HTPC vs. Pre/Pro - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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post #61 of 65 Old 12-18-2012, 10:12 AM
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The two remotes I mentioned previously give me total control over every program I use, not just the basic functions. I can control every aspect of XBMC between the two of them. The Harmony One gives me basic transport functions and navigation whereas the Lenovo 5902 provides keyboard and trackball functionality without requiring a dedicated keyboard and mouse. I could actually use the 5902 to control XBMC and any other program as well, but the Harmony One has a better feel for those types of commands. I rarely have to access any of the context menus in XBMC since I've got the defaults set to work with just about anything I use it for. There are rare occasions when I may need to turn subtitles on or off. That's where the Lenovo makes things simple.

You can always remap keys on the Harmony One so that the same keys perform the same functions in all programs.
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post #62 of 65 Old 12-18-2012, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by jdcrox View Post

It will not work with any programs flagged other than "copy freely", though will it? And more and more cable co's are flagging "copy once" on even networks, not just premium.
I use OTA so nothing I use is flagged. I didn't think about cable content. You are right, it probably won't work with flagged content.

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Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post

A couple of examples:
M-Audio had the Revolution 7.1 soundcard which had great quality and offered full bass management and time alignment in the drivers, and thus worked for all apps/sources. But they've since abandoned the HTPC market.
Theatertek made (IMO) the best PC DVD player by far, but licensing restrictions/costs have killed that, it's just too expensive to get the required licenses unless you can sell your software to OEMs like HP/Dell/etc so the small guys who would provide us the features we want can't make a go of it.
So we're left with the the free/open source groups (largely) who make products to serve the HTPC market, but also don't have the access/resources to integrate things like Blu-ray or protected paths, and quite often don't have the interest to really finish/polish their products to make truly top-shelf systems.
I mean no offense to the foss folks, I don't blame them at all. I did a little development for SageTV a while back and I know personally how when you're doing stuff for free it's largely to serve your own purposes and there's no motivation to polish things to the level you would if you were making a commercial product.
The Revolution 7.1 is what got me started in the whole HTPC as a pre/pro thing for multichannel. cool.gif I still have it sitting here in my office (along with my MyHD MDP-130 tuner). I then went to an X-Fi Elite followed by an Asus Essence ST with H6 daughtercard. During this time I also used Theatertek Advanced.

I now have Steinberg UR824 as an 8 channel USB DAC and JRiver is now way beyond Theatertek in all areas but one (aspect ratio setup). Three examples are automatic lip sync (even with convolution), automatic video refresh rate change based on content, and VideoClock which eliminates dropped frames by adjusting the audio. The bass management is much more advanced than any soundcard or receiver solution. I bought my Revolution 7.1 back in 2004 and I feel my system has dramatically improved in refinement and function.
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post #63 of 65 Old 12-18-2012, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by NorCalJason View Post

On the subject of remote control of your HTPC...
I too have used a variety of different remotes over the years. Most recently a Harmony One. I was running XBMC at the time, and I was unhappy with the integration. It felt... funky.
After trying a "remote" app for my smartphone, I was hooked. THIS is the level of integration I was looking for! Not only is the interface repeated correctly on my touchscreen smartphone/tablet, it's all controlled over IP. No line of sight needed... You can be in the kitchen, press the thumbnail image of the artist you'd like to listen to, and boom.... It launches on your HTPC.
I've used Constellation for XBMC, and JRemote for JRiver. Both are excellent products under $10. And absolutely BLOW AWAY the functionality and integration of a traditional remote.

Touchscreens don't work well for DVR-ing IMO, you can't by feel find the transport controls, you have to pick up and look at the remote, actually you have to look at it the whole time you're using it. I can see where they'd be great for controlling a movie based system where 99% of the use is just picking a movie from the list and kicking it off, or for a music system where you queue up your playlist.

But for a TV solution where you need to frequently pause, play, ffw, rw, etc it doesn't work well. I also prefer hard buttons for volume so I don't need to look at the remote to change the volume.
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Originally Posted by lockdown571 View Post

I guess what I don't understand is the remote you're using. What kind of remote doesn't let you easily remap commands to logical buttons? This is trivial on a Logitech Harmony with both hard and soft buttons. Remapping the commands on XBMC's side is pretty simple as well if you want some continuity between WMC and XBMC (although I would avoid using two different programs to begin with).

I've got a URC MX880 and the problem is not remapping buttons on the remote it's that the same IR command will do different things in different apps. The fact that it's one set of IR commands and one receiver (input) makes it much more difficult to keep the remote's soft keys and what they're controlling in sync.

For example in WMC the "Guide" command brings up the program guide, and is logically mapped to the "Guide" hard button on the remote. However in XBMC "Guide" brings up the context menu, so it should be mapped to a soft button on the remote.

With separate sources you just setup a macro on the remote to switch inputs and switch activities, but when it's all one source, it's much harder since you can't switch sources, and if you use the link option to fire off XBMC from WMC the remote has no idea whether you're in XBMC or WMC to know which customized pages (key mapping) to display.
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Originally Posted by captain_video View Post

The two remotes I mentioned previously give me total control over every program I use, not just the basic functions. I can control every aspect of XBMC between the two of them. The Harmony One gives me basic transport functions and navigation whereas the Lenovo 5902 provides keyboard and trackball functionality without requiring a dedicated keyboard and mouse.

I'd call the Lenovo a keyboard, not a remote. And I don't want two remotes, let alone a keyboard or mouse in my HT. There's a reason I have an MX880+MRF350 in my HT, and it's not so I can have other control devices in there as well.
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You can always remap keys on the Harmony One so that the same keys perform the same functions in all programs.

How would you remap keys on the Harmony so that the "guide" command works as the guide from the Guide button for WMC and for the context menu from a different key in XBMC? And how would you make sure the right one is automatically used in the right application?

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do, see movies the way they were meant to be seen
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post #64 of 65 Old 12-18-2012, 12:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post

How would you remap keys on the Harmony so that the "guide" command works as the guide from the Guide button for WMC and for the context menu from a different key in XBMC? And how would you make sure the right one is automatically used in the right application?

I'm pretty sure all these issues you guys are having can be fixed by editing the XBMC's keymap.xml file. You could create a soft key for the XBMC's context menu, and I assume you could have the guide command from the remote do nothing (or whatever you wanted it to), although I've never used the keymap.xml to remove commands. I imagine it's possible though.
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post #65 of 65 Old 12-19-2012, 04:21 AM
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Originally Posted by stanger89 View Post

I'd call the Lenovo a keyboard, not a remote. And I don't want two remotes, let alone a keyboard or mouse in my HT. There's a reason I have an MX880+MRF350 in my HT, and it's not so I can have other control devices in there as well.
Call it what you want. It's wireless and can be held and operated with one hand so I'm pretty sure it qualifies as a remote. I'd like to see you try that with any other "keyboard."wink.gif I like it because it beats the heck out of having a full-sized wireless keyboard and mouse sitting next to my recliner. It's small and takes up very little space. It's also an RF remote/keyboard so it can be used to access your system BIOS at bootup. I used to use a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse, but it was totally useless for this purpose because the Bluetooth function didn't kick in until Windows started up.
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How would you remap keys on the Harmony so that the "guide" command works as the guide from the Guide button for WMC and for the context menu from a different key in XBMC? And how would you make sure the right one is automatically used in the right application?
I believe you'd set each program up as an event and then map the keys to correspond to that particular program. I haven't done any key remapping on my remotes in ages so I don't exactly recall the process. I know it's fairly simple to do with EventGhost, although a bit tedious to set up, IIRC.
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