Your Universal Remote Control Center
RemoteCentral.com
Harmony Remote Controls Forum - View Post
Previous section Next section Previous page Next page Up level
Up level
The following page was printed from RemoteCentral.com:

Login:
Pass:
 
 

Page 2 of 8
Topic:
why are Harmony remotes dissed by "pro's"
This thread has 110 replies. Displaying posts 16 through 30.
Post 16 made on Sunday June 1, 2008 at 17:07
OTAHD
Super Member
Joined:
Posts:
October 2005
4,679
On May 28, 2008 at 09:53, Jimmy Bellagio said...
It's completely uncustomizable and the keys are made for
toddlers.

Bingo. I'm not a CI, but I tried a Harmony once and it's crap. Couldn't get the SW to let me do things the way I wanted to do them, and the remote felt like it couldn't survive a 4 foot fall.

Went to URC and never looked back.

All you people that think it's some kind of CI conspiracy...just try programming a Harmony to operate the kind of systems they are installing...you'll see why it doesn't work. Even a mid-level theater often won't be fully functional with one.

It's a great remote for replacing multiple OEM remotes. Besides that, it can't do much.
LET'S GO BUFFALO!!!
Post 17 made on Sunday June 1, 2008 at 18:48
hhatkin
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2008
461
On June 1, 2008 at 17:07, OTAHD said...

It's a great remote for replacing multiple OEM remotes.
Besides that, it can't do much.

The whole point of it is that, as well as doing the replacing, it combines the functions of the multiple remotes in as many different formations as you need - to me, that IS much.
Post 18 made on Sunday June 1, 2008 at 18:57
OTAHD
Super Member
Joined:
Posts:
October 2005
4,679
It does that, in a very limited manner. It can't handle complex setups by any means. A simple media setup, sure, but anything else than that it's very limited.

Why wouldn't a pro use it? Because it doesn't do what they need it to do. Harmony remotes are end user remotes...if you've hired a pro to do a system, chances are it can't be controlled by Harmony. If, on the other hand, you want Best Buy to set it up, a Harmony might work fine.
LET'S GO BUFFALO!!!
Post 19 made on Sunday June 1, 2008 at 20:39
Dutch Uncle
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
July 2006
38
On June 1, 2008 at 13:00, Photodan said...

[...]
The bottom-line is, if a Harmony One does everything,
I mean everything, a user wants to control his system
why on earth would he consider a remote costing two to
ten times more?

[...]

In fact I tried to be polite when considering the Harmony remotes as mediocre and not as overpriced crap. The bottom line is that a Harmony One cost 5 time as much as I have paid for my OFA URC-7560 in the year 1999.

The OFA controls has a Home Theather mode, I can program discrete functions and macros, it ensure perfect control. Built quality is excellent, where the Harmony junk breaks down after 10 years / number of controled devices, my 7560 is at least 5 times more durable. And the design ensure that I can press the right button without looking at the remote. But I guess you first have to own a remote before you realize how important this is. A Harmony with it's flimpsy keys won't do.

Best of all: IR compatibility range is 10 KHz-1020KHz and it will also control IRDA devices as the Pace cable STB's in the UK. Battery life: app. two years with 2 cheap AA batteries.

Let's compare the Harmony range :-)

Harmony 520 & 525 - IR range 30KHz-70KHz. Because of this it won't control any devices that have IR modulation below 30 KHz (used by e.g. Blaupunkt, Siemens, Grundig), it can not control High Frequency protocols (B&O, Sony VisionTouch series, Telefunken / Thomson HF protocol, some Kenwood AV receivers use 455 KHz), and no, it will not control IRDA cable boxes. Battery life: 3 Months. But even if the 5xx series would work for your current and future devices, they are still junk because of it's low quality case, shape and keys. Have seen 2$ made in China remote controls with better ergonomics!

The Harmony 6xx series is built so poorly that keys often were off / break down within months. I have to admit not all Harmony's are junk, the 880 and 885 are decent remotes, in fact, if I would never have no experience with well designed & programmed universal remote controls but got a 885 instead, I would probably be quite pleased with this remote.

Ergonomics and built quality are much better then the 5xx and 6xx series and yes, it can control IRDA and the IR range goes up to 455KHz. However, unlike my 7560, it cannot learn High frequency and it fails to control e.g. Sony VisionTouch devices. Or any future AV equipment that will use similar IR protocols. A decent remote, too bad that quite a lot of users have problems with the charger.

Bose isn't dissed because High End equipment by Accuphase or Burmester sound better, but because cheaper entry level equipment by NAD, Cambidge Audio, Yamaha, Denon do. But guess what, my boss has a Bose system and is very pleased with it, he knows how to control his Bose and it plays all his CD's...

The Bose is perfect for him, he is just as heapy with his Bose as you seem to be with your Harmony 880. But I would be extremly unhappy if I had to exchange my 7560 for the H880 / H885 (or my Marantz / T+A for a Bose Lifestyle system). I expect from a new remote that costs 100,- or more that it has at least the same built quality, IR frequency range and ergonomics than a 30 remote control from 1999. The Harmony fails...

Please don't get me wrong, I don't want to insult any Harmony (or Bose) owners who are happy with their equipment, just my answer to the question why Harmony remotes are dissed.

Last edited by Dutch Uncle on June 1, 2008 21:01.
Post 20 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 08:10
hhatkin
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2008
461
On June 1, 2008 at 18:57, OTAHD said...
It does that, in a very limited manner. It can't handle
complex setups by any means. A simple media setup, sure,
but anything else than that it's very limited.

Eleven devices, controlled in seventeen activities.
Is that limited and simple, is it not complex?
My Harmony One was easily programmed to control that setup, which it does with never a fault, and it could still do a lot more.
How much more complicated and difficult are these setups that you professionals are working on, and is there any fair comparison between them and the sort of thing you might find in an average home and that the Harmonys are intended for?

Last edited by hhatkin on June 2, 2008 12:29.
Post 21 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 08:45
bluerhythmav
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
January 2008
379
See this thread...

[Link: remotecentral.com]

Programming is not the best...as per the above thread. As a CI - trying to program these at most customers homes was a pain. Yes the customer usually had internet, but with no local network jack near the equipment location. Ask them for the wireless password, and wait for the blank stare. Trying to customize macros to run flawlessly (without the help feature!) took too much time to tweak, and far too many downloads. My time is $$, and there were a couple of occasions where I wanted to download the new program around 5PM on any given night, and Logitech's servers were so busy that I had to wait 50 minutes for the program to come through! That's why a CI would prefer a local copy of the code base and program. Plus - the programming software crashed way too many times when trying to program a 1000 or an 890.

Keep in mind that the end user only programs one remote... whereas an installer must do many. The installer will see ALL issues, sometimes repeatedly - and that's what turns them (us) off. They are too unreliable for what we want to do most times, and we (I) are (am) not willing to put our names on something that works... sometimes. There is a reason it has that HELP button - because it NEEDS it! A properly programmed RTI, Crestron, AMX, URC shuold never need a HELP button - it just works. A CI has the knowledge to make that happen. It has nothing to do with margins, making piles of $$, or anything like that.
Blue Rhythm Audio/Video
Post 22 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 10:17
Photodan
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
September 2005
80
On June 1, 2008 at 18:57, OTAHD said...
It does that, in a very limited manner. It can't handle
complex setups by any means. A simple media setup, sure,
but anything else than that it's very limited.

Why wouldn't a pro use it? Because it doesn't do what
they need it to do. Harmony remotes are end user remotes...if
you've hired a pro to do a system, chances are it can't
be controlled by Harmony. If, on the other hand, you
want Best Buy to set it up, a Harmony might work fine.

Had to laugh out loud at the Best Buy comment, even though your not at all subtle attempt at condescension didn't really work.

And "doesn't do what they need it to do" implies all custom installs are too complex for Harmony remotes which, of course, is incorrect.

Post 23 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 10:22
pappcam
Lurking Member
Joined:
Posts:
January 2007
8
If you can justify the added expense of a custom remote installation because of real needs that's fine but if the only justification you have is the "Harmony is for half-witted toddlers" argument, than it's obvious you know you've overdone it and you have no basis for your argument. The pompousness and condescending tone of some of these posts make it obvious you're grasping at straws.

I have a Harmony 880 and it does everything I need for $149.00. The only time the HELP button is needed is when someone isn't pointing the remote the right way when they start an activity and the component doesn't get the IR signal.
Post 24 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 11:33
Photodan
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
September 2005
80
On June 2, 2008 at 10:22, pappcam said...
The only time the HELP button is needed is when
someone isn't pointing the remote the right way when they
start an activity and the component doesn't get the IR
signal.

pappcam, leave my wife out of this please.
Post 25 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 12:22
xpat
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
May 2008
277
On May 25, 2008 at 15:06, Joe-CI said...
That is just the biggest crock of shit I have ever heard.
Multivariable design and 2 way communication plus RF are
huge advantages to making something bulletproof. Video
sensing, 12V Triggers, Wi FI... That was profoundly ignorant.
Some find this an issue. I cannot think of the last customer
that did not have an internet connection. Many installers
have their own internet through a cell phone provider.
Nice and vague. Then again we can both be attacked on
our objectivity. I agree their target market is the Consumer,
but that Logitech Rep keeps calling and asking what he
can do for us.

Ignorant? Not really, but slightly vague. Find show me one of these remotes that has multivariable design, two way communication, video sensing, et al for the same price point as a Harmony with the same ease of setup and control by the end user and I'll show you a pig that flies.
Post 26 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 13:09
Jimmy Bellagio
Advanced Member
Joined:
Posts:
January 2008
854
For god sake, every pro or something close to 95% of CI's including myself hate these units and what they stand for. What do you think, it's a coincidence? Maybe, just maybe we may be on to something here...

You can't use your own graphics, you can't use your own specialized macros, you can't base events on certain situations, what is with the #*@ devices thing? Also, those keys and screen are ridiculously small. When I last checked you could even do cusomtized channel macros with them but I think that might have finally been addressed, and there are major codes missing from the database for several zone 2 and multiroom applications.

This stuff is for beginners, and no offense to those of you who have AOL - the "AOL" of remote controls. Someone who just wants to cotnrol a simple setup without an ounce of thought.
James S. Bellagio
Post 27 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 15:56
OTAHD
Super Member
Joined:
Posts:
October 2005
4,679
On June 2, 2008 at 08:10, hhatkin said...
Eleven devices, controlled in seventeen activities.
Is that limited and simple, is it not complex?
My Harmony One was easily programmed to control that setup,
which it does with never a fault, and it could still do
a lot more.
How much more complicated and difficult are these setups
that you professionals are working on, and is there any
fair comparison between them and the sort of thing you
might find in an average home and that the Harmonys are
intended for?

I'll answer by quoting this:

On June 2, 2008 at 13:09, Jimmy Bellagio said...
You can't use your own graphics, you can't use your own
specialized macros, you can't base events on certain situations,
what is with the #*@ devices thing? Also, those keys
and screen are ridiculously small. When I last checked
you could even do cusomtized channel macros with them
but I think that might have finally been addressed, and
there are major codes missing from the database for several
zone 2 and multiroom applications.

First, I'll restate that I'm not a pro. But seventeen "activities" don't include even one true macro. Where's the ability to truly customize something?

I think that you think CI's are like the Geek Squad, in that they'll set up a flatscreen TV, DVD Player, Surround Receiver, and HD cable or satellite.

Think again. Take a look at the "What did you do today" thread in the CI lounge.
LET'S GO BUFFALO!!!
Post 28 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 16:31
akirby
Super Member
Joined:
Posts:
March 2004
4,640
You can't use your own graphics

Why do I *need* to use my own graphics? Has absolutely nothing to do with whether the remote works or how well it works.

you can't use your own specialized macros

With the harmony you NEVER need to do this for turning things on or off and for selecting inputs - it does it automatically. And you can do macros now up to 5 commands. There are very few situations that call for a macro of more than 5 commands (that aren't already handled via the activity start/stop functions).

you can't base events on certain situations

You don't need to with a harmony. The smart state knows how to go from state to state dynamically and automatically.

what is with the #*@ devices thing

It allows the harmony to emulate the OEM remote with it's own separate button mappings.

Also, those keys and screen are ridiculously small.

They're the same size as almost every OEM remote out there. And most people prefer a remote that fits in their hand, not one that has to sit on the coffee table.


Obviously if you want to control an entire house or multiple rooms/zones or if you simply want a super-customized gadget then the harmony isn't the best choice.

But if you just want a remote that seamlessly controls all components in a single room AND does it so easily that it can be operated by a 6 year old (or wife) AND can be programmed by the end user in less than 30 minutes - Harmony is the only game in town.
Post 29 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 16:55
Photodan
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
September 2005
80
You know, I wrote a lengthy response to Vellagio and decided against it. This guy is so inflexible, so full of vitriol, that it would be pointless.

The bottom-line is (Damn! I am responding to his post!):

If 95% of the CI industry "hates Harmony remotes and what they stand for," that statistic alone proves the point of the "Pro Harmony" crowd. The industry hates competition.

And, Vellagio, saying "This stuff is for beginners, and no offense to those of you who have AOL - the "AOL" of remote controls. Someone who just wants to cotnrol a simple setup without an ounce of thought." proves you speak often without exercising an ounce of thought. Stop being childish unless you are, in fact, a child.
Post 30 made on Monday June 2, 2008 at 19:17
hhatkin
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
February 2008
461
On June 2, 2008 at 15:56, OTAHD said...
But seventeen "activities" don't include even one true macro. Where's
the ability to truly customize something?

How do you know:-):-)
They actually include several of what you call macros, a rather silly word to which I prefer the Harmony word "sequence".
The Activities themselves are also what I think you would call "macros", most of them carrying out quite complex series of commands.
The ability to truly customise something is in pages of software that allow you to customise every hard button exactly the way you want it, and when you run out of hard buttons to set up as many virtual buttons on the screen as you need with exactly the same flexibility.

akirby has given concise and accurate replies to some of the other wild criticisms, and has rightly made the point about the contrast between what most people want - which is what Harmonys are intended for - and the elaborate setups that you "CI" people work on and no doubt do need something quite different.

Last edited by hhatkin on June 2, 2008 19:25.
Find in this thread:
Page 2 of 8


Jump to


Protected Feature Before you can reply to a message...
You must first register for a Remote Central user account - it's fast and free! Or, if you already have an account, please login now.

Please read the following: Unsolicited commercial advertisements are absolutely not permitted on this forum. Other private buy & sell messages should be posted to our Marketplace. For information on how to advertise your service or product click here. Remote Central reserves the right to remove or modify any post that is deemed inappropriate.

Hosting Services by ipHouse