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Looking for a hard-button remote with illuminated buttons

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Control & Remote Controls' started by MrSafety, Jun 20, 2003.

  1. MrSafety

    MrSafety
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    I don't want much...

    I'm not looking to spend loads...

    My needs are few ...

    I have a projector, dvd player, remote-control dimmer switch and ... that's it.

    All I want to do is operate all 3 things from a single remote which, due to the projector and the lights, obviously needs to be able to learn from other remotes. I'd like it silver/metallic with buttons not touchscreen and I'd REALLY like the buttons to be backlit (not luminous/fluorescent) so that I can see them in the dark. My Sony projector remote has this and it's brilliant. I don't want to spend a fortune and I don't want to be plunged into the never-ending tweaking world of pronto's etc - just a plain-old-style remote which can handle 3 devices and which I can see in the dark and which doesn't cost me 3-figures.

    Oh, and I'd like macros as well...

    [ok, so maybe my needs aren't few]

    I've checked out remotecentral, searched this forum and google'd till I'm through.

    Anyone point me in the direction of the next tree up which to bark?
     
  2. Loada

    Loada
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    The Home-Theatre Master MX-500 will fit your needs. It retails for just UNDER £100. I got mine from www.fpsgamer.co.uk (no I'm not affiliated with them in any way!).
    It's an excellent remote, well worth the little bit extra pricewise. There's a good review of it on Remote Central.

    Another slightly cheaper option is the One-For-All Kameleon (sic) which is a kind of touchscreen/hardbutton hybrid. It retails for around £70. Again, it has a good review on Remote Central.
     
  3. dts_boy

    dts_boy
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    i will second the theatre master, i have both the marantz rc5200 and a theatre master mx700 and the latter is soo much better!
     
  4. The Robman

    The Robman
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    What are the brands and model numbers of your devices? Chaces are, your best bet is a One For All remote. If you can't find a remote with the right codes built in, some models are modem-upgradeable, like the URC-7560, and many more models are JP1 upgradeable, which is a process where you can add your own codes.

    If the UK OFAs are too expensive, I can hook you up with a cheaper US model, if you like. And if I know what codes you need, I can add them in advance.
     
  5. MrSafety

    MrSafety
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    Thanks for the input everyone but I'm still looking for the RIGHT remote.

    I have a Sony HS10 projector - don't imagine any remote which has built-in codes will cover this (unless possibly a Sony one? VL900T perhaps? But I have looked at a number of websites with User Manuals and yet to find one) so I'm still assuming I need a remote that learns.

    My DVD player is LG DA-3620 - this is bog-standard and I'm sure uses the same codes as other LG players - it certainly works with the same multi-region hacks for other LG devices.

    The remote dimmer switch "learns" so you can get it to recognise any button on any remote - neat!

    I looked at the kameleon and loads of others and I guess I'm being picky-
    I don't want something huge that requires massive customisation but then I don't want to see buttons that say TV or Cable and such since I don't have them
    I want something silvery/metallic in colour - or at least not black
    I'm torn over hard buttons - I'm used to using hardbuttons and feeling my way to the right one but then again I like my Sony PJ's remote because the buttons light up and so help me find the less used buttons. I think maybe I could live with a touch-screen display but I'm thinking illumination is essential because there will always come a point when I need to find a key I rarely use - but I want to be able to look at the screen when I'm, for instance, traversing DVD menus and not continually looking down at my hands to make sure I'm pressing the right thing.
    Punch-through seems like it would be a good idea, specially since my PJ doesn't have speakers so the sound control is solely with the DVD player.
    Macros sound really cool and the thought of being able to press one key to turn on all the gear and dim the lights sounds really appealing.
    I just don't need loads of buttons as I really will only have 2 devices (dimmer works off one button) and most of the actions will be dealt with by the standard volume, transport and menu, arrow buttons, etc. Having a 31-button remote when I only need about 10 seems overkill. {looked at the audio zapper and Speedy 2 in this regard but they either don't illuminate or don't have punch through or inappropriate button labels or don't learn or...)
    The Harmony SST-768 looked beautiful - 'til I saw the price! - but then again that seems way overcomplicated for my needs (and too many buttons)

    And right now I'm wondering whether I couldn't fudge together something using an old iPaq I have moldering in a drawer. I know there are lots of issues with IR coverage/distance with PDAs but I have seen various opinions so I might as well charge it up and try it for myself - would be a no cost option if it works!

    If anyone can decipher my REAL requirements from all this rambling and recommend something I'd be grateful. In the meantime I think I'll haunt eBay, do the research whenever a likely-looking model comes up for sale and pounce when/if I find something which looks just right
     
  6. martin day

    martin day
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    Hi robman,

    Just been reading some of the above and saw that you can supply US versions of OFA. I recently purchased OFA6 from Richer sounds at £24.95 and whilst it is pretty good it is annoying that it does not have backlit buttons. Out of interest for the same price as I just paid what model would you have been able to supply me with as I have been thinking about upgrading to MX-500 in the future.

    Thanks
    Martin
     
  7. Loada

    Loada
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    Why not just pick up the good, old-fashioned black & white Philips Pronto RU940? They're going pretty cheap atm, you should be able to pick one up for a good price (eBay maybe?). It's silver in colour, is well-illuminated, has hard buttons for volume, mute and channel up/down and two other main hard buttons, is completely configurable, there's endless codes and graphic layouts already available for it. The downside is that it does require a PC and some effort in programming it to get the best results from it.
     
  8. The Robman

    The Robman
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    Martin,
    £25 is about $40, you can quite a good remote over here for that. I'm assuming the OFA6 you bought is the URC-7562, so we're talking about a 6 device learning remote. The closest match to that here would be the URC-8811, which is an 8 device learning remote with backlight, but it's quite a bit bigger than the 7562. The 8811 sells for $25 online, and I can get it for $20.

    If you don't need learning, the URC-6012 is a scaled down version of the 8811, and is much smaller. It still has the backlight but doesn't have learning. This one sells for $15.

    If you go the JP1 route, the only reason you would still need the remote's learning feature is to see what signals a new device uses so that you can build a new code for it. But, even without learning, there are other options for getting this info, such as finding Pronto ccf files, etc.

    MrSafety,
    I think you're right about there not being a built in code for the Sony projector, but the signal format is known so it would be easy enough to build a new code for is using JP1. Here's the signal info:

    http://www.anycities.com/rhm5757/Sony_proj.htm

    I think the fact that you want a 2 device learning remote with only a few buttons is going to make your search very difficult, but if you are prepared to compromise a little, I think I know what the right remote for you is.

    The One For All URC-6012 is quite a small remote, it has backlighting and it's silver. Granted it does have 6 device buttons, including TV and CBL, and it has more regular buttons than you need, but if you can get past that, I think it's the one you need.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. MarkR

    MarkR
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    After spending a lot of money on the HS10 setup go for the Pronto. Its silver, it illuminates, you can delete buttons you don't need (Cant do that on a hard button unless you use a pair of pliers to pull one out!!), design your OWN PERSONAL LAYOUT to meet your requirements and most of all it looks the biz.
    Might as well have a top control as that really is the central control panel for all your kit and will make you appreciate it more by having that personal touch to it IMO.

    Hope this help!!


    :lesson: :smashin:
     
  10. MrSafety

    MrSafety
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    MarkR - yeah, I think you're right. Just can't resist trying to do stuff on the cheap. Missus always getting on at me about this. My main concern, though, is ending up spending all my time messing about with CCFs, etc and other endless tweaking rather than just setting the bloody thing up, sitting down and WATCHING FILMS!!!!!

    Oh why did I ever start this home cinema thing........?





    .... because every time I sit down in a comfy leather chair, in a room without kids, and dim the lights and see this glorious picture emerge on a 2m screen I think "Yes."
     
  11. MrSafety

    MrSafety
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    Okayyyyy!

    Bought myself a brand new ProntoNEO on eBAY for £60 !!!!!!!!!

    Have only just started tweaking the screens, etc but already impressed with it. Just having taught it the basic buttons from the DVD player, PJ and light switch and I already have a snazzy-looking remote which...
    1. Lights up in the dark when you touch any button
    2. Has hard buttons for volume, DVD menu navigation, lights on/off, pause/resume.
    3. Is silver
    4. Has a super startup screen with a DVD logo on where I can press a single button and start everything up and dim the lights in one go.
    5. Has got better IR coverage than the original remotes - for instance, my PJ is behind me and I used to have to point my remote over my shoulder to turn it on; the Pronto does it even when pointing straight ahead!

    And you know, it ain't much of a faff using these touch-screen things. I realised that, even with hard-button originals I constantly looked down to confirm what I was about to press anyway!

    Thanks to all for the advice. Let the fiddling with the ncf files commence...
     

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