URC MX-900, TX-1000, & MX-3000 Universal Remotes Page 2

The downfall of many macro-based remotes - where multiple commands are spit out to initiate activities like "Watch DVD" - is that if all the commands aren't received by the correct piece of gear, the system gets out of sync. With the line-of-sight infrared (IR) technology used in most remotes, commands can be missed if the remote isn't pointed at the entire stack of electronics for the duration of the macro command. But with the addition of the MRF-300 ($199), one of URC's optional radio frequency (RF) base stations, all three of these remotes allow full system control without "pointing."

Using RF instead of (or along with) IR offers several benefits. First, you can control gear that's in a closet or behind cabinet doors. Second, you can wander around the house and retain control. Up to 15 uniquely addressable MRF-300s can be installed around the home, and you can also select whether components respond to IR, RF, or both. (As for me, I put one MRF-300 by my main system and the other in my bedroom.)

During programming, each MRF-300 is named and assigned an address. Controlling multiple identical components (such as DSS or cable boxes) from the same RF station is easily accomplished through six individually addressable IR outputs. The MRF-300 uses industry-standard 1/8-inch IR emitters, and has ample output to drive double-headed emitters, allowing a single MRF-300 to handle up to 12 components. Installers will like the built-in RF interference "sniffer" that helps find the best location for the RF receiver.

All three remotes support control for up to 255 devices, with up to 255 pages within a device. That means there are over 65,000 programmable pages, for virtually unlimited flexibility! I created pages that served as a TV warm-up macro, counting down from 10 seconds while my DLP HDTV warmed up. You can also have different page layouts for different members of the family or different areas of the house.