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Old 07-29-2013, 10:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi guys,

I am new on this forum, i would like you to help me with creating a custom remote control. I would like to build a remote control of my own, because I am planning to make my own htpc set top box and I have no idea where to start with.

I have contacted the manufactuers about building a custom remote control, they said that they would charge me between $500 - $1,800. I can't find a way to make it cheaper, I have no choice but to find a different way.

I found a manufactuer that would be able to make the front and the back cover, which is cost me $60. I don't know what manufactuer I should ask to create a custom remote circuit board and the keypad.

Does anyone know what manufactuer I should contact?

Thanks in advance
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Old 07-29-2013, 11:21 AM
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I'm a little confused about what you're trying to achieve (and why you'd want to go this route) - there are multiple options already on the market, so what is it you don't like about them? Do you have the circuitry already designed - or is this where you want help too? I didn't get the sense from your post that you want to do this for the fun of creating something unique.

There are many manufacturers of potentially suitable enclosures - you mentioned front & back "covers" - are you talking about an enclosure or labeling or ?

Unless you are intending to order a reasonably large volume of pieces, the unit cost for all the components will be high - it sounded like you are just looking for one or two devices, correct? There are numerous outfits that can design and build a custom board for you - but they may not be able to do it for target price you have in mind. What $ amount are you thinking about?

Maybe it would be worth taking a step back and explaining what you perceive to be the shortcomings of the commercially available solutions, and then someone here could possibly help validate your assumptions. At the moment it's hard to second guess what you're wanting to do and why.
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Old 07-29-2013, 12:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris0147 View Post

Hi guys,

I am new on this forum, i would like you to help me with creating a custom remote control. I would like to build a remote control of my own, because I am planning to make my own htpc set top box and I have no idea where to start with.

I have contacted the manufactuers about building a custom remote control, they said that they would charge me between $500 - $1,800. I can't find a way to make it cheaper, I have no choice but to find a different way.

I found a manufactuer that would be able to make the front and the back cover, which is cost me $60. I don't know what manufactuer I should ask to create a custom remote circuit board and the keypad.

Does anyone know what manufactuer I should contact?

Thanks in advance
I would contact Universal Electronics Inc. They are OEM for thousands of devices and can probably provide the lowest cost solution. Depending on the quantities you are looking at, you could simply buy existing UEI remotes in bulk and program them yourself, I imagine around $1-3 per unit. It takes about 5 seconds to download a full cloned config to each remote using cheap hardware and free software. Ceton went with a different supplier for their STB, but didn't get their money's worth IMO. URC is another possibility but probably less flexible and more expensive, especially if you DIY.
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Old 08-13-2013, 05:37 AM - Thread Starter
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do you have the link for that company?
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Old 08-13-2013, 09:48 AM
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http://www.uei.com/

I'd love to test that box of yours. If you need any help with a prototype remote (commands only, no custom hardware), let me know.

However, I can't imagine anyone being able to manufacture your custom device for any less than you've already been quoted and probably not in small quantities. The remote is probably the least of your worries. How expensive will it be to get your box manufactured? Have you written all the software yourself? What remote protocol are you using, and is it license free (like NEC) or have you bought the appropriate license?

I know someone who looked into getting a custom calculator manufactured, and it was close to $100,000 for the engineering, tooling, molds and first production run. So for a project like this, you really need a good business plan, market research and some capital. Otherwise you're going to have to make do with off-the-shelf parts, including that remote.

Ceton tried and failed to make an HTPC set top box. How is yours different?
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Old 08-14-2013, 07:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the link. I want to find a manufacter to make me a custom for the remote control cover case. Do you know what company would be able to make me a custom remote control front and back case with the value range between $50 to $100?

I found two manufacters to make me a custom silicone keypad for $40 and a custom pcb for the remote which cost under $100. If I ask them for the custom make for whole remote control, they would charge me over $1,000 which I'd find it is a rip off! eek.gif

I bet you would love to try my box out, but it isn't available to share and it is for my own use. If I share you will probably steal my work and run off! rolleyes.gif

As for HTPC box, i'm using a website to allow me to use the keyboard control on my tv guide where I can move the yellow box to jump on each box for each program and changing the channels using the up and down arrow buttons. smile.gif
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Old 08-14-2013, 08:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris0147 View Post

I bet you would love to try my box out, but it isn't available to share and it is for my own use. If I share you will probably steal my work and run off! rolleyes.gif

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Old 08-15-2013, 11:33 PM
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Chris, have you specifically asked the manufacturers what quantities you need to get those prices? Those don't sound like "onesie-twosie" prices. Those sound like prices they would quote for larger production runs.

If you are only doing this for your own use, there are many options, from mdavej's beloved JP-1 compatible remotes, to Logitech Harmony, to Universal's stuff. Not sure that going full custom hardware is an option, unless you want to spend frightening amounts of money. Many of the existing remotes have enough programmability that they should meet your needs. If you need something entirely different than a regular remote button layout, why not try programming a tablet, smartphone, ipad, ipod, etc.? If you have demonstrated enough technical prowess to create something that mdavej would want to steal, whipping up a remote on one of those platforms should be a snap!
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Old 08-16-2013, 12:34 AM
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Old 09-19-2013, 03:33 PM
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Don't feel like my question needs another thread so I will just add it to this one.

I am making a case for an existing remote(harmony smart control). At this point it's a one off for myself and yes it's very expensive to do this for just one remote. What I want to know is if it's legal for me to sell the case and buttons myself as a kit to others? If it is then maybe I can show the final product and see if others are interested. If it isn't then lets pretend this post never happened because last thing I need it to get sued by logitech. smile.gif

tubes tubes and more tubes.
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Old 09-20-2013, 08:56 AM
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I have not looked into the legal ramifications, but I believe that this would be treated like any other aftermarket parts in any other business (think iPhone cases), so it should be legal. Although, if people are going to put the "guts" of their remotes into a new case, or otherwise need to open their remotes, it would void any warranties.
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