Originally Posted by jautor
For the cost of any 8x8 matrix you could buy a Blu-ray player for every room in your house. And your next-door neighbor's. And their dog.
Ha! My guess is he would run out of room before he ran out of cash to spend on blurays, not to mention wiring to the TV's... but your point is well taken.
As I mentioned, 8x8's get a little pricey. We do a lot of the Binary 8x8's from SnapAV. Retail on those is $4,000 for straight HDMI outs, $6,000 if you want the Cat5e/6 outputs. Using the cheaper option, you would still need a pair of extenders for each TV. The pricier matrix basically means that the transmitting end of the extender is built into the matrix itself. You would still need to price a Cat5e/6 receiver to go behind each TV.
You could theoretically control any matrix with IR. But unless you're planning to put programmable remotes at each TV location, you could be stuck carrying around the one IR remote that comes with the matrix.
Working around a matrix requires a bit of designing, and sounds like it may be overkill for you. But if you're savvy, and want are willing to undertake a challenge, then I say go for it!
Or, like jautor (jokingly) suggested you could simply buy a bluray for every TV. This might actually be better from a usability standpoint. If you only have one centralized player it can make loading discs a real pain.
Hope this helps!