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Topic:
Nevo SL Day 1-3 Impressions
This thread has 20 replies. Displaying posts 1 through 15.
Post 1 made on Tuesday August 9, 2005 at 22:09
Springs
Super Member
Joined:
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May 2002
3,238
My take on the matter...

Had a big network to do today that got put off by a earlier flight. So I had a whole day to just mess about. Well wandered in here and was checking out the goings on. And saw this post about the NEVO. Got a little curious then saw the my local distributor had a special that announced the release. Well they often let me test thing for my "Unique view of stuff." AKA "The guy is a little nuts and has his own way of looking at things. But he finds bugs and solutions. We mostly put up with him." That is a quote from the rep to one of my cohorts... The rep and I joke about it all the time.

Anyways...

Bring home the NEVO sl and put it on the charger. Start reading the little guides but they really are not all that informative... but no worse then other Universals. But the screen doesn't light up. Kind of tap on the thing a few times to figure out whats up but nothing. Eventually move the USB cover and see the reset button, a USB mini plug, and a recessed toggle switch. Find a small screw driver and get it flipped to the on position. Unit lights right up.

Calibration with stylus.

Decided to give it a little time on the charger and take a brief look at the sample config. Pretty run of the mill as templates go. But the scroll thing at the bottom of the page.. takes some getting used to.

Go to the settings menu to try to enable WIFI. No option there. Find out that you have to enable that in the software from the PC first... No big deal. Will let it charge for a while.

Load up software on my desktop computer. Install seems to go smoothly. Try to add a device... Dish Network Sat receiver... what are those numbers??? The wizard is reminisant of the MX series from URC except that there are no specific model numbers. There is an option to test it but the desktop is upstairs and my test system is downstairs. So I guess we will just hope for the best.

Folllow same thing for my Samsung DLP. DVDO doesn't seem to be in there so I will mess with that later.

Use the loader to install the 2 devices. Set time outs for screen and WIFI wich I enabled at this point. Just wanted to get an idea for the emitter and touch screen at this point.

The Dish codes are money. Even descrete on off. Emitter seems to just flood the room. No aiminig needed. Not bad.

The Samsung gets all the majors but the inputs are not right. Probably just used the wrong code group.. will mess with it later.

So now I try to set up WIFI. Using the Stylyus I type out the SSID of my network and fill in the 128 wep key.
(It would be a great addition if somehow this could be done on the computer software and just loaded to the unit with the configuration file. Just a suggestion.)
Takes a few tries as typos happen with those little keys. But after I get around my lack of dexterity I get it done. Select connect and connects right up using DHCP. Is assigned a class C addy ending in XXX.103. Well it says its connected... where is the browser? Or somehting to let me locate network places??? RTFM MAN! No browser. Well it is windows CE I mean if I have to have it I can probably get Minimo or somehting on there... maybe?

Mess around with the thing some more and read the manuals online. Registered for the web forum and so forth. (It is pretty dead in there. But the thing just got released so I am sure that will change.)

I held off from installing the server software on the PC as in the field we don't generally have Windows computers... we have things like Escients and reQuests... right? Well there is a fill in location of media here____ and fill in playback device here___. Well lets see if it can see the samba share on my linux box... It accepts the values in the programing software but doesn't seem to do anything when I try it out. It was a long shot I know...

Well kind of bummed that I don't have a browser as that would let me use slimserver from the remote. Seems like it should be dooable. I mean there is that specific program written for pocket PC that works... and I have been able to control slimserver using the browser on my cell phone. BUT GET OVER IT... THERE IS NO BROWSER INSTALLED. (It doesn't matter how bad I wished it was.)

Seriously considered installing Minimo. But install would take a while and I have other stuff to check out.

Well looking around there is not a list of UPnP devices that this thing works with. You know... like a we have tested this and we know it works with this... so go buy it...

So I check around ther user forum and find little help. HEY A HOTLINE NUMBER. Cool. Lets see if I can get some answers on the phone.

Call in and am registering with a very nice CSR when a sales call comes in so I have to give up the phone for a few minutes. Call right back and get the same guy. We talk the registering of my company and email address. I then asked him if he could just tell me a bit more about what this thing can do.

We go over several of the things I have tried and he tells me what will work and what won't work. But we really don't seem to get real far with the sort of things that this is tested to work with. I mean we sort of mention Linksys and D-Link. I stop and ask if linksys referes to the Media extender or the Media adapter.
CSR: Couch products.

Me: huh? The media extender?

CSR: Yeah.

"You have to have the software running on a Windows XP PC... can be home, pro, or media edition." Ok.

I kind of point out that we don't usually use Windows PCs in our installs. I ask if there is any compatability with linux based devices. I list of Redhat and point to my SUSE box. Both are dismissed. Ok. I try to point out that in the custom world we use prebuilt devices like Escients and Request (buried linux). I also try to make clear that many installers are not comfortable with becoming Windows admins. The CSR listens to my comments and says that he is writing them down.

The only compatable devices being the media extenders and windows computer, I express that it seems this product might be more aimed at the Do-It-Yourselfer who is comfortable messing around with networking devices. Yeah I said it sounds like this would be well suited for sale at the big box stores like Best Buy or Circuit City. It seems poorly planned to only test it for compatability with things that DYIs like to buy and mess with temselves. The market it as a CIs device. It just seemed poorly layed out and planned. I thought.. sell it right next to the Media Extender at Best Buy.

The IP addressed IR units need to be conncted to the network. Well there are two options for this. Hardwire it or buy a WET based unit. So a wireless bridge is required to use this in a cabinate or out of site install. The IR ports are not addressable like the MRF300 but more like the RFX6000. Well that and you need a
Linksys WET11B [Link: compusa.com]
or a Linksys WET5GS5 [Link: compusa.com]
To plug into it or a hardwire from the network to make this work.

80 bucks or a 180 bucks depending on wich you need.

Add that to the price of a device that costs more then the RFX6000 and a the MRF300 together. Well I pointed out that the MRF300 was addressable for less money. He stayed cool.

The other issue I stumbeled onto was when I got currious as to what sort of webserver was on the remote at it's IP. When I typed the IP into a browser I was given a page that is part of Windows CE that says in no unclear terms.. "This is a temporary page and should be replaced." There are a couple of links on there that leed to Microsoft and even to Builder tools for Windows CE. Seriously... real informative stuff. How to build the operating image and nuts and guts of CE. Like I said it was kind of neat.

Well I told the CSR about this page spat out by the webserver and reccomended removing it.The link lead to tools that could be used to seriouly hack the Nevo or down right break it. If you don't know what you are doing and decided to play, you could distort the image and the NEVO and render it inoperable. (Would cause returns because, "It just doesn't work." Who cares if the customer accidently broke it???)

Well I covered all this with the CSR and he seemed annoyed but was still polite and stated that the device was still under developement. Well sure... we have all been throught those updates with Pronto/URC/RTI you name it.

Mostly I was just kind of bummed at the lack of a browser of some sort. Plug ins and firmware changes could add all sorts of functions but right now its not like it can just connet to anything with an IP address. Its litterature implies this rather heavily... but with no training class, who knows what the offical take is currently.

Well the conversation kind of ended with me thinking that the is not a piece we will be able to use at my job. But I was still optimistic about what it might be able to do, I mean the staff seems "into it" wich always helps.

ME: Can I call you if I have more specific questions about the unit. I mean does this number go to you? My rep says that I can try it out for 7 days.

CSR: I would be happy to take those calls.

Me: Thank You

Well all seemed fine and later I checked my email... I find an email from the rep I talked to earlier. I am pretty sure he didn't mean to send it to me... body of message reads:

***
Customer is installer pretending to ask for information about wifi. He really called to complain becasue #1. Nevo is not compabitle with RedHat. #2. Nevo is designed for end users who "buy their products at Best Buy" and then marketed to installers who want to use high- end devices. He is unhappy that he is not able to use a browser on NevoSL to be able to hack NevoSL, but turns around and criticizes because Nevo gives ip address which could allow anyone to breach security of network. He was looking for instant answers and I told him that although UEI is committed to making updates needed to improve the NevoSl product, that major redesigning of software and hardware is not likely to occur. I told him that we have successfully tested NevoSl using many different configurations and end devices, and we are constantly adding new information. He said he would try it for another week and try to find something positive.
***

Well.

Here is a copy of my reply:
***
I am a little confused.. you slander and then send it to me?

Every question I asked was to try and determine suitability or even abilities of the product we discussed. I had no idea you were so offended by our conversation. I was trying to share my opinion with a professional who maybe could do something about some of the issues. I see now that is not the case. Please accept my apologies if I upset you.
***

Well the guy is passionate about the product and defends its perceived sort comings. Sure he got most of the info wrong in his email but I think the point was clear. He feels he has a solid product and my call was nothing more than to give him crap.

NOT MY INTENT AT ALL.

Now the conversation I will be having with his manager concerning his email... well my intent will be a little different then.

I think he probably is a great supporter of the product...

Update 08-12-05:
UEI called the next day to apologize for the incident. The CSR did write me a letter of apology too.

***
I am very sorry for the comments that you intercepted from the trouble ticket. They were totally out of line and there was no excuse for stating them in the way that I did. Those comments were not deliberately sent to you, they were meant to be internal. I understand that you had important questions about the NevoSL product. I may have misunderstood your tone in asking them, and felt that you were attacking the product and overreacted to those feelings.
I have been spoken to about this incident by my superior, and the incident will be handled according to our policies.
Again, I am sorry for the offence and I hope that you will re-evaluate NevoSL on its own merits.

XXXX-XXXXX
Nevo SL Technical Support
www.mynevo.com

***
I accept.

I consider the matter concerning customer service closed.

Now lets get back to what we want to see in this remote.

A big one for me of course:a browser, with some way to make bookmarks to access things quick. Like a way to add an icon to the Home Control section that could lead to a samba drive. Or the ever popular bookmarks in the browser itself for things that we need to communicate with like...
Webserver for Tivo2s, Slimserver, Netstreams, basically things that provide a webserver interface.

The Nevo is slick looking. Might make a perfect hand held for Digilinx with some flash abilities, and a browser :)
(Both are handled by the same distro... might be a good match.)

What I am really saying here is: I see some real potential for this device, with some changes. Currently it is a remote control that really could appeal to the guy who likes working with Windows Media Edition and knows a lot about networking and extenders. Open up the connectivity and it could do so much more. Maybe some of my ideas are just way off? But I think all of us in this industry look for products that help us integrate things together. Sure we need to make a living... but we also need to keep our customers happy. This means providing them with products we are sure work and that we can hang our very reputations on.

This message was edited by Springs on 08/12/05 09:59 ET.
Post 2 made on Wednesday August 10, 2005 at 02:52
Steve Garn
Senior Member
Joined:
Posts:
November 2003
1,315
oop.
Manuals?! We don't need no stinking manuals! a.. er..
Post 3 made on Wednesday August 10, 2005 at 07:14
ejfiii
Select Member
Joined:
Posts:
July 2003
2,021
LOL at the product. Then really LOL at the email.

Dope.
Post 4 made on Wednesday August 10, 2005 at 15:55
oxjox
Founding Member
Joined:
Posts:
March 2002
223
This was a great article - thanks! I had posted some questions about the Nevo months ago and actualy got a response from a manager or VP or someone who thought I had some great ideas and had a clear vision of what the potential of this device is (he even sent me a TShirt!). Sounds like a really expensive remote control and nothing more. It doesn't seem, from your conversation, that it is offering very much in unique features other than possibly controlling MCE PC. Like yourself, we don't service or mantain our customers PCs and personally, I avoid M$ at all costs. This leaves little usefullness in controlling MCE. I had really really high hopes for this remote and still plan on checking out the class at CEDIA, if they can confirm that there is no browser built in and that the expansion module requires linking back to a PC then I am going to have to walk out of the class.
Why is it so impossible for manufacturers to "get it"?! This is why I am such a fan of Apple. They are one of the few companies that actually immerse themselves in their own products and understand how the end users uses the product.
Post 5 made on Wednesday August 10, 2005 at 16:30
Carl Spackler
Senior Member
Joined:
Posts:
November 2004
1,427
On 08/10/05 15:55 ET, oxjox said...
Why is it so impossible for manufacturers to "get
it"?! This is why I am such a fan of Apple.
They are one of the few companies that actually
immerse themselves in their own products and understand
how the end users uses the product.

Yeah, well thats all going to change soon anyways. Just saw a copy of the new intel based machines, one running XP, the other running OSX. I've been die hard Apple for many years, but the end of the good days is on the horizon. And since HP will most likely be doing there production, quality is also going to take a dump.
Gunga.....Gunga....GU-Lunga

And since Ernie won't keep count, I will. Hes up to 249, and counting.
OP | Post 6 made on Thursday August 11, 2005 at 07:43
Springs
Super Member
Joined:
Posts:
May 2002
3,238
Update:

Made the mistake of mentioning this to my rep and his answer was to, "drag me into the principals office", and just yell at me. I tired to explain what happened but he was to "hot" to even listen to my side of it. I kept requesting that he come here and read what happened and my review... basically he didn't have time to read what I said but he time to hollar. Don't know if he ever red this at all.

Yesterday the CSR emailed me a letter of appology. Wich was also followed up by a phone call from his boss.

But back to the remote...
There is no browser at this time. I checked the image file that comprises the Win CE version on the remote. It seems there is barely enough space to get minimo on there. I think that would chew up most the memory. Didn't check the size on IE yet.

I am not totally sure about the IP IR unit yet, I didn't have time to mess with it after I got my head ripped of at my local. However, from my earlier conversation with the CSR. I think it relays from remote to access point to network to router to IR unit. I am 90% sure that does not have to pass through a computer runing software.
Post 7 made on Saturday August 13, 2005 at 06:38
Wish
Lurking Member
Joined:
Posts:
August 2005
2
I've had a couple of these NevoSLs and a couple of the NevoLinks.

I can confirm that, once programmed - no PC is required on the network.

...a word of warning to anyone using the NevoLinks...

It is possible to set a static IP address with the NevoLink (though you don't seem to be able to do this on the NevoSL itself).

My advice would be to avoid doing this. After a few hours of use of both the NevoLinks that I've had, the IP information appears to become corrupted. This means that you can no longer connect to them with the Nevo Studio software (the software that lets you set the IP!)

I think you can probaly see where this is leading... two NevoLinks on their way back to the factory :(

The replacements will use DHCP only!
Post 8 made on Sunday August 14, 2005 at 20:56
Marc Silver
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
October 2003
64
Not sure if anyone is still interested. A few cons about the Nevo.

1. Loses WIFI connection every now and then, even if you set WIFI to never turn off.
2. When WIFI set to "NEVER" turn off, battery will last about 4.5hrs.(Beware NEVO SL will also crash every now and then and have to be reset by switching off on the side)
3. Control over DSM-320 media box very spiratic. Apparently Nevo are working on this. The idea being that the DSM-320 can be used as multiple zone breakouts for music stored on your music server PC.

If anyone has been able to rectify any of these issues, would be very interested.
OP | Post 9 made on Monday August 15, 2005 at 08:31
Springs
Super Member
Joined:
Posts:
May 2002
3,238
On the WIFI thing... I have not noticed a connection drop. Not I like I am running anyting on it yet. But there is this... my wap is in the room directly above my test room. It is a Linksys WAP54G its set to mixed mode. When I am in the same room with the remote gives me a signal strenth of very good. If I am in the test room it ranges from low to very low. Maybe the drops you guys are having is due to the ability to stay connected RF wise???

As for crashes... havn't had that happen.

I was over at the girlfriend's coworkers house this weekend and they had Windows Media Center in there living room. The guy of the house is real into it, but sees the short comings of it... like the fact it crashed several times while we were looking for something to watch... ANYWAYS. He is in need of a remote and I told him about the NEVO and what it is supposed to do. He was all over it.

Next weekend I will see if he wants to do some testing wtih me at his house. It would give me a better idea of actual use of this remote...

This message was edited by Springs on 08/15/05 13:40 ET.
Post 10 made on Wednesday August 17, 2005 at 21:02
ddarche
Mr. RemoteQuest
Joined:
Posts:
February 2002
2,309
Wish,

Drop me a note (Dave@RemoteQuest.com) or call at 650-591-2110 when you get a few minutes to spare. I am selling the Nevo locally and am interested in what you have found out.

Many Thx Dave
Dave D'Arche
http://RemoteQuest.com
Fine Home Theater Remote Controls & Solutions - Programming services for most remotes
Post 11 made on Thursday August 18, 2005 at 00:45
rhm9
Founding Member
Joined:
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December 2001
1,340
I'm a little PO'd at Nevo although it must be something with my machine and I need someone to transfer blame to. The Media manager software has slowed my machine down substantially and absolutely WILL NOT uninstall. It tells me to close ALL other applications... my firewall, anti-virus, etc.etc. and even after I do it will not allow me to take it out. Startup time after a restart is double what it use to be now.

In the sudio software I could not figure out how to build my own devicepage instead of one of their templates. They do have some really cool backgrounds though... wonder how importable they are to RTI?
Post 12 made on Thursday August 18, 2005 at 19:22
MUGEN
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
April 2005
81
i've had mine for 2 weeks not this is my first fully programmable remote so i had to read the manual first. after reading it it was really easy to set everything up. i have custom pictures of cars as back rounds and i have every function from my sharp aquo in only 2 pages. i've only done the tv so far and i will not be using wifi but will be using media center with this remote.
Post 13 made on Friday August 19, 2005 at 04:39
Wish
Lurking Member
Joined:
Posts:
August 2005
2
On 08/17/05 21:02 ET, ddarche said...
Wish,

Drop me a note (Dave@RemoteQuest.com) or call
at 650-591-2110 when you get a few minutes to
spare. I am selling the Nevo locally and am interested
in what you have found out.

Many Thx Dave

Hi Dave, I sent you an email but I guess I ought to post it here too...

I got your message on the remote central forum and thought I'd update you.

On further investigation, I don't think it's anything to do with IP or subnet corruption.

I got the two replacement units yesterday and they were exhibiting the same symptoms so I did a little more digging.

I run a test ping in the background that just pings the IP address on the NevoLink. With this going on, I do a refresh of NevoLinks on the network from within the Nevo Studio software. When I do this the NevoLink falls over for a good 30 seconds so I get no reply from my ping.

I'm still a little baffled - I'm not exactly sure how the Nevo Studio software does its search but the Links certainly don't seem to like it. If I was to take a guess I'd say that Link firmware is unstable but a guess is just that.

My rep has asked the support team at Universal Electronics to phone me but I didn't get a call back yesterday... I suppose the time zone difference gives them a smaller window to call but hopefully they'll get back to me today and we can work towards some sort of resolution.

Hope this helps.

Regards,

Steve Holman

(Wish)
Post 14 made on Sunday August 21, 2005 at 19:25
Marc Silver
Long Time Member
Joined:
Posts:
October 2003
64
OK, Don't have any problem finding Nevo links on the network or any issues with WiFi strength as such. The best combination is to set the power setting to Never turn off WiFi or Nevo SL when on Battery and Never turn off WiFi but turnoff Nevo SL when in the charger. This means when you initially take the remote from the cradle you have to wait about 8 secs for it to connect. It will remian connected while out of the cradle, so always react imediately to button presses. This is the best combination and works pretty well.

As for the DSM-320 control, you can forget it for the moment if your in Aus. NOONE gives a F#@!#ck that it doesn't work and that the product has been sold on false pretenses, Nevo have stopped replying to my e-mails. Their answer was to use "Real rahpsody, but it ain't avaiable in Australia.

No Thanx to NEVO for your support.
OP | Post 15 made on Monday August 22, 2005 at 13:21
Springs
Super Member
Joined:
Posts:
May 2002
3,238
Hey guys...

Got a few eamils asking about how testing went this weekend...

Well Friday I bumped into a firend I have known for about 10 years. He just got a job at the local shop that opened down the street from my house. I had stopped in to take a look around and there he was.

We got to talking about gear before we even finished the "how you been"s. He was talking about how much he loved his windows media center and how the NEVO would work with it. I asked if he had tried it... "Ahh no."

Well I've got one in the car...
(He didn't wait for me to finsih the sentance.)

So he took it home for the week and I kept my thoughts to myself. Will meet up later this week for idea exchange.

(We used to do a lot of Beta test programs for manufactures. One or the other of us would get a product and usually the next stop for the product was the other guy anyways. RUle of our was let the other try it blind. So I told him very little about it and am waiting for a call back.)
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