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User reviews for the Xantech URC-2 from Xantech Corporation.
Xantech URC-2
RatingsReviewsMSRP (USD)
Average: 3.79/5.00
Median: 4.00/5.00
8$199
The URC-2 & URC-2P are learning remote controls based on simplicity. They can control 8 devices with 40 user-programmable buttons on each (80 with tiering) and features unlimited macros, a motion-sensitive backlit keypad, plus optional PC programming software.
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Written by flex01 from Canada.
The reviewer has used this remote control for more than two years.
Review 8 made on Saturday January 14, 2006 at 12:56 AM.
Strengths:I really like this remote for ease of use. Like the auto on back light feature.
Weaknesses:Very poorly constructed, the remote can not handle drops from the sofa, the circuit board falls apart. I am on my third remote due to this and the warranty is up. With three kids this is a major down side for this remote. Price is too high for what you get.
Review:Over all I like the URC-2, but would not buy another.
The finish fades very quickly making it look like a cheap product.
The buttons should be changeable, every one has different needs, i.e.: no HD button.
I have had better luck with the Home Theater Master remotes for reliability.
Price is about the same.
Quality: Features: Value:

Written by Colin Hughes from Annapolis, MD.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 3-6 months.
Review 7 made on Monday March 21, 2005 at 2:26 PM.
Strengths:I like the basic look and feel. Once you get codes properly learned, it preforms well. Like the auto-on back light feature.
Weaknesses:No built in code library, Inability to be able to upload and edit previous configuration files with Dragon Drop (You must have the original Dragon files handy to make minor changes to the remote), Dragon Drop software could use some better programming. It’s pretty clunky to use. Templates for bottom keys are awful.
Review:This remote could be alot more popular if Xantech would work on some of the complaints listed in this forum. I also understand that they are going through a re-organization internally, but support has been poor for the last couple of months and this does not make for happy customers. One tip I can leave is for getting the lower keys labled better, take one of the un-used templates to your local sign dealer and see what they can do for you. I had a template made for a customer with eight of these remotes and it only ran me $50 bucks. It sure beat trying to work with the buttons the way they were. If Xantech wanted to get a little more mileage, they'd be smart to supply us the cad template for the lower keys so we could make our own templates. Might be nice if one could get different keys made as well. Who knows, maybe they will listen.
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Written by Chris S. from Las Vegas.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-2 years.
Review 6 made on Wednesday August 28, 2002 at 11:47 PM.
Weaknesses:cannot upload!!!!
Review:I have been installing these things for over a year now and it has treated us pretty good. I have only programed it with the software. I have never run out of memory. We sell this remote on its one handed operation,easy to teach to a customer and it works well with what we sell. I brought home a pronto,mx100,and urc2 and my wife chose the urc2 because it worked the best for her. (she has no patience for a touch screen) speedy one handed operation to change the channels-sources quickly and efficiently. So I purchased one for my home!
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Written by Brian Burke from Santa Barbara, CA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 3-6 months.
Review 5 made on Tuesday July 10, 2001 at 8:39 PM.
Strengths:The URC2 is great for people who aren't ready for touchscreen remotes. It gives the programmer the ability to simplify system operation throgh the use of macros at a reasonable price.
Weaknesses:The combination of transport/menu keys confuses people and makes programming more difficult. The keys on the bottom are useless (especially with arrows) for most applications and would be more useful as Tivo/Replay keys or for CD changers. The supplied templates are poorly thought out.
Review:The URC2 is a great remote for secondary systems(bedrooms, offices, etc.)or for people who tremble at the thought of a touchscreen, when it works properly. The remote software is really dated and is not user friendly when organizing files. The fact that you can't upload an entire project (associated devices, names etc.) makes it extremely difficult to make changes without the original file. I have had problems with the PC programmer/remote interaction as well. Codes that have worked 100% through the IR flasher output on the programming module don't work at all using the URC2. The most frustrating example for me was the 1 button for a Sony TV. When I tested the code using the programmer it worked great. When I downloaded it to the remote, it didn't work at all. I was able to capture this code using the remote only and it worked fine. Sometimes the functions on the remote just stopped working altogether. This is unacceptable. I modify the programming using the PC and when I do this, I must go back through each of these buttons and capture them using the remote only. I had six commands from different brands that had to be learned without the PC. Talk about a waste of time. Overall, I think the remote is good in theory, and poor in operation. I had high hopes for this remote but I ended up taking it back. Maybe the URC3 will be better
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Written by Adam from Los Angeles.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 3-6 months.
Review 4 made on Thursday June 21, 2001 at 12:09 AM.
Strengths:Great Flexability in programming, and very easy to do so.
Weaknesses:The remote has a set of keys which double as cursor control and play, stop,pause commands. You must use a shift command to change between "teirs" which has become a huge problem for cutomers to get the hang of, especially when using TiVo where you must switch back and forth frequently. Xantech should design a model with seperate buttons, or a template for the lower extra keys.
Review:All in all this is a great remote. I like the use of hard butons rather then a touch screen. and at this price it solves many budget issues.
Quality: Features: Value:

Written by Larry Benson from Oklahoma City, OK.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 6-12 months.
Review 3 made on Monday February 12, 2001 at 8:46 PM.
Strengths:1. The Xantech can learn under any button except the light button.

2. It can have a macro under any button except the light button.

3. The macros delay time defaults to approx. 1/3rd of a second. You can increase it.

4. It has programmable backlighting that activates automatically when you move it.

5. It has the menu diamond layout.

6. It has a port for RS-232 programming with “Dragon Drop” software.

7. IR has very good range, up to 70’.

8. Backed up memory while changing batteries.

9. Unit is clone-able using “Dragon Drop” software.

10. Has 8 device buttons with LED indicating current mode selected.

11. Have not found a device IR code that the URC-2 won’t learn.
Weaknesses:1. The Volume and Channel buttons are not next to each other.

2. Batteries go pretty fast if you program the backlight to stay on for a long time.

3. Does not feature internal library. It is learning only.
Review:February 13, 2001

Xantech URC-2 Review


Before I start the review of the Xantech programmable handheld controller I would like to summarize my list for a good (not perfect) remote. I have read many of the forum contributors’ ideas and while many have some interesting ideas I read very few that cover the main issue that the my remote must have. I have often wondered why this one issue had not been discussed very much and does not seem to be at the top of the discussion heap.

Remotes for years have come in multi device configurations, ie they have a device button for a TV, CD, VCR, Audio, Aux. Devices. Somewhere in your Home Theater system you must have an input or source selector. My personal installations have centered on the A/V receiver. I plug each device into the receiver’s matching device inputs. At some point to switch from watching TV to VCR you have to create a macro to switch the TV from TV tuner to line/external input and the A/V receiver from TV to VCR.

Many of the remotes discussed in the forum talk about the total memory and finding the right codes for a particular brand and model of gear. My remote needs to have the learning capability then I can teach most any brand in my system. Secondly, I need a remote that would give me the WAF (wife’s acceptance factor). This means the remote must be simple and feature one button device switching (OBDS). How are users getting by without the device learning and switching capability?

If there is a work-around for this I am very interested in learning an alternate method. Without this when you select a device button it only switches the remote mode to the new device but does not send out a IR command to your system to switch to the desired input.

I was first introduced to a remote called the SoundStream R3. It would allow a macro under any and all buttons. The main downside to the R3 was the button layout did not have the menu/transport diamond layout just a large number of buttons all in rows and the volume and channel keys are far apart.

I later found the SL-9000 and before the URC-2 it has provided the OBDS. It does not provide full macros under the device buttons (DB). It can learn only one IR command under the DB. It does however have a command called Join. The Join command puts the A/V receiver input selections on the Audio/numeric buttons. Such as Audio 1 would switch the receiver to TV, Audio 2 would switch to VCR, etc. In effect this gives you a two-command macro that they call mini-macros. All of the macros on the SL-9000 insert a long delay each time a device button is entered into a macro making them playback very slowly.

For most applications I could live with the mini-macro. The only keys that have full macro capability are the main power and memory buttons M1, M2, M3 and M4. This full macro buttons are forced to include the long delay between keystrokes. By the time I play an all power off macro for my system it can get out of sync very easily unless you hold the remote very still until the complete macro playback is completed. I do like the fact that volume and channel buttons are next to each other allowing surfing with one hand.

For my systems the macro is still the most important feature especially the macro under the device buttons. I would like to gather a list of remotes that feature full multi-key macros under the device buttons.

Now I come to the Xantech URC-2.

Pros:
1. The Xantech can learn under any button except the light button.

2. It can have a macro under any button except the light button.

3. The macros delay time defaults to approx. 1/3rd of a second. You can increase it.

4. It has programmable backlighting that activates automatically when you move it.

5. It has the menu diamond layout.

6. It has a port for RS-232 programming with “Dragon Drop” software.

7. IR has very good range, up to 70’.

8. Backed up memory while changing batteries.

9. Unit is clone-able using “Dragon Drop” software.

10. Has 8 device buttons with LED indicating current mode selected.

11. Have not found a device IR code that the URC-2 won’t learn.

Cons:
1. The Volume and Channel buttons are not next to each other.

2. Batteries go pretty fast if you program the backlight to stay on for a long time.

3. Does not feature internal library. It is learning only.

I’ve now tried to go to other remotes and I keep coming back to the URC-2. I tried the MX-1000 and could get the touch screen to operate accurately. I find I prefer hard buttons over touch screen buttons. Remotes that require two hands to hold (Sony AV2000, 2100) do not meet my WAF.

Here are some factory specifications.
·Memory: 32 kbytes SRAM (super cap. backed)
·IR Carrier Frequency: 31.25 kHz to 71.50 kHz
·Range: Up to 70’ (Depends on controlled equipment and local conditions)
·Number of Keys: 48 (8 Source, 40 Function)
·Learning System: Direct Learning or by PC with DD4 Software (optional). Similar to SmartPad3.
·Programming Functions: Sequencing, Delays, Step Editing (with Insert and Delete)
·Sequence (macro) Capability: Commands per key limited only by memory
·COM Port: 3-Pin, RS232 Signal Compatible
Cloning: Via 3-Pin COM Port
·Sleep Mode: Backlighting variable from 1-10 seconds,programmable from Dragon Drop. Begins 30 seconds after inactivity when in Program Modes
·Wake up: Activates with motion, a key press, or COM Port Connection
·Power Source: 4 “AAA” Batteries (Alkaline recommended) not included
·Dimensions: 7-3/4” x 2-3/8” x 1-1/16" (196 mm x 60 mm x 27 mm)
·Weight: 6.6 oz. (.93 kg)
Ergonomics played a part in the URC-2’s design. It’s a remote capable of being operated by a single hand. It is easy to operate without a multi-page instruction manual. It’s intuitive when first placed in the user’s hand and not intimidating to the homeowner. Yet, the URC-2 conceals underneath its simple exterior, a very powerful and flexible processor. The user instantly feels familiar with its fit and function and immediately begins to control all of the components. The majority of the most used functions are within thumb access from the same hand that is holding the unit.

I recommend the URC-2 very much. I filled the Xantech remote with 6 out of 8 device items and did not run into any out-of-memory problems. It learned any and everything I threw at it. I hope future models will move the Volume and Channel buttons close to each other.

Xantech can be found at www.xantech.com

Cost is $150.00 estimated street price.

Review by: Larry R. Benson
President Benson Sound, Inc.
3900 East I-240
Oklahoma City, Ok 73135

Email: [email protected]
Quality: Features: Value:

Written by David Hilling from MPLS MN.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 2 made on Sunday September 24, 2000 at 1:59 PM.
Strengths:One touch any button macros, download/upload capability, software
Weaknesses:Appears to be a quality control issur on 1st batch at least
Review:I agree with reviewer previous but my customers have had failures and quirkyness. Macro's will fire off when set down on table, one froze up and has been non-functional since (won't reboot). Overall though I have much hope for this remote as it is by far the most simple for the non-hobbiest user.
Quality: Features: Value:


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