Sunday, March 25, 2007

X10 IR10 iconRemote Review

My first impulse remote control buy. I'm on the fence after a week of using it. It was supposed to replace all my remotes (tv, cable, dvd, surround) but I still need to pick up my old remotes every so often because the remote has either failed to learn the remote code or fails to transmit the code learned. I think that I could have found a Harmony 880 Remote in a superstore for $129 if I would have waited a little longer. I'll hope and pray that this remote morphs into something that I want it to be.

Review

Unboxing the remote you are presented with a hefty remote with alot of well aligned buttons. Batteries are included!! Pop in the batteries and you're presented with a wizard to setup your device(s) and you're on your way. Within a minute, I had my tv, cable box, dvd, and surround sound setup. There is no learning curve as you simply follow the instructions on the lcd. No need for a computer and usb cable for remote codes. Granted I did not receive a manual in my shipment; only a one page quick reference guide. I'm glad that X10 is appeciative of my high level thinking.

I ran into some problems after using the learn feature. If I programmed the soft keys at the top of the remote with a learned code and then tried to use that key it would not work. I don't know if this was user error or a device error. Hard keys always worked. I'll perform a master clear over the weekend and try again and call X10 if that doesn't work.

The DVR functions of my Motorola Cablebox did not work. I was about 5 seconds into learning the rewind button when it dawned on me that it might be another code for motorola dvr cable boxes and indeed there was one that worked with my box.

In the FAQ for the device it reads this:

Q: Can I control X10 lights and appliances with the iconRemote?
A: Yes! All you need is the Infrared Mini-Controller and it will control your X10 gear too!

I've tried but failed in getting X10 IR codes to transmit from the remote. I've made a tv device with the default code 999 and 998 for X10 and nothing seems to work. I'll call X10 about this one.

Macros are another feature that I have not tried but from the manual it looks like it was poorly designed.

Overall I'll give it a 7/10. It saves me from using 4 remotes but I do have to pull it out for some select features that can't be learned on my remotes.

Pros:
His/Hers Favorites
Bright Clear LCD Screen
Huge Built In Remote Control List
Device Wizard
Channel Logo Favorites
DVR Controls
Price $129 Promo
Punchthrough Bypass(Make keys like volume change your tv volume while using your Cablebox)
Learn IR Receiver at the bottom of remote (seperate from transmitter)
Multiple Sleep Timers


Cons:
No Keypad Backlight
No X10RF
X10 only using the IR543(which I haven't gotten to work yet)
No Touchscreen
Heavy
Macros are hidden deep within the learn feature

Update:
I've received a new remote from X10 and the transmission if IR to the IR543 now works and softkey learns work as well. Thanks Michael Millary @ X10
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