Philips Pronto TSU9600 Touchscreen Control Panel Page 4

Philips Pronto TSU9600 Touchscreen Control Panel

Philips Pronto TSU9600 atop an RFX9600 Pronto Serial Extender

Since I was reviewing Escient's new FP-1 iPod Music Manager concurrently, it seemed the planets had aligned for me to run the Pronto through its paces. With the FP-1 connected to my audio system, the Pronto freed my iPod tunes, letting me amble about selecting whatever music I fancied right from its screen. Whether lounging in bed, outside by the pool, or anywhere within range of my Wi-Fi network, the Pronto kept me connected. Escient owners will love controlling their music libraries while wandering around their homes, no longer needing to fire up a TV to make song selections. When a song is playing, the screen displays artist, album, and track metadata, along with a thumbnail of the album art and a time-progress bar. The scroll wheel's sole function is navigating Escient song lists, and it's quite effective. Currently, two-way Escient control is limited to music, which isn't too big of a problem since you'll usually have the TV on when browsing the movie collection in your Escient DVD manager. (Nonetheless, control for movie content is slated for a mid-May software release.) At the time of my review, Philips hadn't fully completed its fine-tuning with the FP-1, so I experienced some glitches that other Escient owners likely won't, including albums that occasionally appeared as "Unknown" despite having metadata attached and, less often, albums whose track lists were populated by songs from another. Philips says it's working with Escient to resolve any issues, and the remote's firmware is fully upgradable for customers in the field.

The Lutron lighting interface worked flawlessly, exactly as promised. If you own a RadioRA lighting system, the Pronto lets you carry your lighting automation with you around the house. The interface gives you instant access to 17 different lighting scenes, including All On and All Off. A scene can be programmed to control a single light or groups of lights, with feedback on the remote indicating whether a light is on or off. Plus the Pronto lets you raise and lower lighting levels.

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