The Logitech Harmony 550, the Ultimate Universal Remote?


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When you first run the software you are greeted by a login screen. What Logitech has done is that they have setup a database that stores all your settings. This is great for the user if you have to reformat your computer since all your settings are stored in a central location, you will not have to recreate everything when you go to change something on the remote.

Once you have set up all your devices, the Harmony Software groups the devices into Activities. Not only does it group your devices into default activities, you can create your own. Below, I have shown my four Activities. My First is “Watch a DVD”. The Harmony Software then asks you a set of questions. First, is what devices are used – I selected the TV, the DVD player, and the Stereo. When you press the button that corresponds to this activity it will turn on the TV, DVD Player and Stereo. It will then set each device to the proper input. When that is finished, it sets the remotes to the set of commands for the DVD player remote, as well as setting the remote’s volume controls to that of the Stereo. This eliminates the need to switch from device to device with the remote. It can all be done at once!

Once all your Activities are set-up, you can further tweak the devices. What you can do here is solve one annoyance that I have always had with any TV and DVD player: Once your done watching your movie and you shut off the DVD player, your stuck on the input that the TV needs to be on to see the DVD. Wouldn’t it be neat if the TV recognized this and changed itself back to the right input so you could go and watch TV? Well the Logitech Remote does this for you. The minute you hit another activity, the remote can be set to switch all the inputs to their proper setting. No need to switch over to the DVD player in the remote and manually switch the input it does it all for you!

Okay, so you have everything setup. What if you have a command that didn’t make it into Logitech’s database somehow, but you still have the original remote? Wouldn’t it be cool if this remote could “learn”? Well it can, read on to find out how!

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