A couple of days ago, I duplicated the TiVo remote on a Logitech Harmony programmable remote (see Cloning the TiVo “Peanut” remote).
Yesterday, it occurred to me that there might be a TiVo remote code for my cheap X10 Universal 5-in-1 Learning Remote. Somewhat to my surprise, there was. TiVo has been around quite awhile, after all.
This is great because the Harmony clones can’t control X10 automation in the den. (They can do so in the theater room due to the presence of an IR543 X10 Infrared Controller, but that’s another post.)
The 5-in-1 universal already controls the TV, Roku, VCR/DVD player, as well as X10 automation (details in the post, The poor man’s Harmony remote). With TiVo replacing cable TV, I can reduce down to just one remote for me in the den.
I did a Mode Reset on the cable (CBL) button. Then I input the TiVo code (0912). Next, I tested each button with the TiVo to see what they would do.
For the record, here is what I found:
The following universal remote buttons were already correct for the TiVo: Channel Up/Down, Volume Up/Down, Mute, Last/Enter, 0-9, directional arrows & Select(OK), and transport (Rewind / FF / Play / Pause / Rec).
The universal’s Menu button was the TiVo (menus) button, and its Exit button was the Clear button. These are close enough in meaning to leave them be.
The universal’s A-B button was TiVo’s Guide (mnemonic: “Guide me from point A to point B”).
The A button was Info. Will repurpose as described below.
B was a duplicate TiVo button. Will repurpose.
C was Live TV, which is a good mnemonic (“See TV”) so I let it be.
D button was the 8-second replay button. Mnemonic: “Do over”.
ENT was a duplicate of Last/Enter. Repurpose.
STOP did nothing. Give it a purpose.
So, using one of my Harmony clones, here is what I taught the learning universal’s buttons:
A became the Zoom button. Why? Zoom changes the Aspect ratio, so a good mnemonic.
B became the Back button, another good mnemonic.
ENT became the Skip-Forward-30-seconds / “-” button for the TiVo. No mnemonic; the logic here is positional: since “-” is the delimiter for digital channels (e.g., 35-2), its location near the 0-9 keys makes it a convenient assignment.
STOP became Info. No obvious mnemonic, nor positional logic, except that if you accidentally push it, you can push it again to get rid of it. It does nothing when you are in the middle of manipulating TiVo menu screens. Good reasons. I suppose a lame mnemonic could be “Stop for Info”.
The Peanut buttons I had no room for: the thumbs-up/down, and the A,B,C,D buttons. Letter buttons are used to change options, sort, and filter. None of them are necessary for typical use.
So now, unless I want to use the left-out buttons, I don’t need a Harmony clone in the den.
If you’ve gotten this far, you see the lengths I will go to have a tabletop uncluttered by remotes.
Gaye still has her Peanut, which includes TV Power and TV Input Select buttons, making it a 2-in-1 remote. She won’t need to use my complex and quirky remote, but I’ll be glad to.
(PS, I just assigned the two buttons of the remote for the RadioShack A/B antenna switch to the A and A-B buttons on the universal, unused under the SAT mode button, which I use to select controls for the DVD side of the VCR/DVD player. Now this remote is a 7-in-1! I documented it all in the universal’s manual, just in case my memory should slip. 😉 )
(PPS, We don’t use the VCR/DVD player much these days, but I still like to have it available.)