Building my home theater...I NEED CONTROL!!! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 15 Old 10-31-2013, 02:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello,

I have been searching high and low for the right remote for my new home theater. I am leaning towards the URC MX-980.

Opinions?

Thanks,

Matthew
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post #2 of 15 Old 10-31-2013, 02:53 PM
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There are some reviews and discussion here:
http://www.remotecentral.com/ureview/143.htm
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post #3 of 15 Old 10-31-2013, 07:36 PM
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Not a bad remote... MX 1200 is a newer / better remote for not much more.

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2
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post #4 of 15 Old 11-10-2013, 03:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stangdriverdoug View Post

Not a bad remote... MX 1200 is a newer / better remote for not much more.

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2

Hellostangdriverdoug. I wonder what kind of car you drive? Or, perhaps, what year is a better question! My home audio guy is trying to talk me into the URC MX - 780. I would assume by your previous comment that this is older technology as well? If you were in the market right now, what remote and extender would you purchase?

Thanks,

Matthew
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post #5 of 15 Old 11-10-2013, 09:27 PM
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The MX-780 is newer than the MX-980 but it is not better. The MX-890 is more comparable in terms of features & functions to the older 980.

You'll get more accurate advice if you'd list what equipment you're wanting to control.

I have a MX-980. I use it to control a two -zone system that consists of a TV, DirecTV receiver, AV receiver, PS3, HDMI switch, outboard DAC, Internet radio tuner, AppleTV, and a Lutron dimmer. You may or not need a remote that has that much capability.
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post #6 of 15 Old 11-12-2013, 10:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cshepard View Post

The MX-780 is newer than the MX-980 but it is not better. The MX-890 is more comparable in terms of features & functions to the older 980.

You'll get more accurate advice if you'd list what equipment you're wanting to control.

I have a MX-980. I use it to control a two -zone system that consists of a TV, DirecTV receiver, AV receiver, PS3, HDMI switch, outboard DAC, Internet radio tuner, AppleTV, and a Lutron dimmer. You may or not need a remote that has that much capability.

cshepard,

I will use the remote for the following:

1. three - zone control
2. Cable box
3. AV Receiver
4. XBOX 1
5. Media Server
6. TV
7. Light dimmer

Thanks,

~Matthew
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post #7 of 15 Old 11-12-2013, 11:08 PM
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Go with a MX-890. The MX-780 is newer than the MX-980 but still doesn't have as many features.

I would rank those 3 remote as MX-780 << MX-980 << MX-890. The MX-890 is the best one out of the three.

I have an MX-780 and an MX-890 and like them both but the MX-890 is definitely more powerful.
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post #8 of 15 Old 11-16-2013, 11:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehan View Post

Go with a MX-890. The MX-780 is newer than the MX-980 but still doesn't have as many features.

I would rank those 3 remote as MX-780 << MX-980 << MX-890. The MX-890 is the best one out of the three.

I have an MX-780 and an MX-890 and like them both but the MX-890 is definitely more powerful.

Rehan,

I did a little research based on your recommendation. I must say, based on the three models you mentioned, the MX-890 is a unit that provides TOTAL CONTROL. The ability to create macros and do quick shortcut assignments along with a plethora of options make this a winner for me. Unless someone writes in a better RC, this will be my next remote.

Thanks for your input,

Matthew
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post #9 of 15 Old 11-16-2013, 11:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LennartzHT View Post

Rehan,

I did a little research based on your recommendation. I must say, based on the three models you mentioned, the MX-890 is a unit that provides TOTAL CONTROL. The ability to create macros and do quick shortcut assignments along with a plethora of options make this a winner for me. Unless someone writes in a better RC, this will be my next remote.

Thanks for your input,

Matthew

I'm glad I could help! If you have any questions while programming, feel free to shoot me a PM.
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post #10 of 15 Old 11-16-2013, 11:49 PM
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The MX-890 is a great remote. Much better than the MX-780 IMO, although the MX-780 is much simpler to program. The MX-980 does have a couple of things the 890 doesn't but the 890 is overall the better remote IMO. The form factor is a *ton* better for most people.

Are you planning to program it yourself? If so, a small word of warning that programming that remote is non-trivial. It absolutely can be done but don't expect a polished wizard interface or a tech support. The software is built for professional installers, not consumers.

The advantage of a remote of this class in my opinion is that it can do nearly anything you can envision, the bad part is you need to envision it in the first place.

That being said, plenty of us have figured it out on our own. Just want to make sure you are going into this knowing what you are getting into.
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post #11 of 15 Old 11-19-2013, 08:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dalto View Post

The MX-890 is a great remote. Much better than the MX-780 IMO, although the MX-780 is much simpler to program. The MX-980 does have a couple of things the 890 doesn't but the 890 is overall the better remote IMO. The form factor is a *ton* better for most people.

Are you planning to program it yourself? If so, a small word of warning that programming that remote is non-trivial. It absolutely can be done but don't expect a polished wizard interface or a tech support. The software is built for professional installers, not consumers.

The advantage of a remote of this class in my opinion is that it can do nearly anything you can envision, the bad part is you need to envision it in the first place.

That being said, plenty of us have figured it out on our own. Just want to make sure you are going into this knowing what you are getting into.

Thanks dalto. What makes the 890 so difficult to program? Is it non-intuitive? When you say it was built for the professionals, what do you mean?

Thanks in advance for your response!

~Matthew
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post #12 of 15 Old 11-19-2013, 08:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LennartzHT View Post

Thanks dalto. What makes the 890 so difficult to program? Is it non-intuitive? When you say it was built for the professionals, what do you mean?

Thanks in advance for your response!

~Matthew
The most difficult part is obtaining the software. Most URC remotes, including the 890, are programmed and installed by professional installers, not the end user. So the software was designed for experienced, professional installers to use, not novices, so it can be challenging to figure out at first. A few dealers will give you the software, but most will not. If you want something you can easily program yourself, get a Harmony.
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post #13 of 15 Old 11-19-2013, 08:51 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mdavej View Post

The most difficult part is obtaining the software. Most URC remotes, including the 890, are programmed and installed by professional installers, not the end user. So the software was designed for experienced, professional installers to use, not novices, so it can be challenging to figure out at first. A few dealers will give you the software, but most will not. If you want something you can easily program yourself, get a Harmony.

mdavej,

Thanks for the details. I see where this could be a challenge or is it. cool.gif I can use this as a negotiation point with the companies providing bids. If they refuse to provide the software, throw them out and move on to the next one. A bit hardcore, yes; however, I am spending over $25,000 in theater equipment so I am betting someone will show me the love!

Thanks again for your feedback mdavej!

~Matthew
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post #14 of 15 Old 11-19-2013, 07:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LennartzHT View Post

Thanks dalto. What makes the 890 so difficult to program? Is it non-intuitive? When you say it was built for the professionals, what do you mean?

Thanks in advance for your response!

~Matthew

Is it fairly non-intuitive, yes. When I say it is built for professionals I mean it is built for people who are sent to training and need to program lots of remotes. As a result, the focus in the software is on ease of programming and repeatability for this audience. It is not based on ease of use for someone who is not familiar with the tool. Therefor, the learning curve can be a little stiff. Moreover, the degree to which the mx-890/mx-980/mx-1200 can be customized means that there are a whole lot more options with not too much predefined. If you compare this with a remote like the mx-780/mx-880 these remotes are less customizable but are much easier to program because they are simpler in design.

All that said, lots of people program these themselves without any training or support. I myself have programmed at least 50 URC remotes over the years and have never had any training.

There are a few things I recommend when stepping into to programming one of these for the first time.
  1. Be patient! There is a lot to learn and not a lot of help.
  2. Read the programming guide for your remote. It is installed with the software.
  3. Be prepared for a lot of trial and error before you get it right.
  4. Start with an existing config. If you can get someone to share a working config that you can use as a base or a model it makes it much easier.

Good luck and let me know if I can help!
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post #15 of 15 Old 11-19-2013, 11:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by dalto View Post

Is it fairly non-intuitive, yes. When I say it is built for professionals I mean it is built for people who are sent to training and need to program lots of remotes. As a result, the focus in the software is on ease of programming and repeatability for this audience. It is not based on ease of use for someone who is not familiar with the tool. Therefor, the learning curve can be a little stiff. Moreover, the degree to which the mx-890/mx-980/mx-1200 can be customized means that there are a whole lot more options with not too much predefined. If you compare this with a remote like the mx-780/mx-880 these remotes are less customizable but are much easier to program because they are simpler in design.

All that said, lots of people program these themselves without any training or support. I myself have programmed at least 50 URC remotes over the years and have never had any training.

There are a few things I recommend when stepping into to programming one of these for the first time.
  1. Be patient! There is a lot to learn and not a lot of help.
  2. Read the programming guide for your remote. It is installed with the software.
  3. Be prepared for a lot of trial and error before you get it right.
  4. Start with an existing config. If you can get someone to share a working config that you can use as a base or a model it makes it much easier.

Good luck and let me know if I can help!

Dalto,

Great information. I love a good challenge which is apparently what I am getting myself into! One note you made in particular rang out loudly, "Be patient! There is a lot to learn and not a lot of help". I will do the very best I can and, in the end, if it looks like I'm in over my head, I will call in a pro. Unfortunately, I am the only audio geek among my friends and colleagues so no help there. It is just me, the 890 and this forum! eek.gif

Thanks again,

Matthew
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