I’ve known about Logitech’s “Harmony” universal remote control product line for years. I’d see them for sale on Dealnews.com from time to time. But they just never seemed like they were worth the $80 starting price (for the ones I saw ads on — they do have lower-priced Harmony offerings).
Recently, someone at work told me they bought a Harmony One remote and loved it. Okay, that was enough for me to give them a closer look. So I looked. For a while, I considered the 1100 model (a big rectangular slab) but after reading reviews eventually decided not to buy it for three reasons:
- Higher price ($270 on Amazon cf. with $170 for the “One” model)
- No ability to assign multiple actions to one button. I forget their term for this, but it would prevent me, for example, for assigning several repetitive fast forward actions to the fast forward button. Might matter.
- The candy-bar style One, with its real buttons, would probably be easier to use by feel. I’d have to be looking at the 1100 to use its on-screen fuctions (it has few physical buttons).
I got the Harmony One working with my entertainment center setup in about an hour. The software, while definitely quirky and irksome, was an order of magnitude better than the total crap Wizz.it 3 software for programming my Marantz SR8002 universal remote.
I bought a Harmony One this weekend. It was delivered Tuesday and I set it up Tuesday night. It is working great. I have only two complaints:
- It doesn’t register button presses as fast as my TiVo remote, slowing me down.
- I wish it were thinner in the middle like my TiVo remote. My TiVo remote fits remarkably well in my hand and I have no doubt that that’s a result of real testing with actual humans.
29 August 2011 update: Our Harmony One remote is going strong. I love it.