We found that after you had completed this process once, it was very quick to add in new products and most of the time the remote gets it right first time – although it did need a few goes to pick up our Thomson Sky box. If your product is not listed – for instance, we could not find a listing for any Bose kit for example – the remote can learn commands from a unit’s original remote without too much hassle.
Macro command programming allows up to 255 steps
Features, such as adding favourite channels for quick access, are easy to apply. A handy 48 favourite channels are available and you can choose from on-screen icons or, if you favourite is not listed, use one of the blank channel icons and type in the name of the channel. As the product is from a US company, the channels choice is a little heavy on North American options, so a more UK or European spec would be helpful.
Setting up macros is more awkward though and we found some of the on-screen instructions rather vague. We did have to play with the product for a good half an hour before we really started to get the hang of dialling in a command series. A good tip – and to be fair the set-up guide does recommend this – is to add pauses into the list when building more complex macros for a greater level of success. A total of 255 steps can be added, which is more than enough for most homes.
A satisfactory performer, with some helpful time saving functions, particularly during basic setup. There are also some other sensible add-ons, like a ‘sofa’ function which senses when the product is stuffed down the side and is having all its buttons pressed and switches itself off. The more demanding user might want something a little more advanced but, for the average AV set-up, the R50 does a decent enough job.
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I'm another who wouldn't do without the Logitech harmony, although the 'sofa mode' would be useful!
No coloured buttons?
Makes it somewhat difficult to use. That's often a problem with remotes from US companies as they don't use them over there.
It also looks pretty horrible, compared to for example the harmony 885 (available for under £100) - although it has the advantage of not being bound to logitech's crappy software.
Controlling multiple devices?
I admit I only skimmed through the review but there doesn't seem to be any mention of the ability to control multiple devices at the same time.
e.g. I need mute, volume and any sound controls to control my surround amp, I need any picture controls (brightness, aspect etc.) to control my TV and I need the channel and menu controls to control the Sky box and I want all this to happen without changing modes.
My Logitech remote does all these things and it doesn't cost £125
Logitech Harmony 525
Had a Logitech Harmony 525 for a while now. It's not got the full colour display but it does only cost £50 from Amazon and cheaper if you hunt around. Fantastic bit of kit. Review here http://www.reghardware.co.uk/2008/10/30/review_universal_remote_controls/page4.html
Not suitable for the UK market...
"...a little heavy on North American options..." - where's the red/yellow/green/blue buttons that digital and Sky TV users are used to?