Monday, September 7, 2009
So after 2 1/2 years of happiness with the excellent Harmony 880 it came time for replacement. Had we not two toddlers, the battery door might not need tape to stay shut, and the screen might not be cracked. C'est la vie. I've been keeping an eye on Harmony One pricing, but at $200 I couldn't rationalize it. I really like the layout of the One for no-look DVR control. The 880's layout is not as well thought out. Enter the 700.
Button layout like the One, except for one thing: it's better. The Harmony 900 at $400 has a similar layout to the One, but it includes four color buttons for use in programming BluRay players and my DirecTV DVR. The One doesn't have these buttons, but the 900 and 700 do.
Dedicated hard buttons for activities. Anyone can control my equipment easily. Wanna watch TV? Hit the "Watch TV" button at the top of the remote and it'll turn on all the necessary boxes and set inputs and you're done.
Programming: I already had the 880 programmed for my gear, so I just told the (excellent and ever-updating) web-based programming guide to copy everything and it did just so in less than 5 minutes. Easiest remote program ever. By far.
Price: $150. It'll come down for sure, but I had BB store credit about to expire and a gift card (Thanks, Flukers) so it came in at <$100 out of my pocket vs. about $200 for the One.
Lack of charging cradle. The 880 has a cradle, the 700 does not. The battery is advertised to last for a week per charge, and it recharges with an included cable, so it's a fair tradeoff for me.
Lack of reviews. This thing was just released last week, so I'll be the willing Guinea pig.
Conclusion: I'm happy. It's easier to control my DVR than was our 880. It was a good deal. It looks nice. And now we can demote the 880 remote to duties in another room.