February 16, 2007

Logitech Harmony 550

I got a Logitech Harmony 550 remote for my birthday, to control my second setup which consists of a GameCube, PlayStation 2, and Dish Network. It was the addition of Dish Network that brought the number of remote controls from two up to four. And made things annoying. The remote is very good and very convenient though, and a great birthday gift. Thanks Alla, Dantam, and Ellen. :)

I had some trouble with software installation on Mac OS X when using a user account that has its home directories NFS mounted. This user is also not in the group that allows administration, so the software was actually installed as a different user. Basically, the software would just quit or sit there doing nothing without crashing or any messages at all, after it started up. So I ended up having to install and run the software as the non-NFS mounted user that also has administrator privileges.

But once that was done, it was very easy. They've got a huge database of devices, including the GameCube, PlayStation 2, Sony STR-DE597 receiver, Panasonic PT50LC13 television, Impact Acoustics 3-Play, and Dish 381 set-top box. So I didn't have to make the remote learn anything manually. I even gained remote on/off access to the PlayStation 2, which doesn't come with a remote by default.

Now things are very nice with four macros: PlayStation 2, GameCube, Watch TV, Listen to CD. It works extremely well and I just hit one of the macros to start up the components and set their inputs/settings automatically, and everything's running.

Even though I didn't do any heavy customization, the software does allow for it. You can assign different functions to different buttons in any of the modes. And if you choose not to use macros, you can still access devices directly by pressing the Devices button on the remote.

Posted by josuah at February 16, 2007 3:46 AM UTC+00:00

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