Have you been looking for DVDs to test or demonstrate your home theater system
with? Tired of popping in a movie you thought
was good, but instead turns out to be a dud?
Well, look no further. We've got a new "live" listing of great DVD demo scenes online. You can
view, add and vote for scenes in real-time. Since this list is made up of viewer suggestions, we
need your DVD suggestions! Click here to view.
[Talk about DVD movies...]
MX-1000 update: Well, I suppose it was inevitable. The Home Theater Master MX-1000
touchscreen remote has been delayed a little while further, until mid April. There is some good
news, though: chances are high it will now ship with the PC editing software on CD-ROM along with
a serial cable for immediate remote customization. So, no waiting to see what you can really
do with it! Though I managed to see it for a few minutes at this year's CES,
I'm really looking forward to finally having a full and proper chance to use one.
[Talk about the MX-1000...]
Merlin remote: This weekend, the Philex "Merlin"
remote was brought to my attention. The Merlin is a backlit LCD touchscreen remote that also
features a full numerical keypad and round channel/volume controls, along with a few others.
It can control up to 10 devices and comes preprogrammed, or you can use the full learning
capabilities on up to 32 keys per device. The screen is "reconfigurable" and there's even macro
functionality. What's more, a full QWERTY keyboard is expected shortly as an add-on. The picture I
have is merely an artistic mockup, so I hope to get something more concrete from the company soon.
[Talk about the Merlin...]
New Pronto firmware? As you no doubt are already aware, the Marantz RC5000 is currently
using firmware APP version 4.84, while the Pronto has
version 4.81. The main operational difference in the newer version is bug fixes. Well, it appears
new Prontos shipping from Belgium are starting to also appear with version 4.84, even
though no updated firmware upgrade file has been provided for everyone else. This firmware is
not the same as the Marantz version. The Pronto version is dated December 27, 1999, while
the Marantz revision is December 30, 1999. Sounds like someone was cramming to get it done before
the end of the year, eh? (Remember, you cannot cross-load Marantz/Philips firmware revisions.) Well,
I'll be speaking to Philips early this week and hope to get some clarification on this new firmware issue -- along
with juicy new tidbits on the upcoming color version!
[Talk about the RC5000 & Pronto...]
New Pronto files: A number of new system CCF files are available for this week, by
Danny Owens, Ernie Davis,
Gareth Morrow, Johnny Chuah,
Lain Davis & Michael Marciante.
Peter Dewildt has recently sent over CCF Explorer, in the Utilities
file area. CCE Explorer allows you to view the contents of a CCF file in a Windows Explorer style
interface. Check it out!
Eric Johnson's new CCF file for the Marantz SR-4000 receiver
demonstrates how it is possible to simulate holding down a button for a macro. The SR-4000 requires
2-second holds to turn it off or switch video sources, and using split-up codes and a few aliases Eric has reproduced this needed
functionality. Andrea Whitlock has sent an updated file
containing 117 Dish Network logos for your use. In addition,
George Fournaris has uploaded "Mind It" -- a handy place on the
Pronto to store notes -- in the Design Elements file section.
The MXHP-R700 adds a more fully-featured remote control to the MX HomePro platform.
Expand traditional sensor coverage on Total Control systems with URC's new 4-port, network-enabled expander.