Tag Archives: Katye McGregor Bennett

Episode 106: Rayva Home Theaters – an Entirely New Approach to Home Entertainment Design and Engineering



This episode is sponsored by: Rayva Home Theaters

Join the Crew host Katye McGregor Bennett and Corey Moss as they welcome their guests:

Vincent Bruno – Chief Executive Officer at Rayva Home Theaters

George Walter – President at Rayva Home Theaters

Listen to this in-depth conversation with Vin (who became Rayva’s CEO in August), and George about Rayva’s unique approach to home theater design and specification, technologies, and how they work with AV integrators. 

George talks about Rayva’s beginnings, the business plan, vision, and how every opportunity from the start became a “project” – though George talks about home theater as a product, not a project, along with selling the experience.  

Katye asks about the home theater environment and market segments, George also adds who some of the drivers are. Vin also talks about streaming content, and the difference that a Rayva home theater system makes. Katye also mentions the gaming experience – George talks about the immersive, and the huge opportunities in this category. Vin talks about how the Rayva Theater is properly acoustically developed, perfect for the immersive experience necessary for a gaming environment. 

George and Vin talk about the Rayva Configurator and Build Book – maximizing design along with profits for the integrator, while delivering the best experience for the client. They also talk about utilizing developed CEDIA expert best practices to properly pre-engineer the room. They also discuss industry manufacturers, and how the customer can choose from these companies’ products and solutions for their home theater technology bundle. There’s a way for the client to take a VR “virtual walkthrough” of their overall theater room. George then discusses how this makes it simple for the dealer/integrator to install the system. 

Katye has George and Vin talk about Rayva’s founder Theo Kalomirakis, and his well-known theater design background. George and Vin also talk about Rayva’s support. Katye talks about a home designer, who discussed the home theater as an “escape room” for her and the family to retreat to. 

Katye finally asks about how Rayva will be expanding across the U.S., and what else is next. 

Sit back, plug in and listen to this discussion about experiencing the Rayva difference. 


Episode 101: The Residential Integrator, the Kitchen & Bath Designer and the Architect – the Final Frontier in AV Trade Technology (Part 2)



Make sure you listen to Part 1!

Join the Crew host Katye McGregor Bennett (Billings MT area), Corey Moss(Northern VA area) and Allie Watson (Washington, DC Metro Area) as the welcome back their guests:

Joe Whitaker – Founder/President at The Thoughtful Home (Greater St. Louis area)

Giles Sutton – Senior Vice President of Industry Engagement at CEDIA (London, UK)

Toni Sabatino – Designer Owner at Toni Sabatino Style and National Kitchen + Bath Association (NKBA) Manhattan, NY Chapter President

Molly Switzer – Principal Designer and Owner at Molly N Switzer Designs, LLC and NKBA Columbia River (Portland, OR area) Chapter President

Dean Larkin – Owner at Dean Larkin Design (Greater Los Angeles area)

As in Part 1, the show’s ongoing theme concerns “playing better in the sandbox” for the integrator, the designer and the architect. Katye talks about it being October, and officially on the other side of CEDIA Expo.

And the conversation continues – including mention of other important trade shows, integrators hosting events for architects to get to know the technology, enrichment through the NKBA relationship (and much more)…

Katye also talks about voice – a very important add to this episode (there’s a regular guest’s company name mentioned here too). Joe also talks about voice and audio solutions enhancing “the total experience.”  

Some real “aha” moments here, as we seek the best ways to properly align residential AV and the other trades. 

The Final Frontier. 

(This episode recorded and produced by Katye McGregor Bennett) 


Episode 100: AV, Digital Signage, Bourbon & Bacon – It’s Just So Right (Part 2)



Make sure you listen to Part 1!

Join the Crew Corey Moss, Katye McGregor Bennett, Rich Ventura and Kaleo Lee as they welcome their guests:

Rich’s people…

Kym Frank – President at Geopath
Brian McClimans – VP Sales, North America and APAC at Peerless-AV
Spence Graham – Business Development Manager at Real Digital Media
Jeffrey Weitzman – Managing Director at Navori
Jon 9 – CEO at Holonyne Corporation
Maria McKinsey – Director of Business Development at Brown Innovations

Katye’s people…
Vin Bruno – Chief Executive Officer at Rayva Home Theaters
Alex Capecelatro – CEO at Josh.ai
Robert Keeler – Vice President of Sales at Stewart Filmscreen

Corey’s people…
Cory Schaeffer – Director, Strategic Industry Relations at QSC
John Greene – Vice President of Sales and Marketing at New Era Technology
Brandy Alvarado – Marketing and Business Development Manager at rp Visual Solutions
Justin Watts – Global Operations & Service Delivery Lead at Facebook

(and let’s not forget Kaleo’s son Ethan).

This one continues with Corey revealing his bourbon of choice for the show, and then each of the guests (and the Crew) talk about what they brought to the table (in a glass), and how they live the AV life. 

Kim and Spence get to expand on what they do professionally, and others will as well. 

And Cory wants to hang out with everybody. 

And lots of scoop drops, just like Katye likes it. 

Rich and Corey do their best to finish it out, Katye is always at her best. And stick around till the end to hear Kaleo and the real star of the show Ethan Lee. 

Sit back, plug in, and we hope you’ve enjoyed this show with a total of 20 (or 21) participants as we live…

The AV Life. 


Episode 100: AV, Digital Signage, Bourbon & Bacon – It’s Just So Right (Part 1)



Join the Crew Corey Moss, Katye McGregor Bennett, Rich Ventura and Kaleo Lee as they welcome their guests:

Rich’s people…

Kym Frank – President at Geopath
Brian McClimans – VP Sales, North America and APAC at Peerless-AV
Spence Graham – Business Development Manager at Real Digital Media
Jeffrey Weitzman – Managing Director at Navori
Jon 9 – CEO at Holonyne Corporation
Maria McKinsey – Director of Business Development at Brown Innovations

Katye’s people…
Vin Bruno – Chief Executive Officer at Rayva Home Theaters
Alex Capecelatro – CEO at Josh.ai
Robert Keeler – Vice President of Sales at Stewart Filmscreen

Corey’s people…
Cory Schaeffer – Director, Strategic Industry Relations at QSC
John Greene – Vice President of Sales and Marketing at New Era Technology
Brandy Alvarado – Marketing and Business Development Manager at rp Visual Solutions
Justin Watts – Global Operations & Service Delivery Lead at Facebook

(and let’s not forget Kaleo’s son Ethan).

Corey begins by telling the story of podcast beginnings, meeting Katye and the two of them podcasting.

A special call-in at the beginning from Cordell Lawrence and Caleb Kilburn from Kentucky Peerless Distilling Co.  (arranged by Rich), and all get a chance to talk with them.

Sit back, plug in and enjoy Part 1. #100AVLife.


Episode 98: The Road Back From CEDIA Expo – A Focus on Lighting, Z-Wave, the Designer, the Integrator and More



Join the Crew host Katye McGregor Bennett, Corey Moss and Allie Watson as they welcome their guests:

Walt Zerbe – Senior Director of Technology & Standards at CEDIA
Michael Gaydos – Vice President of Market Development at LumaStream
Mitchell Klein – Executive Director at Z-Wave Alliance 
Toni Sabatino – Designer Owner at Toni Sabatino Style/ President NKBA Manhattan Chapter 
Dawn DeLuca – Principal at Dawn DeLuca on Design 
Joe Whitaker – Founder/President at The Thoughtful Home/ CEDIA Board of Directors
Eddie Shapiro – Chief AV Designer at SmartTouch – AV

The return  from CEDIA Expo 2018 – the Crew welcomes seven guests to discuss the show. Along with discussion that focused on lighting (LumaStream won CEDIA Expo Best New Product Award) audio, the integrator and more, all talked with Toni and Dawn who brought their overview of the show from the designer’s perspective.

Mitch talks about Z-Wave Alliance and the smart home connection, with special focus to security, along with discussion of the insurance industry. Eddie and Joe of course bring the direct integrator focus to the show – specifically business, education and design. Walt of course adds discussion from the CEDIA side.  

Allie Watson focuses on social media discussion – and her main platform is Instagram.

This is it – the final CEDIA Expo podcast, we hope you’ve enjoyed them all. Sit back, plug in, and join us as we live…

The AV Life.


Episode 96: The Road to CEDIA Expo 2018 – We Couldn’t Design It Any Better… Let’s Do This!



Join the Crew host Katye McGregor Bennett, Corey Moss, Matt Montgomery and Kaleo Lee as they welcome their guests:

Brian Pagel – Senior Vice President at Emerald Expositions
Giles Sutton – Senior Vice President of Industry Engagement at CEDIA 
Toni Sabatino – President at NKBA Manhattan Chapter
Alex Capecelatro – CEO at Josh.ai
Frank White – Senior Consultant at Weld2 & StayTuned
Brad Hintze – Sr. Director Product Marketing at Control4
Emily Harger – Senior Marketing Manager at Séura

This is it, the final stop on the #RoadtoCEDIA as Katye hosts the third ‘Road to CEDIA Expo’ show for The AV Life! This one wraps it up with seven guests, along with Crew members Convergent AV’s Corey Moss, smart home and home theater integrator Matt Montgomery, and commercial integrator Kaleo Lee, who talks about his attending CEDIA Expo (as well as a commercial voice control integration that his company AVCO in Hawaii did). 

CEDIA Expo is the event that’s making smart homes genius. More than 20,000 home tech pros and 500+ exhibitors convene for the leading event in connected technology – receive concentrated access to new products, breakthrough innovations and targeted training in tech integration.

And with all of this in mind – listen to the guests (and members of the Crew), and what they will be doing at the show, as well as what they’re looking forward to there. It’s the first time on The AV Life for Brian, Giles, Toni, Frank, Brad and Emily – Alex is a ‘The AV Life Pro’ (listen in for more on that). One of the major focuses here – the design/lifestyle connection to the AV/tech world, and the user experience to go along with it. Oh yes, and then there’s this party at the show…

Sit back, plug in, join the guests and the Crew who bring you along for this final podcast ride to CEDIA Expo 2018 – as we live…

The AV Life. 


Episode 95: The Road to CEDIA Expo 2018 – A Focus on Trade Show, Experiences and Trends



Join the Crew host Katye McGregor Bennett, Corey Moss and Matt Montgomery as they welcome their guests (in order):

Jayson Savage – Western Regional Technical Manager Premium and Custom Installation products at Sony Electronics
Alex Capecelatro – CEO at Josh.ai
Tim Bigoness – Chief Marketing Officer at D-Tools, Inc.
Joey Kolchinsky – Founder, CEO at OneVision Resources 
George Walter – President at RAYVA
Mark Cichowski – CEO at Clarity AV International, Inc./Founder of Technology & Business Summit 
Joe Whitaker – President at The Thoughtful Home/ CEDIA Board of Directors 
David Watson – Consultant
Allie Watson – Digital Strategy Specialist at KMB Communications, Inc.
Bruce Reed – Senior Systems Engineer at Cloud9 Smart
Gordon Van Zuiden – Owner at cyberManor

As a continuation of Episode 94, what can we say – another must-listen pre-CEDIA Expo podcast, where this time Katye ties for most participants on a show. We hope to break the record sometime soon… 

Sit back, plug in and continue down the road to CEDIA Expo 2018 with us as we live…

The AV Life. 


Episode 94: The Road to CEDIA Expo 2018 – A Focus on Trade Show, Experiences and Partnerships



Join the Crew host Katye McGregor Bennett and Corey Moss as they welcome their guests:

Tim Sinnaeve – Managing Director at Barco Residential
Robert Keeler – Vice President of Sales at Stewart Filmscreen
Nader Dajani – Head of Business Development at JStar LLC (Josh.ai)
Bryce Nordstrand – Chief Sales Officer at Access Networks
Matt Montgomery – President at Tym Smart Homes and Home Theaters
Allen Tremble – CEO at Acoustic Evolution

Katye and Corey begin The AV Life coverage of CEDIA Expo 2018 with six guests – manufacturers and integrators – who talk about their companies, the show, “the experience” and partnerships.

Each of the manufacturers discuss what they’ll be doing at the show, how they focus on the experience, the importance of partnerships and education – perspectives that fully round out this episode. Each of the integrators follow suit in terms of the experience for the end user, along with relationships which include education. Each will also talk about what they’re looking out for at the show.

Terrific insights on this episode brought by all of the guests, including one that focuses on the integrator — or should we say the former integrator…?

And a new Crew member has been recruited. Katye refers to it as trapped. Find out who it is.

Sit back, plug in, and join us on this first ride on the road to CEDIA Expo 2018 as we live…

The AV Life.


Episode 89: AV, and the Daily Discussions in the Industry (Part 2)



Make sure you listen to Part 1

Join the Crew host Corey Moss, Katye McGregor Bennett, JoAnn Arcenal and guest Crew member Gabe Moronta (Zoom Video Communications) as they welcome their guests:

Nic Milani – Director, Commercial Product Marketing at Crestron
Megan Dee Durocher – AV/IT Solutions Architect at University of Southern California
Brandy Alvarado – Marketing & Business Development Manager at rp Visual Solutions

This part two discussion continues with conversation about AV, and the following:

Big Data Analytics – discussion led by Megan
Marketing – discussion led by Brandy
Security – led by Nic

All to go along with convergence, integration, experience and engagement.

…and some of the fun “what did you bring to the table” conversation The AV Life is known for. 

You sat back and plugged in for Part 1, keep listening to this Part 2 conversation – and of course continue to live…

The AV Life.


Episode 89: AV, and the Daily Discussions in the Industry (Part 1)



Join the Crew host Corey Moss, Katye McGregor Bennett, JoAnn Arcenal and guest Crew member Gabe Moronta (Zoom Video Communications) as they welcome their guests:

Nic Milani – Director, Commercial Product Marketing at Crestron
Megan Dee Durocher – AV/IT Solutions Architect at University of Southern California
Brandy Alvarado – Marketing & Business Development Manager at rp Visual Solutions

First – yes Katye is back (we know you missed her)! After an announcement about Zoomtopia which takes place in October, this part one discussion takes off with conversation about AV, and the following:

Cloud – discussion led by Nic
UX – discussion led by Megan
Digital signage led by Brandy

All to go along with convergence, integration, experience and engagement.

Tune in for this insightful discussion brought by these AV industry guests and the Crew.