Give it to me straight- Universal remote- RF? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 10 Old 08-21-2017, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Give it to me straight- Universal remote- RF?

my wife and I decided to finally cut the cable/satellite cord. So now we are relying heavily on our roku player with netflix/sling tv/nfl game pass. Both my wife and I are getting tired of using a universal remote as well as the roku remote.

Can we do an inexpensive universal remote that will do RF or wifi control of the roku as well?

For some reason this is a hard question to find an answer for doing searches on here or google.

I hate touch screen remotes because you have to look at the remote to use it instead of learning by feel where the physical buttons are.
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post #2 of 10 Old 08-21-2017, 02:06 PM
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Most Roku devices have an IR port. Unless you have a Roku stick you probably just need to program your universal remote to control it.

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post #3 of 10 Old 08-21-2017, 02:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryansj View Post
Most Roku devices have an IR port. Unless you have a Roku stick you probably just need to program your
universal remote to control it.
I'm not interested in using IR. I want the ability to hide my roku or not have line of sight and use RF / WIFI to control it.
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post #4 of 10 Old 08-21-2017, 02:40 PM
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Then you need a universal RF remote. However, those still require the devices have IR. You can't learn RF with a remote. Some new Harmony remotes use Bluetooth.

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post #5 of 10 Old 08-21-2017, 06:50 PM
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Like others have said, go RF. RF remotes communicate with a base station which then sounds out the IR to the device. You can hide everything that way.

All the RF remotes use proprietary protocols, so they won't learn or work with each other unfortunately.
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post #6 of 10 Old 08-21-2017, 08:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbarland View Post
Like others have said, go RF. RF remotes communicate with a base station which then sounds out the IR to the device. You can hide everything that way.

All the RF remotes use proprietary protocols, so they won't learn or work with each other unfortunately.

That is very helpful information! So I would need a remote that has some sort of hub that is placed near the roku that can hit it with IR. Well I guess that makes things a lot more expensive I imagine, doing a quick search brings up some options well over $100-200
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post #7 of 10 Old 08-21-2017, 09:28 PM
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Just about the only way to do RF for under $100 is a cheap IR universal plus a Next Generation RF system. If you're willing to go up to $100, then Harmony Smart Control will work, but kind of sucks. A couple of hundred will get you a decent RF universal or smart phone app and hub / IR gateway.

Or, you could just leave your Roku line of sight or get a cheap IR repeater and use any IR universal, many of which are well under $100. You kind of painted yourself into a corner with unrealistic requirements.
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post #8 of 10 Old 08-21-2017, 09:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mdavej View Post
Just about the only way to do RF for under $100 is a cheap IR universal plus a Next Generation RF system. If you're willing to go up to $100, then Harmony Smart Control will work, but kind of sucks. A couple of hundred will get you a decent RF universal or smart phone app and hub / IR gateway.

Or, you could just leave your Roku line of sight or get a cheap IR repeater and use any IR universal, many of which are well under $100. You kind of painted yourself into a corner with unrealistic requirements.
If that's what it costs to do things right then I'll be looking at the couple hundred range. When I was doing research it just seemed to jump into the whole home automation side of things when I was searching with my requirements which I'm not really getting into (for now) so I thought it would be worth checking in with you folks to make sure I wasn't missing something obvious in a lower price range that would work WELL (not just kinda sorta work)

Knowing that I'm wanting more physical button layout would you recommend a specific universal remote and hub package?
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post #9 of 10 Old 08-21-2017, 10:01 PM
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Harmony Elite has physical buttons and would be a good option, but it puts the num pad on a touch screen. If a physical num pad is a requirement, then URC is pretty much your only affordable option. But that can be a challenge for a layperson to program.

For the record, the cheap options I posted work well. Main drawbacks to the Smart are the lack of a screen and no IR on the remote itself. Knowing almost nothing about your setup, it's impossible to know if it's a good fit for you or not.
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post #10 of 10 Old 08-22-2017, 10:32 AM
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I'm partial to the URC line of remotes. They're considered "pro-only" but are sold to consumers with the expectation that you'll have a pro program them. There are dealers that'll give you the software when you buy the remote new. They're readily available on the used market as well, but usually don't come with CCP (the programming software).

If you're at all savvy with basic programming and/or like to tinker, then URC might be an option. If not, or if your significant other is not understanding of quirks, then a Harmony might be more your liking. They program fairly easily, using an online wizard-based system. Easy to set up, but can be complicated to tinker with.

I wouldn't hesitate to use a Harmony if you were just looking to control a TV, a Roku, and a stereo, or a similarly "simple" system. If you want to run you lights, use one remote in many rooms of the house, or have a complicated A/V system (HDMI matrix-powered TV's in every room, all the equipment in a central closet, etc.), then Harmony will quickly be outclassed by the more pro remotes.

Since I'm not too far from you, feel free to PM me.
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