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User reviews for the Home Theater Master MX-500 from Universal Remote Control Inc.
Home Theater Master MX-500
RatingsReviewsMSRP (USD)
Average: 4.80/5.00
Median: 5.00/5.00
The MX-500 is a 10-device all-buttoned remote control with an LCD screen for custom labels on 10 adjacent buttons. It includes full infrared learning capabilities, a preprogrammed database, 5-way joystick, macros and more.
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Now viewing user reviews page 15 of 23 for
the Home Theater Master MX-500 remote.
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Written by D Wenk from Milford Ohio.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 59 made on Monday May 20, 2002 at 4:38 PM.
Strengths:Easy to setup did everything I wanted it to do.
Weaknesses:Did not have codes form my cabel box or audio system. But easy to learn the commands.
Review:Easy to set up and supported everything I needed it to do at a great price ($122 over the internet). I did not think I would use the FAV chanels stuff but I set it up and use it now all the time.I looked at more expensive Sony products that are LCD only - the Sony remotes had problems with my Yamaha audi system in macro mode. Also I realy like the mix of keys and LCD over an LCD only remote.
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Written by T. James from Santa Monica, CA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 58 made on Monday May 13, 2002 at 7:27 PM.
Strengths:Super easy, logical, flexible programming
Nicely designed...all the right keys
Very high quality
Weaknesses:Lack of discrete codes
Not enough macros
Review:This is a great remote for the price (I paid $116). The engineering is excellent and in contrast to others' reviews, my thumbpad works great. I must have the latest iteration. Programming was super simple and to make changes or additions, I don't need to consult the manual because it is so intuitive. Perfection would be a computer interface and a database of discrete codes, but that hurdle can be overcome with the purchase of a Cinema 7 w/JP1 cable. Otherwise, this is an excellent product--by far the best for the price.
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Written by canalratz from NC.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 57 made on Sunday May 12, 2002 at 10:45 PM.
Strengths:Great Features
Price -$124.00
Every button is programmable
Solved all my remote problems
Weaknesses:Programming was finicky
Still have not gotten it to learn my Sony Sound Fields
Review:I recently purchased this remote and love it!! It has completely solved all my remote problems by eliminating 7 remotes down to one. The only problems I have found was during programming. Every once an a while, it seemed to lose a key that I had previously programmed. But, I just reprogrammed it and had no more problems. The only thing I have not been able to get the MX500 to learn is my Sony DE945 Sound Field codes from the RM LJ304 remote. But from what I have read on the forums, it is a Sony problem, not a MX500 problem.

I recommend a strong buy!!

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Written by Commizzar from Chesapeake VA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 3-6 months.
Review 56 made on Friday May 10, 2002 at 8:39 AM.
Strengths:UBER User Friendly, Plenty of buttons, more than enough macro's, controls my X-box DVD player....
Weaknesses:Buttons are kind of slick I have the new jewell button version
Review:I would suggest that anybody in the market for a universal remote snatch this one up. The price is dropping almost daily. I got mine for 146.00 Retail at a local home theater store. This replace a Phillips Neo I purchased for 200.00 from best buy and took back next day it was terrible....
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Written by jonro from NJ, USA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 55 made on Friday March 29, 2002 at 1:38 PM.
Strengths:Easy programming
Both learning and program codes
Excellent backlighting
Hard keys with editable labels
Device buttons can contain learned keys AND macros
Excellent mix of "hard" and "soft" keys
Weaknesses:Not enough device macros (for my taste)
There should be an easier way than AUX 155 to clear devices
3 pages of LCD functions per device would be helpful in some cases
Center selector in joystick is a little stiff
How much trouble would it have been to include a clock/timer on the display?
Review:I had been using the Home Theater Master SL-8000 that shipped as an OEM remote control with my Sherwood Newcastle receiver. It was OK, but I had to send it in to be reprogrammed every time I bought a new component that wasn't in its library. Plus, the labels often had nothing to do with the function of the buttons. I wanted to replace it with something flexible, but didn't want to spend $500+ for a remote. Then, a friend recommended the MX-500.

I'm very happy with this remote. My personal preference is for hard keys. I like the tactile feedback and don't have to look at them to use functions like play and pause. the MX-500 gives you a standard complement of labeled buttons and then gives you 20 additional buttons per device that you can label yourself.

The MX-500 also makes it easy to switch inputs without having to make selections from multiple devices. The function button can be a learned button (i.e., that switches the receiver to DVD) and can also contain a macro (that you activate by pressing the key for 1 second). It can also do nothing at all except to display the functions for that device.

Nearly any key can be a learned key, so it is easy to customize a remote's functions exactly the way you want it. I have found that the MK-500 can be setup to be much more intuitive than the remote that ships with a device.

Programmiong is very easy. Once you are in setup mode, you can "learn" or edit a button, one after the other, and obscure button combinations aren't required.

There are only 5 macro buttons (that aren't device specific) and a single device-specific button for each type of device. There are some "tricks" to increase that number, but it would have been nice if Universal Remote allowed us to apply macros to every "soft" button.

Overall, I'm very pleased with the build quality, feel of the keys, layout, backlighting, flexibility and programming ease of this remote. It is better than anything I've seen at close to this price (available for much less than retail at several Internet stores),
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Written by Jantzen from Pittsburgh, PA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 54 made on Monday March 11, 2002 at 1:54 PM.
Strengths:Price (at least what it can be had for online).
Build quality is top notch.
Backlighting is excellent.
Easy to program.
Universal Remote Control actually listen to and take care of their customers.
Weaknesses:No time/date on LCD.
Would be nice record macro to any button (I know MX-700)
A faster way to clear the remote would be nice - instead of AUX 155'ing and editing all labels.
Support of discrete codes would be nice (other than learing from another $16 remote that can do this).
Review:Well I received my MX-500 on 3/7 and spent a good 4 hours setting up that evening/night. I had already laid out what I thought I wanted to do using the Excel spreadsheet at this site and pretty much got everything but the favorite channels set up (saved that for the morning). I also had an old OFA Cinema 6 around that I learned a bunch of discrete codes to beforehand.

I did find the manual a little lacking - but I'm not too into reading them anyway so it was no big deal for me. I mainly used samples from posts on the forum here that I had jotted down. Actually, I thought it was easier to follow the on-screen steps instead of the manual...

So programming was pretty straightforward - I did end up re-arranging some buttons in my original LCD layout as I learned that the right hand column is a lot easier to get to than the left - so I moved all my most accessed buttons there. I had laid them out on the bottom originally. I also decided to move a lot of +/- buttons (like TUNE+/TUNE-) above and below each other instead of across from each other.

The worst part was clearing out everything with the AUX 155 - as I was doing this I thought it would have been great if RRDEALS (where I ordered) would have offer an option to send the remote already cleared out. Since cloning only takes a minute or so, that would have be sweet. They could keep one "AUX 155'ed" remote around and charge an extra $2 for the cloning - I know I would of done it. Maybe they would of done this if I had asked. It did give me time to become familiar with the remote - so it was not that horrible.

The only problem I had was after I had the remote set up I decided to see what would happen on M3 macro since I only used M1 and M2... well the whole remote locked up on me!!! The transmit signal lit up and stayed on. No buttons worked at all. So I removed the batteries and popped them back in. All was fine again - needless to say I quickly cleared out the M3 macro!!! I was shocked that anything would be there by default. I didn't think I put anything there...

The thing I was most impressed with was the feel and build quality of this remote. Also, the overall ergonomics of the remote. Every buttton feels solid - even the new (GS2) thumpad. The backlighting is superb and it feels perfect in my hand. The most surprising thing is that I found myself using it in my left and right hands - I usual only use the right - but the feel of this remote is so good I can use it either way!

The only gripe I have is minor - put a damn clock on the LCD! Yes, I have other ways to get the time but my old cheap-ass remote had this. Besides this the ability to create a macro on any button would of been nice in a few instances (I know the MX-700 will have this). But that's about it - overall it surpassed my expectations in every way.

Finally, a big thank you to everone who posts here as the amount of information I learned from reading old posts, etc. was invaluable!
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Written by Ron Williams from Lake Tahoe,Ca..
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 53 made on Monday March 11, 2002 at 11:51 AM.
Strengths:This remote is amazing. I customized it to fit my home theatre system. Programming is a breeze. Macros are vary usefull and easily done.
Weaknesses:Static design when sitting on table. The footprint seems unstable, a tendancy to rock back and forth. Hardly a concern though.
Review:When I was researching a universal remote this product stood out out. The combination of LCD and hard buttons made the choice easy. It took about 12-15 hrs of programming over the course of two weeks or so to complete but well worth it. My wife gave me the look when I brought it home but now it is the only one she uses. Wifey approved. I have macros to turn entire system on/off. Switch to VHS, switch to DVD, and back to TV/DBS. COOL!..I did run ito a sony AV problem programming VID 1, VID 2, and TV/DBS but solved by borrowing a friends newer sony remote for learning the codes. The background light is really nice at night. $118 from or $180 at good guys.
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