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RF remote help.

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by j_mcanalley, Oct 14, 2008.

  1. j_mcanalley

    j_mcanalley Member

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    im new to the hobby. this is my second thread trying to get help setting up my home theater exactly how i want it. thanks for all the help on the first thread (speaker placement)



    i am putting all my components in the closet to clean up the look of my living room. so far everything is great. i have a small ir sensor running to the front of my tv for my cable box. but i just added surround sound. the surround sound receiver does not have an ir input like the cable box so i cant hook it up the same way. im also tired of using several remotes.

    i am looking into the real nice RF remotes with LCD display. to my understanding the rf remote will transmit through my closet door which is great. i wont have to use the ir sensors anymore.

    my question is what is the best way to make the rf remote work with ir components. i assume that the rf remote will have some sort of receiver, am i correct? also does that receiver convert the rf signal to ir? if it does will it distribute that signal wireless or will it have ir sensor wires? if they have ir sensor wires do they plug into the component or do they make them that cover the ir sensor on the component on the front?


    also if somone has a favorite remote they really like let me know.


    its really important to me that my components are hidden and everything works well. i am already well into this project and there is no turning back now.

    any help would be great.



    p.s. i will be in hawaii for the next week and a half so i wont be able to respond to your comments for a while. but i look foward to reading them all when i get back.



    thanks alot
    josh
     
  2. j_mcanalley

    j_mcanalley Member

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    any help with remotes?
     
  3. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Wayne A. Pflughaupt Well-Known Member

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    Hi Josh,

    An RF remote works with a receiver that converts the signal back to IR. The receiver needs to be put in front of the components, and far enough away from the equipment rack so that everything responds to commands from the remote..

    The problem you're going to have, unless your closet is big enough to allow the receiver to be situated a few feet back from the equipment rack, is that not all of the components will be in the receiver's "line of fire," and therefore will not respond to commands from the remote.

    If that's your situation you might consider an IR repeater system instead. You can see a discussion of them here.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  4. Brent_S

    Brent_S Well-Known Member

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    I thought you were away in Hawaii. [​IMG]

    Take a look at this set. It includes an RF remote, an IR flood base plus 6 cabled IR emitters. No personal experience, but have read good things.

    My personal solution for gear hidden in a cabinet is a Terk Leapfrog with a Harmony 550. The 550 goes on sale at Amazon periodically for $50 w/ free shipping. At that price, the Terk/Harmony would be about the same as the URC, but you would have to place the Terk IR receiver somewhere the 550 could hit it with line of sight. With the URC, everything is hidden.

    You'll find fans and detractors of both remotes...almost to the point religious zealotry in some cases. Just means they're both probably solid solutions. Do your own reasearch, maybe even go to store and get touchy-feelie with the stuff.

    -Brent
     
  5. Robert_J

    Robert_J Well-Known Member

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    I'm a huge fan of the Harmony remotes. In fact, I have 3 model 880's controlling two systems. One is recovering from a fall from the couch into a glass of tea. I like the 880 because of the completely configurable LCD screen. There are no preset buttons like "Watch DVD" or "Watch TV". That type of generic label doesn't help me since I have 2 DVD players and 3 DVRs. I am able to put equipment names on the LCD button lables to make working the system much easier for others who aren't as familiar with it.

    As for the RF portion, the 890 is just an RF version of the 880 and the 1000 is a step above that. Both have an RF to IR base station with IR blasters. I would have gone that route but I've been using a hard wired IR relay system for at least 13 years so I don't need that additional expense.

    -Robert
     
  6. Brent_S

    Brent_S Well-Known Member

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    Robert, even the Harmony 550 and Xbox model allow you to relabel the activity and device names on the LCD buttons.

    Looks like the biggest functional difference is the 880 has 6 soft buttons versus 4 for the 550/Xbox.

    -Brent
     
  7. Robert_J

    Robert_J Well-Known Member

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    Make that 8 soft buttons. That was my biggest reason for buying it.

    -Robert
     
  8. Brent_S

    Brent_S Well-Known Member

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    Sorry. Looked like 6 in the photos on Harmony's 880 product page. [​IMG]

    -Brent
     

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