Your Universal Remote Control Center
One For All Kameleon 8 URC-9960 Review
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The preprogrammed code number assigned to a device can be read back via code 9-9-0. Numbers are read by counting blinks – press the [1] key and count the number of times the indicator blinks for the first digit, and so on for all four numbers. On a remote like the Kameleon I really would have preferred it flash back the exact number on the numeric keypad, although I realize that this isn’t done due to technical limitations on the number of individually accessible screen elements.

Several levels of reset are available to help you back out of programming blunders. Learned keys and key moved keys can be deleted singularly or on an entire device basis, while items such as volume lock and macros can be reset individually. If you’ve really messed up, the remote has two main reset options: “custom programming reset” (code 9-8-0) deletes everything except configured device codes, while “setup code reset” (code 9-7-7) does more than just clear device codes – it wipes out absolutely everything. Sounds more like a 9-1-1 situation to me!

Stuff they didn’t tell you about...
Hidden in plain sight inside the battery compartment of most UEI-based remotes is a mysterious 6-pin connector labeled “JP1”. Some curious and technically inclined users have discovered that this is, in fact, the connection through which all factory updating of the remote is accomplished. After much determination and a lot of trial and error, those users have even figured out how to make good use of JP1 through a computer.

One For All Kameleon 8 URC-9960
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The Kameleon 8 is a JP1 compatible remote, however there are no actual pins soldered onto the board – or even holes for pins – making it a less than ideal candidate for JP1 fans. Still, techies eager to exploit the remote’s deeper capabilities can opt to purchase a special cable that must be manually held against the contacts during programming.

So what is JP1 useful for? Practically anything you couldn’t do to the remote normally. Back up its configuration to a computer, upgrade the code database, add new codes including discretes, program more sophisticated macros, include deeper key functions, plus a whole lot more. The only problem is that this is still a “hobby grade” procedure, something decidedly not supported by UEI (users will, of course, void the 90-day warranty).

Why UEI hasn’t latched firmly onto the concept of under-$100 computer programmable remotes and turned it into a marketing bonanza is a mystery, but for now JP1 remains a tool for those looking to eek the most value out of their purchase – by any means necessary!

Then again, not every bit of tweaking requires the use of JP1: although not mentioned in the manual, it’s still possible to use “advanced codes” (also known as “magic codes”) to add functions not normally assigned to a button – and even ones normally unavailable on original equipment remotes, such as discrete power and inputs. Advanced codes were the craze before JP1 started, and it’s nice to see that they still work on the Kameleon.

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