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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is it just me or is the remote control market missing the boat? It used to be that you could buy a remote and do some fairly advanced programming yourself (macro's, delays, etc. etc. etc.). Now, you can either buy a remote that is very much a consumer version where programming is done through wizards, and outside of that, you're limited to want you can change (Harmony for example), or you can buy a professional remote (UEI, URC, and now also Pronto), but then you can't program them yourself (software only available to dealers...). What about all of us that wants to customize our own remote? Or change/add equipment often enough that we need to make some changes in the programs...


Sorry for the rant... just very frustrated with this obvious hole in the market.
 

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- it's a pretty small hole, to be frank... the percentage of people who fall into the category you describe is darn small...


- and that hole is being filled by applications for various handheld devices... there's any number of applications being developed for idevices and so on...
 

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Ever heard of JP1? You can get a great JP1 remote at your local radio shack for 97 cents (15-134), buy or build a JP1 cable and use the free programming software to run circles around harmony. No wizards, no dependence on web servers, and replacements are ultra cheap. They keys don't wear out in 6 months, but last 10 years or more. Here's a screen shot of the free software. Check out the links in my sig.




The software is much better than harmony software. Tech support is always fast and free. You just drag and drop functions onto the buttons. Updating your remote takes about 3 seconds instead of 5 minutes. You can store all your files locally and load to as many remotes as you want. You can do nested macros, state tracking, 15 step macros instead of harmony's 5 (or zero) steps, 4 functions per key (primary function, shifted function, long key press or double key press), device state tracking, pauses, device specific macros, etc. You can even multiplex to get unlimited devices rather than 5 or 6 in a comparable harmony. You can even create your own custom protocols to control absolutely anything, if you are so inclined.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiojan /forum/post/19622011


Is it just me or is the remote control market missing the boat? It used to be that you could buy a remote and do some fairly advanced programming yourself (macro's, delays, etc. etc. etc.). Now, you can either buy a remote that is very much a consumer version where programming is done through wizards, and outside of that, you're limited to want you can change (Harmony for example), or you can buy a professional remote (UEI, URC, and now also Pronto), but then you can't program them yourself (software only available to dealers...). What about all of us that wants to customize our own remote? Or change/add equipment often enough that we need to make some changes in the programs...


Sorry for the rant... just very frustrated with this obvious hole in the market.

You should check with local URC dealers to see if they will give you the software, when I bought my MX-980 I got the software so I could program it myself.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdavej /forum/post/19623730


Ever heard of JP1? You can get a great JP1 remote at your local radio shack for 97 cents (15-134), buy or build a JP1 cable and use the free programming software to run circles around harmony. No wizards, no dependence on web servers, and replacements are ultra cheap. They keys don't wear out in 6 months, but last 10 years or more. Here's a screen shot of the free software. Check out the links in my sig.




The software is much better than harmony software. Tech support is always fast and free. You just drag and drop functions onto the buttons. Updating your remote takes about 3 seconds instead of 5 minutes. You can store all your files locally and load to as many remotes as you want. You can do nested macros, state tracking, 15 step macros instead of harmony's 5 (or zero) steps, 4 functions per key (primary function, shifted function, long key press or double key press), device state tracking, pauses, device specific macros, etc. You can even multiplex to get unlimited devices rather than 5 or 6 in a comparable harmony. You can even create your own custom protocols to control absolutely anything, if you are so inclined.

The problem with your JP-1 remote is only the person who programs it will know everything it can do and how to use it unless you spend a lot of time teaching them. A proper universal remote will be easy to use for other people from the first time they pick it up.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiojan /forum/post/19622011


Is it just me or is the remote control market missing the boat? It used to be that you could buy a remote and do some fairly advanced programming yourself (macro's, delays, etc. etc. etc.). Now, you can either buy a remote that is very much a consumer version where programming is done through wizards, and outside of that, you're limited to want you can change (Harmony for example), or you can buy a professional remote (UEI, URC, and now also Pronto), but then you can't program them yourself (software only available to dealers...). What about all of us that wants to customize our own remote? Or change/add equipment often enough that we need to make some changes in the programs...


Sorry for the rant... just very frustrated with this obvious hole in the market.

You mentioned URC. URC will allow you to obtain software via the dealer who sells you the remote. Any dealer who tells you different needs to read this post. http://www.remotecentral.com/cgi-bin...ost.cgi?858702


What a dealer can do is refuse to give you the software... so hang up on him and call another dealer.. rinse repeat until you find one who will give you software.


Pronto changing their policy was a big surprise but i assume it was so they could regain traction with the CI market.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by WayneDB123 /forum/post/19625716


The problem with your JP-1 remote is only the person who programs it will know everything it can do and how to use it unless you spend a lot of time teaching them. A proper universal remote will be easy to use for other people from the first time they pick it up.

Well, it is possible to program a JP-1 remote to operate in an obscure way, but it surely isn't necessary.

The only deficiency I can see is that the buttons can't change labels. So it is hard to remember what button to push when the user wants to, say, select Concert Hall sound effects. But guess what-- only the OEM remote has the correct labels. Cascading LCD screens ain't so easy for a first time user either.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3FingeredGlove /forum/post/19629496


Well, it is possible to program a JP-1 remote to operate in an obscure way, but it surely isn't necessary.

Actually it is very hard not to when the button labels are named wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 3FingeredGlove /forum/post/19629496


But guess what-- only the OEM remote has the correct labels. Cascading LCD screens ain't so easy for a first time user either.

All of my buttons have the right names, if I need to add more options it is very easy. Here is an example of what a proper universal can do with the situation you described, say I want to have more sound options then the screen can hold on the first page for an activity, I create a button that says more audio options that jumps to another page with all the properly labeled buttons along with a button that is labeled for returning to that activities main page.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Sorry... have to agree... the JP1 would make it fairly difficult for my wife to use the HT and impossible when we have visitors... I could most definitely live with it, but the inability to customize the labels would be an issue.


Regarding URC... every dealer I have spoken to have basically said that they would have to program the remote and that they will not supply the software. Needless to say, I don't shop at any of those and never will.


Again, the big ones... URC, RTI, UEI and Pronto, all require you to purchase a remote that is basically useless unless you also purchase professional programming. It's kind of a car company selling a car without the ECU software and then forcing you to purchase the installation of that... doubt it would be acceptable. Seriously, I would feel as if I was taken hostage by the remote company if I purchased a remote that I can't change myself... I do change stuff once in a while and I would not be happy to pay for reprogramming (and the hassle of it to boot).
 

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^^^


again... the software for urc remotes is readily available to you from the dealer that you buy the remote from... and if you can't find a dealer who will do this, you aren't looking hard enough... if you can't find one, pm me and i will point you in the right direction...


businesses (not just remote control manufacturers) have logic behind their business model... because it is inconvenient for you does not make it a "bad model"...
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiojan /forum/post/19630120


... the JP1 would make it fairly difficult for my wife to use the HT and impossible when we have visitors...

For me, a remote is toy. I suspect that is true for most posters here.


For my wife, a remote is a useful adjunct to an appliance. She likes that she can walk into any of the three areas of the house where we have TV screens, pick up the remote, click the TV button and have the remote turn on the necessary components, select the inputs, etc. Or instead she can click DVD, etc. The Power button shuts every thing off. Our visitors need no training.


The three rooms have different equipment, but she doesn't need to think about that. Clicking the volume button controls variously TV volume (kitchen), HT system (living room), and a simple receiver (bedroom). Each room has its own identical remote programmed to control the hardware in that room. At $20 per remote, we carry a spare or two.


I don't want her, the kids, and certainly not the visitors fiddling with things like individual audio channel levels. I use the OEM remote for those infrequent tasks on the components which need dedicated buttons. Tasks like setting up the PVRs for recording, or selecting a NetFlicks title, etc all are handled by on screen menus.


It's just a different philosophy.
 

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I'm under the impression that the Harmony remotes use wizards for programming, but allow for more advanced programming when needed, e.g. delays, macros.


What's missing?
 

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Harmony's flagship models can't do macros anymore. The models that can do macros are limited 5 steps. Support for delays, etc. isn't too bad, but you have no control over the order of events the wizard creates. So you are somewhat limited like the OP says. It works fine for most users but still leaves a lot to be desired for advanced users. I've chosen to live with it for the family's main remote and use JP1 everywhere else. If I could afford it, I'd probably go with URC.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccotenj /forum/post/19630145


^^^


again... the software for urc remotes is readily available to you from the dealer that you buy the remote from... and if you can't find a dealer who will do this, you aren't looking hard enough...

What he said. There are a couple of them that visit this forum. Look harder.
 

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ntempleton,


We use the Comcast red OK/Select button remote. It has only three device buttons, but internally can handle 4.


If we had more components to control, I would use the RCA RCRP05B. ($20 at Walgreens, Best Buy, and of course on line.) Insignia sells a JP1 remote that I like the look of, but those are not so easy to get.

NS-RC01G-09 not backlit

NS-RC02U-10A 67100BA1-005-R backlit

I think mdavej may be able to comment on these.
 

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The Insignia is my favorite JP1 remote at the moment. It's small, but the buttons are big and well laid out. The RCA is big with small buttons, but more of them (see the screen shot in my first post). HERE's a thread with pics and links to sources. I found mine on ebay, but mcmelectronics has them as well.


There are only a few retail JP1 remotes these days, like the RCA and URC-8820n. But there are many more OEM JP1 remotes from various cable systems and tv's. That's why you have to get them from ebay or some vendor of OEM replacement remotes. But they are often extremely cheap. A few months ago the RCA was widely available for around $4. Many radio shack JP1 remotes are now on clearance for $1. Most people have no idea what these little wonders are capable of, so they eventually fail in the marketplace because competitors usually have better styling and layout. But OEMs buy millions of them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by herdfan /forum/post/19652240


What he said. There are a couple of them that visit this forum. Look harder.

Obviously we will disagree on this one... as a customer I shouldn't have to "look harder" to use a companies product. I have spoken to a couple of my local dealers and they have all said, "no, we program for you", at a fee of course. Not interested in that.... neither am I interested in having to chase down a dealer that would be will to supply the software.


I have a found a UEI with software, which allows me to do exactly what I want to do.


I still think that if you purchase a remote, you should be able to use it. So either include the programming in the price (and all the future programming to accommodate for changes), or give me the program.
 
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