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MX-700 software - Page 5

post #121 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by bregar_a320 View Post

I think bigpapa is just trying to justify charging what he charges (which he knows is high) for his remotes.

How much do I charge for programming remotes?

That's a rhetorical question because it's quite apparent that your opinion is already made up; CI's are expensive.
post #122 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grimdeath View Post

I only care because they want to force you to use him/them....

That is a statement borne of ignorance. If you think this policy was about forcing consumers to use AD or CI's, or something as simplistic as price fixing, then you can't be reasoned with. Likely, you're merely looking for flame war to start just like that last guy I replied to. What is it with you guys who just can't give no respect? Is it because you have none for yourself?
post #123 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigpapa View Post

How much do I charge for programming remotes?

That's a rhetorical question because it's quite apparent that your opinion is already made up; CI's are expensive.


I wasn't asking.
post #124 of 199
If you are a dumb ass Joe Six Pack that can't figure out how to get the flashing "12:00" off of your VCR, then buy from a custom installer who will, most likely, rape you on the price.

If you are a tech-savy individual that lives to "do it yourself" but are fearful of what stupid move URC might make in the future, then buy from an authorized dealer offering the lowest price AND includes the Live Update version of the software.

If you are a tech-savy individual that lives to "do it yourself" and couldn't care less what happens with URC down the road, then buy from an eBay seller that offers the lowest price AND includes the Live Update version of the software.

Mark
post #125 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Booth View Post

If you are a dumb ass Joe Six Pack that can't figure out how to get the flashing "12:00" off of your VCR, then buy from a custom installer who will, most likely, rape you on the price.

Joe, if you feel the pull to take advice from somebody so negatively biased against a group of people and an industry that they know little about, then programming a VCR is the least of your worries.
post #126 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigpapa View Post

Joe, if you feel the pull to take advice from somebody so negatively biased against a group of people and an industry that they know little about, then programming a VCR is the least of your worries.

You're blowing his statement way out of proportion as he's just stating a fact: custom installers do tend to charge too much for a service that's relatively easy to perform if you're at all technically inclined, which I suspect many people who post to AVS forums are. If you're mechanically inclined and can change your car's oil for the price of the oil and a filter, would you take the car to a dealer and pay $200 for the same service? Probably not.
post #127 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Gardner View Post

You're blowing his statement way out of proportion as he's just stating a fact: custom installers do tend to charge too much for a service ....

That's totally subjective. Many can program remotes, but not all can or with the same level of efficiency, but that's a different that saying something as absolute as 'custom installers do tend to charge too much.' I think anybody who says that and really believes it should share what they do for a living and how much they make so we can all assess whether they charge too much. Makes for interesting discussion, no?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Gardner View Post

If you're mechanically inclined and can change your car's oil for the price of the oil and a filter, would you take the car to a dealer and pay $200 for the same service? Probably not.

That's wayyyyyy... wayyyy out of proportion. I've never heard of a $200 oil change, even with the overpriced filter markup. In fact, even without the filter markup, programming of remotes is cheaper than oil changes when you look at time involved, since an oil change actually takes less than 20 minutes.
post #128 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigpapa View Post

That's wayyyyyy... wayyyy out of proportion. I've never heard of a $200 oil change, even with the overpriced filter markup. In fact, even without the filter markup, programming of remotes is cheaper than oil changes when you look at time involved, since an oil change actually takes less than 20 minutes.

That's what my dealer charges (and why he doesn't do my oil changes.)
post #129 of 199
I was at my local AV store a couple of weeks ago getting my sub repaired. A customer was asking about remotes and basically the required professional programming would cost more than the remote itself. I don't have a problem if customers don't know how to program remotes and willing to pay for the service, but requiring programming is silly. People are probably more tech savvy today and some of us like to customize and do the coding ourselves even if the service was free.
post #130 of 199
I agree. There's lots of really smart people out there these days to whom programming a remote is child's play. After all, some of these people have written complete operating systems (Linux), photo editing packages (The Gimp), HTPC software (MythTV), and many others.
post #131 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Gardner View Post

I agree. There's lots of really smart people out there these days to whom programming a remote is child's play. After all, some of these people have written complete operating systems (Linux), photo editing packages (The Gimp), HTPC software (MythTV), and many others.



And then there are some really really smart people out there and there VCR's are still flashing: 12:00-12:00-12:00-12:00-12:00!

I just couldn't resist!


...Glenn
post #132 of 199
And there are some who know the difference between "there" and "their".

I just couldn't resist!
post #133 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Gardner View Post

And there are some who know the difference between "there" and "their".

I just couldn't resist!



Touche!
post #134 of 199
I have MX-850 and searched RC with no luck.

Where can I get the live update enabled software from? Can someone e-mail me or PM me? Thank you.
post #135 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Norboo View Post

I have MX-850 and searched RC with no luck.

Where can I get the live update enabled software from? Can someone e-mail me or PM me? Thank you.

Live Update is not yet available. See the response from URC guys:


"We appreciate you contacting Universal Remote Control, Inc and your continued patronage. We are currently improving our website and how we provide the Live Update' to our clients so it is disabled until further notice........."

You can ask the dealer for updates, but I'm OK with waiting for the IRDB to be updated via the live update. But then again, all my boxes are already in the IRDB.
post #136 of 199
Well, this is a huge disappointment. I've been searching for a new remote this week after having a horrific experience with the Harmony 880 software (see my posts on that thread for details).

I was seriously considering the MX-700, but there's just no way I'm going to drive into Tampa and pay full retail so that I get the correct software. Their policy regarding e-tailers is idioc. I also find it insulting they they assume most of us are too dumb to program a remote.

I've been in IT for > 30 years and have done my fair share of programming on many platforms & languages - I think I'll somehow manage to figure out how to 'program' (and program is a real stretch of the word here - configure is technically more accurate) a stupid remote control - geez
post #137 of 199
I ordered a new MX-700 from surfremotecontrol.com this week, upgrading from my great MX-500 to make it easier in programming discrete codes and just adding to ease of changing the LCD layout, adding pages, etc. Programming the MX-500 was actually fun, but once my macro needs began to include using some codes which would require a JP1 setup (or similar), going to the MX-700 seemed the best way to go for me.

I have the software and manual from them already, even before the remote physically gets here - it's somewhat fun, actually. I have no investment in this company, outside of being a new customer, but they've seemed like helpful folks from their emails, thus far.

On this whole Authorized Dealer / upgradeable software from manufacturer / Custom Installer etc. thing, it's apparent that URC has decided to more stringently market the MX-700 (and some other models) differently than some people desire. They are keeping the "Professional" models distinct from "Consumer" ones, because that apparently serves different channels as they see best.

Since there's obviously a services market involved here and it appears that URC is saying up-front what their support policy is for each of their products based upon the channel in which they are meant to be available, I don't see the big issue beyond a transition need for existing owners of MX-700 units who may desperately need a software upgrade for new codes/firmware to resolve issues that can be identified as fixed or updated.

URC is apparently attempting to protect their "Professional" product line branding and any profits related to those advanced offerings, it seems - against erosion of such in the grey market by distributors or previously unscrupulous dealers, one would imagine. Against channels which they cannot otherwise easily control who manage to get their hands on the "Professional" products. Many I/T hardware and software vendors have done similar (and even more drastic) things with their support agreements, and this is just one way for a manufacturer to handle the situation.

What I have ordered now seems like it will support my needs well for years, but if it required a CI from the get-go, that would have been part of my purchasing decision. As it is, I am happy to give my business to an Authorized Dealer, with all that implies. Am I missing something in the debate, here?

- ooofest
post #138 of 199
I have read this thread extensively and based on the infoprmation here I may have no other options. I fear I have to toss my MX-700 and replace it with a remote from a company that doesn't rear end their customers.

I have just recently upgraded several components and I need to make some mods to my MX. However, the pc I installed the original software on is now gone. I'm a software engineer by trade and am pretty savvy with this stuff. I don't need no stinking installer to program a silly remote for 100 bux an hour. And the software does not seem to be available anywhere. Hell at least with the pronto I could just grab the latest software from the web site. Or find it on a bazillion other web sites.

I suppose I could call UTC tech support and tell them that I don't remember where I got the remote, it was actually a gift from my wife and she can't remember. It may or may not have been through a licensed dealer. This is really a shame. I actually like this remote.

Any advice for just another screwed consumer?
post #139 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by ooofest View Post

As it is, I am happy to give my business to an Authorized Dealer, with all that implies. Am I missing something in the debate, here?
- ooofest

Uhh, yeah !

This whole Authorized Dealer bit is the modern version of the old (and despised by consumers) 'Fair Trade' practices some electronics manufacturers adhered to in the 60's & 70's. It's an attempt to artifically manipulate the free market to protect the profits of an anointed set of sellers. What these guys are doing is particularly lothsome as they are foisting their apparent inability to control their distribution channels on the customer. If they don't want someone distributing their product, then they should not be supplying them. If one of their 'chosen' dealers is dumping stock, then they should be addressing the issue with the dealer, not hanging the customers out to dry. It's a simple matter of tracking the serial #'s, which any legit manufacturer should automatically be doing.

Net is - why force folks to buy & pay more at an 'Authorized Dealer' if (as is the case for me) they don't really need/want the implied 'services' purportedly being provided ? Many people do not need their advice or configuration services (they are not really 'programming' remotes). Why should I be forced to pay for something I'd rather do myself !

Personally, I'm tired of this sort of corporate manipulation and on principal, will not give folks like this my money. Fortunately there are many other similar competing products to select from - which is what I intend to do. You elected to go the Authorized Dealer route and if that works for you - great !! - it's all about the free market & having the ability to chose for yourself.
post #140 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Braun View Post

Any advice for just another screwed consumer?

Call URC directly, on the phone. Don't send them an email.
post #141 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeD2 View Post

Net is - why force folks to buy & pay more at an 'Authorized Dealer' if (as is the case for me) they don't really need/want the implied 'services' purportedly being provided ?

I peruse these forums to see the same old mis-perceptions keep cropping up. Forcing consumers to pay more is not what's happening at all, if you'd care to actually study the sitiation from both sides. Many AD's actually are competitive with non-AD's, almost to the point of being a non-issue. The difference is that non-AD's don't adhere to MAP policy, whereas AD's do.

If you call or email some of the better AD's for their best price, it will be comparable to most of the low bid internet stuff.

Or, the conspiracy theorists amongst you can continue to speculate about the evil corporation that is URC and their attempts to screw the noble consumer.
post #142 of 199
Quote:


Forcing consumers to pay more ....................

My bad, but that's only part of the issue (from my perspective).

The other and overriding concern (to me) is - they implemented this policy and backleveled existing customers ! This leads me to believe they simply cannot be trusted, who's to say they won't decide they no longer like XYZ as an AD and pull the same stunt on folks who own units from there ? So (for me), I consider them to not be totally trustworthy and honest and chose to not do business with them for that reason. I tend to keep my electronics for rather long periods of time and so, place a lot of value on selecting products I believe will stand the test of time backed by companies that will not pull the rug out from under me arbitrarily post purchase.

I do not believe them to be "evil" as you state above - self serving, stupid & greedy perhaps, but not evil.

If they had elected to implement the policy on a go forward basis (i.e. any product purchased after xx/xx/xx will not get the software), then I would assign less 'risk' to this product/company & it would likely still be in the running.

BTW - statements like this only serve to reinforce the attitude amongst many of us that AD's like yourself only care about grabbing as much business as they can, with no regard for wether it's actually been 'earned'.
Quote:


Or, the conspiracy theorists amongst you can continue to speculate about the evil corporation that is URC and their attempts to screw the noble consumer.

There's plenty to go around and the few who will elect NOT to buy thru a AD won't leave you starving on the street !
post #143 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Braun View Post

I have read this thread extensively and based on the [snip]

I suppose I could call UTC tech support and tell them that I don't remember where I got the remote, it was actually a gift from my wife and she can't remember. It may or may not have been through a licensed dealer. This is really a shame. I actually like this remote.

Any advice for just another screwed consumer?


did you try putting your SN into their website? It should let you download the software.
post #144 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by hansangb View Post

did you try putting your SN into their website? It should let you download the software.

Do you have a link to the location on their website? I scoured it the other day and couldn't find bubkiss.

Chris
post #145 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Braun View Post

Do you have a link to the location on their website? I scoured it the other day and couldn't find bubkiss.

Chris

Never Mind. Found it: http://www.universalremote.com/pro/registration.php

Must not have looked very hard
post #146 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeD2 View Post

This whole Authorized Dealer bit is the modern version of the old (and despised by consumers) 'Fair Trade' practices some electronics manufacturers adhered to in the 60's & 70's. It's an attempt to artifically manipulate the free market to protect the profits of an anointed set of sellers.

It sounds like a means to protect their "Professional" product line brand, to me. Ensure integrity of support, service and advertised price in the market. This does not appear like a unique throwback to the 60s, but a standard means to ensure this product line goes through specific and preferred channels vs. the channels which carry their "Consumer" product line.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeD2 View Post

What these guys are doing is particularly lothsome as they are foisting their apparent inability to control their distribution channels on the customer. If they don't want someone distributing their product, then they should not be supplying them. If one of their 'chosen' dealers is dumping stock, then they should be addressing the issue with the dealer, not hanging the customers out to dry. It's a simple matter of tracking the serial #'s, which any legit manufacturer should automatically be doing.

Perhaps you know much about distribution channels, service providers and resellers and this business (or in those with similar models), but I've never heard that such policing was easy for anyone to implement or maintain. It can also be incredibly costly just to attempt such detailed accounting and auditing - you pay others to do that for you, as part of the contract. Knowing where the leaks are can be tough. And, you don't always have much of a say with the leakers, especially if they are otherwise your best provider for your overall distribution needs. I truly don't believe this is as cut and dry as you feel it should be to control.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeD2 View Post

Net is - why force folks to buy & pay more at an 'Authorized Dealer' if (as is the case for me) they don't really need/want the implied 'services' purportedly being provided ?

At least this point is easy and previously addressed in this same topic: these products were intended for a different market/channel than do-it-yourself Consumer, apparently. People in this forum tend to be more savvy with such things, or at least care to be so. That's not the majority view. Otherwise, the Professional URC line would likely offer a programming interface similar to what Logitech provides for their upscale, consumer-oriented Harmony products, I suspect. Instead, my MX-700 has a rather techie, somewhat buggy and not entirely friendly program to configure it as I desire - not terribly catchy, foolproof or necessarily meant to guide the casual user along, I'd offer. However, I have an I/T background, so it's just another device programmer to me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeD2 View Post

Many people do not need their advice or configuration services (they are not really 'programming' remotes). Why should I be forced to pay for something I'd rather do myself !

I got a highly competitive price from surfremotecontrol.com recently - I didn't feel forced to pay for anything but my researched choice, in this case.

I have not needed further advice or updates for programming yet, but at least I have a support channel for such things.

My whole-house humidifier was an installer-only model I bought on eBay which I *knew* required professional installation to obtain full manufacturer support. It took some forum scrounging and consulting with HVAC experts to get it operating correctly. I knowingly took on those Support risks and accepted the consequences, saving a few bucks from bringing in a contractor, essentially - for other items, I've hired professionals to ensure it was done correctly and supported.

I also am of the opinion that if URC had not previously offered this (or a similar) blurb on their website previously:

Quote:
http://universalremote.com/pro/

. . .
All of the devices we advertise here in the Professional section of this website are designed to be programmed and installed by experienced custom installation professionals. Our remotes are powerful and quite advanced, and in the hands of a trained programmer they can be configured to exploit all of the rich features that provide maximum consumer benefits. While it may be possible for an advanced hobbyist to derive satisfactory results, it is our strong conviction, based upon extended experience, that our products will not deliver their maximum potential unless they are professionally programmed.

We do advertise a number of advanced products designed and engineered for consumers to quickly setup on their own. These products are listed in the Consumer section of our website.

. . .

If you are a Consumer or End-user of Professional Products
Please contact your place of purchase to obtain programming support, software and manuals. If your dealer is unable to help you, you may download the appropriate programming software and manual here. Note: that you will be required to register your serial number and place of purchase.
. . .

. . . then pre-existing owners of MX-700 (and above) units who purchased independent of Authorized Dealers, Custom Installers/Contractors, etc. should have a formal means to ask for latest software from URC when they need a new device code or bugfix that the latest package will actually help resolve. And, it turns out that URC has a web form apparently for that purpose. I'd be curious to know their criteria for accepting such applications, admittedly.

I have worked for businesses which had extremely similar breakdowns of "consumer"-oriented products vs. service-installer ones. The latter were definitely more flexible and powerful in many cases, and some savvy consumers could have managed without many issues, but our support was not geared to anyone except our authorized service, sales and similar contacts. This is not at all uncommon in many, many industries.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeD2 View Post

Personally, I'm tired of this sort of corporate manipulation and on principal, will not give folks like this my money. Fortunately there are many other similar competing products to select from - which is what I intend to do. You elected to go the Authorized Dealer route and if that works for you - great !! - it's all about the free market & having the ability to chose for yourself.

Sure thing. But, lets always remember that "free" markets aren't actually free-for-alls, in many ways. They are still run by various rules - some managed by governments, others dictated by participants, etc. What we, as consumers, eventually end up choosing to obtain would seem based on what we desire for the money value at times, but I also support brands backed by companies/individuals who tend to be more in line with my pertinent personal philosophies than others, those who have given me what I wanted in a consistent fashion, etc. How they navigated market realities in order to get their products out the door has only been a consideration when I was knowingly buying into contractor-designated, service-provider-only, grey-market, etc. products. In such cases, I knew there was some form of risk involved.

Regardless, in any market, the product line will probably succeed by a combination of marketing, customer perception, availability, capabilities, pricing and even politics, among other things. So, if you find a remote control that meets your needs elsewhere from URC products, I support that choice, too. But . . .

. . . I really can't agree with your harsh perspective of this simple business clarification (and related service policy) by URC of how to obtain proper support for their Professional product line. If that's your primary reason for looking elsewhere, it might be worth a reconsideration of your current perspectives on the matter. The most harsh issue I see here is possibly leaving prior consumers flapping in the breeze when they absolutely *need* a new update for their software - but again, there's apparently a means for helping overcome that issue on an individual case basis with URC, directly.

Profits and such for their products . . . you pay for what you want. This website formalization of their "Professional" line support policy has rippled down the channels by now, and the only folks being newly caught are those buying from unauthorized resellers of these products - but, even that's being tempered, hopefully. Note that the Amazon page for the MX-700 has clear statements in many of the product reviews about Amazon not being an AD for URC Professional line products. Yet, as a viable and visible alternative, it appears that surfremotecontrol.com is linked through the same page by Amazon, itself.

- ooofest
post #147 of 199
Quote:


Perhaps you know much about distribution channels, service providers and resellers and this business (or in those with similar models), but I've never heard that such policing was easy for anyone to implement or maintain. It can also be incredibly costly just to attempt such detailed accounting and auditing - you pay others to do that for you, as part of the contract. Knowing where the leaks are can be tough. And, you don't always have much of a say with the leakers, especially if they are otherwise your best provider for your overall distribution needs. I truly don't believe this is as cut and dry as you feel it should be to control.

I do, and it's not as hard as it may seem to some. Remember, they are selling to these suppliers in bulk not one'se, two'se - so they only need to track the SR#'s by 'block'. It's basic supply chain software & inventory management stuff these days (most bulk shipments are bar code scanned into & out of inventory).

As a fellow IT person, I would think you would consider these premies by URC to be every bit as laughable as I do:
Quote:


Our remotes are powerful and quite advanced, and in the hands of a trained programmer they can ...........

- oh P-L-E-A-S-E
And, as I have stated before, I don't really consider this to be 'programming' - it's just setup/configuration.

As for reconsidering them, I simply do not trust them since they have precipitated a situation that left existing customers high & dry. This alone is enough to give me cause to spend my $$ elsewhere. I'm sure they don't care that they lost 1 sale and they are not alone. I just returmed a Logitech 880 because their software has 'bugs' that renders the customizable features useless. After many calls & e-mails to tech support, turns out they've know about it for over a month & it will be another month before they can fix it ! In researching the issues, seems this is the 3rd time they have introduced crippling software glitches. That remote went packing back & I would be hard pressed to ever consider their product again - seems they cannot be trusted either !

The search continues ..........
post #148 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeD2 View Post

I do, and it's not as hard as it may seem to some. Remember, they are selling to these suppliers in bulk not one'se, two'se - so they only need to track the SR#'s by 'block'.

Sure, but do they have access to that info without hiring somebody in addition to those they've hired along the distribution chain? It costs more money to checkup on your chain. Why would they need to go through that expense? You didn't address my other notion, that they may not have much of a distributor choice, either - we don't know in this case.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeD2 View Post

As a fellow IT person, I would think you would consider these premies by URC to be every bit as laughable as I do:
- oh P-L-E-A-S-E
And, as I have stated before, I don't really consider this to be 'programming' - it's just setup/configuration.

It's still easily classified as programming a device, and I say that as an I/T person. EDIT: I should add that "marketing speak" is what it is, and I accept your sneering at it from an I/T level. Sure, the blurb sounds silly to us, but we can't deny that it is meant to represent URC positioning of how this product line is meant to be supported. Which, again, is not a unique stance for such a line in this or other industries.

- ooofest
post #149 of 199
I am cross-posting a request for knowledge concerning Toshiba DVDR/DVR component discrete codes, because this forum seems the more appropriate place for my original query. Hope that's OK.

Sorry if I seem desperate . . . perhaps I am! In attempting to make these MX-700 macros relatively foolproof for my family and guests, the DVR is the only standout to cause problems due to no evident ON/OFF discrete codes (or obvious work-arounds).

- ooofest
post #150 of 199
Quote:
Originally Posted by ooofest View Post

I am cross-posting a request for knowledge concerning Toshiba DVDR/DVR component discrete codes, because this forum seems the more appropriate place for my original query. Hope that's OK.

Sorry if I seem desperate . . . perhaps I am! In attempting to make these MX-700 macros relatively foolproof for my family and guests, the DVR is the only standout to cause problems due to no evident ON/OFF discrete codes (or obvious work-arounds).

- ooofest

The Motorola 641x DVR's have the same issue; we all just opt to leave them ON all the time (even though you turn it off, it is STILL really running afterall - I doubt you'll find a huge difference in power consumption).
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