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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    56

    American Auto-Matrix

    Can anyone share the pros and cons of American Auto-Matrix controls?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    181
    Pros: very reliable
    Cons: not very convenient way to program (GPC controllers)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    924
    American AutoMatrix is a very hearty and reliable product line. A little difficult on the programming side and fairly expensive for the end user. Are you considering them as a product line?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    56
    We are devloping a project that has the SAGE system installed in several buildings. We are trying to decide weather to upgrade it to Matrix, stay SAGE, or install a different system. As an Energy Performance Contractor we try to stay brand neutral.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    2,163
    The controllers are reliable but the alarming and trending applications in Auto-Pilot are horrendous. If you have Auto-Pilot and you care about alarming, trending and remote communications I would look into using a Tridium front end for these features.
    "Controls is a lifestyle not a job" -klrogers

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    924
    Rip out the Sage and go with a Jace. I've done several AutoMatrix integrations and they all went very smooth. Tridium makes a pup driver that talks 485 to all pup devices.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
    Posts
    484
    Those types of replacements (Sage to Tridium) go well when you know Auto-Matrix hardware. If you don't know all the attributes that lie underneath the Current Value, or how the controller schedules work, or how the control loops are addressed to correspond with the outputs, you'll end up fighting the controller - so do your homework!!

    And if the Sage is running any programs, make sure you can emulate those functions. Some programs can be emulated simply by linking two objects together (which requires a custom program in the Sage if the points lie on two different PUP networks) - others can be emulated through regular Tridium objects...as sophisticated as SPL is, I've been able to get every SPL program I've run across ported over to Tridium with a minimum of fuss...

    Or keep the Sages - provided you don't lose a hard-drive, those things run incredible amounts of controllers and points with nary a hiccup. But dapper is right on the money - AAM's existing software sucks for trending and alarming, although the graphics can do just about anything you need, as long as that's all you need (although setting schedules is a little kludgy too...).

    It looks like AAM has re-invented the wheel again (their corporate history is all about re-starts, from a software perspective - in less than 20 years, they've used four different GUI's (Mouseview, Spectra, Auto-Pilot, then they finally "discovered" Tridium)) with Aspect being the latest and greatest front-end. If you're not a dealer, then it may not be available to you, so perhaps the Tridium route might be to your liking - but find out if Matrix is going to be supported by AAM for any length of time (or simply buy the PUP driver with a WEBS controller or a JACE (if you have access to the Vykon channel)) - there's no need to rely on AAM to support your front-end of choice, given that their track record shows that they'll forget all about it in 4 or 5 years anyway. To be fair, some of the changes in software platform were as a result of PC technology advances (Mouseview was DOS-based, after all), but they never really developed any of the Windows packages to a fully-functional software suite. Once they finally got to Tridium, several years after forward-thinking people finished the PUP drivers (for the r2 stuff too!), they've moved on again...

    But you'll like the hardware, once you get to know it - like Reaper said, hearty and reliable.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Gluckstadt Mississippi
    Posts
    1
    Hello,

    I have twelve solostats and would like to sale them. Don't think Ebay. They don't have any auto-matrix. I also have other contols( gx-1, gc-1, and seven mx-1. Any HELP would be great.
    Thanks Irb

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Minneapolis, MN
    Posts
    8

    AAM Flexibility and function

    I am working on a AAM system with a Sage and using AutoPilot. I am looking to change come controls. Does AAM have a optimum start routine? The building has MUAs, HPs, and a core water loop, could I do a reset on the core water loop temperature based on number of HPs in cooling vs heating? Can AAM do counts like that?

    Thanks!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    46
    You can write any routine you may need through the SPL programming language in the SAGE. There are no pre-canned applications.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Minneapolis, MN
    Posts
    8
    Quote Originally Posted by smickeyg View Post
    You can write any routine you may need through the SPL programming language in the SAGE. There are no pre-canned applications.
    Thanks!

  12. #12

    Question Also thinking about AAM.

    We are looking at taking on the line. The company that was the rep in ur area went out of busines. Not sure why, they had installed alot of it locally. We have seen the Aspect system. It appears fairly nice. The only knock against it is the inablility to auto-size the graphics. Small issue, but it stands out to the user. In our area we see mainly BACnet in specs so thats our motivation. We also rep TAC Vista (LON) and Trane. Our concern is getting them listed in specs, which is probably a concern of others. Not many people have heard of them. All the more common lines are already spoken for. Anyone have problems being able to get the line in plan and spec projects? For the design build projects its not an issue, but why take on a line we can't use. Although we had the same concern when we took on TAC Vista a few years ago and have been fairly successful with it.

    If someone has any thoughts or maybe another line that maybe avaible that is more well known. Unfortantely, name recognition means alot in our area.

    Anyone been successful using their Lab Controls? Phoenix is the big dog and it will be a tough fight to go up against.

    Thanks in advance.
    Anyone who says this trade is easy, aint doing it right!

    If you want to hear God laugh, tell him your plans.

    Proud member of the United Association.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    924
    Their lab controls leave alot to be desired. We have been blowing Phoenix out of the water with our lab control line. The AAM product is a little too expensive for the lab arena. We were able to flat spec AAM for HVAC in the past succesfully. I don't know how their newer stuff is priced but I hope it's cheaper than the older pup controllers were. Good luck.

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