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Do I Need a Remote?

olds

Elite Member
Mar 3, 2000
49,616
441
126
Running Windows 8
Built a new rig and have it hooked to my TV. I am not sure it's a true "HTPC" as I don't watch cable or OTA on it, just Netflix and Blu Rays ((and browse and game).
I am running the trial of Total Media Theater 6 for watching Blu Rays and have to go between the keyboard and mouse for controls.

Am I supposed to be using a remote?
If so, how would it interface with the PC?
 
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LoveMachine

Senior member
May 8, 2012
491
3
81
I bought a cheap Rosewill Win7 media remote on the Amazons for about $20, essentially just for the USB receiver that comes with it. I use a Harmony remote, so I just added a device profile for it and now the Harmony does the job for nearly all tasks in WMC, XBMC, and iTunes. If you don't Harmonize, you can just get the Win7 remote, plug in the USB dongle, Win7 will install its own driver, and blammo, you have remote control.
 

Dirigible

Diamond Member
Apr 26, 2006
5,950
7
81
I like a remote. I mostly use this sort of thing:
http://www.amazon.com/Lenovo-Enhance...ds=lenovo+5902

Cheaper but crappier and more break-ier:
http://www.amazon.com/OrientEX-Rii-W...4&keywords=rii
http://www.amazon.com/Mini-Wireless-...5&keywords=rii


A cheap windows media remote is useful for some things, but useless for some computer functions. The above are useful for pretty much all computer functions, since they are combo KB/M units in a tiny size. I don't use real KB/M at all with my HTPCs.
 

thestrangebrew1

Diamond Member
Dec 7, 2011
3,048
175
106
I like a remote. I mostly use this sort of thing:
http://www.amazon.com/Lenovo-Enhance...ds=lenovo+5902

Cheaper but crappier and more break-ier:
http://www.amazon.com/OrientEX-Rii-W...4&keywords=rii
http://www.amazon.com/Mini-Wireless-...5&keywords=rii


A cheap windows media remote is useful for some things, but useless for some computer functions. The above are useful for pretty much all computer functions, since they are combo KB/M units in a tiny size. I don't use real KB/M at all with my HTPCs.

I've got the one in the 2nd link, looks exactly the same except mine is a Visiontek Candyboard. Weird. Anyways, I like it. Easy to use, works better than a remote IMO. Only problem is I've only had it for about 2 months and the response seems like it's getting worse. Feels kinda laggy.
 

Charlie98

Diamond Member
Nov 6, 2011
6,210
38
91
Does anyone know if it works on Windows 8?
The new version does W8... I have one of those Rosewill W7/WMC remotes, too. It's fine navigating through WMC (which is my primary front end) but is worthless trying to navigate elsewhere. I'll be looking into a better remote soon, but the W7 remote is easy and cheap enough.

I think this is the new and improved verison...
 
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monkey333

Senior member
Apr 20, 2007
790
4
81
The other option, if you use them is either an ipad or android to control your pc, they can act as a virtual mouse pad and keyboard.
 

Dirigible

Diamond Member
Apr 26, 2006
5,950
7
81
I've got the one in the 2nd link, looks exactly the same except mine is a Visiontek Candyboard. Weird. Anyways, I like it. Easy to use, works better than a remote IMO. Only problem is I've only had it for about 2 months and the response seems like it's getting worse. Feels kinda laggy.
Yeah, dunno who in china makes them but multiple brands sell them. When they work they're great. I have about a 50% success rate though. :-/
 

amdhunter

Lifer
May 19, 2003
23,264
155
106
45
Got a smartphone? There are a lot of apps that will use VNC to control your computer. You lose the tactile feeling of a remote, but there are some useful free ones that you can use.
 

olds

Elite Member
Mar 3, 2000
49,616
441
126
I tried the Android option, it works but I think I'd prefer a remote.

Do these remotes work with TotalMedia Theater or do I have to use MCE?

Does a universal remote like the Harmony (to control TV, Receiver, DVR) wotk with a PC?
 

LoveMachine

Senior member
May 8, 2012
491
3
81
I tried the Android option, it works but I think I'd prefer a remote.

Do these remotes work with TotalMedia Theater or do I have to use MCE?

Does a universal remote like the Harmony (to control TV, Receiver, DVR) wotk with a PC?
I can't confirm since I don't use TMT but I have a strong hunch the remotes do work with it.

As I posted above, to get a Harmony to work with a PC, you need some sort of IR receiver for the PC to get the signal from the Harmony. Buy a W7 remote as listed above, plug in USB doodad that comes with it, add device profile for W7 remote in the Harmony setup software, throw W7 remote in the trash.
 
Oct 16, 1999
10,497
3
0
Is that a 'mouse' pad on that? How does that work?
Yes, mash the direction you want the mouse pointer to go and it goes. You can adjust speed and such like a regular mouse. It's adequate for when you need it, but don't expect pinpoint precision. It's just good enough for web browsing without being frustrating.
 

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