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Using TIVO remote for TV and Home Theater

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by jthomas119, Sep 17, 2009.

  1. jthomas119

    jthomas119 Member

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    I have a Samsung LED TV (B6000) and a TIVO HD XL. The TV audio is not great and I need a Blue Ray player anyway so I am planning to buy a "home Theater in a Box" with built in Blue Ray. My highest priority is to be able to continue using the TIVO remote for everything except the DVD. (Control Power on/off and volume)

    Does anyone have that setup and have recommendations.

    Thanks, John
     
  2. Robert_J

    Robert_J Well-Known Member

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    TiVo remotes have very little control other than a TiVo and a TV. Look into the Harmony remotes. I picked the 880 model because is had a TiVo 'peanut' shape. It controls 20+ pieces of equipment with 16 activities on a color LCD screen. If it is out of your price range there are other, similarly shaped Harmonies that are less expensive. I wanted full control over the descriptions of my activities because I have three high def DVR's in my system.
     
  3. jthomas119

    jthomas119 Member

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    I should have been clearer. I really like the TIVO remote. The TIVO remote according to the instructions can be set to control volume and mute for a home theater. But it doesn't mention power on/off. TIVO supports Dolby Digital The Samsung TV supports AnyNet which I understand is their name for HDMI-CEC which allows HDMI devices to communicate (power on/off)
    So it seems like I might be able to use the TIVO remote to turn on/off the TV/HomeTheater and have the remote control the audio volume on the Home Theater and get the 5/1 digital audio. All with only the TIVO remote
    BUT does it really work that way? I was hoping that somebody has successfully setup a similar system (or tried and failed)

    Thanks for any advice. John
     
  4. Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Well-Known Member

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    If all you want is control of power and volume, follow:
    http://support.tivo.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/278
    It will work fine since you have learning on the Tivo "glo" remote.

    A Harmony universal, however, would control the DVD as well, and automatically switch inputs on both the TV & receiver for you. As is, you'll have to switch the HTiB input with the HTiB remote, then the TV input with the Tivo remote, every time you switch from DVD -> Tivo. Though if this isn't that often, then maybe it's not a huge deal to you.

    Also, consider separate components instead of HTiB, the speakers will be much better usually. Good receiver + speakers can last a very long time, the better sound quality is worth the extra cost IMO.
     
  5. jthomas119

    jthomas119 Member

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    Thanks, I now see how to program the remote to have the power button turn on 2 devices. Although I am concerned about the problem of the buttons getting out of sync. I guess that happens when the 2 devices have different sensitivity to the infrared. I assume that having the infrared port on the TV and HBiB near each other would minimize this.
    I am weighing the tradeoffs between HBiB, sound bar and components. cost, space taken up, complexity, and audio quality. We have a small living room and 60 year old ears so audio quality is not as important as it might otherwise be. We mostly just want to be able to understand the actors when they mumble.
     
  6. jthomas119

    jthomas119 Member

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    If I was to buy a Samsung HTiB with 1 or more AnyLink HDMI-CEC inputs and 1 HDMI-CEC outputs shouldn't the following work.
    HDMI cable from TIVO out to HTiB in
    HDMI cable from HTiB out to TV HDMI in.

    The TIVO HD remote would control power and volume for the HTiB and the signal for the TV power would be carried from the HTiB to the TV via the HDMI cable.

    It appears that 1 or more people have gotten this to work with all Sony components with TheaterSync which is their version of HDMI-CEC. I wonder if one can mix brands if the control protocol is standard.
     
  7. Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, that would work. Only the top of the line HTiB will have HDMI *inputs* though. The cheaper ones only have outputs for their DVD/BD players.

    HDMI-CEC is intended to be cross-brand compatible, but there can always be implementation bugs. Shouldn't need it too much in this situation.

    Even with good speakers sometimes one can have trouble understanding actors at times ... my approach is to use the instant replay and turn on subtitles/captions.
     
  8. jthomas119

    jthomas119 Member

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    Stephen,
    Thanks for all of your input (both in this thread and other s)
    I am seeing what you mean about availability of HDMI inputs. My previous list of HTiB candidates all had none.
    It looks like a universal remote may be cheaper but I love the TIVO remote. It is a beautifully designed human interface. I might end up spending more than I planned.

    Even with good speakers sometimes one can have trouble understanding actors at times
    Hmm, I guess this is an important question. I was assuming that the center speaker would be mostly voice and with separation from background noise it would be easier to understand. Maybe not. It is hard to test this in dealer showrooms.
     
  9. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Well-Known Member

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  10. jthomas119

    jthomas119 Member

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    Update.

    I did finally settle on buying a Samsung BD1250 and a Harmony 670. I am fairly happy with the 650. It took longer to setup than it should but that was partly my fault. My biggest complaint is that it is hard to read the LED screen when it asks you questions to get back in sync. Also it seems to often get out of sync on the proper HDMI input from TiVO. It seems to know that it needs to change the input but doesn't do it correctly.
     
  11. Robert_J

    Robert_J Well-Known Member

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    My HDMI is kind of flakey when I first turn my system on. It always defaults to the last HDMI input no matter what activity I choose on startup. I just wait until everything is properly powered up and choose the same activity again and it syncs up everything. I have only used the Help screen on the remote once and it screwed up things so bad that I had to re-program the remote.

    If you are getting out of sync because some equipment is missing the IR signal, remember to point the remote at the equipment as long as the transmit icon is on. It takes some time to learn this.
     
  12. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Well-Known Member

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    You can also set the order of startup in the Harmony advanced setup (under 'Troubleshooting"). Sometimes HDMI requires the TV be on before everything else.
     
  13. Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Well-Known Member

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    Some things to try for better Harmony operation:

    adjust the power on delay for the TV, long enough for it to reliably respond to input change requests
    (devices/more options/adjust delays)

    (adjust inputs):
    if possible use "discrete codes" for input changing, "method 2", one button for directly going to an input, rather than one of the other methods. Use the device mode for your TV, see if it has commands for jumping directly to an input. Sometimes you need to enter a slightly different model # (different size, sometimes older/newer series).

    Do the same for power commands (separate command for "on", separate for "off", even if your original remote doesn't have it, there may be codes that work).
     

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