- Written by Sandy Bird
- Published on 25 August 2008
Not all universal remotes are created equal. Every now and then Dell or Amazon will have a sale on Harmony Remotes. Someone in my office full of programmers will post a link to these deals. The reactions from the employees in the office are quite mixed. Some people cannot believe someone would pay over $100 for a remote when you can buy a new DVD player for significantly less than that. Other people will praises the remotes simply for the ease it brings to other users of the entertainment center in their homes.
Honestly, if you have ever been away from the house and received a call that sounds something like, “You need to come home because I cannot get sound to come out of the TV,” you need to buy a Harmony remote. The best thing about any Harmony remote is the “Help” button. It simply walks the user through all the possible options, asking them simple questions like “Is the Receiver on the DVD Input (yes/no)” then it make the appropriate adjustments based on the answers. It is so simple . . . . and so brilliant.
I purchased the Harmony One when it was first released long before any reviews had been published, and I purchased it solely on the history I have had with the previous products. It is a good remote, however I feel Harmony lost a tiny bit of the magic it had with the 880. The street price on the Harmony One at the current time is about $210. That is almost twice the street price of the 880 (around $130). I am not sure the additional value is there. It looks a little nicer and there is eye candy and geek factor provided by the touch screen. But the 880 has all the same functionality with a stronger IR signal and more dependable hard buttons for the functions assigned to the screen. I will continue to use the Harmony One over the 880 but if you don’t own a Harmony yet, I would seriously consider the cheaper 880 if you are on a budget.