The devices button lists all
the devices that you have programmed the remote for. For the few times you
don’t use the activities button, this is one way to get to a specific component
and control the functions of that component. I find myself using this feature
only when one of the devices didn’t receive the IR signal so a step was missed.
This usually happens when my remote is low on battery power so I know that if I
start using the devices button a lot, then it’s time to change the batteries.
If you’re having trouble
with a certain component’s state, the help button next to the devices button
can guide non-tech savvy folks through troubleshooting the problem. When
pressed, the remote displays some basic questions to try and fix the issue. This
can really help those that are intimidated by complex remotes. The easy to
follow instructions will help you easily troubleshoot any problems you have.
A nice LCD display with a
green backlight displays all the information in nice clear text. Here is where
you will see the list of activities displayed, help questions, and more control
options. Two buttons on either side of the LCD display correspond with the
function listed on the LCD. If there are more functions you need but don’t have
the buttons on the rest of the remote to accommodate it, you can set them up
here. This feature really makes the remote versatile as you can put any remote
command from any device and map them to one of the four LCD buttons. If you
want more than four commands, you can setup a few more pages of commands which
can be accessed with the left and right arrows underneath.
Underneath the navigation
buttons are the basic VCR buttons. Here you can control your DVD player or your
DVR. The buttons are nicely separated with a very nice feel to them. I do like
the positioning of the buttons with the play and stop button on either side of
the chapter skip button. Those are the ones I do use the most. The pause button
is also easily accessible on the right side underneath the play button.
The four Xbox 360 buttons
are positioned X, Y, A, and B along one row. These buttons will work to
navigate around the Xbox 360 blades but can’t be used in games. I tried using
the remote to play Bejeweled 2 but the buttons didn’t register in the game. That’s
a little disappointing but not really a deal breaker.
In the middle of the remote
there is the nice navigational pad. The pad features four directions and a nice
feeling OK button in the middle. The OK button is slightly raised and rounded
given it a more distinct feel. You will use the navigation pad to move around
the blades and through the menus when using the Xbox 360 as a Media Center
Extender. Compared to the Harmony 688, I do like the style and feel of the pad
here. It’s a little more comfortable for me when navigating with the thumb
here. When glowing, it looks very similar to the ring of light that’s on the
console and controllers.
On either side of the
navigational pad are the channel and volume controls. These four buttons allow
you to change the channels and adjust the volume on the device it is set for.
They are long and easily reachable with your thumb.
In dark times, you’ll want
the remote to be illuminated and that’s where the glow button comes in.
Pressing the button turns on the green backlight and the whole remote shines
through. The cool thing about how the buttons glows is that unlike the Harmony
688, the buttons mostly light up at the command label and on the outer edge of
most buttons. You can easily see what button does what in the dark this way.
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