Serendipity strikes when you least expect it.
I was out helping my friend Saleem select a suitable LCD TV & Home Theater system for his flat. At check out, I mentioned to him that eventually we will buy a universal remote to reduce the clutter on the center table. Basically replace 4 remotes (LG 47″ LCD TV, LG DVD Player, Tata Sky Set-top Box, Onkyo Home Theater System) with just one.
The OneForAll range of remotes has become quite popular now and can be easily found at electronic stores across Hyderabad. Basic model (4 devices) start at just Rs. 750/- and go all the way up-to 5,000/- for touch-screen remotes. The price is a far cry from the offering by Logitech weighing in at Rs. 27,000/-
In a spontaneous gesture Saleem purchased and gifted me a OneForAll remote and left me speechless. Our weak protestations were insufficient to convince him that he needed the remote more than we did! Hence, now I am the proud owner of a OneForAll Protecto 4 Universal Remote.
The Protecto 4 remote is quite similar in functionality to the other universal remotes by the company in functionality. The USP of this model is it’s colorful appearance, rubberized grip and back-light.
The remote features 4 device selection buttons (TV, Satellite, DVD Player, Amplifier) and comes with a booklet that contains basic instructions and codes for various devices. OneForAll also maintains a functional website that makes it relatively easy to find codes for your device.
Setting up the remote was quite easy. It seemed to work with the Tata Sky Set-top Box (Humax make) out-of-the-box. Making it work with my new Panasonic LCD TV took two attempts. Making it work with my DVD player took longer (about 5 attempts before I found semi-functional codes).
As with all universal remotes, don’t expect this to provide every single function of your original device remote. Most common functionality is enabled just by entering a 4 digit code. For specific functions, the device can be trained using the original remote.
The device features cream colored plastic body with orange rubber strips. The slim remote body combined with rubber strips make it easy to hold and operate the remote. I don’t think the remote is drop-shock-proof, but the rubberized body will prevent accidental drops for sure.
The remote features a unique orange back-light function that make it easy to operate the remote in pitch dark rooms like home-theater rooms. According to the manual, the back-light duration can be adjusted, volume keys can be locked and macro buttons (one button as a shortcut to a sequence of button presses) can be programmed. This are features I am yet to try out.
The remote is currently priced at Rs. 1,400. If you shop carefully, you should be able to get a discount on it. Even though the functionality of this remote is similar to a basic model costing Rs. 750, the sheer looks of the remote and back-light functionality make it a conversation piece.
The remote came with 4 nos. Duracell AAA batteries and they expected to last 1 year. Hopefully the remote will last longer than that.
Buy Universal Remotes by One For All from Amazon.com:
- URC 4110 4-Device Universal Big-Button Remote Control: [amazonproduct=B000FCP5L2]
- URC-R50 Digital R50 Universal Remote Control: [amazonproduct=B001KC08AE]
- URC 6131N 6-Device Universal Remote Control: [amazonproduct=B0000ALPBA]
- URC R7 Universal Pre-Programmed & Learning Remote: [amazonproduct=B000CSIHW8]
- URC 8820 8-Device Universal Remote Control: [amazonproduct=B00083J29O]
- URC 10820 10 Device Learning Universal Remote Control: [amazonproduct=B00083ET5G]
- URC MasterControl RF20 Universal Learning Remote w/ RF Capability: [amazonproduct=B000FL9E6K]
- URC RFS200 PowerPak Bundle w/ MasterControl RF20 and PowerBlaster: [amazonproduct=B000FL9E6U]