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Home Entertainment Remote Controls

Home entertainment systems have expanded out of all recognition in recent years – LCD, and Plasma, television sets, DVD players, or recorders, AV receivers, even video games consoles, now form part of everyday entertainment, for many domestic consumers – and each component is supplied, naturally enough, with its own remote control unit.

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However, this can also mean that an everyday activity, such as watching a film on digital television, can involve using one remote control to switch on a television set, and select its input source, another for a digital television receiver, and yet another for, perhaps, digital surround sound components. By programming the control codes for each device into a “Universal Remote Control”, or “URC”, all these operations can be completed with a single push of a button.

Universal Remote Controls

Remote control units, of any type, operate by communicating with electronic devices via infrared light. Pressing a key on a remote control unit causes a sequence of infrared pulses, known as a “control code”, to be transmitted from its infrared port, or “eye”, and received by a detector on the corresponding piece of equipment. The detector, in turn, translates the incoming control code into electrical signals, used to perform some function of the device.

The good news is that there are only a finite number of control codes in use, so by manual programming, or by “acquiring” control codes automatically, from existing remote control units, Universal Remote Controls can replicate the functionality of each, in a single remote control unit.

Example products include the One for All Kameleon 6-in-1 URC, which, as the name suggests, is capable of supporting up to six individual devices, and a touch screen which illuminates – by using a proximity sensor – when fingers are nearby, and the Logitech Harmony 525, which also has “learning” capability, can support up to 12 individual devices, and be connected, via USB, to a computer, for downloading software and upgrades from the Internet. One for All Kamelon 6 in 1 Universal Remote Control


Carefully chosen, a Universal Remote Control is likely to become quite a“personal” item; you are likely to use, and, perhaps, abuse, it on a daily basis. You should make sure, therefore, that a URC fits comfortably into your hand, with a layout, and style, of buttons that you like, and does not feel flimsy – if it feels like it will fall apart very quickly, the chances are it will. Make sure, too, that the user interface is clear, easy to understand, and operate.

Where Can You Find More Universal Remote Control Information?

For more details of the remote featured on this page, click here for the One for All Kameleon.

There are many excellent resources available on Google.com, simply perform a search for "remote control units" or "universal remote control" and you will find plenty of useful information.


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