3.14.2010

Luxury remote

The latest gadget in my life is a Harmony One universal remote, and although I have to retrain the muscle memory in my fingers that instantly knew where all the buttons were on my old remotes, it's much more convenient (and even declutter-ish) to have one remote rather than five! My Dad and my pal Matt both have other Harmony models, and I'm sure they would have done all I needed, but I wanted the Harmony One just for the color touchscreen coolness factor, so I took the plunge thanks to a nice Amazon price (plus some Amazon affiliate money I had saved) along with a Logitech rebate. The setup was super-easy using the Mac software (although the user interface isn't incredibly efficient), and I was pretty impressed that the remote instantly knew every function of all my AV devices, which includes my TV, TiVo HD, Blu-ray, standard DVD player (which I have to keep to watch Japanese DVDs), Apple TV, Wii and PS2! I was able to change and reorder the various "activities" on the remote, and even add some awesome custom button icons for my favorite channels from this incredible site. It was easy to tweak the default settings as well, so I could map a button to my Blu-ray's Search feature (which is the best way to show the time remaining on a movie, something I look at often). I'm getting used to the way the remote feels, and I'm definitely enjoying the backlighting (which none of my old remotes had), which is actually motion-activated (it lights when you pick up the remote). I won't even need to worry about batteries since it has a cool recharging cradle, too! The frugal side of me thinks the Harmony One is a bit pricey, but sometimes you just have to buy exactly what you want to be satisfied with a purchase!