I have a lot of personal experience with a whole home 4 bay Lutron Homework’s interactive system. A Crestron system that I orphaned ~12 years back and an MDF and 5 IDF that have lots of Cat6 and 62nm mm fiber.
But I’m not a pro so I didn’t post there.
I march to a different calliope. Here’s what I’m puttering with. To start with All the Marketing folks at Amazon swear in their advertising this will work! So here’s the spec and expectation.
Consolidated Entertainment Control Equipment: Amazon new FireTv Cube Amazon FireTv Cube IR Blaster Amazon 2020 Echo Device.
Control all Ent. Equip via Alexa Voice. TV 65” Hisense HDMI (2) <~~SIIG media Cvt~~>HDMI (1) Marantz NR1609 (working) Marantz HDMI (2) AppleTv Marantz HDMI (3) Oppo BluRay Marantz HDMI (4) Cox Cable Marantz HDMI (5) Google Chromecast Marantz HDMI (6) Security Cameras
Current problem. Fire Cube (truncated) Does have a field and a keypad to input the IR PROFILE of the Marantz AV Receiver. In equipment management you can select use a “receiver” and select the brand “Marantz” Marantz was no help email and phone call “we don’t have that information. I don’t know what you are talking about.”
The Cube is 50/50. The Cube remote is RF but it outputs IR to the other gear via the Blaster Cube. (1x1x1 cube) I have the Cube turning the TV on/off and turning the Marantz on/off. Marantz Volume up/down + mute. Mostly via Alexa. Presently I am up to my ears in guacamole and out of chips.
I’ll verify progress and post. I’m pretty amped about this configuration cuz life will be real good if I don’t have to stop listening to my vinyl and come downstairs to push buttons.
Made another knee jerk move. I'm S-canning Cox Contour cable TV. (Keeping Gig Internet) I signed up for DirecTV SAT. I go way way back with DirecTV so I know what I'm getting. My last was about 5 years back. My first more than 20yrs. I left Directv for Cox to get a bundled internet price. I live in So. Cal. so I've never had a signal/service problem with SAT but I have read a whole lot of horror stories before signing up.
It looks like this Genie box is tightly integrated with Alexa. For one commands are mentioned in the marketing material. Oh My Gosh! I remain an optimistic fool.
A little update… DIRECTV genie is kinda integrated with Alexa but it could be a lot better the new Marantz 1711 is working pretty well I can switch inputs between Apple TV fire TV and DIRECTV only some problems with it not going to home screens I have to figure out how that’s gonna work but the Project is moving along slowly. A lot of that is due to me. Note I had to purchase the Fire TV blaster box. Not to be confused with the tiny cube that comes with the fire TV Cube. this helps a lot with switching and volume up volume down. Presently it’s $20 so it’s not a wallet Buster. The most annoying thing at this point is Alexa wants to send everything to fire TV so if you have a problem with getting to direct Tv she’ll ask you if you want to send it to fire TV.
Yet Another Update. I think the heavy lifting is done. IMO. FireTV Cube is an excellent choice for A/V device control. Pro’s: Ok this will sound stupid… Inexpensive, surprisingly comprehensive, easy to implement, but it takes time (you will take many, many paths but you will know why you took them) I can switch the Marantz NR1711 to any input.*. It's a tad slow switching inputs. (Fire TV, AppleTV, DirecTV/Satallite) Content searches and channel changes are snappy. (“Alexa tune to Turner Classic Movies... Her response adds what is playing on TCM at that time!) That is solid.
Some gotchas. You can maneuver to individual programs (see above) but main screens like “Guide” “List” “Menu” aren’t happening (yet) *The Roku skill gives me a 403 in the Alexa app. Also I haven’t found a good DVD skill for my Oppo DVD player.
I really like the Input setup process. It has a voice acknowledge and test with the remote to make sure your selection works. A real no-brainer.
Right now theFireTV Cube is sitting atop the equipment cabinetin the equipment closet. Without any aux blaster whatsoever. And it works! Magically. DirecTV is setup for RF The Marantz NR1711 is not RF it's IR yet the Cube can make it dance. Maybe through HDMI? Me not know. Don't care. See Photo.
This setup has taken days yet as stated above it was kinda easy. When I ask Alexa to switch to DirecTV I have to say “Satellite” otherwise I get FireTV. When I’m there and I’m changing channels I tell Alexa “Tune to ESPN on DirecTV”. She pretty flexible and you can ask in quite a few different ways. She will respond “Now tuning to ESPN on DirecTV, now airing Sports Center”. Mostly I don't have to say "on DirecTV". I can say" Alexa tune to NBC"
The Alexa app is critical. You must do what I call “double thread” your device. That's Device (DirecTV) linked to (Echo) and (FireTV Cube).
What follow might not be accurate but it's close. Create your device “DirecTV” in FireTV Cube. Make sure it’s in the device list in the Alexa App. Create a DirecTV “Skill” in the Alexa app. Go to “more”. “Settings”. “TV & A/V” ok my memory is bad here…. The bar at the bottom “Create or Link Device”. Fill in the correct button (DirecTV Device). Link it to your Echo (Yes you gotta buy an Echo) then repeat and Link it to Fire TV Cube. You’ll get get it. On thing. The Alexa love creating superfluous devices. Like DirecTV’s that are “Type” Speakers”. Kill them. I don’t know why or how. It hasn’t bothered my configuration. Just make sure you don’t select one of these devices.
EDIT When I started, I thought I would need a set of IR codes for the Marantz. I searched the Web and called Marantz. Bubkus. Guess what. No codes required. It just worked. For me.
Thought I would relay a fix to a very annoying persistent problem I ran into. Perhaps Ya'll have seen this message or one like it.
"HDMI does not support this programs content protection try switching to component cables" Every channel
I had never seen this message until 2 days after DirecTV was installed. "Oh easy fix, Just cycle power and maybe reset the HDMI cable". Yup that did it. !0 days later it was back but it took quite a bit longer to fix. hmmm. Then it was Thursday thru Friday. On the phone with DirecTV....pulled a Joker. Called Marantz They said the message comes from the TV (Hisense) pulled a deuce. Called. Hisense...Joker again. I pulled the Marantz out and ran the DirectTV (genie) straight into the SIIG extenders. They are HDMI 2.0 and straight into the Hisense Bingo IT WORKED.
Ahhhh. Ha. The error message was telling me something as was this test. Interface/Cable. I went to my cable pile and commenced to rummaging. And there is was an HDMI cable that I thought might be Kryptonite. Had built-in Ferrite Chokes at each end. Hooked the Marantz back up and used the HDMI cable with the chokes to connect the Genie to the NR1711.
Instant success. Not a flicker. No nothing. Solid.
Sorry for the long story but this was a nasty glitch. I wanted to take the time and relate my journey to see if it helps somebody that's in the same muck hole.
Side Bar. When configuring the HiSense 65" LCD TV Under Picture there is a setting for HDMI 2.0. It's Grey'd Out. I told the HiSense I want it to work. He said it's not broken because I have a picture. WTF He wouldn't do anything. There's no supervisor around. NATCH. To Be Continued.
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