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User reviews for the Harmony 659 / H659 / SST-659 from Logitech.
Harmony 659 / H659 / SST-659
RatingsReviewsMSRP (USD)
Average: 3.88/5.00
Median: 4.33/5.00
The Harmony H659 remote control features simple Internet-based programming via USB, Smart State control for easy system automatation, full backlighting, a redesigned user interface and a large complement of hard buttons!
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the Harmony 659 / H659 / SST-659 remote.
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Written by leximar from Dearborn, Michigan, USA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for under 1 month.
Review 82 made on Monday November 6, 2006 at 8:46 PM.
Also owned:RCA Universal Custom 8
Strengths:Works perfectly, very intelligent operation, help button truly solves problems
Weaknesses:long setup time
Review:I've wanted a Harmony Remote for over a year. I finally decided to sink the $140 for a Harmony 659, and I am extremely impressed and very satisfied with it.

Why did I finally spring for (in my mind) such an expensive remote? For years I've lived with my old RCA Universal Custom 8, surfing devices, and was happy. However, within the past year, I built a MythTV rig, since paying a monthly service fee for a DVR really burns me. I control my MythTV via a Hauppauge WinTV-PVR-350 remote, and my old RCA remote doesn't have the Hauppauge remote's setup & layout built in. I could have programmed it via it's IR learning function, but decided instead to invest in a new remote.

I obtain the Harmony 659 from CompUSA, bring it home, and quickly scan the instructional leaflet. It warns me to gather all of the model numbers from my components before I start, but I think to myself, "bah! I'll grab them as I go." Well, as I got into the wizard-based setup of the Harmony Remote, I realized that gathering the model numbers from my old components was rather a big job, since it's all encased in an entertainment center, and, being all wired up, does not lend itself to being pulled out to peer at the back of the devices. So with a mirror, a flashlight, and a small camera, I finally got all of the model numbers (probably a couple of hours spent on the model number trek).

Once I had all the model numbers for my components in hand, running through the Logitech setup wizard was a bit cumbersome, but not quite annoying. The wizard is easy to use, but if you have to run through it more than once, it does become repetative and boring. Nonetheless, once through, and the remote worked pretty well.

My setup is low-end, and most of my components are quite dated. My old TV has one input: coax. In order to switch between VCR, DVD, and DVR, I run everything through my old VHS VCR, which gladly accepts composite video from other devices and forwards the signal to my TV via coax.

That said, I need to set my TV to ch#3, VCR to input 2, and stereo to input VCR to watch my DVR. I figured, that's about the most complicated setup I have, so I try that first. I hit the activity button I have mapped to DVR, and the VCR and stereo come to life, but my TV remains dark. I press the help button on the remote, and I hear the TV click on, while the remote says, "Did that fix the problem?" I select yes, and from then on, the remote works just as I want it to...

... except that it wants to turn my DVR off when I'm not using it. I don't want it to do this. Additionally, it's default time delay between button presses for my DVR is 500ms, which is too long for my taste. After reading the review of this remote on Remote Central, I found the "advanced settings" for my DVR device. I set it to leave my DVR on all the time, and rediced the time delay between button presses for my DVR to 200ms.

So, probably a grand total of 6 hours toying with the Harmony Remote 659, and it now works perfectly, and, I might say, even better than I expected.

As I stated up front, I'm very pleased with this remote, and feel it's worth the $140 (after tax) price tag.
Quality: Features: Value:

Written by markbowen from Sarajevo.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 6-12 months.
Review 81 made on Tuesday March 7, 2006 at 5:06 PM.
Strengths:Completely programmable
Very easy to use

Weaknesses:Complicated to set up
Review:I really like this remote, and most importantly my wife likes it. I bought this to replace my Home Theater Master MX-500, which is also a great remote. (It did not survive a fall from the shelf, though.)

We have a complicated setup, with TV, two satellite receivers, A/V receiver, cable and DVD, and with the 659 we can switch between all of them effortlessly. Once the remote is programmed it's very smart, turning things on or off and switching inputs as needed.

Programming is a bit of a hassle, though. You have to download from the internet for every change. If you test it and it's still not quite right, you have to download again. There are codes for a vast number of devices, but most often the default layouts require a good deal of tweaking to get it to a fully useable state. If you've got more than a few components, count on spending several hours to get the remote the way you want it.

That said, I don't regret the hours I spent setting this up, because now it really is the perfect remote. Very satisfied, I recommend this highly if you don't mind spending the time to set it up.
Quality: Features: Value:

Written by DLH from TN.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 80 made on Thursday December 29, 2005 at 2:32 PM.
Strengths:Does exactly what it say's it will do, replaces all your remotes and self learns macros
Weaknesses:Web based interface.
Review:It took me 4 hours to finally get finished with my settings due to the fact that the web site kicked me off repeaditly or wouldn't let me in due to high traffic. This may be becuase of Christmas and lots of units sold, but it was a frustrating to say the least. Once finished it controled everything, and turned on all the correct components as if it was a miracle, with one exception.I have a VHS/DVD combo player and it wouldn't control the VHS side. I went back on line and taught it the codes by simply pressing buttons on the old VHS remote, and walla, it all works! Even my wife who is skeptical of most gadegts loves this one!!
Quality: Features: Value:

Written by whytewolf from Montreal,Qc.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 79 made on Saturday December 24, 2005 at 12:42 AM.
Review:Plugged it in my pc....not recognised...spent about 13 hours trying to find a way to have this thing connected on my pc but to no avail....i will stick to my 4 remotes...this is the worst electronic gadget that i bought in my life....Everything else i plug into my pc works great...but not this thing...

Very disappointed in logitech,they should stick with gaming controllers...
Quality: Features: Value:

Written by bonkers from Australia.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 78 made on Tuesday November 29, 2005 at 7:21 PM.
Strengths:Does everything I wanted in a universal remote. Replaced 7 remote units for my home entertainment system. Can even learn to operate the A/C.
Weaknesses:Setup can be a bit tricky. Activites sometimes doesn't complete its operations (not an issue - easy fixed). Didn't get much help from the Tech people at Harmony, slow response.
Review:After a whole week of playing around with my Harmony 659 and plenty of advice from others here (forum). Now finally, the remote does everything I need it to do, exactly the way I want it to do it. There were a few commands I thought 'no way it can do that', and sure enough - there was a way! I am currently working out how to operate the A/C with the H659. Amazing stuff!!

The setup process was very tricky but with the huge amount of help you can get from the forum here it was not an issue at all. Harmony didn't help much when I sent an email of a problem, this was because they only replied long after it was resolved by the forum here.

The size of the unit and button placement are excellent. I looked into the Sony models but decided against it due to the size of them.

Great product. I would recommend it - however, keep this site and its very helpful forum in mind during setup.
Quality: Features: Value:

Written by russ from mchenry, il..
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 77 made on Saturday November 12, 2005 at 7:50 AM.
Strengths:i love the electronics world and having my tv being just a monitor. This remote also lets my wife enjoy all the systems conected to the system with this remote.
Talk about easy to use. this takes the cake.
Weaknesses:difficult to make changes to the system when online loading info to the remote
Review:dont miss out. if your looking for a remote that is easy to use. this is it.
Quality: Features: Value:

Written by Stan Komor from NY.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 76 made on Saturday October 22, 2005 at 8:28 PM.
Strengths:Runs my entire home theatre-exactly what I was looking for in a remote.
Weaknesses:1.Struggled with the web based setup, but it got easier when I started to understand.
Review:Loving it so far. The ability to throw all my original remtes in the drawer is what I was looking for in a remote and found it with this one. My former remote couldn't handle the task but this does. I recomend it.
Quality: Features: Value:

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