Control from the couch? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 03-14-2013, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
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All of my media consumption happens with my HTPC connected to my TV in my living room. I'm trying to figure out the best way to control the computer without having to lean forward and hunch over my coffee table with keyboard/mouse all the time. I have a Harmony remote for controlling all my devices, and could buy an IR receiver to perform some basic functions on the PC, but that still feels clunky.

I use XBMC for movies I've downloaded and watch Netflix/Xfinity through Chrome so that means I need to be able to use normal desktop functions. I know I'll have to use a keyboard/mouse at some point, but I'd like to avoid that as much as possible.

I know people are starting to work on gesture control using Kinect or other technologies to interact with Windows 8/7, but I haven't seen anything that's fully functional yet. If I could wave my hands around to control my computer from my couch I'd be in heaven. Does anyone have a genius solution they absolutely love that makes using your HTPC feel a little bit less like you're sitting at a PC with a big screen?
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post #2 of 10 Old 03-14-2013, 11:19 AM
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MCE RC6 remote.

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post #3 of 10 Old 03-14-2013, 11:23 AM
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Second the MCE remote.

I also have a Lenovo - N9502 for when I need keyboard functions.



They tend to go for $60-75, but I grabbed one on sale for $35 last year.
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post #4 of 10 Old 03-14-2013, 06:54 PM
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I have a full size wireless keyboard and mouse, an MCE remote and a 10" tablet that can control the main HTPC. If you have a smart phone or a tablet (even a cheap one) Ceton has a $5 app that makes it a HTPC remote. The Mrs. uses the HTPC to play SCRABBLE and shop on line. She actually likes the mouse the best.


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post #5 of 10 Old 03-15-2013, 04:44 AM
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Teamviewer.

Install on phone or tablet, install on computer, connect and done. You can see the HTPC on the tablet and make it do whatever you want.

Free for home use, no ads.
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post #6 of 10 Old 03-15-2013, 05:24 AM
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It's not smooth ^

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post #7 of 10 Old 03-15-2013, 02:22 PM
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I might not be smooth on the tablet but it gets the job done. On a small screen you're probably better off with something else, but for what he described in his OP it will work fine.
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post #8 of 10 Old 03-15-2013, 03:01 PM
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MobileMouse or HippoRemote is a whole heck of a lot easier to use than remote desktop. Why would you navigate using a microscopic version of your desktop when you have the full size version right in front of you? Mere mortals like me can't deal with 1080p shrunken down to a 3" screen.

I've tried those mini membrane keyboards with touchpads, etc. While they work ok, something with a nearly fullsize keyboard like the logitech k400r is a lot better IMO.

All that being said, using an IR remote 99% of the time is so much easier. I only use something else if I have to do a lot of typing or need a mouse.


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post #9 of 10 Old 03-15-2013, 03:02 PM
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Try splashtop (on a tablet, as mentioned it's pretty tough to use on a phone), does the same thing as teamviewer but smoothly. I use a harmony for xbmc (just use the right profile in the harmony db and you won't need to map any keys or mess with xml on the htpc, just have to do the mapping on the harmony) and keep a rii mini handy for when I need mouse/keyboard.
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post #10 of 10 Old 03-18-2013, 12:09 PM - Thread Starter
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I did forget to mention that I do have a Nexus 10 I can use. I'll give those apps a shot on my phone/tablet and see how I feel about the result. I appreciate the feedback!

Since I already have a Harmony remote, it doesn't seem like there's much reason to buy a different remote. Anyone have preferences for an IR receiver to hook up to my HTPC?

Edit: I'd just like to update that I gave Splashtop a try and it's great! The delay isn't bad at all and will allow me keep my mouse/keyboard out of sight most of the time. I think I'll get Windows 8 because that will probably work better as a finger friendly interface that is streamed to my tablet, though.
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