Logitech Debuts Two Harmony Remotes - Ultimate and Smart Control - Page 7 - AVS Forum
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post #181 of 253 Old 06-20-2013, 10:58 PM
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Just finished setting up the Harmony Smart Control "Basic" Remote as a replacement for my Harmony One. By far the best remote system I've ever used. Put the hub on my kitchen counter, pointed at the TV/AV cabinet and it controls everything just fine--Samsung LCD HDTV, Dish DVR, Sony PS3, Sony A/V receiver, optical audio switch, etc. Couldn't be happier!

Only time I used the iPhone app was to sync the hub with the PS3 via Bluetooth. Other than that, I'm using the "basic" remote for EVERYTHING.
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post #182 of 253 Old 06-24-2013, 10:45 AM
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Replaced our Logitech 880 with a Harmony Ultimate last week and, so far, it's been a fairly frustrating experience. (And this after a decade of using Harmony remotes, we currently have 3.)

First problem: The hub keeps going to "red" light and requiring frequent reboots. It always goes green again after reboot, but this is major PITA. And, yes, my wireless signal is strong (full bars) and I've tried resetting it.

Second problem: While it initially controlled my Oppo Blu Ray just fine, and my old Harmony did great, it no longer will. I've got the hub literally on top of the Oppo and nothing, though the original Oppo remote works dandy using the IR blaster we already had (and used to use with the 880). Again, this originally worked and I've tried moving the hub all over the dang place with no results. Totally frustrating.

Third problem: The favorites don't work to change channels on DirecTV for 3 digit channels. They're clearly getting only partial channel numbers (5 for 501, then another 01 later, etc.)

Fourth problem: I need the custom buttons back that my 880 had; where it featured all the extra button pushes in the order I wanted for each activity. Even though I did a transfer of settings, these didn't transfer. And maybe it's just the different set-up (from app, to webpage) and being used to the old ways, but I'm having a devil of a time finding and syncing things with this new one.

We've got it controlling an unenclosed, but behind us, home theatre system that includes: projector, AV, DVD recorder, Oppo blu ray and DirecTV DVR.

EDIT: Oh and, we've got another 880 in our main living room that controls an open (in front of us) cabinet and, based at least on my experiences so far, I don't really want to insert the buggy hub into that system when that 880 bites the dust. IR works fine and is reliable, don't want to insert an unneeded component to bog things down. Any Harmony out there that will still do that?
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post #183 of 253 Old 06-24-2013, 11:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnnt29 View Post

It is very responsive. Very little delay if any at all.
I've now tried it myself. It does seem faster than the Harmony One, but it is still a bit slow
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post #184 of 253 Old 06-24-2013, 11:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jflatt View Post

I've now tried it myself. It does seem faster than the Harmony One, but it is still a bit slow

The difference being I don't have to keep the Ultimate it pointed at the device I wish to control, like I do with the One. smile.gif
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post #185 of 253 Old 06-24-2013, 12:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by susanandmark View Post

Replaced our Logitech 880 with a Harmony Ultimate last week and, so far, it's been a fairly frustrating experience. (And this after a decade of using Harmony remotes, we currently have 3.)

First problem: The hub keeps going to "red" light and requiring frequent reboots. It always goes green again after reboot, but this is major PITA. And, yes, my wireless signal is strong (full bars) and I've tried resetting it.

Second problem: While it initially controlled my Oppo Blu Ray just fine, and my old Harmony did great, it no longer will. I've got the hub literally on top of the Oppo and nothing, though the original Oppo remote works dandy using the IR blaster we already had (and used to use with the 880). Again, this originally worked and I've tried moving the hub all over the dang place with no results. Totally frustrating.

Third problem: The favorites don't work to change channels on DirecTV for 3 digit channels. They're clearly getting only partial channel numbers (5 for 501, then another 01 later, etc.)

Fourth problem: I need the custom buttons back that my 880 had; where it featured all the extra button pushes in the order I wanted for each activity. Even though I did a transfer of settings, these didn't transfer. And maybe it's just the different set-up (from app, to webpage) and being used to the old ways, but I'm having a devil of a time finding and syncing things with this new one.

We've got it controlling an unenclosed, but behind us, home theatre system that includes: projector, AV, DVD recorder, Oppo blu ray and DirecTV DVR.

EDIT: Oh and, we've got another 880 in our main living room that controls an open (in front of us) cabinet and, based at least on my experiences so far, I don't really want to insert the buggy hub into that system when that 880 bites the dust. IR works fine and is reliable, don't want to insert an unneeded component to bog things down. Any Harmony out there that will still do that?

Sorry you are having so many probems. I have a couple of thoughts. Did you apply the firmware updates when first you set up the Ultimate? When it first came out there were complaints that the hub wasn't always synching. For your OPPO have you tested using the Hub's IR blasters to see if there isn't a problem with the old ones? I have been using mine for a little more then a month and was using the Harmony One prior to that and haven't run into what you have described. JT
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post #186 of 253 Old 06-24-2013, 12:10 PM
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Originally Posted by jnnt29 View Post

Sorry you are having so many probems. I have a couple of thoughts. Did you apply the firmware updates when first you set up the Ultimate? When it first came out there were complaints that the hub wasn't always synching. For your OPPO have you tested using the Hub's IR blasters to see if there isn't a problem with the old ones? I have been using mine for a little more then a month and was using the Harmony One prior to that and haven't run into what you have described. JT

I am using the hub's blasters ... We just also have an IR blaster system (behind our screen) that was already wired in and I didn't remove. Oppo will respond to it's own remote, but not the Ultimate's commands. Again, this worked originally and only set-up change has been multiple hub reboots.

All of our components are on separate shelves and span about 6' total. I'm kind of shocked a high end system like this would have only two included blasters, without even room to expand for more. Obviously if each component had its own "eye" it would be more reliable.

Any idea how to fix or why it would go from working to non?

I did move the hub itself to same shelf as Oppo in effort to reconnect but no go. Have tried putting it on top, on either side, in front of, etc and no dice. (Also tried hanging it over edge where I know IR is so it sort of "hovered" over eye. Still no response.)

I'm not sure about firmware. I did everything asked at initial set-up. Can remember if it prompted a firmware update or not. Where can I check what it's running?
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post #187 of 253 Old 06-24-2013, 12:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by susanandmark View Post

I am using the hub's blasters ... We just also have an IR blaster system (behind our screen) that was already wired in and I didn't remove. Oppo will respond to it's own remote, but not the Ultimate's commands. Again, this worked originally and only set-up change has been multiple hub reboots.

All of our components are on separate shelves and span about 6' total. I'm kind of shocked a high end system like this would have only two included blasters, without even room to expand for more. Obviously if each component had its own "eye" it would be more reliable.

Any idea how to fix or why it would go from working to non?

I did move the hub itself to same shelf as Oppo in effort to reconnect but no go. Have tried putting it on top, on either side, in front of, etc and no dice. (Also tried hanging it over edge where I know IR is so it sort of "hovered" over eye. Still no response.)

I'm not sure about firmware. I did everything asked at initial set-up. Can remember if it prompted a firmware update or not. Where can I check what it's running?

I would contact support and describe your issues. This is definitely not working correctly. It sounds like you may have a defective Hub. You can also try plugging your Remote into your computer and running the Harmony software and select synch remote. The remote should apply the latest firmware that came out over the weekend and re-establish communication with the Hub. JT
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post #188 of 253 Old 06-24-2013, 04:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnnt29 View Post

I would contact support and describe your issues. This is definitely not working correctly. It sounds like you may have a defective Hub. You can also try plugging your Remote into your computer and running the Harmony software and select synch remote. The remote should apply the latest firmware that came out over the weekend and re-establish communication with the Hub. JT

Took the Oppo off the hub and had the remote control it directly with the remote and it works again. Kind of wish I could remove the gimpy hub from the whole system, as that seems to be downfall.
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post #189 of 253 Old 06-24-2013, 05:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by susanandmark View Post

Took the Oppo off the hub and had the remote control it directly with the remote and it works again. Kind of wish I could remove the gimpy hub from the whole system, as that seems to be downfall.

The hub works great for all my gear, and in some cases the signal is passing through multiple cables. I really think you have a bad unit.

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post #190 of 253 Old 07-06-2013, 01:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AggiePhil View Post

Just finished setting up the Harmony Smart Control "Basic" Remote as a replacement for my Harmony One. By far the best remote system I've ever used. Put the hub on my kitchen counter, pointed at the TV/AV cabinet and it controls everything just fine--Samsung LCD HDTV, Dish DVR, Sony PS3, Sony A/V receiver, optical audio switch, etc. Couldn't be happier!

Only time I used the iPhone app was to sync the hub with the PS3 via Bluetooth. Other than that, I'm using the "basic" remote for EVERYTHING.
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But is it a problem that the remote only has 3 activities? smile.gif
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post #191 of 253 Old 07-06-2013, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by kristoffer77 View Post

But is it a problem that the remote only has 3 activities? smile.gif
Not at all. I really only use two of them right now anyway--Watch Satellite TV and Use PS3. What all other activities do people really use that often? I'm sure there are some but I'm curious.
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post #192 of 253 Old 07-06-2013, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by AggiePhil View Post

Not at all. I really only use two of them right now anyway--Watch Satellite TV and Use PS3. What all other activities do people really use that often? I'm sure there are some but I'm curious.

I have the Ultimate and have several activities. Watch TV, Watch TV with Surround sound, watch Blu Ray, Watch Roku, Listen to CD, Listen to internet Radio, Play game, Listen to IPod. Just to name a few. smile.gif
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post #193 of 253 Old 07-06-2013, 10:36 AM
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Everyone's situation will be different. And only you will know if certain activities can be eliminated or combined.

For instance, I used to have some Listen to Music/Listen to iPod type activities on the Harmony One but they were used so infrequently that it wasn't a problem to activate those devices manually (with the individual remotes) when needed.

With the Smart Control remote, you can still create sequences (only up to 10 steps in length though, unfortunately) and assign them to any button (in fact, up to two per button). So if you wanted, you might could create a sequence to enable or disable your surround sound system, avoiding the need for two separate activities.

Again, your situation may vary but the point remains that it's an incredibly versatile and robust system, especially for $130. I'm sure I'll be getting another one for my bedroom TV soon.
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post #194 of 253 Old 07-06-2013, 11:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AggiePhil View Post

Not at all. I really only use two of them right now anyway--Watch Satellite TV and Use PS3. What all other activities do people really use that often? I'm sure there are some but I'm curious.

A few of the possibilities from my remotes (Roomie and H1)
  • Watch DirecTv
  • Watch Roku
  • Watch Apple TV
  • Watch BluRay
  • Listen to Pandora
  • Listen to iPod
  • Listen to PC
  • Listen To Am/Fm
  • Listen to Internet Radio
  • Listen to CD's
  • Play Wii
  • Lighting

There are many more possibilites.

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post #195 of 253 Old 07-07-2013, 12:56 PM
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Originally Posted by kristoffer77 View Post

But is it a problem that the remote only has 3 activities? smile.gif

The smart remote actually provides six activities, three more with press and hold. Also, you can have as many as you want on the smartphone app. I have the infrequently used activities like zone 2/3 only on the app.
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post #196 of 253 Old 07-17-2013, 09:59 AM
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Thanks guys for the really helpful thread (as ever for AVS smile.gif ) and the great contributions by HarmonyIan. If only all suppliers were as good.

I'm a long term Harmony user of 7 years now, originally with the 895, now a 900 and a 600 (for the kitchen!). So it sounds like the Ultimate could be for me. My main question is about range. There are lots of good things about the new remote but the thing that might make it a must have is improved range. My 900 is a bit marginal - depending on "conditions" (actually no idea what those are!) sometimes it works fine, sometimes it can take 2 or 3 presses before the remote gets through to the blaster! It is only in the next room through a wooden door! Accepting all the usual caveats (yes, I might have some huge RF field generator under the floor!) is it generally felt that the RF in the Ultimate is better than the 900? What frequency does it use? Is it affected by the usual 2.4/2.5ghz problems?
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post #197 of 253 Old 07-17-2013, 11:02 AM
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jong1, I had the 890, and it's RF worked fairly well for me, and I think that was the same as the 900's, but I'm not certain. All I can say is that the Ultimate works pretty good, I have my hub inside a steel rackmount case, and it never has issues, and that rack is in the next room.

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post #198 of 253 Old 07-17-2013, 11:10 AM
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Thanks Keith, so if the 890 worked "pretty well" and the Ultimate "never has issues", does this mean it is noticeable better smile.gif. Not trying to put words in your mouth, just trying to understand if there is any difference.
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post #199 of 253 Old 07-17-2013, 11:25 AM
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It's a minor improvement because the 890 was pretty reliable in my experience. Typically with IR commands are missed sometimes, it just happens, you add the RF component into the mix, who knows where the problem lies. The Ultimate works better overall, pretty much 100% on getting activities started right every time, seems to receive almost every command it's sent, and so forth. The timing could be better when sending multiple commands, it could be emitting a stronger IR, or the RF could be more reliable.

I believe that more of the smarts are located in the hub this time around. It could be the 890/900 and other remotes with RF capability in the past had to send more complex signals and handle the timing of activities themselves, and there may not have been much two-way communication occurring, so less chance for error correction.

For a short time I used an Acoustic Research arrx18g with RF. That thing sucked in comparison to the 890 and the Ultimate. It was barely usable in my setup.

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post #200 of 253 Old 07-17-2013, 11:36 AM
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Yeah, two way handshaking should be able to help; would be good if Logitech could confirm smile.gif

When I have problems I get the little cross on the 900 that says it could not reach the blaster, so I know it's an RF problem.
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post #201 of 253 Old 07-23-2013, 09:04 PM
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Just purchased an Ultimate, and within about 10 minutes realised there's a huge hole in its capabilities. You can only set up favourites for one activity! That is just plain dumb. With previous remotes, you could have per-activity favourites, but not with the Ultimate. I watch free to air TV through one set top box, and cable through another, but can't set up favourites for both. I'd be happy if we can get some sort of confirmation from Logitech that this will be fixed in a future release, but otherwise I don't think I want to keep the Ultimate.

Does anyone else think this is a major omission?
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post #202 of 253 Old 07-25-2013, 03:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AggiePhil View Post

Everyone's situation will be different. And only you will know if certain activities can be eliminated or combined.

For instance, I used to have some Listen to Music/Listen to iPod type activities on the Harmony One but they were used so infrequently that it wasn't a problem to activate those devices manually (with the individual remotes) when needed.

With the Smart Control remote, you can still create sequences (only up to 10 steps in length though, unfortunately) and assign them to any button (in fact, up to two per button). So if you wanted, you might could create a sequence to enable or disable your surround sound system, avoiding the need for two separate activities.

Again, your situation may vary but the point remains that it's an incredibly versatile and robust system, especially for $130. I'm sure I'll be getting another one for my bedroom TV soon.

 

Can you elaborate on this a bit? I'm presuming that you aren't simply talking about "Activities" when you refer to creating "Sequences"

 

And by "assign them to any button", I'd like to know how you are doing that. I can assign a discrete command to any button (both short and long press), but the only way that I know to program a "sequence" is via the Activities menu and they are only allowed to be assigned to one of the three activity buttons (six if you count short/long press)


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post #203 of 253 Old 07-25-2013, 03:37 PM
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Can you elaborate on this a bit? I'm presuming that you aren't simply talking about "Activities" when you refer to creating "Sequences"

And by "assign them to any button", I'd like to know how you are doing that. I can assign a discrete command to any button (both short and long press), but the only way that I know to program a "sequence" is via the Activities menu and they are only allowed to be assigned to one of the three activity buttons (six if you count short/long press)

Every hard button on the remote (can't speak for the soft buttons on the Ultimate since I only use the basic remote) can be set to send a single command to any of your devices OR it can be assigned to do a pre-programmed sequence. And thanks to the short press/long press functionality, each button can, in theory, be assigned to do both. For instance, when I am in my Watch Satellite TV activity, I have the Red button set to perform a "Turn Closed Captioning On" sequence upon receiving a short press and it will perform a "Enter TV Brightness Adjustment Mode" sequence upon receiving a long press. The first sequence consists of a series of commands to the Dish receiver (Menu, 8, 6, 1, Left, Select, Right, Select, Live TV, Cancel). The second sequence consists of a series of commands to put the Samsung TV into the backlight adjust mode.

All these settings are setup using the MyHarmony.com web portal. When you first get your remote, you create an account, log on, tell it which remote you have, and set up your profiles. If you're migrating from a different Harmony remote, MyHarmony will even import the old settings and apply them to the new profile. Once everything is set, you connect the hub to your computer and upload the settings. You're then good to go.

Like I said, I love this remote and it works SO much better for my setup than the Harmony One did. There are still rare occasions when the Off button does not properly shut down my PS3 (like when I'm in the Netflix app or something) but that isn't a huge deal and there might even be a setting I haven't found to modify the shutdown sequence. But all in all, I'm loving this remote, especially for $120. cool.gif
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post #204 of 253 Old 07-25-2013, 04:15 PM
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Can I assume that multiple iPhones can be set up as remotes to a single hub?
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post #205 of 253 Old 07-25-2013, 04:35 PM
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I notice concerns about Skip/FF and back/rewind being on the same buttons, but I did not find a description of the actual working here or on the Logitech site. Are these buttons set up so that skip is press and FF is long-press? If it is the reverse, can I reprogram it so that skip is a simple press? Same for back and Rew of course. Skip and Back are used 10 times as often as any other buttons on my remote.
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post #206 of 253 Old 07-25-2013, 09:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AggiePhil View Post
Every hard button on the remote (can't speak for the soft buttons on the Ultimate since I only use the basic remote) can be set to send a single command to any of your devices OR it can be assigned to do a pre-programmed sequence

 

I stand corrected. I had not seen the "Sequence" tab before now. I just logged into myharmony.com and now I see it there plain as day. That opens up a whole new dimension to this already fantastic package. Thanks again for the info.


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post #207 of 253 Old 07-25-2013, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by vestaviascott View Post

I stand corrected. I had not seen the "Sequence" tab before now. I just logged into myharmony.com and now I see it there plain as day. That opens up a whole new dimension to this already fantastic package. Thanks again for the info.

No problem. Logitech, if you're reading this, how about some product ambassador compensation? wink.gif
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Originally Posted by RJCarlson49 View Post

I notice concerns about Skip/FF and back/rewind being on the same buttons, but I did not find a description of the actual working here or on the Logitech site. Are these buttons set up so that skip is press and FF is long-press? If it is the reverse, can I reprogram it so that skip is a simple press? Same for back and Rew of course. Skip and Back are used 10 times as often as any other buttons on my remote.

You can set it up however you want. I agree that it would have been nice to have dedicated skip and FF/RW buttons though, since some unique issues arose when I attempted to customize the programming. Here's how I wound up setting up mine...

In Satellite TV mode, a short press of the FF button results in a Skip Forward command. A long press initiates a sequence I created that sends three Fast Forward commands in rapid succession. This gives me a 60x FF speed with one long press. Another long press repeats the sequence and maxes out the FF speed at 300x. Same goes for the Rewind button. I set them up this way because it takes too long to do three long presses back to back. Hope that helps.
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post #208 of 253 Old 07-26-2013, 09:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AggiePhil View Post

Here's how I wound up setting up mine...

In Satellite TV mode, a short press of the FF button results in a Skip Forward command. A long press initiates a sequence I created that sends three Fast Forward commands in rapid succession. This gives me a 60x FF speed with one long press. Another long press repeats the sequence and maxes out the FF speed at 300x. Same goes for the Rewind button. I set them up this way because it takes too long to do three long presses back to back. Hope that helps.

Yes, it does. Thanks.

-Bob
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post #209 of 253 Old 08-04-2013, 09:59 AM
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Is it possible to swap out just the hub to see if that's the issue with my remote set-up? I don't want to have go through and set-up a whole new remote if not necessary.
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post #210 of 253 Old 08-04-2013, 03:23 PM
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Sorry, after reading through the past months of entries of this thread, still not seeing the attraction over an H1. The RF to hub blaster, BT devices, and even iDevices is not enough for the investment ($350 or so) to replace my H1. The Ultimate may be the "next generation" but Logitech blew it with discontinuing the H1 and forcing people to the Touch and now this..... Hope my H1 never dies.....
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