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What's the perfect remote....for me?

 
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prorange47



Joined: 10 Oct 2003
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2003 4:18 pm    Post subject: What's the perfect remote....for me? Reply with quote

I am willing to learn and load JP1 jack codes. I want to control the following: tv, toshiba dvd/vcr combo, tivo series 2, GI dct digital cable box (comcast of course), AND X10 controls. The X10 probably means an RF transmitter to an X10 base. I would like to get it from a source that ships cables as well. I have read quite a bit but not sure about the x10, don't have massive home theater or audio requirements (yet).

Appreciate the help.
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gfb107
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Joined: 03 Aug 2003
Posts: 3388
Location: Cary, NC

PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2003 5:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

x10 support is accomplished though the use of an IR to X10 converter, the IR543. Which is available for $40 at Radio Shack or $20 at http://www.homeautomationnet.com.

I'm pretty sure any of the JP1 remotes can support X10 if you have the IR543.

So, now that we've got that out of the way, the best JP1 remote for TiVo use is, IMO, the OFA URC-6131M (M=modified for JP1). It has all the TiVo specific buttons. See a big picture.
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prorange47



Joined: 10 Oct 2003
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2003 11:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Greg. Wasn't obvious to me that so few of the remotes support the PVR keys. I looked at the ir converter for x10 and that looks like a winner. IR is line of sight though where rf could be in a separate room. But both are the right price point for playing around and have the functionality I need. Where would you but the 6131M?
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gfb107
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Joined: 03 Aug 2003
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Location: Cary, NC

PostPosted: Sat Oct 11, 2003 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

prorange47 wrote:
Thanks Greg. Wasn't obvious to me that so few of the remotes support the PVR keys. I looked at the ir converter for x10 and that looks like a winner. IR is line of sight though where rf could be in a separate room. But both are the right price point for playing around and have the functionality I need. Where would you but the 6131M?

The Robman, who runs the hifi-remote website, usually has some on hand. If he doesn't, you can get one at Surf Remote Control for $31.95 shipped, add a JP1 cable for $15 more.

The IR543 converts IR signals to X10 powerline signals, which will travel down the powerlines, so you can control things in other rooms. However, the remote would need line of sight to the IR543.

If you want RF, there are a few different ways to go.

You could use the Remote Range Extender RR-X200 (available at Surf Remote Contrl and BlueDo). It is supposed to convert any IR remote that uses AA remotes (which the URC-6131 uses) into an RF remote. I've heard really good things about it. I have one on the way to try.

There are other remote extender products out there, some wired, some wireless.

Alternatively, you could get a JP1 remote that has an RF transmitter and basestation included, such as the RS 15-2117 (currently on sale for $30!) or the OFA URC-9910 (available here and here). Neither of these have labelled buttons for the TiVo functions, but they both can handle TiVo, you'll just have to remember where those special TiVo functions have been assigned. The URC-9910 has a few more buttons than the 15-2117, specifically the next-track and prev-track buttons that I think would be the logical choice for TiVo's instant-replay and advance. (From what I've read, the RR-X200 may actually do RF better than these remotes, but I can't vouch for that)

With either approach, you would want to positon the RF-to-IR basestation so that it could control your A/V equipment and the IR543 simultaneously.

There is one draw-back to the URC-6131M: it does not support learning.
With JP1, the need for learning is greatly reduced, because you'll hopefully be able to find an exisiting device upgrade for any device your remote doesn't support out-of-the-box.
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The Robman
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Joined: 01 Aug 2003
Posts: 18312
Location: Chicago, IL

PostPosted: Sat Oct 11, 2003 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's true, I always have some URC-6131Ms available, for $25 each.
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usblipitor



Joined: 10 Oct 2003
Posts: 516
Location: Greenbelt, MD

PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2003 2:31 am    Post subject: Any recommendations for ReplayTV best remote? Reply with quote

gfb107 wrote:
the best JP1 remote for TiVo use is, IMO, the OFA URC-6131M (M=modified for JP1). It has all the TiVo specific buttons. See a big picture.


Any recommendations for the best JP1 remote for ReplayTV use ? I have a 3000 series (hey, it still works Embarassed ) and am looking for something with a backlight (as soon as I hit 40 everything seems to be falling apart, starting with my eyeballs).

I see on the replaytv website that I can buy a replacement remote for the 5000 series and that it is backwards compatible. From the picture I can't figure out if it has a backlight.
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Lenroc



Joined: 05 Oct 2003
Posts: 61

PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2003 2:41 am    Post subject: Re: Any recommendations for ReplayTV best remote? Reply with quote

usblipitor wrote:
I see on the replaytv website that I can buy a replacement remote for the 5000 series and that it is backwards compatible. From the picture I can't figure out if it has a backlight.


It doesn't look like that remote has a backlight from the picture, though I must say I've never seen it.

I have been very impressed with the backlight on my RS 2117 (or 2116 if you don't need RF... though they are currently the same price). Compared to the remotes I've used in the past, this thing is like a mini-lamp. When the light is on, you can clearly read all the button functions (every one... well, except the programming button).

I don't know how well it would work for RTV (I am using it for Tivo, though I wouldn't call my keymappings ideal yet), but I can certainly vouch for the backlight Wink
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The Robman
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Joined: 01 Aug 2003
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2003 9:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use a backlit 15-1994 downstairs, and a backlit 15-2116 upstairs, to control my Replays. And IMHO, the Radio Shack remotes have much better backlights than the One For All remotes.

That being said, the OFAs do have more buttons, so if you don't need a really bright backlight, the URC-8811 or any of it's scaled down clones (ie, the URC-8011 or URC-6012) will do just fine for Replay or Tivo. These remotes have |<< and >>| buttons that are perfect for Instant Replay and Quick Skip.

The URC-8811 is JP1 ready out of the box, but if you prefer the smaller remotes, the URC-6012 and URC-8011 require modifications to work with JP1. I have modified 6012s and 8011s available if you need them.
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plyons10



Joined: 20 Sep 2003
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2003 9:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm using the 15-2117 for my Replay ( and a full array of 7 other devices). Backlighting is great, and it has the strongest IR signal of any remote I've ever had. I do miss having the programmable buttons that the 2104 has, however.

And for me at least, the RF trasmitter creates interference with the normal operation of my cable box. In this I believe I am in the minority, but not alone.
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Lenroc



Joined: 05 Oct 2003
Posts: 61

PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2003 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe the RF box is very bad at creating interference with IR units.

I have been having a heck of a time getting mine to work right.

The problem is that the RF/IR bridge generates an IR signal for just about any RF signal it sees. So if it gets any interference, it sends out a 'matching' IR signal.

You can see if your box is getting interference if you look at it closely (and look for a very subtle red light), or look at it with a camcorder (maybe only digital? not sure). If you use a camera, you're looking for bright white light.

Anyway, I've found that, in my case at least, moving the base station away from walls helps a lot, as does lowering the antenna. (In my small apartment, the antenna isn't necessary for the signal, and it only serves to help pick up interference.)

It is very annoying, because sometimes it makes the equipment completely uncontrollable, even by the IR remotes. I wonder if line noise (on the electric outlet) has anything to do with it? Probably not for me, since moving it away from the wall helps...


Last edited by Lenroc on Sun Oct 12, 2003 9:54 pm; edited 1 time in total
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plyons10



Joined: 20 Sep 2003
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2003 9:49 pm    Post subject: Interference Reply with quote

I've been ridiculed in the past for suggesting this type of behavior from my 15-2117 so I'm, well, not glad, but heartened to hear about your plight.

The only interference I suffer from is with my cable box. It renders even the Replay TV IR blaster ineffective.

I've used my Palm Pilot and an IR detector program to positively establish the fact that it is emitting IR nearly constantly, as you confirm. I cannot really move it further away from the wall since it needs to remain unobtrusive in my living room. I've pondered putting it in the closet itself and simply splicing together a series of IR blasters to reach everything but the cable box.

Maybe I will try using a good power strip that might eliminate some of the noise.
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Lenroc



Joined: 05 Oct 2003
Posts: 61

PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2003 9:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Before you try anything else, I would suggest moving it away from the wall and just holding it in your hands, to see if the IR stops. Then at least you will know one way to consider fixing it.

If it is running IR constantly in it's present location, running IR blasters from it will not help, since it will be generating spurious IR signals even on those.

But splicing together IR blasters is not a bad idea... hmmm.... I wonder... could I just use any wire in the middle? (i.e. cut off the emitter end, splice it to some wire, and then splice that wire back to the connector end?)

I could really hide the bridge, and run a long cable from it to my TiVo...

Hrmm....

Except, the wire itself would probably run along a wall, and that would raise the possibility of the signal getting affected there...
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plyons10



Joined: 20 Sep 2003
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 12, 2003 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it was Robman himself who suggested splicing them.. and you should be able to use most any wire, I belive.

Interference would most likely not be a problem. Remember, it's the electronics within the transponder that pick up the stray EM signals and convert them into IR ones. Without that conversion, I don't think you'll have a problem.

I did try moving the unit about 4 feet from the wall. While performance was improved, it wasn't reliable enough to ensure capturing programs while I'm away.

Using blaster for everything BUT the cable box would work for me since that's the only place I get any interference. I would hide the larger transponder so it's noisy signals (as well as those of the IR blasters) don't hit the cable box.
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The Robman
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2003 6:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think it was me, but I could be wrong.
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Rob
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