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Logitech Harmony 1000 Review
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Slim, sleek, and squarish.
Logitech, who have been known in the past to create rather extravagant packaging for special products, have done a wonderful job embellishing the box for the Harmony 1000. A thick tri-hinged cardboard outer cover (with a magnetic latch, large 3D plastic insert, plus embossing and spot varnish effects), opens to reveal a clear window through which the actual remote control can be seen. To get in the box, break two plastic security stickers on the edges and another flap lifts to uncover an easily removable plastic tray holding the remote and docking station. Beneath that is another plastic tray with the software, battery, power supply and USB cable. It’s both fancy and convenient.

As the first touchscreen remote from the Harmony development team, I had no preconceptions as to how the 1000 would be designed. Naturally with years of successful “stick” remotes under their belts they knew what was needed for hard button designs, but would their first premium touchscreen be equally as refined?

The Harmony 1000 features a landscape-oriented LCD display offset in the top left corner of the case, with an assortment of hard buttons along the right side. The case measures 5.5” wide, 4.1” high and a mere 0.72” thick (14.0cm by 10.4cm by 1.8cm). Rather thin for a touchscreen? You bet – but I’m not done with the impressive numbers yet. The center rear of the case has been ergonomically sculpted inwards to provide finger holds on the left and right sides, resulting in this sculpted portion measuring an unprecedented 0.5” (1.3cm) thick. Now that’s thin!

Some users may tend to favor bulkier remote designs where a solid grip can be maintained even during a category 5 hurricane, but as for me I’ve always favored the thinner models with no space wasted. And there certainly isn’t any unused space here – the Harmony 1000 is by far the most compact remote I’ve ever seen. Those two ergonomic finger holds I mentioned earlier are formed around the rechargeable battery on one side and what must be the main circuit board on the other. They’ve whittled the case down to the absolute last millimeter. The Harmony 1000 is also lightweight, weighing only 6.8 ounces (190 grams) with the user-replaceable lithium ion battery installed.

Fit and finish.
The front of the Harmony 1000 is finished in brushed aluminum, with a black piano gloss recessed bezel surrounding the LCD display. The rear of the remote is plastic, painted in the “grippy” black paint that I like so much. The rectangular case sports softly curved corners and edges; there’s absolutely nothing sharp to catch your fingers on. The finish of the remote is excellent, with the join between the metallic top cover and the plastic back nearly perfect.

On the bottom edge of the case are two large metal contacts for use with the docking station, plus a small plastic window in the lower left corner concealing an infrared learning eye. The two infrared emitters are located directly opposite the learning eye, behind a larger plastic shield on the front of the remote. The industry standard mini USB port has been placed in the top left, and Logitech has even included a cellphone-style rubber cover to keep out finger grunge and other assorted crumbs. On the back of the remote are small slots to mark the speaker location; the opposite side is occupied by a large compartment for the user-replaceable battery. The battery cover isn’t especially easy to remove and requires significant pressure and dexterity to unlatch – which is just as well since it should technically only have to be opened once or twice during the lifespan of the remote. (Unless it needs to be rebooted for some reason, since there’s no reset button.)

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