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Pre-CEDIA Preview
New products from Logitech and URC, plus a new Pronto PCF utility
Posted by Daniel Tonks on September 5, 2005 at 1:00 AM
RC News Story
This week I’m off to the 2005 CEDIA Expo in Indianapolis, Indiana, but before I go I’d thought I’d post some early information that has leaked out on new products that will be seen at the show.

Logitech Harmony 520
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Logitech Harmony 520
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First up is the new Logitech Harmony 890 – the RF version of the Harmony that you’ve all been waiting for. The 890, which will retail for $399.99 USD (60% more than the current 880), includes a new RF/IR transceiver with four wired IR emitter jacks that will allow you to operate the remote from another room, or to control equipment located in a cabinet or just out of the line of sight. The 890 also includes a color LCD screen, rechargeable lithium ion battery and station, full backlighting and USB communications, and features control of up to 15 devices along with the Harmony’s Smart State Technology. This will be the first model specifically targeted towards Custom Installers, which may explain the $150 price jump...

Logitech Harmony 520
Click to Enlarge
Logitech Harmony 520
Click to Enlarge

At the other end of the pricing scale is the new Harmony 520, which will sell for just $99.99 USD. This model features a fully backlit LCD screen and buttons, menu joystick, USB communications, learning capability, “Help” button, 4 buttons with changable labels, and comes wrapped up in snazzy new styling. Seems like a great value at first glance!

Over at Universal Remote Control Inc. I’ll be looking for five new models: The TX-1000, MX-900, KP-100, MRF-500 and a mysterious remote known only as the R7. The TX-1000 is a larger touchscreen remote, possibly a successor (in at least concept) to the MX-1000. The MX-900 is similar in design to the MX-950 but with a single line screen, while the KP-100 is a 2-way wall-mounted keypad. The MRF-500 is a new advanced RF basestation featuring video and current sensing for all those devices that don’t support discrete codes. And as for the R7... we’ll see if that’s even at the show!

The New Pronto NG Range Finally, Philips is expected to have at least three new remote products, the black and white TSU3500, full color TSU7500 and new RF extender RFX6500. Exact details as to what’s new are unknown. Of course we’ll also be keeping an eye out for new remote products from Sony, Marantz, RTI, UEI and others.

And of course say tuned for our video report in HDTV afterwards!

New file area updates...
Uploading files to Remote Central just got easier! I’ve recently revamped the file upload page with a new program that dynamically modifies the submission form, so there should be no confusion as to what kind of information is preferred to expedite your file upload. Got a remote control related file that other members of the community could benefit from? Access the new form here!

In addition, I’m pleased to report that all queued file uploads have been processed are now available in the file area.

New PCF utility!
Philips and Marantz owners - irritated by “this file type cannot be loaded by this editor” errors? Tired of manually editing PCF comment sections just to get a Pronto NG PCF to load in Marantz PCF Switcher to the rescue!

This micro drag-and-drop utility is designed to automatically edit a PNG’s comment section so that any PCF editing software can open any type of PCF, for example load a ProntoProEdit NG file in Marantz 9. The program will also make a minor change to the XML file so that the RC5400’s older package will load objects in the correct positions.

Download PCF Switcher here!

Finally, I’ve updated my TSU7000 PCF with a new version containing a few additions requested by users. Also, due to the difficulty some users are having editing several of the PNG files (which had been given a run through PPENG’s downconversion routine to make the web download smaller), this version of the file now features the original 24-bit images. More information here.

Download my PCF here!

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