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User reviews for the URC-200 "Automater" & RF-20 from Universal Remote Control Inc.
URC-200 "Automater" & RF-20
RatingsReviewsMSRP (USD)
Average: 4.18/5.00
Median: 4.33/5.00
15$150 / $120
The URC-200 is a 10-device learning and preprogrammed remote control that features numerous macros, a large LCD screen with customizable names for 5 hard buttons, favorite channel macros, 5-way menu controls and an optional RF extender.
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the URC-200 "Automater" & RF-20 remote.
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Written by its837 from los angeles.
The reviewer has used this remote control for under 1 month.
Review 15 made on Saturday January 13, 2007 at 12:22 AM.
Review:i was nervouse cause a bunch of user reviews said it sucked at learning

i had no problem
it learned over 40 commands all in a row from multiple remotes with no problem
and only 2 fails

works great i am very happy with it

... so far
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Written by griz_fan from Meridian, ID USA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 3-6 months.
Review 14 made on Tuesday November 28, 2006 at 11:13 PM.
Also owned:OneForAll 8820
Strengths:Very well built
Strong backlighting
Incredibly flexible
Great button feel
Very powerful learning and macro abilities
Weaknesses:Very weak built in code database
Difficult to change default device types on LCD
Missing "transport" keys (no record, chapter skip forward or back buttons)
Very bad at learning from other remotes
Macros seem to get jumbled after time
Review:There is a lot to like about this remote, but after having lived with it for a few months, I've noticed a few issues that have dimmed my initial enthusiasm. Generally speaking, the lack of built in device codes can easily be overcome through learning. The missing transport keys would have made DVR operations a lot easier, but I manage quite will with using soft keys for the missing stuff. Unstable macros has caused a lot of problems, though. For the first few months, no problems, but in the last few weeks, one of my macros (which switches everything over to satellite viewing) has decided to add a couple of extra steps (sending a signal for number 1 to the TV, causing the TV to switch from input 3 back to integrated tuner). My power on/off Macros have become increasingly flakey, too.
To compound the problem, this remote really struggles to learn certain commands, especially for my Pioneer AV receiver. Even with using a OneForAll as a "middleman", most attempts to teach functions to the URC-200 only succeed after 20 or 30 attempts. I can't begin to describe the frustration this can cause. Finally, URC support is not good at all. They have an email support contact form on their website, but no one ever responds to these emails.

I really wish I could rate this remote higher. Generally, the quality is quite good, it has a strong feature set, and the price is right. But, It just doesn't work as well as it should, and the support just isn't there. Unless you are willing to spend many hours of your time trying to figure this out on your own, I would have to reccomend you look elsewhere.
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Written by Dukealexan from Yonkers, NY.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 13 made on Thursday March 2, 2006 at 4:19 PM.
Strengths:Smooth hard buttons, deduced size, features.
Weaknesses:Not just this remote but I haven't found a remote yet that has a key labled with a dash "-" to match my HDTV. This button is needed to enter in a digital QAM channel eg: 110-8.
Review:This will be a review in progress, so far so good. I'm coming from a RC 2000MKII and the automator is much smaller in size and weight but more powerfull. I've figured out a way to get 11 devices. There are 5 device buttons per page and 2 pages = 10 devices but if you do not select a device you can learn the main unselect hard buttons. I'm only using 6 devices and I use the remaining 5 as functions. Lable a button WDVD (watch dvd) and teach it a mix of the TV, DVD and Receiver buttons and add in some macro and you have a funtion based remote.
I really can't blame the Automator but I had great dificulty teaching it the source buttons for my BK317, they are double tap buttons and the original remote doesn't transmit the signal long enough. I had to use the preprogram feature to set the automator for the bk317 code 096. Then teach my RC 2000mkII the source buttons from the automator then reteach the automator from the RC 2000mkII. It worked for all the sources but one the "SAT" source, it's not in the preprogram, which is werd. I had to set it up as a fav on the bk and use a macro for that button.
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Written by jrfuda from San Antonio, TX.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 12 made on Wednesday February 22, 2006 at 12:36 PM.
Strengths:Easy to program
Easy to learn IR
Easy to edit labels
Good "feel" and weight
Looks nice
Similair layout to my MX700, so no re-learning layout
Excellet directional arrows and selct button feel and control
Weaknesses:Lack of PC programability
Review:I've been an MX700 owner for over 3 years and wanted another remote to complement the MX700 - as a second remote to use from the kitchen/dining room from where all of the living room's components are viewable/listenable. I was torn amon the URC-200, URC-300, MX-500, and another MX-700.

- I ruled-out the URC-300 becuase I do not like touch screen remotes.
- I ruled-out another MX-700 becuase it was nearly twice the cost of the URC-200 and MX-500
- I ruled-out the MX-500 becuase it's button layout did not quite match the layout of the MX-700 and I did not want to have to reprogram my feel and click (and have to remember if I was using the 500 or 700 each time)
- I decided on the URC-200 becuase of its similarities to the MX-700. The only differences are
--1. Lack of PC programabillity
--2. Only 5 labeled buttons per screen and 10 devices vs 20

The lack of PC programability was made-up for by the ease of programing the URC-200. All-in-all it took me about 30% longer to fully program 9 devices (using both preprogrammed and learning) than it would have to do the same on my MX-700 using MX editor. Now, this ease of programming was facilitated by having the MX-700 handy to send discretes from, and to ensure a buton-for-button matchup from one remote to the next.

Here's how I did it:
1. I relabled each device in to the same order as I have them on my MX-700.
2. I then setup each device with preprogramed codes.
3. I then edited the button labels on each device to match the MX-700 (remapping a bit, of course, since the 200 shows 5 per page and the 700 shows 10).
4. I then learned directly from the MX-700 to the URC-200's like-labled keys. I also learned over a few of the non-custom labeled keys that did not function exactly as I wanted them to (I actually learned the MX700's punch throughs to the URC-200 rather than using the URC-200's punch through options).

This entire operation took about 45 minutes, including me putting batteries in the remote and reading the manual. I still have to porgram about 10 macros into the remote, so that may add another 10 minutes.

The remote controlled all of my components very well. I actually like the seperate directional arrow pad and select button better versus the MX-700's "joypad" that had all four directions and the select button consolidated. The URC-200's is much easier to control.

This remote is going to replace a Dish Network remote that was used from the kitchen. I got tired of having to go into the livig room to use the 700 when I needed a command the Dish remote couldn't handle. The Dish remote shall spend it's golden years in a drawer :)
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Written by TeepS from CA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 11 made on Wednesday December 21, 2005 at 9:34 AM.
Strengths:All observed by others
Weaknesses:Will not "Learn" IR keyboard commands.... :-(
Review:I was hoping this would be the answer to my remote control blues but alas it is not. The URC 200 would not learn IR commands from my computer keyboard, needed to operate my Home Theater Computer. Turn it on/off, start programs, etc...
So, I did not get past IR keyboard Learn failure.
The guy is going back to Circuit City
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Written by Ronfl from Tampa Bay, FL.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 3-6 months.
Review 10 made on Monday June 20, 2005 at 11:28 AM.
Strengths:Good Solid Remote.
Easy to Use.
Great IR range.
Small form factor.
Excellent hard button layout.
Weaknesses:No USB/PC interface
Review:I am a diehard MX-500 user, still have my old one but wanted to upgrade to a newer unit. I saw the Unifier a.k.a. MX-350 Osiris and thought I would give it a try. I like the smaller footprint (than the MX-500/700/800, etc.) and silver color!

I am pleased to say that URC/Home Theater Master has maintained their quality standards and listen to users about want they want & need out of a universal remote. This is a great remote, especially for TiVo users. Excellent remote for those that prefer frequently used functions as a hard button rather than a “soft” key or touch pad.

Easy to program (especially since I have the MX-500, nearly identical programming methods), very nice macro features and back lighting. It took a while to get used to the “select” button which has changed from the MX-500 where it was a part of the center selection ring, to a separate button within the ring, now that I’m used to it, I like it.

It would have been cool to add a color screen or USB port; but sometimes less is more...This is a high quality “get the job done” remote. A+
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Written by Lee F from New Hope, PA.
The reviewer has used this remote control for 1-3 months.
Review 9 made on Monday June 6, 2005 at 9:30 AM.
Strengths:It's a breeze to program this remote. Very nice built quality. Love the custom programmable buttons. Remote sits nice in your hand - not too big. Beautiful backlit LCD/buttons. I personally like that this is no touchscreen and that you can still program custom buttons.
Weaknesses:5 digits for LCD sometimes makes it difficult to find an abbreviation (for examples: How do you abbreviate "Pre-amp on". But then I think this is no big deal ones you are familiar with your own abbreviations.
Review:Very nice remote. Just got it and it was very easy to program all my other remotes into this one (I used the learning mode and it goes fast). I am a happy camper and want to thank you for this grat website, which guided me to this decision.
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