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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 8 of 23 for
the Home Theater Master MX-500 remote.
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Written by Brajesh from Burlington, NJ.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 108 made on Monday March 10, 2003 at 9:48 AM.
Strengths:Very easy to use
Very powerful
Controls everything
Enough macros
Favorite channels (even hi-def channels)
Weaknesses:No timers :(
Review:I've used many sub-$150 remotes in the last 5 years & the MX500 is the absolute best I've come across so far. It's well-built & laid out, easy to use, & controls everything (my seven components anyway). The pre-programmed code base could be a bit better (no codes worked for my Zenith 520 hi-def STB), but since this remote learns with ease, no problems teaching it. The only complain I have is it lacks timers (very important for me). For that, I'm still keeping my Sony VL1000 remote. Other than timers, this remote does eveything far better than that Sony. System-wide & device macros work wonderfully. Just a terrific remote all-around! I'm very happy with it.
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Written by John Hernandez from San Antonio, Texas - USA!.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 107 made on Saturday March 8, 2003 at 11:23 PM.
Strengths:Feel, Learning and Backlight is really nice.
Review:My Dog chewed up my remote. So Here I was looking to replace my Big screens TV Remote so I looked to the internet for some guidence. I didn't want to waste much money and thought it would be nice to now replace all 5 of my remotes for my home Theater System. I found this site - and stumbles upon my new friend - the MX-500. I read all the reviews left from everyone, and it impressed me a device that could do everything everyone says so easily. I went to and ordered mine - it arrived 4 days later, I couldn't wait. Well I opened the box and this baby looked really cool - popped in the batteries and started to play. I was really concerned this thing couldn't handle my Sony Amp Features - That couldn't be further from the truth. This thing handled everything I threw at it. Every little button, every little feature for all my remotes worked flawlessly. Thanks to everyone that left there opinion and reviews on this remote I am now the proud owner of a one remote home :). If your reading this belive every word of every review this remote ROCKS! And I have never bought a peice of equipment that I have been so impressed with. Now I'm going out and getting some X-10 to add to my kick ass remote.

Thanks! And great product Home Theater...
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Written by Chris Duncan from Toronto, CA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 106 made on Thursday March 6, 2003 at 11:00 PM.
Strengths:Easy config, well built, looks great, works with everything.
Weaknesses:Takes some time to clear codes and display names for devices, as most of these "general" settings do not work for all.
Review:There are many excellent reviews on this product (no need to repeat them), I am in agreement that this is the best remote I have ever owned and certainly does everything more expensive remotes can do!

I have it configured to control my two SAT's, VCR, XBOX, DVD, stereo, TV, my lights (IR), and even my difficult to set up RCA receiver RT2300. This receiver requires hitting the power button twice, which this remote was able to handle with some additional configuration. (I had to learn the code from the original remote, but had to hide the first code and have the MX-500 learn the second press of the power button - properly timed).

This is an incredible device. Takes about 1/2 hour to learn how to use (small simply manual), and a few hours to set up as required. This includes labelling of all devices. This remote could not be made any easier for those not used to using complex config's (wife, guests, etc).

I was not able to find the remote in Canada. Reviews on this site, suggest using, I certainly back these. They are excellent. I ordered the product on a Saturday, received notice of the order right away, was given a tracking number and had the product delivered eight days later. All this for an excellent price.

I am very anal about configs and found that this remote can be set up completely - as desired. Simply put - this is "The Remote"!
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Written by Tim Leslie from Fort Worth,TX.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 105 made on Thursday March 6, 2003 at 3:07 PM.
Strengths:Normal sized - barely bigger than my cable remote. Simple & easy to use. Awesome backlight. Able to re-label buttons. Easy to program. Wife and family friendly.
Weaknesses:Only thing I can think of is that it doesn't have the WOW factor of the touchscreens, in terms of appearance.
Review:But - the appearance weakness I described is more than made up for by the fact that this thing simply WORKS, and works well. I bought an RCA touchscreen last week, RCU1000B. It looked pretty - but just plain wouldn't learn one command on one remote that I have, and you couldn't re-label the buttons at all. I had buttons on remotes that I just couldn't find anything even close to, in the limited choices of button labels on that remote. Sorry for delving into my review of THAT remote - but it's pertinent to my review of this remote, in that the problems I had on that one, were resolved with this remote. I bought this one based upon the reviews and ratings on this site, and couldn't be happier. The button that couldn't be learned on that remote was easily learned on this one. I have incorporated 5 remotes into this one so far; I cheated and used the built-in codes for each one, then went back and "learned" unique commands that were missing for each, putting those up on top, where I could label the button just how I wanted (within the 5 character limitation), and never had any trouble learning any commands from any remote. I love how I can invoke the macro for switching everything for watching a DVD on the DVD device button itself - talk about easy to remember! (For the uninitiated - if you briefly press the DVD button, for example, it changes the controls for the remote for that device; but if you also assign a macro to that same button, as I did, then when you press and hold that DVD button, it will invoke the macro, which in my case switches my TV to another input, switches my Amplifier to another input, turns the DVD player on, and opens the DVD tray.) And the Favorites feature is way too cool - I can never remember what channel number corresponds to what name, and now I never will, because I don't have to - I just press the button for HDNet, and I'm there! This site, and the MX-500 rock!
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Written by evatar from Los Angeles, CA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 104 made on Sunday March 2, 2003 at 6:06 PM.
Strengths:Hard Buttons. Turbo charged emitters. Easy to program, super easy to use. Customizable page keys. Punch Through function is awesome.
Weaknesses:There should be a better way to clear all the buttons out of the box than hand entering AUX155 over and over. You have to juggle the remote in your hand to use anything below the joystick. The joystick enter command is a little too firm.
Review:After buying our first ever home theater sound system, we reached critical mass with eight remote controls on the coffee table. My wife and I were baffled over which remote was the correct one to use for each component and mode desired and in which order to use them. Blah, blah, blah... If you're reading this you're probably already there. So for the first time I found myself considering a universal remote. After a lot of internet reviews, especially here at, I ordered the MX-500 from (They're great. I recommend them.) When it arrived I prepared myself for a couple days of programming, as mentioned by a few posters here. Except... it didn't take a couple of days to program the MX-500. In fact, after clearing the remote of its pre-programmed codes--a solid half hour, the longest part of the job (They’re not kidding when they say it’s got up to 530 commands)--I pretty much had all the major codes learned from my old remotes in another half hour. Days later, after getting used to it and figuring out where I really wanted certain things, I reprogrammed a few buttons, fine-tuned a few macros and it's been running like a dream for the last three weeks. Unlike others here, I didn't find the manual that bad, and coupled with the step-by-step instructions online at I didn't have any confusion programming the remote. Being able to hand label each page button allows you to really personalize the remote. BTW when I fine-tuned button placements I used the excel spreadsheet available here, as well as the MX-Editor for the MX-700 at the Home Theater Master Website; It doesn’t allow you to program the remote from your PC but you can use the layout functions to figure out where you want your codes to go. Very handy. I read complaints about discrete codes, but I learned all my codes from the original remotes and didn't have a problem at all. BTW whoever mentioned that using fresh batteries in your old remote during learning modes was dead right; it makes a HUGE difference.

What more can I say? When I was reading these reviews I saw where people had described it with "pride of ownership" and "high wife acceptance factor," and I feel as strongly. Not only does my wife love using it as well, she even commented that it was the first electronic device I'd bought that she hadn't heard me swearing at while I was getting it setup. Really, it is that great a piece of equipment. While it looks chunky, it actually feels pretty good in our hands. The LCD is clear and the backlight is very good. The Punch Through function—where, for example, no matter what component I’m commanding, the audio control will automatically adjust only the home theater volume--is fantastic. And yes, I know that sounds dumb. But I cannot communicate to you how utterly frustrated and stupid the both of us felt when we had eight remotes lying around; we were accidentally pushing the wrong button constantly. With this remote we no longer feel intimidated by our home theater system. And that, my friend, is worth each and every penny we spent on the MX-500.

Some minor quibbles: I've found some macro functions only let you enter a function once--i.e. To change video modes on my television to watch component out on my DVD player, I have to press a button 3 times to cycle through Video modes 1 thru 4--It won't let me do this. However, I could just be doing it wrong. Everything below the joystick is just a little hard to access with your thumb; although I have all my favorite channels programmed so I don't use them that much. Oh, and we've found that once you've programmed the System Power and System Off macros, you really need to keep pointing the remote at the telly until the entire sequence completes. Otherwise we've found it will sometimes miss the last one or two components. It's surprising given that the emitters are so strong that we frequently don't even point the thing in the direction of our audiovisual components. I mean, the thing will change channels underneath a blanket. Seriously.

Like I said, minor, minor criticisms. I love this thing. All of our other remotes are in a box under the television and we haven't gone back to them once since the MX-500 arrived. Now I look like an idiot trying to convince other people to buy one of these things, and to tell you the truth, I kind of felt like one for coughing up $112 for a television remote. But on the bright side I don’t feel like dumb ass whenever I try to use my home theater anymore. Thanks to everybody at who wrote and reviewed this remote. It’s a terrific piece of equipment.
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Written by William Cox from Arlington, TX..
The reviewer has used this remote control for 3-6 months.
Review 103 made on Friday February 28, 2003 at 8:51 PM.
Strengths:Hard buttons where you need them and enough memory to satisfy your needs. Very easy to program and it doesn't feel like a cheap remote. I've dropped the thing a couple of dozen times and its still going strong.
Weaknesses:None for me.
Review:It is the best remote I've ever owned and I've had the over rated Philips Pronto TSU2000. If you're into touchscreen remotes, fine, but I just like the feel of a solid hard buttoned remote. You can't beat the MX-500 for the money.
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Written by Derek S from michigan.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 102 made on Thursday February 27, 2003 at 3:55 PM.
Review:I love my remote so much. It is so pretty and works so well. I had about 6 remotes and now have everything on my one. I had a choice between this and the harmony zapper, I chose this one and I think I made the right choice! Highly suggested.
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