I’ve been using a universal remote for so many years now that I’ve forgotten what it’s like to have 5 or 6 remotes piled on the coffee table. There’s just no other way to do it. The remote I currently have works pretty well, but it’s one of those deals where you have to press TV-Power-Cable-Power-Receiver-Power, etc etc. If you want to control something, you have to press the device button first (TV, Cable, DVD, etc), then you can control it.
Enter the Logitech Harmony 670 Universal Remote. All other remote controls should be embarrassed. You take this thing out of the box, hook it up via USB to your computer, answer some questions and VOILA! Everything works. There’s three main buttons: “watch a movie,” “watch TV” and “listen to music.” You press those and the remote does everything else except make your dinner. You can even do things like pre-set the volume or change the type of sound in your receiver for each of the three. And no more changing the TV to video 1 or DVI or component 2. All done automatically. Genius.
And get this: the remote can also control lighting and appliances in your house, although I haven’t set that up yet and I doubt I will. I don’t think that’s a line I need to cross.