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Logitech Harmony 1000 Remote
Log into Logitech's website these days and the first thing you see is a huge image of their swanky new product, the Logitech Harmony 1000.
For the uninitiated, this is a universal remote control, an upgraded version of Logitech's 880 model. As the name implies, it's designed to control all your electronic home theater devices.
The brand was originally developed by Canada's Intrigue Technologies, which is now owned by none other than Logitech.
The need for such devices is rising due to the variety in brands and different components we end up owning, and of course the inevitable fact that humans are lazy.
Design and Features
Make no mistake, this is totally different from the previous dumbbell-shaped 880. The 1000 is swanky to look at; it sports a futuristic brushed aluminum body, with a larger LCD screen embedded in a jet black frame towards the left, though the screen pretty much takes up the whole front panel.
On its right are shiny metallic silver buttons, neatly arranged, bearing multiple little shapes. Actually there are three shapes: four small round buttons, one major circular navigation joystick and two elongated capsule-shaped buttons at the top for volume and channel movements.
The Logitech logo is seen below the black frame of the screen, just beneath a black flush-mounted push button called 'Activities' on the black frame itself. (It’s kind of camouflaged; in fact it took me some time to realize that it’s actually a button.) The 'on' switch is on the top left corner.
The back panel is a dense smooth blackish grey surface, with no luster whatsoever, so it scores there. The left side exposes a small USB port, the wire for which is provided. Also provided is a charging station, a black shiny one at that, along with its wire.
Overall the design is great, but it's too bulky for a remote. I don’t know how people will adapt to a remote they have to hold with two hands.
Once the device is turned on, the story gets better. The 3.5" LCD touchscreen is quite an improvement over the small one in previous models. The initial setup is a tedious process as you need to first charge it for at least 5-6 hours before it can start working properly.
Initially you need to set up software provided along with the unit, which in turn takes you step by step in connecting, configuring and setting up your remote. There are lots, I repeat, lots of preset models; I believe all the gear we have in our studio could be configured just by clicking on the model name on the software.
Another cool feature is Logitech’s remote activity setting, which allows you to set basic home theater functions (such as Watch TV, Watch DVD etc.) in the remote, once your models are configured. These functions are triggered by a nice-looking set of button icons on the touchscreen LCD.
The unit works absolutely fine with all the equipment we had, including a Yamaha Amp, an LG TV, a Sharp Aquos TV ,and an LG DVD player.
The unit is perfect for simply switching on your TV to an appropriate channel, or starting up a DVD in the drive straight till the main menu with just one click. That’s what these remotes are meant for: simplicity in operation, and this surely has that quality.
However, this state of nirvana is reached only after an initial journey of trial and tribulation. There is a lot of setting up to do, though you can get Logitech’s assistance in hooking things up for you. At least they were quite prompt when we called them.
Now the bad part: probably the one point that will render this whole review pointless. Yes, you guessed it, that factor is the exorbitant price tag of Rs 27,995. This is the price quoted by the company, so it should be cheaper elsewhere online.
Yours truly, for one, can always appreciate a fancy price tag, and is willing to pay it too – but if and only if it’s justified. This remote no doubt is excellent at what it does, and scores dizzily high on every count, but it's way too expensive in retail.
There are similar premium priced products out there, and I would not pick them up either.