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User reviews for the Take Control TC1000 from Harman/Kardon.
Take Control TC1000
RatingsReviewsMSRP (USD)
Average: 3.74/5.00
Median: 4.17/5.00
Designed in cooperation with Microsoft, the Take Control is an ergonomically designed unit featuring a large backlit LCD screen, a selector wheel for scrolling through channels and menu options and large volume buttons.
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the Take Control TC1000 remote.
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Written by Robert Vandervoort from Apopka, FL.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 3-6 months.
Review 13 made on Thursday September 13, 2001 at 6:53 PM.
Strengths:Learning capabilities and personal customization potential
Weaknesses:1. Time delay between button press and signal
2. Touch pad imprecise...often requiring multiple presses
3. Lack of hard buttons combined with limited number of programmable buttons per screen means multiple screens are required for operating a single component
4. Horrible visibility
Review:After salivating over this remote I purchased the Madrigal and was severely disappointed.

It was fun to fire up the interface and program everything in, but when it came time to really start using it several fatal flaws reared their heads. It has sat on my coffee table for about 4 months now, fully programmed, because it is just so much more tedious and annoying to use than my good old A/V producer 8.

The delay between button presses and signal delivery is enough to make you want to eat a bullet. Enough said.

Not only that, but the touch pad often must be pressed several times to send a signal. So I push a button, wait a second for an effect to happen (because of aforementioned delay)...if it doesn't come then I push the button again, etc, etc. For some reason the buttons in the corners of the LCD screen are particularly difficult to activate. This problem was not alleviated by reclabrating the touch pad over and over to try to get it more "sensitive".

Because there are so few hard buttons, you have to take up valuable touch-screen space with mundane buttons such as number buttons and directional arrows. Right there, you lose 14 of the possible 20 buttons which can be programmed for a single screen. So for any device which requires more than a very few "real" customized buttons, you have to resort to multiple screens. Travelling between screens back and forth just to control the simple functions of your cable box is an unbelievable pain in the rear.

Other issues:
The roller device is cool in theory but is agonizingly slow and imprecise.

All of the touch-screen buttons are the same wouldn't think this would matter but believe me it makes using the remote even more difficult.

This remote has taught me:

1. Touch screen bad
2. I demand hard buttons for universally-needed keys such as the number keys and directional arrows
3. Time delay after a button press is a huge deal
4. Don't assume just because a remote is marketed successfully that the screen will be easy to see. Somehow this one got through.

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Written by Mark Jeppesen from Olympia, WA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 6-12 months.
Review 12 made on Tuesday July 24, 2001 at 12:00 AM.
Strengths:Very easy to program and setup. The activity based user model is very good to make control easy. The rollerball is very intuitive.
Weaknesses:IR not as strong as I'd like.
Review:I've had the Madrigal IRIQ remote for almost a year now and I really like it. I couldn't believe how quickly I was able to take it out the box and control all but the Sony DVD player in my system. To my suprise, with the computer software learning commands for my DVD player was easier than I ever imagined possible. The remote has a quality look and feel. The rollerball is quite functional and allows easy operation of channel changes or fast forward and reverse. The activity based structure is well organized and thought out. It helps the user integrate their system rather than just duplicating each components remote. After all it is nice to have only one remote to control all of our home theater gear. It is even better to have our setups work together seemlessly as if they were one piece of equipment.
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Written by Brian Nofsinger from Durham, NC.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-2 years.
Review 11 made on Sunday April 29, 2001 at 2:53 PM.
Strengths:This remote has many strengths including:
1. Full learning capabilities
2. Screen button placement control
3. Ergonomic shape
4. Great, user-friendly Windows software
5. Rollerball
Weaknesses:At the same time, it falls very far from the perfect remote because of:
1. Cannot change shapes of touchscreen buttons
2. There is a noticable lag between button presses and when the signal is emitted
3. IR strength is low
4. Poor backlighting
Review:I'll be the first to admit that I was sucked into buying this remote because, among other reasons, it looks cool. However, I was extremely disappointed with it because of the weaknesses listed above. I went through the LED upgrade to increase signal strenth/angle as well as bought expensive Tadiran, 3.6V batteries to make the screen brighter. While the screen did get noticably brighter (probably at the expense of eventually frying the remote), the IR mod still left much to be desired. You must point the remote at many components, which is bad for a touchscreen remote since you must then be directly above the touchscreen to see the touchscreen.

Probably the biggest, most annoying drawback to this remote is the noticable lag between button presses and when a signal is sent. Before buying this remote, I heard others talk about this problem, but I thought it wouldn't bother me. It most certainly did. When I sit down to watch TV, I simply want to watch TV. I don't want to spend my time dealing with a remote, wondering when and if the series of buttons I pressed have been sent. For channel surfing, the lag is horrendous. Imagine using the rollerball (which is a great idea) and you roll, then wait a half second, and then the channel changes...roll, then wait a half second, then the channel changes. It's extremely annoying.

The other major drawback is the fact that you cannot change button shapes. I own a ReplayTV and there are many buttons that must be on my "Watch TV" activity like "quick skip", "play", "pause", etc. Imagine having a screen packed with buttons that are all the same shape. It tends to be hard to hit specific buttons when they're all together like that. It would be nice to make some of the more important buttons larger on the screen.

Finally, there is zero customer support for this remote. If you go read the forum for Home Theater Master remotes, you will find that they take feedback directly from this website and incorporate user suggestions into future remote revisions (I applaud Home Theater Master). Harman/Kardon could (and should, but won't) do the same thing to finish what could have been a great remote.

Don't get me wrong, this is a good remote and it most certainly will be able to control your home theater equipment. However, think long and hard before you buy it.
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Written by Jan Mietle from Bristol, UK.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 10 made on Thursday April 5, 2001 at 10:06 AM.
Strengths:Easy set up and lovely touch screen.
Weaknesses:Seemed to have some problems sending the "same" button in a row, e.g. channel up.
Review:I have a NAD TV and an Arcam Xeta 2 processor, and the remote didn't work as expected. After having programmed it with all my remotes it still didn't manage to send the same button in a row. Therefore I couldn't use the wheel to change channels, the mute button only muted my processer, never "unmuted" it. If I by accident switched of the processor I couldn't get i back on again until I pressed a different button, and if I pressed TELETEXT, then I couldn't get it off again until I had pressed a different button. Very, very annoying.... A big pity because I really liked it... I'm now ready to try Marantz RC5000i....
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Written by Richard from Washington, DC.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-2 years.
Review 9 made on Sunday March 4, 2001 at 1:54 PM.
Strengths:Roller wheel; clever, task-based remote menus; wizard-based PC software functions are user-friendly
Weaknesses:Very large, poor backlight visibility, software does not provide capability to program discrete on/off codes, remote cannot learn "bundled" codes like System Off, touchscreen frequently needs to be recalibrated, no USB support
Review:At first, I was very pleased with this remote control. However, I quickly became disillusioned by its limitations. I love that I can create task-based lists of options on the remote like "Watch a video tape" or "Listen to CDs." Unfortunately, the remote doesn't make programming these tasks easy (or, sometimes, even possible). A complete lack of support for programming discrete on/off codes for components makes it impossible to create macros that can power on and off components as necessary. This is particularly frustrating, because it's largely a limitation of the software--not the hardware. While these capabilities could be added with continued software upgrades, it appears, instead, as though Microsoft and Harman/Kardon have just dropped their support for this product. The other major downfall of this product IS hardware related: visibility and reliability of the touch screen. At certain light levels, it's almost impossible to read the screen--the backlight just isn't bright enough to compensate for mid-level lighting. Visibility is further complicated by the fact that the projection angle of the remote required to operate your devices combined with the visibility angle of the screen nearly requires that you to sit upright, looking down at the horizontally-posititioned remote. That's not too convenient for relaxed, home theater viewing. Finally, I know that screen re-calibration is a typical problem with LCD touchscreen devices, but I was constantly having to recalibrate this thing...nearly every week. This remote is now burried in a cabinet with the rest of them.
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Written by Raymond Doan from Hamden, CT USA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 6-12 months.
Review 8 made on Wednesday February 21, 2001 at 1:04 PM.
Strengths:Easy programming, versatile scroll wheel, high learning capacity, and macro editor
Weaknesses:Low readability, needs better software, e.g. Philips Pronto.
Review:I've had the TC1000 for about a year now and I still love it!! It has learned every remote I own. I've put all my old remotes in a box in my closet somewhere. The best feature is the Macro feature. I love being able to fire up my home theater with the touch of a button. I only wish that Harman/Kardon would develop software that allows you to create different shaped buttons and the ability to download logos from the internet. All in all, this is one of the best remotes out there.
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Written by Bob from Here.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 7 made on Tuesday February 6, 2001 at 6:23 PM.
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