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KNX Case Study – Self Build Smart Home – Western Scotland

Function Control were delighted to be appointed in 2019 to oversee the full design, specification, supply and programming of this high-spec, luxury self-build smart home in Stirlingshire, Scotland.

The clients were existing customers of Function Control and previously had a simpler smart home system that they wanted to expand upon for their forever family home. As we were involved from the very start of the project, before building warrants were even submitted, we were able to assist the clients by helping develop the lighting, electrical and smart home spec from scratch.

The customers were acting as their own project managers on this large self build. Using the architects files we were able to generate drawings alongside them to customise the smart home to their exact specification. We were also in a position to not only carry out the automation & audio visual side of the project but also the lighting design and supply as well, helping to ensure compatibility between lighting fittings and the KNX dimming modules.

A revision of the Ground Floor Plans showing Lighting, shading, KNX devices, network, AV and door entry systems

A revision of the Ground Floor Plans showing Lighting, shading, KNX devices, network, AV and door entry systems.

KNX is our standard for every control project we do. Over 500 international manufacturers produce a huge range of devices that will all work with each other, allowing vast scope for flexibility & personalisation.

We were able to not only provide schedules and diagrams for the contractors, we regularly attended site meetings with the various parties to make sure things were progressing smoothly. In particular the electricians, CES Electrical, were excellent to work with on this project, following our instructions and carrying out a high standard of work with good communication.

In the project there are 3 KNX automation panels located throughout the house that control:

  • 48 Circuits of dimmed lighting
  • 40 circuits of switched lighting
  • 19 zones of wet underfloor heating
  • 6 Blinds/Motorised curtains
  • 6 electric/Wet Towel Radiators
  • 2 Fakro motorised windows

Lounge with Electric Windows and LED lighting control

We chose Theben panel modules for their quality and our favourite Gira pushbutton sensors for the in-room controls. The vast array of finishes and surrounds as well as the custom inscribed rockers meant the client could match to interior decoration in each room. In fact they had a wide range of finishes round the property including the linoleum plywood, stainless steel and brushed aluminium finishes.

Gira KNX PushButton Sensor 3 with gloss white rockers and blue Linoleum Plywood finish

Gira KNX PushButton Sensor 3 with gloss white rockers and Stainless Steel finish

A combination of 33 of these Gira Pushbuttons as well as 14 PIRs give full control over the lighting around the property. As the switches can be fully customised, they control blinds and curtains as well. Additionally, they measure the air temperature  so become part of the heating system as well, avoiding the need for multiple devices attached to the wall, leaving a cleaner look in the property.
The Gira X1 & S1 system were chosen to run the smart home control. These are KNX native devices meaning that even in the event of network issues, the KNX devices will continue to run in the background. The X1 provides the tablet/phone app visuals. This allows the homeowner fine control of:

  • Individual lights including timers
  • Editable light scenes in each room
  • Blind control
  • MVHR control
  • PIR run on time control
  • MVHR control and status of any error messages
  • Heating zone control setpoint adjustment & timed control of each room
  • Electric Towel Rail timers
  • External lighting timers
  • Simulated Occupancy
Gira X1 App

Gira X1 Visualisation allows control of all the smart home functions

The S1 gives secure remote access and voice control as well as the ability to add push notifications and emails triggered by certain events in the house.

Audio Visual

Centralised AV rack containing the amplifiers and audio streamers

The project also features a multi-room audio system and distributed 4K video as well as a 5.1 speaker surround sound media room. SkyQ/Freesat, Bluray and CCTV cameras can be watched on any of the 4 screens. Handled by a Control4 processor the systems allows music including Internet Radio, Apple Music, Spotify and Amazon Music to be played in 8 zones of the house through discreet in ceiling or in-wall speakers. Control4 app and universal remotes give the client easy control of the media zones.

Sitting Room – Media Room with 85″ TV and 5.1 Surround sound system

Kitchen Dining Area

Control4 Halo remote

Lighting Design

Function Control also carried out the full lighting design for this project. Utilising high quality downlights from one of our favourite manufacturers SG Armaturen we ensured flicker free operation and smooth dimming alongside the KNX dimmers. We specified the colour temperature at 3000K and helped source lamps for the clients own fittings to both ensure compatibility and similar colour temperature throughout the project. Dim-to-warm LEDs were chosen in the lounge areas to replicate the feel of halogen style downlights and give a warmer colour temperature at low-levels.

LED tape features and low-level lighting give softer more discreet lighting particularly late at night.

Low level LED lighting on the stairs

Whilst the project was inevitably partially delayed by COVID, it was completed in 2022 to a high standard by all involved. This has been one of our favourite projects of the last few years. Function Control have signed the client up to a maintenace contract and thanks to the networking equipment installed we can sort most issues remotely avoiding expensive & time consuming site visits.

Privacy Policy

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Under the General Data Protection Regulation, we have a legal duty to protect any information we collect from you. We do not pass on your details to any third party unless you give us permission to do so.

What information do we collect?

If you email us an enquiry or send us feedback, you will be asked for a limited amount of contact information so that we can respond to your request and follow up to ensure that it has been dealt with to your satisfaction.
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If this privacy policy changes in any way, we will place an updated version on this page.

Latest Revision Date: 26 June 2023

About Us

Our Why

We enhance peoples lives by making buildings perform better.

Function Control Ltd was established by Nick Laing in 2015 offering services to design and implement smart building solutions for luxury homes, offices and assisted living projects.

We like to listen to our customers aspirations for their building and consider how we can help. Every project is individual but the following question is universal:

‘How do we create smart buildings that simplify daily life, improve the living environment for occupants and save energy?’

The Team

Nick Laing – Director

‘Buildings have an incredible ability to affect our mood and our behaviour. In the UK we spend 90% our lives indoors, I want the buildings we occupy to actively improve our health and wellbeing by responding to our needs.

I’m excited by every new project as it is an opportunity for a new relationship to be developed with trust and understanding. I love the feeling when I get positive feedback following completion of a challenging project.’

Nick studied Audio Technology and Electronics at Glasgow Caledonian University before taking his first real job as an AV engineer at the Millennium Dome. He then moved into the Film Post Production industry in London where career highlights included crawling around the feet of movie stars such as Michael Caine and Ewan MacGregor as he performed ad-hoc repairs during recording sessions.

Mark Hardie – Integrated system engineer

I had an early fascination with finding out how things work. This usually meant most of my toys & gadgets were opened up & dismantled (and to the disappointment of my parents, various other electrical devices around the home) Occasionally, they were even put back together!

I took this interest into an Electrical & Electronic engineering degree at Strathclyde University before getting involved in the audio visual and smart home industry. I take great pride in designing and implementing an integrated home specifically for each client’s needs.

Chris O’Brien – Integrated system engineer

When people choose to design their new dream homes thoughts are often for the exciting, the here and now. One of the great motivations about incorporating technology into a building’s fabric is knowing that a fantastic space has been created which is adaptable to the residents ever changing needs. Ideally this can ensure that people can remain in their homes for the longest time despite the challenges older age and circumstances brings.

Chris met Nick whilst working at the Millennium Dome where he honed his skills for driving a golf buggy to faulty plasma screen walls, climbing very high ladders and foiling diamond heists.


Poppy the Dog
Poppy – Office Dug

I’m still learning the ropes, but I think I have already found my niche in information security, shredding any paper I can get near. I also take pride in enforcing regular screen breaks for the rest of the team.


Chris and Mark in Office
Mark Working On Plans
Chris Wiring Rack

Join Us

You might already have a job, but would you like to join our journey?

Are you excited by the prospect of working in a small innovative team where you will regularly be asked to step outside the constraints of your main job role? A job where you can grow and develop?

As a small tight-knit team each of us has to cover a number of job roles at once. You may have an unusual combination of skills or an interest to learn new ones.

Don’t worry if you don’t have the qualifications you think you need yet. It is far more important to us that you have enthusiasm and a genuine interest in making a difference in our industry. We train our people and help them gain industry recognised qualifications.

Would you fit a combination of any of the roles below? Treat it like a pick’n’mix and drop us an email if you think you are a good fit. Tell us who you are and why you would like to get involved.

Trainee smart buildings engineer
Admin assistant
Smart buildings engineer
Panel/rack builder
Marketing manager
Sales manager
Project manager
Assistive technology specialist
Systematisation guru

All roles are hybrid or office based, from our office in Loanhead, Edinburgh. Dependent on role, some work will require travel to building sites and client homes.

Virtual Golf
Labelling Beer Bottles
Charity Runners
Chris with Mug


Our budgets range from £15k to £250k+ dependent on the size and scope of the project. There really is no one-size-fits-all solution. We can very quickly provide you with a rough indication of price if you have plans and can answer a few simple questions about the scope of your project.

Click here to send us an email and we will get right back to you.

If you prefer to speak to us in person then please give Nick, Chris or Mark a call on 0131 440 1735

Our service is designed to support any competent electrician to be able to complete the electrical installation aspects of a project. Since electrical installation is not included in our services this leaves you free to choose your preferred Main Contractor who may have their own electrical team.

Not at all. Our service will support any competent electrician to understand and complete the electrical installation required for our systems.

We specialise in providing the most robust and versatile control systems which will provide decades of reliable service regardless of technological advances in the future. To achieve real smart home integrations different services in the home must be able to communicate and interact together. Linking IoT products using home network, wifi and the cloud can be unreliable and complicated to maintain.

At the heart of every Function Control system is KNX, the international standard for building control. Over 500 manufacturers make KNX compatible equipment and the range of products spans lighting, heating, ventilation, air conditioning, motorised blinds, music systems and much more.

KNX has been used in award winning projects around the world and has both a proven track record and a future-proof design.

KNX devices each have a microprocessor and communicate with each other using a serial bus communication principal. This allows the system to be wired using a single installation cable which links each switch and device. Upgrades and additions to the system can be made with minimal invasive work.

Learn more about KNX

Wireless and battery free devices. EnOcean energy harvesting technology allows switches and devices to convert the energy they need using solar, thermal or kinetic energy. For instance, an EnOcrean switch will use the energy you put in by pressing the switch to send a wireless signal.

What this means is less toxic chemicals as EnOcean devices rarely need batteries, and since you don’t need to remember to replace depleted batteries the system requires much less maintenance.

We love to use EnOcean wireless devices where a cabled device is unsuitable, like window and door sensors or where a device needs to be added retrospectively.

Learn more about EnOcean

We can support you with maintenance, repairs and modifications to your systems on-demand. Just email to arrange an appointment.

If you prefer to speak to us in person then please give Nick, Chris or Mark a call on 0131 440 1735.

For complete peace of mind we offer smart home maintenance subscriptions. For a low monthly charge we will provide an annual service of your system and preferential rates for call-outs and modifications.

Click here to find out more about Premier Service.

Function Control use KNX as the basis of all of our projects as it is considered a future-proof solution. As a tightly regulated standard with hundreds of participating manufacturers KNX is the only option we recommend for professional smart home infrastructure.

Learn more

Let us help you! Because intelligent building control covers so many aspects of a building project Function Control like to work as part of the design team and get involved in the project as early as possible.

Initially we will work with you and your architect to form a provisional design to suit the specific needs and style of the project, selecting the building elements to control and offering products to suit.

If you would like to chat to us about a project please Click here to send us an email.

If you prefer to speak to us in person then please give Nick, Chris or Mark a call on 0131 440 1735.

You may have experienced a KNX smart building without realising it. Many luxury homes have KNX infrastructure and there are also many high profile hotels and commercial buildings which rely on KNX to provide robust and reliable controls.

The 2022 KNX UK award winning project was a new build passivhaus barn project by New Land Solutions.

Heathrow Terminal 5 and Edinburgh Royal Hospital for Children and Young People rely on KNX for their complex lighting needs.

A weather station can be a huge asset in a smart home system as the external climate information can be used in so many ways to make your building respond in a helpful manner.

Bastian Elsner from Elsner Elektronik explains many of the benefits here