Best Non-TiVo TiVo Remote

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by HeatherA, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. Edmund

    Edmund Remote Czar TCF Club

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    Nov 8, 2002
    Des Moines. IA

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    remotes models mx-600 & 800 were RF versions of the mx-500 & 700.
     
  2. megory

    megory Advanced TiVoOligan

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    Spectrum,...
    WOW! That's great. Maybe WeaKnees could do it! I think I heard that years ago, so I'm glad to hear it again, and to have the info on the kits. Any more info appreciated too!
     
  3. megory

    megory Advanced TiVoOligan

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    Spectrum,...
    Well, I asked WeaKnees, and they said they "Sorry, we can't help you and don't know anyone who can."

    Does anyone know of any company that can handle this technology?
     
  4. classicsat

    classicsat Astute User

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    Ontario Canada.
    You still need to add the JP1 connector to the Sony remote, and it isn't as simple as the 6 pin connector either; you have to wire to the EEPROM chip that the JP1 adapter/software reads.
     
  5. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance

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    Doh. I guess I could have just looked at it and read the label. It's an MX-600. :rolleyes:

    Question for the folks with Harmonys. Can you operate most functions without looking at the remote?
     
  6. bkdtv

    bkdtv New Member

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    On the Harmony One/900, yes. On others, not so much.
     
  7. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance

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    What buttons do you guys use for "Menu" and "Guide"? Do you use the << >> ?
    [​IMG]
     
  8. atlynch

    atlynch Person

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    Sunnyvale, CA
    You can now get the Home Theater master MX-850 on Ebay for about $250. It's worth every penny. The software to program it on the PC is reasonably good. It's PC only, which is the only reason I own a copy of Windows. Mine a is set up to handle 3 tivos, receiver, a CD player a DVD Player, an Apple TV, an XBOX, A BluRay Player, an HDMI switch, a Component video switch, a DVDO Duo, even a VCR, and oh yeah, the television. When I first got it, I programmed it, and my technophobe (ex) wife picked it up and started using it without instruction. My kids use it as well. I've had it about 5 years now.


    For the bedrooms, I like the Sony RM-VL900. You can set one up, and then clone it to others. This way each bedroom has the same remote. These can be found for dirt cheap now.

    -Drew
     
  9. bkdtv

    bkdtv New Member

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    DC Metro Area
    I have the Guide button set to bring up the guide. Yes, I use << and >> for FF/REW.

    My menu button is set to display the NPL. Harmony has a discrete code for that.

    I have the TiVo menu on the LCD, but rarely use that.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    If you've never used a Harmony, you customize the buttons as seen here.
     
  10. snarler

    snarler New Member

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    "Menu" is "TiVo" for me. "Guide" maps to pulling up the channel guide. << and >> are rewind and fast forward (as opposed to |<< and >>| which are seven second skip back and 30 second skip forward with that enabled or jump to next marker if it's not)
     
  11. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance

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    Ah I see... I use the << >> buttons for Guide and Menu on the MX-600. That way I never have to move my hands around on the remote. You could do the same on the Harmony too I suppose. I like the Harmony. I could get used to that button layout fairly quickly and it actually has a couple more hard buttons on there that look like they'd come in handy. It's good to know there's something else out there if for some reason my beloved MX-600 ever gets discontinued. :)
     
  12. balboa dave

    balboa dave well rounded

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    Newport...
    Another hard core fan of the Harmony One. I set the ^ and &#957; buttons under the screen as thumbs up and down, even though I rarely use them. I control an A/V system, 2 TiVos and 2 TVs in different rooms, an Xbox 360, a PS3 (w/adapter), and a CD/DVD jukebox.
    I thought the 880 was the bee's knees when I bought it on the day it came out, but now, I agree with your assessment. Even after paying big bucks for it, I still used the TiVo peanut as my go to remote. And it's now retired since I got the One.
    I think the TiVo peanut is the best remote the was ever invented. You'll love this link about it's history. Still, after just an hour of using the H One, the peanut went into the drawer. Not only is the layout and feel remarkably similar, and that's not by coincidence, the buttons light up. Absolutely and completely usable in pitch darkness. It's thinner, lighter, and the keys feel very good. I've set up things like the To Do and Season Pass menus to be one-click. The hidden settings that start with thumbs up, down, up and select, play, select are now a single button press away.
    I know you hate to hear this, I would, but the Harmony One and PS3 adapter were for sale together on Amazon for $150 just a week or two ago. I did paid full retail for the 880 when it came out.
    I use the buttons labeled "Menu" and "Guide."

    Since every single button is reprogrammable based on your activity, if you want to use the << >> buttons for Guide and Menu, you can.
     
  13. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance

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    How easy is it to move around on that thing? For TiVo use, it seems you have to move up and down the keypads quite a bit. Can you operate the Menu and Guide buttons without looking at the remote? If not, has it turned out to be a big deal? I really am liking this one more and more... Anyone using the 900 model with the RF capability? Works well? Good range? :)
     
  14. Dan S

    Dan S Member

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    Another die-hard Harmony One user here. I previously owned various Sony universal remotes as well as a Harmony 659 and never liked any of them, whereas with the Harmony One I was loving it immediately.

    My wife instantly liked it a lot better than the original peanut, and she usually hates it when I switch us to a new remote.

    For me, besides the obvious reasons of activity based control and ease of setup, the reason I like it so much is the ergonomics. It's so light and thin it just feels great in the hand, and they really did their homework on separating out the "groups" of buttons, making them nice and big, and making them different shapes and textures so that you learn it all by feel very, very quickly. I have never used any other remote that has come close in quickly developing "muscle memory" for using it. This remote is expensive, but it's just worth it.

    For anyone else using, or thinking of using, a harmony one, here are some strategies I use for the button assignments, with the goal of having as little as possible on the color touchscreen (again, to take advantage of muscle memory and feel).

    The ^ and &#957; buttons, as mentioned by another poster, can be used as hardware thumbs up and down buttons. But if you are like me and do not use suggestions, you have no need for thumbs up/down, and can use them for other important functions. For me, I use the ^ button to go straight to the "now playing" menu, and the &#957; button as the "live TV" button. True, you wouldn't know what these do just by looking at the remote, but you learn them very quickly.

    Another button I'm not sure if I saw mentioned is the + button, which has a sub-label on the remote of "clear". This inspired me to assign it to the "delete" command, which lets me delete shows or folders of shows in the now playing list with a single button press, much quicker then selecting the show and then doing additional presses to delete the show, saying yes I'm sure, etc.

    For the "E' button on the lower right, I assigned this one to the "last channel" button for those times when you are trying to toggle between two channels and watch two shows at once. You know you've done it :)

    Lastly, I have assigned the "back" button to the "aspect" command, since Tivo uses the left cursor diamond to go back and does not need a dedicated back button. This is useful when you are watching some letterboxed show on a standard def only channel (quite common these days). On a 16x9 set, using this button to change the Tivo from the "panel" aspect ratio to "zoom" will allow the letterboxed program to fill the screen just right and get rid of the black borders on all 4 sides of the TV.

    One thing I do make sure to do, for all of these extra button assignments that do not have "intuitive" button labels to go with them, is to ALSO map those last few commands to the 6 buttons of the touchscreen. That way my wife, who has not memorized all these extra mappings, can get to those extra commands, when she wants them, by touching their corresponding touchscreen button, while I can get to them quicker by using their hardware equivalents.

    Thanks!
     
  15. balboa dave

    balboa dave well rounded

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    Newport...
    I'm not sure why you need to use this without looking; you've repeated the question so it must be important, but this remote is 100% usable in complete darkness. But to address your concern, I'd say 90% of TiVo functionality can be done without looking, as the core button placement is so similar to the peanut. The touch screen isn't reachable with the thumb without shifting your hand, but I can live with that.

    And to add to Dan S's mapping suggestions, I assigned Slow to the square Stop button next to Pause. Placing the Live TV and Now Playing to the ^ and &#957; buttons is a great idea. That would make this have 100% of the peanut functionality within reach of your thumb.
     
  16. brettatk

    brettatk Thread Killer

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    I'll echo other responses and say get a Harmony. I have an 880 and after remapping a few of the buttons I can use it very easily without looking at it. I do wish at the time I had paid a little more and gotten the 890. I hate having to have line of sight to my components, the RF would have came in handy. If the One had RF capability it would be very tempting, but I'll stick with my 880 for now.
     
  17. dianebrat

    dianebrat wait.. I did what? TCF Club

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    The new Harmony 900 is a Harmony One with RF

    Diane
     
  18. Brute

    Brute Member

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    May 14, 2004
    Richmond, VA
    We've had an 880 for about 3 years now. We've loved it. Sadly, but buttons are starting to become unresponsive. I don't know if that's a normal issue on the 880s or if its because I spilled beer on it a couple of years ago.

    I think I will be upgrading to a harmony one in short order.
     
  19. brettatk

    brettatk Thread Killer

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    Thanks, I didn't realize that. I guess when my 880 dies I know what I'll be purchasing. :)
     
  20. bareyb

    bareyb Under Maintenance

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    Silicon Valley
    Just trying to get some long term user impressions. Being able to operate the remote by touch is very important to me. It's one of the reasons I've stuck with the MX-600 for so long. With my luck, they will undoubtedly "improve it" some day and ruin it. If that happens and I'm looking for a new way to go, it sounds like the 900 would be my best bet. :)
     

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