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Harmony Remote Questions on Latest Release


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22 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   PearlMikeJam

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 02:59 AM

I have a Harmony 890 that has been working great for a couple of years with my HR20 and most recently, my HR22. With the latest update, my rewind, pause and fast forward buttons stopped working. I am able to learn some of the commands, but others still do not do anything. As an example, if I press pause, the command is sent, but I get the sound on the TV like it was a bad command. This all started with the latest update. Is anyone else experiencing this?

I have reset the receiver and reprogrammed the remote to no avail. What else can I do? Thanks in advance.

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#2 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 04:31 AM

No change in the performance of my 880 with the latest software release.

I think that some buttons on your remote stopped working when the software came out is a coincidence. The remote commands of DirecTV are very basic in their structure, with identical codes across all platforms, SD, HD, and DVR.

When you updated your remote's codes, did you update its firmware as well? That could be the problem. Look at the top of the Harmony software's page for Downloads.

You should also know both the 880 and 890 were not Harmony's finest moments. It may be time for a Harmony One. While it lacks the 890's RF capabilities, it otherwise is a much better remote.
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#3 OFFLINE   mbmarsh

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 05:07 AM

But.....I just got an HR24-200 yesterday, and when I tried to reprogram my Harmony 620 to work with it instead of my old SD Tivo, I have the same symptoms - I can pause and play the DVR with the Harmony remote, but can't skip forward or backward.

Interestingly, when I tried to set up the HR24 in the Harmony software, it told me the remote couldn't control the DirecTV PVR. I upgraded to the latest remote firmware and Logitech software, but no dice.

This is very frustrating, especially given that the DirecTV remote doesn't work worth a crap with this new receiver. :(

Edited by mbmarsh, 22 September 2010 - 07:32 AM.


#4 OFFLINE   Yoda-DBSguy

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 05:26 AM

But.....I just got an HR24-200 yesterday, and when I tried to reprogram my Harmony 620 to work with it instead of my old SD Tivo, I have the same symptoms - I can pause and play the DVR with the Harmony remote, but can't skip forward or backward.

Interestingly, when I tried to set up the HR24 in the Harmony software, it told me the remote couldn't control the DirecTV PVR. I upgraded to the latest remote firmware and Logitech software, but no dice.

This is very frustrated, especially given that the DirecTV remote doesn't work worth a crap with this new receiver. :(


All DirecTV HR series units use the same IR code sets; Choose any of the following from the harmony's database when programming if the HR24 is not listed:
HR20
HR21
HR22
HR23

All functions work correctly; I had an HR20 and upgraded to an HR24 without having to reprogram my harmony 880 at all.....

#5 OFFLINE   vfviola

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 06:26 AM

My 880 has not stopped working!

#6 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 07:25 AM

But.....I just got an HR24-200 yesterday, and when I tried to reprogram my Harmony 620 to work with it instead of my old SD Tivo, I have the same symptoms - I can pause and play the DVR with the Harmony remote, but can't skip forward or backward.

Interestingly, when I tried to set up the HR24 in the Harmony software, it told me the remote couldn't control the DirecTV PVR. I upgraded to the latest remote firmware and Logitech software, but no dice.

This is very frustrated, especially given that the DirecTV remote doesn't work worth a crap with this new receiver. :(

If neither remote works, you have another issue. It isn't with Harmony.

We need more info to figure this out. What kind of TV? How close to the TV is your receiver? Do you have a remote repeater or Slingbox in the system? What is the lighting in the room? Does it work at night?
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#7 OFFLINE   mbmarsh

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 07:57 AM

If neither remote works, you have another issue. It isn't with Harmony.

We need more info to figure this out. What kind of TV? How close to the TV is your receiver? Do you have a remote repeater or Slingbox in the system? What is the lighting in the room? Does it work at night?


Sure - I have a Panasonic TH-42PX50U, TV is right below the receiver, and the remote is about 8 feet away. The DirecTV remote works, but sometimes it takes four key presses before I can get the DVR to respond. The little blue light on the DVR that blinks when it receives a command only blinks every fifth or so time, and only if the remote is pointed directly at it - can't be off to the side at all. The Harmony remote just won't do forward or back, but it will do play or pause, and the DVR seems to respond a bit better to the commands from that remote.

No repeater, Slingbox, anything like that, should be pretty straightforward, I would think.

Thanks in advance!

#8 OFFLINE   mbmarsh

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 08:06 AM

All DirecTV HR series units use the same IR code sets; Choose any of the following from the harmony's database when programming if the HR24 is not listed:
HR20
HR21
HR22
HR23

All functions work correctly; I had an HR20 and upgraded to an HR24 without having to reprogram my harmony 880 at all.....


OK - I'll try this too and see if it is happier with an HR20 - do you just put HR20 in for the model number, or the whole number, like I entered HR24-200?

Thanks for all the advice!

#9 OFFLINE   Chris Blount

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 08:08 AM

You should also know both the 880 and 890 were not Harmony's finest moments. It may be time for a Harmony One. While it lacks the 890's RF capabilities, it otherwise is a much better remote.

What are you kidding???? The 890 is a great remote and the RF capability is an excellent feature.

#10 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 12:59 PM

You didn't have customers who couldn't get it to charge, and then you had to eat the remote and sell them - and reprogram - a Universal remote. I did at least half a dozen of those. I grew to hate the 880 and 890.

Harmony replaced how many bases? As if that was going to fix it. The new ones don't work any better than the old ones. "Take a piece of paper and put it in the battery compartment." Oooo, that sounds professional and again, an iffy fix at the best.

All this said, I've used one of those returned 880 remotes at home for years, and other than my cat knocking it off the entertainment center and the USB connector breaking off, it's been great. I do have to clean the contacts with an eraser maybe once a month but that's second nature by now.

I went to an old customer's house a few weeks ago and the screen had died on his 890. At least by now I could get him to pay me for reprogramming a Harmony One, which I had to do from scratch because, unlike most of Harmony's remotes, the 880 and 890 won't transfer their basic programming over to a new remote. Figures

EDIT: And I forgot the non-detachable power cord on the 890's receiver. It has to be mounted inside the customer's cabinet and yet it has to come out EVERY TIME you reprogram the remote. I like tucking my cables away neatly, especially something that will be in the front of the cabinet. And yet, with the NON-DETACHABLE POWER CORD, you can't do this easily, if at all.

Jeez, thanks, Chris, for dredging up so many pleasant memories for me about the Harmony 880 and 890. ;) :rolleyes:

Edited by Carl Spock, 22 September 2010 - 01:12 PM.

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#11 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 01:24 PM

Sure - I have a Panasonic TH-42PX50U, TV is right below the receiver, and the remote is about 8 feet away. The DirecTV remote works, but sometimes it takes four key presses before I can get the DVR to respond. The little blue light on the DVR that blinks when it receives a command only blinks every fifth or so time, and only if the remote is pointed directly at it - can't be off to the side at all. The Harmony remote just won't do forward or back, but it will do play or pause, and the DVR seems to respond a bit better to the commands from that remote.

No repeater, Slingbox, anything like that, should be pretty straightforward, I would think.

Thanks in advance!


I bet you are getting interference between the plasma and the receiver. It is putting out radiation that is interfering with the remote. Plasmas are notorious for this. If at all possible, put more space between these two.

And I'm confused. You say in one post the DirecTV remote doesn't work with your DVR and in the other one, you say it does. Which is it?
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#12 OFFLINE   Chris Blount

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 01:24 PM

Sorry to hear about the problems you have. I haven't had any of those issues. I've never even cleaned the contacts.

Yes, reprogramming did suck but once its done, its done.

#13 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 01:26 PM

I haven't had any of those issues. I've never even cleaned the contacts.

And I used to like you... ;) :grin:
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#14 OFFLINE   Beerstalker

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 02:10 PM

Actually you used to be able to upgrade form the 880/890 to the one without reprogramming everthing. I was able to do it when I bought my first One. However one of the Harmony Software updates broke that feature, and now it doesn't work. Also, the updated charging base did help if you got the latest one with 2 smaller contacts and a small magnet in the center. Also, Harmony did eventually hear enough complaints about the non-detachable cord on the 890 base station and they changed it to make it detachable.

I've been using my 880 for about 4 years now and I am still very happy with it. I like the button placement of the One better, but I really don't care for the touchscreen. I am debating switching over to the 700 for my simpler systems when my 880/one wear out.

#15 OFFLINE   mbmarsh

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 02:37 PM

I bet you are getting interference between the plasma and the receiver. It is putting out radiation that is interfering with the remote. Plasmas are notorious for this. If at all possible, put more space between these two.

And I'm confused. You say in one post the DirecTV remote doesn't work with your DVR and in the other one, you say it does. Which is it?


I said it didn't work worth a crap, not that it didn't work. There's a difference. :) Like if I'm fast-forwarding through a commercial, and then want to press play, I have to press play about four times to get the DVR to actually stop fast-forwarding. Unfortunately, with my entertainment center setup, I don't have any other options for placement of the receiver. Is there a specific reason why the HR24 would behave differently than my old H20? I never had any problems with it, and it was in the exact same location.

Thanks!

#16 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 22 September 2010 - 05:48 PM

Is there a specific reason why the HR24 would behave differently than my old H20?

Nothing specific beyond different manufacturers at different times with different specs and different construction of a different circuit.

I'm not trying to be a wise ass, but I've found nothing is ever the same. Electronics can be as quirky as cars, and that's the truth.

You owe it to yourself to at least move the receiver for a few minutes to see if proximity to the plasma is the problem. We can go from there. If they are too close, then you bury the receiver, which I'm sure you can do with your cabinet, and have it see the IR commands with a remote repeater.

Edited by Carl Spock, 22 September 2010 - 05:53 PM.

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#17 OFFLINE   lsbrodsky

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Posted 24 September 2010 - 04:51 AM

I had exactly the same problem with my 890 a few years ago when I upgraded to an HD receiver. My TV is LCD and I had to disable autodimming on the TV to eliminate the interference with the remote. Did not affect the DTV remote, only my Harmony. All has been well ever since.
Larry

#18 OFFLINE   dafreeds

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Posted 24 September 2010 - 11:22 AM

Seeing very similar behavior to what is mentioned. I have the 880 and unless I point it right at the box from close range, not working well. I see the same behavior with the IR remote from Directv. It is like it sees the command and pauses before it does anything. I have a second receive in the bedroom and when I use the DTV remote, it works fine. I can point it at the ceiling and it works. The one in the living room, under a Plasma tv, only works directly pointing at it and close range. My older HR20 never had the same issue. Seems like this is a REAL issue and DTV may need to research.

#19 OFFLINE   dafreeds

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Posted 24 September 2010 - 11:27 AM

Same

#20 OFFLINE   Carl Spock

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Posted 24 September 2010 - 12:09 PM

IR technology sucks. I've struggled with IR systems for years and hate them. IR interference is real. Everyone, not just DirecTV and Harmony, has this problem. You're just seeing the tip of the iceberg.

I've spent days solving IR interference problems, and these are systems which have nothing to do with DirecTV. In the examples here, though, the problem seems more straight forward. Interference from the TV is the most likely cause. Both plasmas and LCDs wreck havoc with IR systems. You might just as well blame the TV maker as much as DirecTV. It's the TV that's causing the problem. They should build TVs with better shielding and that emit less radiation.

And I wouldn't expect DirecTV to do much to address this issue. Their obvious answer to interference issues is switch the remote into RF. The fact that this doesn't work with yours or my Harmony is our problem, not theirs. They've provided a solution. Maybe the next version of the DVR will have a more interference proof IR receiver but that costs money.

Distance is your friend. The interference drops off quickly as you move your DVR away from your TV.
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