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Here's a challenge I'm having a hard time solving without resolving to custom circuits. I've got a Harman Kardon PA4000 eight channel amp (4 stereo pairs). I'd like to control each stereo pair volume independantly using the available IR input for each set of channels -- 1 IR receiver going into each of 4 zones around the house. This way I can carry the same remote around the house and adjust volume for each room as I am in it with the same remote (just using the volume keys). The HK allows control via the 4 IR inputs or 4 keypad inputs (custom RJ45 circuit). Each input controls a discrete set of channels, but each input also recieves the same commands as the other -- there is no address for each IR.

Make sense? Now comes the hard part:

I'd like to also be able to control the volume levels for each of these 4 stereo pairs from my home control program. I'm having difficulty finding a device to read in IR signals from 4 different locations to a computer (where my home control program is) that can also send out signals to each of these 4 IR ports WITHOUT sending them all the same info at the same time! By this I mean that each port must be discrete. This comes to be a problem when the IR codes are the same for divices you want controlled discretely.

I found a device called a Tira-2.1 that seems to be able to act as both IR reciever and transmitter, but I'm not sure if I can use something like 4 of these plugged into the same computer or what.

Any ideas? Much appreciated -- I'm not beyond hardwiring up custom mux's at this point
 

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One approach would be to connect IR receivers in your four rooms to the four zone inputs of a Xantech 795-20 , and then connect the Xantech's four zone outputs to the channel IR inputs on your amp. Doing so would ensure that volume commands in a given room get sent only to the corresponding amp channels. You could then use the "common" outputs to control, say, some shared A/V sources.


To send commands to individual IR zones from your PC, you could get a Slink-E , then connect four of its IR outputs to the four inputs of the 795-20. Since doing so puts them in parallel with the room IR receivers, you'll need to either "diode mux" them together, or flash the Slink-E outputs into IR receivers for each zone (you could use the room-based receivers if you wanted). The former would be cheaper, while the latter has the added advantage of optically isolating the two systems for ground loop protection.


There are other ways of solving the problem, too. For a novel approach, check out Xantech's Gatekeep-IR system.


- digiphotonerd
 
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