can see one of these LEDs on the front edge of the remote…fairly standard for most Infrared remotes…

But in the age of touch screen devices, remotes typically get held at an angle.

So, Cinema Remote also has a built-in IR blaster…here.

The blaster is engineered to be both directional, giving it control over longer distance…

And widespread…so it can reflect IR off of walls and other surfaces.

The result in a room…is that it is not necessary to point the remote at its various targets.

So long as it’s not completely blocked it generally finds its mark.

With IR Cinema Remote is an absolute beast, and performs as if it were omnidirectional.


Nano Brain & IR

Use the Nano Brain when you need to get IR to places the remote cannot reach.

Blasting IR—especially to hidden devices in racks and behind large screens—is one of the several functions of the AVA Nano Brain.

It has a 360-degree IR blaster, so you can co-locate it with concealed devices or racked equipment that needs IR control.

An import design consideration is when you use a Nano Brain, the remote does not emit IR.

IR either comes from a standalone remote, or from the Nano Brain. Not both.

This might change in future software updates.


Flat IR Emitter

There are two uses for the AVA Flat IR Emitter.

First, you can use it to reach a device that is out of direct range for a Nano Brain.

The Flat IR emitter is 2.7 meters long.

That’s just a little less than 9 feet, allowing you to reach the far side of a device that doesn’t face the Nano Brain for a solid IR signal.

Second, when you have several of the same device model in a rack, the Flat IR Emitter lets you isolate the IR signal for each device.

For example, if you have 3 Apple TVs in a rack, each one needs its own Flat IR emitter.

Connect the Flat IR Emitter to one of the Nano Brain’s available USB-C slots.

There is a USB-C Splitter in the AVA Store that lets you connect up to 4 Flat IR Emitters per Brain.


Home Remote

We should note that the AVA Home Remote also has an IR transmitter.

It’s just a single LED and very directional.

Since the Home Remote is typically used either in projects that have a Nano Brain, or as an app-based remote for standalone system like Sonos or Creston, it’s IR emitter is never really used.


CEC Control

When you have a Nano Brain in a project, it can add CEC as another type of control.

CEC requires an HDMI connection between the target device and a Nano Brain’s HDMI port.

It doesn’t have to be a direct connection, just a continuous HDMI chain is needed.

The device has to have CEC control enabled, and you have to install the CEC driver for the device into AVA OS.

Unless there is a driver for AVA OS, or you know that the CEC-controlled device works well with other devices, you should generally leave CEC disabled on a device.

Look for more on CEC control in other videos.



That lays out the concepts you need for the three types of control available in AVA OS.

IP, IR, and CEC.