In the past couple of years, some companies have been straying away from the “standard” universal remote with varying degrees of success. Logitech has been one of the companies with the greatest amount of success in this field with their “Harmony” remotes. The question, however, is whether or not the Harmony 1000 lives up to the reputation of its predecessors.
First of all, the method used for syncing it to different devices is quite handy. Rather than entering some byzantine code you can only hope works, the Harmony 1000 can simply download a profile for almost literally any device from the Logitech website. Don’t make the mistake of thinking this only means TVs or DVD players. You can use this on just about anything that has a remote, up to and including lights, fans, and AC units. One of the great things about this is the functionality it provides. Anything the original remote for the device – for example, a DVD player – could do, the Harmony 1000 can emulate. Thanks to its LCD screen it can just create a whole new menu for any nonstandard functions your device has. The slight downside to this is that you need to go through a seperate menu to get to these nonstandard functions. It’s not all that big a problem but you do notice it.
Speaking of the screen, though, you’d imagine this thing would burn through batteries like nobody’s business. Luckily, this isn’t really a problem since it comes with its own rechargeable battery. The battery can last for a couple hours but there’s really no need for it to do so. Instead of plugging the remote into the wall you set it on a small stand that automatically recharges the battery while still letting you use it. A big bonus to this is you never have to go hunting for the remote again. Not that you really would anyway. The Harmony 1000 is many things but small isn’t one of them. This is a sizable two handed remote. It’s not all that heavy but the size makes it just a tad awkward to use.
One thing a lot of people will really like, especially if they’re more technically inclined, is that you can cue multiple actions to one command. For example, let’s say you want to watch a DVD. You can set up the remote ahead of time so that, with one button push, your lights dim, your TV turns on, your DVD player opens the tray, and your input selector switches over to DVD input. It’s the touches like that that make the Harmony 1000 such a nifty piece of technology. There is, however, one big downside. Depending on where you go to get one, you can spend up to 500 dollars, USD. If you can afford to pick this up, you’re guaranteed to love it. Unfortunately, unless you can find a sale it’ll be relatively hard to do that until the price drops quite a bit more. Overall, a good device that’s just a bit too expensive.