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Welcome to the new forum!
This thread has 21 replies. Displaying posts 1 through 15.
Post 1 made on Saturday December 8, 2001 at 01:17
Daniel Tonks
Wrangler of Remotes
Joined:
Posts:
October 1998
27,912
Welcome to the new forum dedicated to Easy Zapper's Harmony remote control. If you experience any difficulties, please let me know.
Post 2 made on Saturday December 8, 2001 at 05:17
GregoriusM
RC Consultant
Joined:
Posts:
December 1999
9,778
Can we move the 3 or 4 threads from the Universal Remote forum to this forum, Daniel?
When ignorance is bliss, ‘tis folly to be wise.
Post 3 made on Saturday December 8, 2001 at 10:43
Justin Henry
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
November 2001
2
Hello All.

On behalf of of the Harmony Remote team, I'd like to say how excited we are to have this forum to exchange information. Thank you Daniel!

We look forward to all questions, suggestions, complaints and kudos.

Thanks again!
Justin Henry
President
Easy Zapper Inc.
www.HarmonyRemote.com
Post 4 made on Saturday December 8, 2001 at 13:22
MikeSRC
Loyal Member
Joined:
Posts:
July 2001
5,953
When's the official Remote Central review coming? ;-)

Mike
www.surfremotecontrol.com
www.SurfRemoteControl.com

THX-certified video calibrator and contributing writer, ProjectorReviews.com
Post 5 made on Saturday December 8, 2001 at 14:57
Bob Ulius
No Longer Registered
Glad to see this forum here!

Just for the record, I have my Harmony almost "done". Its been a lot of work and trial and error, but I even have all my recording devices up and working and my menus simplified. Once I get ALL my cable channels and some quirks with cable worked out, I'm going to feel fully functional.

I'm hoping to pick up some good tips and ideas I might not have thought about here.

-=Bob=-
Post 6 made on Monday December 10, 2001 at 16:23
dewdman42
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
December 2001
13
I am very curious about this remote. I bought a Pronto a while back. I finally got around to programming it for my home theater and I'm very unsatisified with the LCD touchscreen approach. I want hard buttons. The Harmony has a few more hard buttons then my Pronto...so far so good. I don't want to ever have to look at an LCD screen and touch it. If the screen is informational, then fine.

What strikes me as as cool about the Harmony from what I have read so far is that its very updateable, especially since they are keeping the website up to date with channel listings and what not (as long as the company stays alive anyway).

What I can't really get a good idea about is how easy it would be to setup macros. On my pronto, I can hit one touchscreen button and have my entire theater setup for watching a DVD..or a different macro button to setup for watchind DSS...etc.. I assume I can do this with the Harmony using some kind of XML/HTML thing.. Its a bit fuzzy to me right now how it works. I also can't get a handle on discrete codes and how I can program them in.. ??

Will I always have to scroll through a menu to activate these various functions? I sorta wish there were a few extra hard buttons that I could program to do certain things that I regularly need to do without having to scroll through a menu.

Any other comments? So far, other remotes I am considering include the HTM MX500 and the Xantech URC-2P. Still looking though..

Post 7 made on Tuesday December 11, 2001 at 08:28
Mike Riley
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
May 2001
620
dewdman: The Harmony doesn't use Macros in the way we are used to thinking of them. It takes the information about your Devices, and creates Activities for you, based on that input. It knows, for example, that if you have a DVD player, you will want to watch it and probably have your amp on at the same time. So it creates an item called "Watch DVD", which appears as a Menu selection on the LCD screen. You don't have to tell it what inputs to switch to; it already knows that based on your initial setup.

You do NOT have to know XML; that is the underlying language of the device, which makes it eminently programmable and tweakable... but that's just the beauty of XML as a standardized language. You won't see that unless you want to get into it; everything is done via the Wizards on the EasyZapper website.

The big advantage of the Screen and the Menuing system is that everything is available with a push or two, and everything is labelled correctly. You might have a hard-button labelled DVD on your other remote, but it can only do one or two things; on the Harmony, everything has its own label. This makes it a no-brainer when looking for an option, and certainly makes it easier for others in your family who haven't spent hours creating their ultimate remote setup. ... Mike
Post 8 made on Tuesday December 11, 2001 at 14:50
dewdman42
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
December 2001
13
Hmm, yes...I can see how it would be extremely convenient for friends and family that just want to watch TV and they can't do it unless the stereo is turned on, the DSS is turned on, the TV is turned on and all the right sources are selected, etc.. They need a single button or menu option. Same thing for turning the whole system off.

Where I think I will wish I had some more hard buttons is when I am watching and I switch to the HDTV station and I need to switch my DTC-100 to HD ON...(only for that channel). I will have to navigate down to some menu for this. Or... When I want to change the aspect ration of my RPTV...I'll have to navigate to some menu.. There are a few other little things that I regular need to do while switching around from channel to channel.

I can see where having the menu on the harmony I could have my list of favorite channels, and I could have a list of high level activies (ie, watch TV, watch DVD, watch VCR, listen to music, etc..). That all makes great sense and sounds like it would work fine. Where I think it would drive me crazy would be having to navigate through the menu system to do any kinds of adjustments to a particular component (such as the two things I listed above). Most of the time, you don't have to mess with specific components other than the common stuff...shuttle controls, channel up/down, volume, etc.. However, there are a few other misc features which do have to be adjusted several times during a typical viewing session...and I'm not sure I would want to wade through several levels of menu items to get there... Make sense?

If this remote had even a single row of 4 programmable hard buttons, I would be tremendously happy...

On 12/11/01 08:28.08, Mike Riley said...
dewdman: The Harmony doesn't use Macros in the
way we are used to thinking of them. It takes
the information about your Devices, and creates
Activities for you
, based on that input. It
knows, for example, that if you have a DVD player,
you will want to watch it and probably have your
amp on at the same time. So it creates an item
called "Watch DVD", which appears as a Menu selection
on the LCD screen. You don't have to tell it what
inputs to switch to; it already knows that based
on your initial setup.

You do NOT have to know XML; that is the underlying
language of the device, which makes it eminently
programmable and tweakable... but that's just
the beauty of XML as a standardized language.
You won't see that unless you want to get into
it; everything is done via the Wizards on the
EasyZapper website.

The big advantage of the Screen and the Menuing
system is that everything is available with a
push or two, and everything is labelled correctly.
You might have a hard-button labelled DVD on your
other remote, but it can only do one or two things;
on the Harmony, everything has its own label.
This makes it a no-brainer when looking for an
option, and certainly makes it easier for others
in your family who haven't spent hours creating
their ultimate remote setup. ... Mike
Post 9 made on Tuesday December 11, 2001 at 14:51
dewdman42
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
December 2001
13
On the upside, I LOVE how small this remote is compared to every other universal remote I have ever seen. VERY NICE form factor.
Post 10 made on Tuesday December 11, 2001 at 15:00
Eric Warnke
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
December 2001
45
Did you check my last post.

I was able to setup a smart state for my 16:9 set. The part of the documentation that is missing is how I bound it to a hard button on my remote so I just hit the zap button to change aspect ratio.

In my case I also have 3 diffrent TV modes, analong ( tv does everything ), digital ( cable box tuner and stero output ), and HDTV ( same as digital , but diffrent TV input ). Each one I have configured as a diffrent activity Watch TV, Watch Digital TV, Watch HDTV. Each has their own channel listings and their own favs. It works very well. So as soon as someone knows how to change activities they can use whatever.

The power button on the remote can be used to start any activity you choose. I have it start the analog tv activity. When you are in ANY activity pressing the power will shut everything down for that activity.

Hope that clears things up some.
Post 11 made on Thursday December 13, 2001 at 08:15
Mike Riley
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
May 2001
620
Dewd: I, too, would like a few more buttons. No matter how much genius the guys at EasyZapper have put into the channel selection menus, I still like to have direct access.

That being said, Eric has the best answer. I find, too, that I don't use more than a couple of options very often: Watch DVD, Watch TV, Record TV. Listen to CD and other Activities, at least for me, don't happen very often, so with the "prime" activities on the main selection screen, there is not a lot of scrolling required.
Post 12 made on Thursday December 13, 2001 at 13:46
Jason Persampieri
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
December 2001
22
OK, potential purchaser here. I've been reading all the Harmony-related threads here, but there's a few things I haven't been able to figure out.

1) TV listings are way cool... but... how many days can it store (ie how often to I have to sync if I want correct listings)?

2) Dan's 'IR testing' is very valuable. How well do the IR ports behave on the Harmony (any issues with power/distance/angle)?

This remote looks like the coolest thing since sliced bread. I think I'm gonna ask for one for the holidays.

Jason
Post 13 made on Thursday December 13, 2001 at 14:58
Eric Warnke
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
December 2001
45
1) Mine stores just about a weeks worth of TV, but I have 3 TV activities, so each requires it's own list. I'm trying to figure out a way of fixing that.

2) No problem with IR. It has two IR ports one facing up and the other facing downish ( for using the remote while looking at the screen ). I shoot from up to 15' without a hitch, I have not tried further.
Post 14 made on Friday December 14, 2001 at 14:12
Anthony
Ultimate Member
Joined:
Posts:
May 2001
27,171
(ie how often to I have to sync if I want correct listings)?

I don't think that is a fair question, the correctness of the listings probably depends more on the station then the remote. If the station makes changes to the line up (and passes out the information) the day before how is it Harmonies remote. So there is two things, 1) how often does the station makes last minute decisions. 2) does that information get passed down the right channels (I have no idea where local papers, satellite, Tivo.... get their info, but I am sure there must be some database somewhere, and I assume that is where Harmony gets its info).

...
Post 15 made on Friday December 14, 2001 at 14:46
Mike Riley
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
May 2001
620
There is a service that sells subscriptions to the TV informational guides, and EasyZapper pays for that service to supply the regular updates.

But Eric's response about having 3 TV activities, and therefore requiring 3 times the amount of memory for the listings, intrigues me. I just assumed that they would all come from the same bank, but of course that can't be true, since a different set of XML is required for each Activity. Or can it be... you have 3 Activities, but those only provide "selections"... the data to feed those selections would come from one common source. ... Mike
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