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When you’re satisfied that your file is shipshape, the Communications menu will launch it off to your remote (or upload from, if you wish). From that menu you may also check your remote’s firmware version and create a self-installing version of your configuration that will download itself to another TheaterTouch T2 remote when run on any PC.
RF And Beyond
Despite being perfectly capable as a stand-alone infrared remote, the TheaterTouch also provides built-in RF capabilities that can be used with the optional $299 USD IRF-6 basestation module. The IRF-6 is a six-zone IR router, IR connecting block, RF receiver and control system all in one package. In addition the IRF-6 requires no programming – all information is transmitted solely from the T2. The IRF-6 is a 5" x 7" x 1.5" (LWH) dark blue metal box that can be mounted anywhere. It comes with a flexible seven-inch antenna with 12 foot lead that can be installed anywhere, however they recommend five to seven feet above floor level and at least three feet away from a television or other source of RF interference. Though the antenna uses standard cable and connectors, it is not recommended to extend its length beyond the default 12 feet. RF reception range is rated at approximately 100 feet, however your mileage may vary depending on the construction and wiring in your home.
IRF-6 System Interface Module.
Click to enlarge. (31kb)
Each of the six output ports can be configured for various IR output levels; each port can also support any RTI accessory module including power and video sensing dongles. Such modules are used to completely sync a home theater so that devices are always on or off when they should be and commands – such as "power" – are only sent at the proper time. A full RS-232 communication module allows for advanced control of theater components that support it, such as preamplifiers and projectors. The IRF-6 module interface design has been left open with a custom 4-pin connector for the creation of almost anything you can think of. One idea they’re considering (and I personally feel would be fantastic) is an X-10 module that would connect to your house wiring and directly transmit X-10 codes.
Output ports are also compatible with industry-standard IR emitters and repeaters (with up to 500 feet of cable and 4 emitters each), though none are included with the base package. Additionally, status sensing modules are also designed for connection of IR emitters. A code selector on the rear of the IRF-6 can be configured for one of 10 ID codes, meaning a total of up to 60 zones can be defined. Plus, multiple IRF-6’s can have the same ID code to be used with a single T2 remote. The folks at RTI were even thoughtful enough to include four plastic feet and a mini screwdriver to adjust ID codes and IR output levels. An example IR emitter should probably have been included.
IRF-6 Output Settings
In the TheaterTouch Designer application you can specify for each button whether a code should be sent via default, IR or RF, and which IRF-6 ID code to use. The "Default" option is configured in the "Remote Properties" customization screen, where you may select IR or RF, ID Code and what labels the various IRF-6 output ports should have. On that screen you may also configure the security passcode, scroll speed, power down time, tilt switch and when the LCD should come on.