One remote to rule them all!

Discussion in 'TiVo Help Center' started by cnsayre, Apr 8, 2015.

  1. Apr 8, 2015 #1 of 15
    cnsayre

    cnsayre New Member

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    Feb 27, 2003

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    We have about a 10 year old Zenith LCD TV in the bedroom, hooked up to a Tivo Premiere, I believe. It's HD and has two tuners...

    Anyway, I have an old "One for All" universal remote that I like (http://www.replacementremotes.com/ONE-FOR-ALL/Download-FREE-URC8011-URC8017-Operating-Manual.html ), simply because it allows me to use one remote for the TV and the Tivo, and actually has Tivo-esque buttons, thumbs up, thumbs down, etc.

    And it was all good.

    But... and you knew that was coming...

    We've recently begun using the Roku in the bedroom more and more, to watch HBO Go on. And this is where my "One Remote To Rule Them All!" falls apart.

    The One For All Remote is... iffy to program, at best. It's not that it's acting weirdly, it's that the Zenith TV codes don't program all the buttons, so it's hit and miss. I have a lot of them programmed on it now, though.

    The one command I couldn't find/map on the One for all remote was to swap inputs on the TV, to swap back and forth between the Tivo and the Roku.

    So I programmed the Tivo Remote. And this controls the TV, the input setting... but there's no button on it that will turn on the sleep timer on the TV.

    I am now forced to swap two remotes in and out to change inputs/set the sleep timer on the TV.

    Is there any one remote out there that anyone recommends that can do everything (swap inputs, sleep timer, thumbs up/down, etc)?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Apr 8, 2015 #2 of 15
    scandia101

    scandia101 Just the facts ma'am

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    MN, greater...
    There are many
    I'd look into the Logitech Harmony line of universal remotes
     
  3. Apr 8, 2015 #3 of 15
    mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

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    Ellicott...
    Harmony One. Unfortunately, it's been discontinued. However, you can find a lot of them listed on ebay. It contains a rechargeable battery and a charging cradle so you never have to replace the batteries.

    The Harmony remotes are unique in that they are smart remotes that can remember which mode you're in. You don't program macros to control your devices but rather you program activities. For example, to watch TV you pick which device is used to view the video (TV), what controls the audio (A/V component), what inputs are required, what source is used, etc. You tell it if the device is controlled by an on/off switch or is on constantly.

    When you select the activity, the remote assumes that everything is off and turns on the necessary components and selects the designated inputs on the TV and A/V components. If you select a different activity, the remote already knows which components it turned on and only turns on additional components as required. When you hit the power off button it turns off just the components it turned on.

    Harmony remotes are programmed via their website using the supplied software. They connect to a PC that has the software installed via a USB cable and connects to the internet to access their massive library of remote codes. You look up the desired device and it automatically fetches the necessary codes. You can test the remote until you have it set the way you want and then save the configuration. It's saved in your account and can be accessed from anywhere should you wish to program a different remote or reprogram your current one.
     
  4. Apr 8, 2015 #4 of 15
    hughvh

    hughvh Member

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    I still miss my All-In-One...

    I had the Harmony One until my dog chewed on it. I now recommend the Harmony Home Hub http://www.logitech.com/en-us/harmony-remotes. It has the same functionality as the Harmony One. You can purchase one with a remote or use your phone or tablet as one. I have one of the remotes, but I have grown to love the tablet interface.
     
  5. Apr 8, 2015 #5 of 15
    telemark

    telemark Active Member

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    Harmony is probably the most popular, with URC the next most popular.
     
  6. Apr 9, 2015 #6 of 15
    Teeps

    Teeps Well-Known Member

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    Torrance,Cal...
    I have a Harmony 670 remote.
    I will add to what mr.unnatural has stated, saying that the Harmony can also learn commands from an original remote, too.

    My experience, programming of the Harmony remains difficult even with the latest website.
    But, once you get it tweaked to your liking, it can't be beat.
    I like tactile buttons on the 670 vs touch screen buttons on other remotes.
     
  7. Apr 9, 2015 #7 of 15
    mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

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    Ellicott...
    I meant to amend my post to indicate that it could also be programmed from another remote, but you beat me to it. The first time I tried to program a Harmony (it was a model 880) I was put off by the way it functioned, mainly because I just didn't understand it. My mindset was so used to the way other universal remotes were programmed that it was confusing. After using it for a while I got more comfortable with it and find it quite simple to program. It's a radical departure from programming most universal remotes so it takes some getting used to.

    I also prefer tactile buttons vs. touchscreens, which is why I would never consider the latest Harmony Ultimate One. Logitech reduced the number of physical buttons and now rely mostly on touch screen commands. I prefer a remote I can use without having to look at to perform a function. The Harmony One is set up so that most of the touch screen functions correspond to rarely used commands or commands specific to individual components. The most commonly used commands are assigned to physical buttons that can be selected by feel.
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2015
  8. Apr 9, 2015 #8 of 15
    krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    I understand your situation. I've had the One-For-All URC6131 deployed throughout 3 different homes for over a decade, as it worked so well with our DirecTiVo and ReplayTV DVRs; but it's fallen down as we've added new devices not available in its codeset and with the advent of the RGYB buttons. (I picked-up a couple 6131s that had been retrofitted for JP1 programming, which would allow for adding new device codesets, but that won't fix the absence of the colored buttons.)

    We've deployed two Harmony Ones in rooms where we have surround sound systems, where the surround sound and TV input switching would be far too complex for anyone to remember. And now that we've switched over to TiVo Roamio/Minis for our DVR solution, we're using the Roamio-style TiVo peanut remotes most of the time.

    However, I *am* still looking for a low-cost universal remote replacement for the URC6131, and have been eyeing an RCA 6-device remote (RCRN06GR) as a possibility. (Amazon,RCA,Lowes;image) I'd love to hear if anyone has experience with this remote, especially as it relates to programming for TiVo, Roku, Xbox 360 and AppleTV; and whether it would support TiVo's IR "Remote Address" customization.
     
  9. Apr 9, 2015 #9 of 15
    Rugged Ron

    Rugged Ron Member

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    I highly recommend the Harmony remotes, but stay away from the newer versions with fewer physical buttons. I have three Harmony One's, three Harmony 650's, and a Harmony Touch, which is one of the newer versions. It's pretty much junk; not from a physical standpoint, but from a button layout and screen commands standpoint. I rarely use that one because it just drives me nuts! In my opinion, Logitech really messed up when it stopped manufacturing the One form factor.

    As a poster above said, the One's are (unfortunately) no longer manufactured, but good ones can still be found on eBay for a hundred bucks or so. It uses a nice combination of physical buttons and touchscreen commands. The 650's are also a nice remote. All commands are physical buttons with programmable screen button titles. 650's can be found new for $50-$60 if you shop around. Both remotes are nice. It just depends on whether you want to buy a used One or new 650. I recently grabbed a very nice 650 off of eBay for $22!

    Programming the Logitech remotes can be a little trying at times, but it is amazing what you can make them do with a little ingenuity!
     
  10. krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    I wholly agree. I'd likely have purchased one of the latest network/smartphone-integrated Harmony remotes had they stuck closer to the One's form factor and button layout. The One style would have benefited from an update, perhaps adding the colored RGYB buttons, and perhaps I could grow accustomed to the absence of the keypad, but they removed just too many buttons for my taste -- especially with the combining of the FF/Next buttons and the removal of the top rocker toggle; and I'm not a fan of the DVR/Guide/Info button relocation.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. telemark

    telemark Active Member

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    I've heard good things of the Harmony Hub. The remotes that go with it have more buttons again too.

    [​IMG]

    There's also one that control lights and such.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2015
  12. krkaufman

    krkaufman TDL shepherd

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    Good to know; thanks.

    Looks like diffs b/w latest remotes (Harmony Smart vs Ultimate) are...
    • restored keypad
    • shifted DVR/Guide/Info up near Exit/Menu buttons
    • shifted colored RGYB buttons up
    • removed Home & Favorites buttons
    • replaced LCD touchscreen in favor of 3 activity buttons
     
  13. mr.unnatural

    mr.unnatural Well-Known Member

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    Ellicott...
    The only problem I see with this remote is that it lacks the ability to cover the full functionality of each individual device. It's probably fine for running activities, but you'd still need to pull out the specific remote to access and control individual device commands. Having a touch screen in addition to the buttons on the Hub gives the user almost limitless remote commands. The hard buttons are for commonly used functions whereas the touch screen commands can be customized with as many pages as you need to cover all of the device's functions.

    That's what I've always loved about the Harmony One. Logitech took a huge step backwards when they dropped the One in favor of the Ultimate One. I'm not surprised that they did it because the LCD screen on the One was easily prone to damage and Logitech would not offer any repair service to fix it. Instead, they'd offer you a discount on a replacement remote that was usually more expensive than buying the same remote on sale from an online retailer.
     
  14. philhu

    philhu User Since Day ONE!

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    I had 4 Harmony 890 Pro units. You programmed each when you made changes, which was a pain, but I batched up my changes.

    I have since bought 2 IPOD units and run Roomie on them.
     
  15. Islanti

    Islanti Member

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    Dec 13, 2001
    Georgetown, TX
    That's where the Smartphone app comes in. You can do anything from there that you need the original remote for, but you get the benefit of physical buttons too.

    I wish Harmony had a backlit version of the cheap remote. I also wish they allowed multiple of the cheap remotes to be paired with a single hub.
     

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