Alternate remote controls

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by mcgroarty, Jan 13, 2015.

  1. mcgroarty macrumors member

    Oct 7, 2011
    Most of you know that the Apple TV can be programmed to learn remote control codes. What remote do you like using with yours?

    I went with a TiVo remote myself. I got a DirectTV one, but you can find countless other variants on Amazon and eBay for $15 or so new. They have a good hand feel, and it's easy to learn the buttons by touch without having to look at the remote.

    These have the added benefit that they can be programmed to cover most TVs and stereo systems as well (at least for power, volume, input select and mute).

    For programming, I use:

    Menu/Back: TiVo button
    Up/Down/Left/Right: Up/Down/Left/Right
    Select: Select
    Play: play
    Pause: Pause
    Stop: Stop
    Fast back: Fast back
    Fast right: Fast right
    Skip back: Rewind 10 sec
    Skip forward: Skip forward 30 sec
    Chapter forward/back: Channel up/down

    These are all nicely clustered around the select and pause buttons so I can rapidly find them by feel. I never have to look at the remote.

    There are various guides online that list all the remote codes for programming the TV and optional stereo system parts.
  2. hallux macrumors 68030


    Apr 25, 2012
    I have a Logitech Harmony One for my system. I didn't even need to tell the ATV it was a different remote, it just worked once I programmed the activity.
  3. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604


    Feb 8, 2004
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    Universal Remote Control MX850- one remote to rule them all.

    It's both a learning and macro-capable remote so it can be programmed to replace every other remote for anything AND even execute multiple steps to make simple or complex setups at the push of 1 button.

    It's not $15. But it's worked for years and adapts with each new bit of AV hardware I buy. Allocating one of the LCD buttons as "setup" and anyone in the house can easily set up the system to play any source (again, by pushing 1 button).

    It's cool that :apple:TV can flip the learning capability around but much of the rest of typical AV tech can't do that. So you either have a pile of remotes or you move toward something like this one or Logitech Harmony or similar.

    Some should post about using their iPhone or iPad as a remote shortly. But the big issue there is that it's a solution for only the single, living-alone people (else, as soon as you take the "good remote" out with you, the rest of the family doesn't have a good remote).
  4. cynics macrumors G4

    Jan 8, 2012
    Logitech Harmony something. Works well although it's getting worn out. I need to press extra hard on the menu button.
  5. foobarbazqux macrumors regular

    Apr 17, 2014
    I prefer Universal Remote Control remotes. I've been using them for years. I currently have a couple MX-450s and an MX-810. URC MX remotes are expensive but the quality is great.
  6. LV426 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 22, 2013
    Roomie Remote. I control all my home cinema equipment (including my Apple TV) directly from my iPhone using wireless.

    About half my equipment is controlled via IP. For the remainder, I have a Roomie wireless adapter on the network that sends out infrared codes.

    It's a pretty neat setup. I get to see a graphic of the movie that Apple TV is playing on my remote, and how much it's played. When someone fiddles with the volume knob on my AV amplifier, the volume level gets updated on my remote.
  7. richwoodrocket macrumors 68020


    Apr 7, 2014
    Hamburg, NY
    Alternate remote controls

    I use the remote app almost exclusively
  8. takeshi74, Jan 14, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2015

    takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    Not using that approach. I've programmed my URC MX-980's to replace the Apple Remote. Was using an MX-350 but it was replaced by the second MX-980 when I found that the MX-350 couldn't fully control my Atlantic Technology PB-2355 soundbar.

    URC's remotes are very versatile but can have a bit of a learning curve since they're really intended for custom installers to set up for their clients. Kinda surprised to see a couple of other posts already mentioning them in this thread.

    I also use the Remote app.
  9. sgiera macrumors member

    Mar 25, 2014
    I got a Tivo remote, Premiem 4 and it doesn't work well when I'm using the apple tv. What was happening is when I was moving around on the apple tv, it was doing the same functions on my Tivo. If I moved it up, then if I switched back on my tivo, it was doing the same thing. I called Tivo and they said that I needed to use a universal remote or I needed to use the apple tv remove. Anyone can help me out?
  10. mcgroarty thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 7, 2011
    Using the TiVo remote for both the Apple TV and the TiVo won't work. Just because the display is showing another device doesn't stop the remote from working on all devices. For my suggestion above, I'm assuming people don't also have a TiVo. It just happens that the TiVo remote works well with AppleTV when there's no TiVo in the room too.

    Very old TiVos had a remote with an A/B switch for people who had two TiVos. You might be able to get one of those old remotes and set it in the B (2nd TiVo) position and use it as a second TiVo remote if you really want to use a TiVo remote while having a TiVo too.
  11. Uofmtiger macrumors 68020


    Dec 11, 2010
    I am also a Roomie Remote user. However, I have a Harmony 880 that I use, too. Just depends on my mood and what I am doing.

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