Need thoughts RE-Best Universal for my High end audio and TV, video etc.


Having issues.  Using a "URC" controller.  Having consistent problems with interface between components.  I run Conrad Johnson Pre and Power Amps--other than that, turntable, cd, dvd, tv,----Using ARCAM 600 for switching modes only for each component. ---that's about it.  Installer said he has "issues" with making all work with my CJ equipment. 

Just wondering----does anyone have any thoughts, re---a really good Universal remote for my equipment---or is it best to go back to all of the manual steps?  Or does my installer just not know what he is doing versus the usual Japanese items he is used to working with?  I do know ARCAM has had it's issues.

Appreciate your comments.
bluesnbike1954
I use a RTI and it works flawlessly
Have you contacted Conrad Johnson?
in general,amps should be the easiest things to work with.  The harder components are the ones that rely on HDMI hand offs.
i would get another installer
I use the Crestron G system (it's cheaper than the full blown Crestron) with a tablet as the handset.  Fully satisfied with no issues in three different rooms for a period of four or five years now.

I actively advise against anyone buying the RTI system without the most careful consideration; my experience with it, and with its customer service, has been completely unacceptable.

I purchased the remote through an authorized dealer, who also set it up.

From the outset the remote had an intermittent fault in its battery contacts, which causes it to fail; the fix is to extract the battery using the appropriate tool and reseat it; fix and repeat.

I contacted the dealer to get a replacement, who referred me to RTI Customer Support. RTI Customer Support referred me back to the dealer, in what was clearly a form letter response to specific request for support. Endless loop from which there is no escape.

Compound this with the fact that the software programming of the remote was never complete (buttons didn't work because of programming gaps and errors) and the fact that it’s not possible for the user to modify the remote if his/her system changes e.g., a change from an AppleTV 3 to an AppleTV 4.

All in all we have a product with good technical design that is brought down by a poorly thought out and poorly implemented business model – resulting in an expensive, inadequate, unreliable, and obsolescing product

Go to Harmony or URC as a better alternative. That's what I’m going to do.

PM me if you would like the name of the dealer and installer, so you can avoid them, or if you would like more details on my experience.


I'm still using a URC remote from 30 years ago and it still works flawlessly.  I've recommended them to friends over the years and their experience is similar and they are thrilled with their remotes as well.  I did a little looking and it looks like your remote should have no problem doing what you want with no problems.  I think the problem lies with your installer who probably doesn't know how to or doesn't want to spend the time programming your remote properly.  URC seems to be shifting more of their remotes to ones that rely on programs exclusive to dealers and installers, but as you've seen this depends greatly on the competence of your dealer.  The reviews I've seen from MX780 customers with knowledgeable dealers are consistently very positive, which is more inline with my experience with URC remotes.

Since URC is now more highly invested in depending on dealers for programming their remotes I'd contact them directly and describe your problem both with your remote and your installer.  I'd be very surprised if they don't have a solution for you, and I'm sure they'd also like to know about an installer who's out there making their otherwise fine products look bad.

Last couple thoughts.  Looks like the model below yours -- the MX 450 -- is more in line with their legacy remotes in that you don't need a dealer or a program to make it work.  Also, two of my neighbors who asked for my recommendation instead went with Harmony remotes and both failed within a year.  They also seemed pretty flimsy compared to the build quality of the URC remotes I've seen and used.  Personally I'd stick with Universal however you can make it work.  Best of luck. 

+1 soix. personally, i like hard button remotes, which are much more intuitive for me, and the urc has the simplest interface. like soix i use a legacy urc remote (the wr-7) for a couple of my systems; even though i had to program a couple of components by the "learning" method it was very easy to do by myself and has operated flawlessly for years. (i've also heard great things about the more advance mx980/mx780).  the hamonys are the simplest to set up, and do have their virtues, but for me were less intuitive and quirkier--i often needed to go to multiple steps to turn on a component or switch an input.