The RM-V310 measures 2.19” (5.6cm) wide at the bottom, tapering ever-so-slightly to 2.07” (5.3cm) in width at the top. Its length is 8.63” (22.0cm), the same as the RM-VL600 which is the longest from the company so far. The remote is slender, measuring 1.09” thick at the bottom (2.7cm) and slimming down to 0.76” at the top (1.5cm). The RM-V310’s weight, at 5.6 ounces (157 grams) with batteries or 3.9 ounces (106 grams) without, is about half an ounce heavier than the RM-V402. The balance point is directly under the [Cursor Up] key.
The front of the remote features a single exposed IR emitter, while a large compartment on the back holds two AA batteries. It's nice to see Sony sticking with standard AA batteries for their remotes, since they last so much longer than AAA versions. The compartment lid allows only a tiny amount of movement when closed and doesn't require undue force to open. Also on the back of the remote, just above the battery lid, is a small horizontal finger groove placed directly behind the middle of the [Volume] and [Channel] toggles. Although the groove is in a comfortable spot, it's not as pronounced as the one on the RM-V402 and serves little ergonomic purpose.
Indeed, the RM-V310's case design isn't nearly as form-fitting as the sculpted RM-V402, and feels bulkier due to the boxier, more rectangular contours. With sharper edges, a flat top and less ideal places to put your fingertips on the back, I ended up preferring the ergonomics of the original model.
The top half of the case is finished in metallic silver paint, with regular black plastic on the bottom. All keys are made of soft rubber, with the majority being either blue rubber with white printing or white rubber with black printing. Additional color touches include a bright green [Power] button and a black [Set] button, making the whole look more vibrant and colorful than the RM-VL600.
Everything in its place.
Although this remote shares the same basic keypad layout as the RM-VL600, which in turn is nearly identical to the RM-V710, the new layout for the RM-V310 represents a more significant upgrade over the former RM-V402 with a total of 47 buttons - 4 more than before.
Beginning at the top of the remote on the left side is a tiny [Set] button plus a wide green [Power] key on the right edge. Immediately below are seven component selection buttons in two rows labeled [TV], [DVD], [SAT], [CBL], [VCR], [CD] and [AMP]. In the far left position of the top row of these device keys is a rather strangely placed [TV/Video] button. I gather that Sony did not want the offset device button layout as seen on the RM-V402, and instead settled on an even two rows of eight keys. However this placement gives the [TV/Video] button an importance level that it doesn't normally have, and also makes it especially easy to press accidentally. On the other hand, since the RM-V310 doesn't have any automatic component switching macros you're likely to be hitting [TV/Video] a whole lot, so perhaps this is appropriate after all.