AVS Forum banner

1 - 20 of 254 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,658 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Since I purchased the PS3 at launch, I've been patiently waiting for the IR command of the PS3 via BT since it came out. I can't think of a day that I ever regret purchasing my Harmony universal remote, but the PS3 did make it very problematic from a one remote control perspective.


Now it appears that 6 very small companies (and 1 large) have come out with a similar device. All will take the IR commands from a programmable universal remote and then resend the signal as a BT command the PS3 can receive. It's a 1 remote home theater answer if you have and like PS3.

IR2BT

11/3/08 DISCONTINUED: The IR2BT , made by IR2BT Devices, Inc. hit the streets first as ordering began on 3/28/08 - selling 200 in approx. 12 hours and preordering another 300 in about 8 hours 1 week later. The current plans of the manufacturer at this time of writing is to ship 100 units/week. To power the device the owner can use a mini-usb cable to an always on USB port or 2 AA batteries. So far what I'm hearing is the reviews are good if not great. The current price is $55 plus shipping. There is an option for an opt-in mailing list when more IR2BT become available. IR2BT offers good forum support for their device and consumers.

MAJOR EDIT: With as of Firmware 2.40 on 7/1/08 there appears to be a problem with BT communication and pairing upon startup of a PS3 with IR2BT units with serial numbers from 0001 to 1399. If you didn't update to 2.40/2.41 and you have an affected unit, there isn't a problem yet. However, when you do upgrade your PS3's firmware you will run into this unfortunate error. Without the ability for the user to update firmware for the IR2BT device at home, this is real problem, but a fix has been made. It does however, require you sending your unit back to the manufacturer to flash a new firmware that corrects for the problem. Follow the instructions for returning the IR2BT as found on their website. All currently sold IR2BT units are not showing this error and according to the manufacturer while it might be possible for Sony to cause an error in the future, that change in BT would have to disable the functionality of the Sony BT remote, so it is believed to be highly unlikely to happen again.

8/31/09 MAJOR EDIT UPDATE:In a wacky twist of fate, with the release of FW 3.00 for the PS3, if you never sent your IR2BT back in the recall to be fixed, it should now be working! Well that is what users here at AVS are reporting . A full year later Sony messes with its firmware and its like the problem never existed. I'm sure Bruce with the IR2BT company is little less than thrilled to hear that.

NEW IR2BTci: The IR2BT company has discontinued the original IR2BT model and replaced it with the new IR2BTci model sold for $150. For information and images: start here . The major changes include power by USB option and firmware upgradeable but read the link for further details.


SCHMARTSTUFF


The second group of products, are brought to you by Schmartz.com . Schmartz.com does offer great email support and communications to which I can attest and a return customer discount.

EDIT: Their first product, the PS3IR-PRO has now been discontinued (firmware support still continues). What once sold for $100 has now been replaced with much more feature packed and cheaper alternatives. See Below:



EDIT (5/7/09): NEW PS3IR-1000 has been released which boasts USB Power Sensing for flawless power functions, Infrared Emitting for remote control programming, twelve User Macros including a fully editable Discrete Off macro, and PS3 control from your PC desktop. Full PS3 control including Discrete On and Discrete Off, external infrared input, firmware upgradeability and good looks with slimmer design, LED status indicator for power state/signal reception. PS3 powerstate sensing (ps) (additional USB ps cable required - see accessories) and custom macros at a price of $80 ($90 w/ ps cable).


EDIT (9/14/09): NEW PS3IR-500 Just to add, as I am a current Schmartz consumer, he had added a new lower cost device running at $39.99 that beats the logitech in functionality and price, while maybe not in aesthetics. Apparently its virtually the same as the PS3IR-1000, but without the power sensing. EDIT: 4/16/2010 - It appears to be discontinued.


PS3TOOTHFAIRY


As of a post today at avs, there appears to now be a 3rd player in this niche market. http://www.ps3toothfairy.com has come out with something very similar to the above 2 products. Their target ship date is 4/30/08 with a starting price of $50 (which will hopefully be lower) that is a retrofit, utilizing your existing PS3 remote. The $75 assembly is ready to go, minus the power supply. For power, "the ps3toothfairy uses a standard 2.1mm polarized, tip-positive barrel connector. We will also offer a subminiature 110-250V wall pack as well as a USB-A to 2.1mm cable. You may of course provide your own power cable, the device requires a 4 to 12VDC input. For installers that wish to build their own cable, we can provide a list of qualified connectors." Sorry for the direct quote, but that escapes my technical jargon. There is an option for an opt-in mailing list for when the toothfairies go on sale/are available. There is now an PS3toothfairy thread going here at AVS which has some user reviews and discussion.


IR4PS3


EDIT: 5/23/08 - I have updated this post to include the 4th version of an IR to BT converter. There unfortunately is very little web information about this product but I will give you what posters have reported. The device is called the IR4PS3 and has been available since mid-April, and according to some works great. There is no website as of yet, but all inquiries/orders are done through [email protected] c/o Ben. For a review of the IR4PS3 you can read a pretty good review at remotecentral.com. According to one reviewer, the the latest version of the device includes a kit with a little box that requires you to pull the card out of the PS3 BT remote and also get an AC adapter for everything to work. There is now an IR4PS3 thread going here at AVS which has some user reviews and discussion.


BLUEBEAM


EDIT: 3/5/09 - And it looks like we might now have yet a 5th player in this game if IR control of the PS3. Audio Authority's new BlueBeam IR to Bluetooth converter . It will be available late March and it appears it will also among the most expensive at $159. We'll have to see how that plays out.


HARMONY


EDIT: 3/19/09 (updated 5/13/09) - And yet again there is new player in town. This time coming from a much bigger name. It looks like Logitech/Harmony is about to enter the fray of IR to BT converters. Here is the link @ EngadgetHD It is now out and for sale at Amazon for $59.99!

8/31/09 MAJOR EDIT: Apparently with the advent of the PS3 Slim , when used in conjunction with Harmony adapter, seems to have created a major pairing problem for BT devices. Not a good sign for a device that doesn't have the ability to update its firmware.


The problem has been isolated by Logitech to a FW change made by Sony and select Logitech devices with PID #'s earlier than LZ922xx will have this issue with PS3 slims. The have RMA's the affected devices and those currently being shipped are not affected.



SYNOPSIS


So, for those of you out there looking for a IR/BT universal remote to work this your PS3, you need not to. Check out these three sites to see your options to get the PS3 onto your IR universal remote. For those that have any product I/we would love to hear your reviews.


Here is very good synopsis for 3 of the 4 IR/BT converters in layman terms. Big thanks to Beerstalker!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beerstalker /forum/post/14047037


Nyko BluWave - does not support PS button so not power on or off. Does not allow you to directly control audio tracks, subtitles, video angles, color buttons, etc. You have to bring up the PlayStation on screen menu and use it to perform those functions. The IR receiver looks like a thumb drive sticking out of the front of the PS3 when installed.

Edit by dogdoctor 8/15/08: with PS update 2.40 there is now an option to turn off the PS3 without the use of the PS button. So in essence with pure IR controllers of the PS3 you can now turn off the PS3, you still however, can not turn it on.


Shmartz Stuff PS3IRX1 - Same limitations as the Nyko BluWave. This is a more attractive USB device that blends into the PS3 so well most people won't even notice it is there.


IR2BT - supports all the same functions as the official Sony Bluetooth remote. Requires the remote control to send out the macro for power down (PS, down, down, PS held for 3.5 seconds, X, X). Some Universal remotes cannot be programmed with a 3.5 second button hold, so the macro will not work with them. Those owner's would have to shut the PS3 down manually. This unit can not be updated in the field, so it possibly could stop to work at some point in the future but it is highly unlikely.


PS3 Toothfairy - supports all the same functions as the official Sony Bluetooth remote. The power off macro is built into the unit itself, so users just send a single discreet power off command from their remote, and the PS3Toothfairy sounds out the entire power off macro (so you don't have to sit there and point the remote at the unit for 5 seconds while the PS3 shuts down). The PS3Toothfairy is also available in a version that offers a 3.5mm mono jack input for direct IR control. The PS3 Toothfairy does not support firware upgrades (at least not that I know of), but it does offer the ability to change some of programming through different button presses etc, so it should be a little more futureproof.


PS3IR-Pro - Supports all the same functions as the official Sony Bluetooth remote. A recent firmware update has the power off macro is built into the unit itself. Users just send a single discreet power off command from their remote, and the Pro sounds out the entire power off macro (so you don't have to sit there and point the remote at the unit for 5 seconds while the PS3 shuts down). The Pro allows for firware updates through a USB port, so it can add new features and be more future proof. Mike is still working to get direct IR control working, but as of right now it is not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,658 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
I missed the IR2Bt original preorder and then after much communication with Schmartz.com, I've decided to go the PS3IR-PRO route, skipping the second IR2BT preorder. I'll post my review as soon as I get it. I'm glad both these companies took on this endeavor. It will be interesting to see how the patent thing works out if everything holds up.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
215 Posts
I have had the IR2BT for 1 week now and I feel it is a great product. Extremely easy to set up and works exactly as the Sony BT remote only I am using my Harmony 880. As this is the sole purpose of this device I couldn't ask for anything more.


Bill
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
587 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by zmn668 /forum/post/13581062


I have had the IR2BT for 1 week now and I feel it is a great product. Extremely easy to set up and works exactly as the Sony BT remote only I am using my Harmony 880. As this is the sole purpose of this device I couldn't ask for anything more.


Bill

I'm with you! Bruce and the IR2BT group have been great! Some of the things I like a lot:
  1. There's no lag in usage
  2. Paring was easy and straight forward, and it stays paired with the PS3, even after a loss of power
  3. My IR2BT doesn't stand out in my system
  4. It's powered through my DirecTV HD-DVR's USB port
  5. The $55 price is just about right
  6. The IR2BT has been working with Logitech to provide a solid default button mapping
  7. Great communication from Bruce and the IR2BT company
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Why pay 75-100 when you can get the same effect for 55? IR2BT seems to be the better deal at this point and that is where my money will go
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
787 Posts
This thread is completely premature. There aren't 2 alternatives, only one.

If the ps3irpro ships on april 15th, I'd be very, very surprised.


A week before the launch, I would suspect he would have review samples out to beta testers by now. There doesn't seem to be a real photo of the final product yet.


Whatever the situation is, I don't think its cool to offer a product at over double the price (shmartz lowered it down from an original price of ~130) and start waving the patent hammer. Especially if your product hasn't yet shipped. It's not really in keeping with the spirit of these projects.


Besides, there has been home grown versions of this talked about on the intraweb since back in December. Theres more to this than the simple idea, there has to be some hardcore engineering in there, not merely to get it to work, but to produce it in decent quantities at this price.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
75 Posts
ir2bt:

-currently available through preorder (at times)

-already in hands of customers with positive feedback

-$55

-great communication with customers


PS3IR-PRO:

-not yet available

-no customer reviews whatsoever

-$100 (brief sale for $75)

-creator tried to sell it in a thread devoted to the competition, while insinuating that his

patent would eliminate the competition (a classless move)


seems like an easy decision to me, especially based on the behavior of the PS3IR-PRO creator.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,430 Posts
I've got the IR2BT and it works great. I chose it over the PS3IR-PRO for two reasons:


1. It was cheaper (this was also before the $75 "sale").

2. It was available first
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,919 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by brhow /forum/post/13594034


ir2bt:

-currently available through preorder (at times)

-already in hands of customers with positive feedback

-$55

-great communication with customers


PS3IR-PRO:

-not yet available

-no customer reviews whatsoever

-$100 (brief sale for $75)

-creator tried to sell it in a thread devoted to the competition, while insinuating that his

patent would eliminate the competition (a classless move)


seems like an easy decision to me, especially based on the behavior of the PS3IR-PRO creator.

I couldn't agree more. I was disappointed to see such a cheap shot move from a company that has generally been well received around AVS.


And who knows on this patent business. He didn't mention the patent number, or what specifically the patent covers. You would think that the IR2BT would be exempt from the patent as "prior art", they had samples and shipping products long before the PS3IR-PRO has gotten to market.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,525 Posts
well, one delayed the product to get the patent process started, one didn't.


I doubt it will remove the IR2BT from the market, though. You'll just see the price go up to cover any possible royalties.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,919 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by steven975 /forum/post/13597169


well, one delayed the product to get the patent process started, one didn't.


I doubt it will remove the IR2BT from the market, though. You'll just see the price go up to cover any possible royalties.


In all likelihood it will be a year or more before such a supposed patent infringement would ever make it to the courts, although based on previous tactics from the Schmartz guy I would suspect that "cease and desist" papers have already been sent to Bruce of IR2BT.


It really chaps my hide to see someone bust their ass to bring a product to market at a fairly reasonable price only to have someone else swoop in a month or two later claiming that they patented the idea for their ridiculously overpriced version of the same thing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,658 Posts
Discussion Starter #12

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmpage2 /forum/post/13597184


....It really chaps my hide to see someone bust their ass to bring a product to market at a fairly reasonable price only to have someone else swoop in a month or two later claiming that they patented the idea for their ridiculously overpriced version of the same thing.

This wasn't meant to be an attack one business practice vs another thread. Who is to say they haven't both busted their butts to reach the state they are at. If you can refrain, please keep this type of jargon out of it.


Now it is true no one can prove patent to be true other than the manufacturer. That being the case, those that already bought the IR2BT won't lose out on anything, they will still have a product that works. Future buyers may just have to pay a higher price to cover royalties - but that is all pure speculation at this time. I just said it would be interesting to see what happens with the pattent - I mean someone had to pattent it right?


I spoke with Schmartz.com yesterday - shipments plan on going out very likely this thursday.


I will say - for a company that had some pretty good feedback at AVS, this little device (and some controversial posts I hear) has created some real animosity.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,919 Posts
The reason for the animosity is that the owner of Shmartz dropped an advertising blurb about their new PS3-IR device into the thread dedicated to the IR2BT device.


Not only did this happen but the forementioned patent was mentioned with an insinuation that sales/support of the IR2BT might cease at some point due to patent infringement.


Personally I found it unprofessional in the extreme, and apparently the mods agreed as the offending post and responses were removed from that thread.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
587 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmpage2 /forum/post/13598083


The reason for the animosity is that the owner of Shmartz dropped an advertising blurb about their new PS3-IR device into the thread dedicated to the IR2BT device.


Not only did this happen but the forementioned patent was mentioned with an insiduation that sales/support of the IR2BT might cease at some point due to patent infringement.


Personally I found it unprofessional in the extreme, and apparently the mods agreed as the offending post and responses were removed from that thread.

Agreed on all counts!


As for the patent, it is a non-issue. Even if the folks at Schmartz are awarded a patent (in a year or two), the IR2BT has a case to have the patent voided. Not only that, but it is cost prohibitive to carry forward a patent infringement lawsuit for companies of this size. By the time any of this could even happen, we'll be moving on to the PS4!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,658 Posts
Discussion Starter #15

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmpage2 /forum/post/13598083


The reason for the animosity is that the owner of Shmartz dropped an advertising blurb about their new PS3-IR device into the thread dedicated to the IR2BT device.


Not only did this happen but the forementioned patent was mentioned with an insiduation that sales/support of the IR2BT might cease at some point due to patent infringement.


Personally I found it unprofessional in the extreme, and apparently the mods agreed as the offending post and responses were removed from that thread.

And while I agree with you - what you are doing here is not furthing the actual topic of this thread. I guess if had I been the maker, I might have created my own thread and slipped a post in IR2BT thread that said something to the effect of if you still can't get the IR2BT check out this thread, letting people do their own reading of the options. That is what I attempted to do here. But thanks for the continued lambasting of the guy for some misguided posts, and derailment of this thread. You haven't yet even posted that you have an IR2BT.


Edit: Can we again keep this to the comparisons of the 2 devices. On a personal note from the invention side I'm intrigued to see if there are any.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,919 Posts

Quote:
Originally Posted by dogdoctor /forum/post/13598223


And while I agree with you - what you are doing here is not furthing the actual topic of this thread. I guess if had I been the maker, I might have created my own thread and slipped a post in IR2BT thread that said something to the effect of if you still can't get the IR2BT check out this thread, letting people do their own reading of the options. That is what I attempted to do here. But thanks for the continued lambasting of the guy for some misguided posts, and derailment of this thread. You haven't yet even posted that you have an IR2BT.


Edit: Can we again keep this to the comparisons of the 2 devices. On a personal note from the invention side I'm intrigued to see if there are any.


I have IR2BT order #160 and will provide a review when it arrives (it shipped Monday). I also believe that the character and behavior of the companies involved IS a factor to many here, and that it did deserve some discourse.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,658 Posts
Discussion Starter #17

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmpage2 /forum/post/13598402


I also believe that the character and behavior of the companies involved IS a factor to many here, and that it did deserve some discourse.

Yes, and people make mistakes. But hey feel free to make your own thread about why you hate the company. I don't even have the product yet to hate it. I believe I ordered mine before the discourse at avs took place. As far as I have seen - I have had great customer support via email, even cancelling an order for the IR version that I placed, not five minutes before finding out about the IR2BT and the PRO version. And so I patiently wait.


I'd like to see your reveiw. I hope you will take the time to read mine and compare when mine arrives.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
27 Posts
I received my IR2BT this morning. Pairing went smoothly and the product works exactly as advertised. I am very happy with this device.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
587 Posts
I'm just not sure how much of a review/comparison there can be. Both devices will convert some set of IR commands to BT and unless the PS3IR-Pro has a discreet power function then I don't see a difference other than price.


I'm very happy with my IR2BT and even a discreet power function wouldn't be worth an additional $20-$45 IMHO.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
416 Posts
First of all, please don't respond to this post. It is slightly off topic but I wanted to get my apology out there. If you would like to contact me please PM me instead. That way we wouldn't be pulling this thread off topic.


I see now that my post was not appropriate. I was naive and just not thinking. I thought what I posted was very topical. If I had realized it was inappropriate I would not have posted. My intent was to be informative, not to offend or invade anyone's territory. If there is anyone out there that was offended by my post on the IR2BT related thread, I am truly sorry. I wandered over because someone was sprinkling IR2BT posts all over the thread that people use to find out what's going on with my products (it's not my thread , it's theirs!). I actually thought it was kind of funny and annoying at the same time. There was no information, just the advertisement for the IR2BT device


As far as the patent is concerned, I applied for the patent in January for a generic device that converts IR commands to BlueTooth commands, and citing the PS3 as an example. I put together my first full prototype back in November but was fiddling around with the concept much earlier. It wasn't until several people posted that they would like to see a device like that available that I decided to move it to the front burner. I seem to remember one AVS member even cobbled something together using relays to make closures on the PS3 remote keypad. That pretty much convinced me I should spend the resources on a production model. This is all from memory so I don't remember if the relay version was before the nice guy in Canada was doing his or what. The point is, there was just a great deal of interest then by many folks.


yada yada Yada... the bottom line is I applied for a patent because it is the sensible thing to do if you're going to pour money into something. In today's market, it is less useful, but still expected, when you meet with anyone about investing. I applied because it is just good business practice. I am trying to bring a product to market for the purpose of providing a solution for this problem. It's Sony that everyone should be upset with, not me. I've put in really long hours this year providing solutions for this market. And I have shelled out my own cash to get them out. I've also reinvested all profits back into growing the company and bringing new products to market.


I'd just like to say that the early adopters are part of the team and are partially responsible for any products developed by a small company. I get the sense that most people get that and in fact, enjoy being part of the whole process. It is a selfless act since inevitably you end up buying each new and improved version as it comes out and almost always pay much more at first as well. But this allows and nurtures the development of a product. Otherwise we would all be slaves to the Sony's of the world that pretty much do whatever they want and have very little dialog with the very customers in the markets they serve. If they did they would have provided IR. Doh!


I disagree with the lower price for the early stages of a product because it doesn't provide much to help grow and evolve the solution. Eventually, yes, that price will likely come down if a big piece of the market buys in because of the economy of scale.


Fortunately for me, the market I am after is the people who want a well supported and fully featured solution. That would include some very cool people here at AVS plus mainly the installer market. They get it. And they participate. And I totally appreciate their support and business.


Again, my post on the other thread was ill advised and I'm truly sorry. Everyone that knows me and has done business with Schmartz.com knows that I am fair, honest, and earnest in my desire to help provide a solution for this market. But that doesn't mean that I can't be naive or even dumb sometimes.



Mike Muecke

Schmartz.com
 
1 - 20 of 254 Posts
Top