Remote Controls

Simplify Your Family Room With a Smart Universal Remote

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Does your family suffer from TMR (Too Many Remotes) Syndrome? Is your coffee table covered in umpteen different remote controls, but you can never find the one you need? If this rings home for you then you should consider getting a smart universal remote control for your entertainment system.

One of the things we found after we cut the cord is that we no longer had an easy way of controlling our entertainment system. The remote we had been using got sent back with our cable box. We still had the original remote to our TV, and the one for our sound bar, and now a remote for our new Fire TV, and even the good old DVD player remote in case we wanted to dust off a DVD.

All of these remote controls worked fine, but that was just it, we needed them ALL!

Another thing we struggled with was switching from one source to another in a way that didn’t want to make us pull our hair out. We always had a hard time remembering which inputs were for the Fire TV and what we had to switch when we wanted to watch the antenna. A lot of times our evenings would start out a little something like this:

Wife: “Hey! Let’s watch a movie on Netflix. What do I need to change the TV to again?”

Me: “Uh…change the TV to HDMI 1 and the sound bar to TV. No, wait, TV is for TV. I mean…Input 3. Yeah, definitely Input 3.”

Wife: “Which remote is for the soundbar? Is that the Vizio? I think the batteries might be dead.”

Me: “Faaan-tastic!”

Then, one day, the remote controls gods shined down on us.

We were introduced to the holy grail of remotes, the best thing since sliced bread (literally!), the Logitech Harmony smart universal remote control. This thing was “da bomb”. It could replace all of our existing remotes and control all of the devices in our entertainment system. Some models could even be used to control our Fire TV or Roku.

One of the best features of the Harmony remotes is that you create shortcuts, they call them “Activities”, which turn all your devices on and to the correct inputs for the source you want to watch. So pressing the “Watch TV” button turns your TV on and to the antenna input and your soundbar on and to the right input. Then, if you press the “Watch Fire TV” button it changes your TV and the soundbar to the correct inputs for the Fire TV.

If this sounds like something that your family needs in their lives, then I highly recommend getting a universal smart remote control. Specifically, the Logitech Harmony Companion and Logitech Harmony 650 would be my top choices. The Companion remote includes some advanced features like the hub, which can control devices behind a closed entertainment console door and can also control a Roku or Fire TV. The 650 is the more reasonably priced model, but still has all the smart features to help simplify your TV watching experience.

                    

If the Logitech remotes seem a little too extravagant, then I’d suggest trying out the SideClick remote. This little guy clips right onto the side of your Roku or Fire TV remote and provides just enough buttons to control the basic features of your TV and entertainment system. It’s as simple as it gets and can help eliminate some of those pesky remotes from your coffee table.

sideclick

Sideclick for Roku | Photo Credit: sideclickremotes.com

So, what do you think? Could your families case of TMR syndrome be cured with one of these universal remote controls? I know we’ve been cured in my house!

 

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2 comments

That’s way more clever than I was extpiecng. Thanks!

Thanks for stopping by!

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