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Snapstream Firefly PC Remote Control Review
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The Firefly includes a rather substantial count of 48 hard buttons, 7 more than even the stock MCE remote. Beginning at the top are two large keys for [Maximize/Minimize] and [Close] functions. Directly below this is a rather cramped but nonetheless usable numeric keypad, with [Back] and [Enter] keys on either side of the [0] button. Next is a pair of wedge-shaped [Volume] and [Channel] toggles, with [Mute] and a large colorful white [Firefly] button positioned between. This is followed by a roomy 5-way menu cursor control, flanked on the outer corners by [Info], [Option], [Menu] and [Exit] keys. Secondary labels for those four buttons indicate [Back], [Forward], [Right Click] and [Left Click] functionality.

SnapStream Firefly PC Remote Control
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Beneath the cursor section is the transport control cluster, including two dedicated [Chapter Skip] keys and a [Record] button. Finally, situated at the bottom of the remote, are a series of utility buttons with shortcuts to [Music], [Photos], [DVD], [TV] and [Video] activities, an on-screen [Help] display, a [Mouse] mode toggle, plus four multipurpose buttons labeled [A] through [D] intended for other unlabelled functions. Being RF there’s no infrared emitter visible on the front of the Firefly, and the only other distinctive physical feature is a dim red LED at the top to indicate activity.

Although at first glance the keypad’s construction might seem uninspired, SnapStream has integrated a surprising number of interesting details into its construction. Some keys feature 3D embossed logos, such as the [Volume] toggle and four directions, while others including [Maximize], [Close] and the transport cluster, utilize an unusual reverse embossing technique (although this does not serve any tactile double-duty). Labels are printed in black text on the body of the remote, or silkscreened in white, red and two shades of grey on the rubber keypad. The brightly colored [Firefly] button uses four colors in of itself.

Despite its light weight the Firefly remote is surprisingly sturdy, with very little lateral twisting possible. The overall quality of the case’s molding is acceptable, although the join between the two halves has certain sections that can feel a bit sharp if probed, and there were a few minor handling issues such as small scrapes in the paint. The remote is well balanced, with the center point located just slightly lower than halfway, around the [Menu] and [Exit] keys.

SnapStream Firefly PC Remote Control
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The button layout is smart and logical, with prominence given to the volume/channel, menu and transport sections. The positioning of the activity keys in the bottom half of the remote is a departure from most remote control conventions, but works particularly well in this situation by keeping those infrequently used functions from occupying positions better suited to more important commands. Thanks to the ergonomic sculpting this also results in the menu controls falling naturally under thumb whenever the remote is held.

While the keypad is densely packed with buttons, the spacing between most keys is more than adequate. The only buttons that felt a little awkward to use were the [Fast Forward] and [Rewind] keys, which are wedged between other transport functions, and the 5 small activity buttons all lined up in a single horizontal row. The Firefly has no backlight or glow-in-the-dark capabilities, so thankfully most keys are easy to distinguish by feel alone. The only exceptions were the numerical keypad, which has no tactile bump to indicate the [5], and the transport cluster which is a little too crowded with square-corned flat-topped buttons to provide adequate tactile separation.

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