Originally Posted by bfan1
I might be spoiled...
1) The remote is cheap and poorly designed...
2) The latency between a keypress and something happening on screen...
3) There are plenty of features, but they are poorly programmed...
I prefer the word 'discerning' instead of 'spoiled.' ;-)
I have all these problems too, and more: I can't stand wiggly knobs, or faceplates that have weird textures, or bad fonts on screens, or modes that have too many steps. I hate constricted user interfaces, especially ones based on screens. (I'm a programmer, so not a technophobe!) I'd rather handle a single-purpose toggle switch than double-clicking some multipurpose knob and horrible menu system. I've purchased & returned countless pieces of gear that sounded good, but just felt wrong
Unfortunately I don't have a good answer for you, except to consider & understand the attributes you care about. You clearly care about design, to a point where poor design causes anguish. You literally feel
the effects of bad design. It's a curse that I know well. ;-) You might as well go with your gut, and recognize that most people don't care -- and won't.
I care about my tools. I wouldn't buy a tool that fit poorly in my hand, or whose fussiness overwhelmed its usefulness. I'd rather spend more for a better tool, even if it had fewer functions, or even use more primitive tools if that felt better.
I realized that probably no
AVR units were going to work for me -- they're a great example of an inherently complex user interface. I enjoy a system composed of parts that do one (maybe two) things well. So I have a separate HDMI switcher, audio extractor, ADC, DAC, player (Oppo 101ci for DVDs/BDs, a 30-year old Sony CDP-707ESD for CDs), streamer (AppleTV), preamp (1980s high-end ES series), EQ/DSP, and power amp. It's not simpler, of course, but it's a different sort of complexity. I like the physicality of it, and of knowing exactly how the signals travel. And I enjoy being able to switch things around, which I do often.
As for remotes: besides my old Sony remotes from the 80s, the remote for my Oppo 105 (and 101ci) are pretty great. Otherwise they're all awful. I'm actually planning on building my own remote, since most of the gear listed above has either IR or RS-232 interfaces.