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telcodad

join:2011-09-16
Lincroft, NJ
kudos:3

1 edit

[Comcast Equip] New XR8 device will allow older STBs to use RF remotes

Comcast may be preparing to deploy a new device called the "XR8" that would allow subscribers to control their STBs with RF remotes like the XR2 and XR5:

Universal Electronics preps XR8, XR2 'aim anywhere' devices for Comcast
By Steve Donohue, FierceCable - February 11, 2014
»www.fiercecable.com/story/univer···14-02-11

quote:
An FCC test application for Comcast's new XR8 device includes an image of the Sequence RF4CE-to-Serial Adapter that Universal exhibited last year at the SCTE Cable-Tec expo, along with an Xfinity logo. The adapter could be inserted into the IR port on legacy set-tops to enable to the boxes to be controlled with radio frequency signals that are more effective than the infrared technology that Comcast and most other pay TV providers currently use in remote controls.

"Your Xfinity remote can be paired with the XR8, allowing you to control your set-top box or DTA [digital terminal adapter] even when the device is placed out of line-of- sight (for example, in an entertainment center or behind your TV)," Universal wrote in the user manual that was included with its FCC application for the XR8 device.

 

EDIT: Found this info and docs (on a generic version of it?) on Universal Electronic's site:

Adapter, RF4CE-to-Serial
»www.uei.com/product/north-americ···o-serial

UNIVERSAL RF4CE SERIAL ADAPTER - User Guide
»www.urcsupport.com/images/upload···_B01.pdf

SpHeRe31459

join:2002-10-09
Sacramento, CA
kudos:1

Ahh that's cool, nice way to give people a chance to use the new remotes, and probably a great way for Comcast to make $20 per remote off of them (i.e. tell customers to order the XR5 from their webstore).



SeanWhite

@comcast.net

Even though this device would probably cost me money, I fully and without hesitation endorse this product. Now that we got the pleasantries out-of-the-way let's start shipping these babies out to customers posthaste.



bananarama

@comcast.net

The frustrating thing about all these new RF remotes, which have infinitely better latency than IR, is that they can't be programmed into a universal remote like a Harmony.

Even the RF-based Harmony remotes rely on a special RF-to-IR adapter that still sends legacy IR signals to the devices, which probably adds MORE latency.

So you have to choose... the better latency of RF, but back to a separate remote for every device, or a nice universal remote with the sluggishness of IR or RF-to-IR.



telcodad

join:2011-09-16
Lincroft, NJ
kudos:3

said by bananarama :

Even the RF-based Harmony remotes rely on a special RF-to-IR adapter that still sends legacy IR signals to the devices, which probably adds MORE latency.

So you have to choose... the better latency of RF, but back to a separate remote for every device, or a nice universal remote with the sluggishness of IR or RF-to-IR.

Hopefully, as the Zigbee RF4CE (Radio Frequency for Consumer Electronics) standard gets used by more and more manufacturers and devices, Harmony will end up making a model that works with it.

joejoejeo

join:2006-04-02
Bloomington, IN

If there any info on the remote control for xr8 that is listed in the article and also is there any info on the generic version of the x1 comcast remote as stated in the article



telcodad

join:2011-09-16
Lincroft, NJ
kudos:3

said by joejoejeo:

Is there any info on the remote control for xr8 that is listed in the article and also is there any info on the generic version of the x1 comcast remote as stated in the article

I've only found this page on the UEI site on their products for the Pay-TV market: »www.uei.com/north-america/subscr···roadcast

BTW - I also came across this YouTube video about a December 2012 presentation by the Zigbee Alliance, which includes material from UEI and Comcast: »www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl···ZEaJVJ98

Also found a link to the full, 48-page, slide set on the Zigbee Alliance website:

ZigBee RF4CE: A Quiet Revolution is Underway
Zigbee Alliance presentation - December 6, 2012
»docs.zigbee.org/zigbee-docs/dcn/···ides.pdf

joejoejeo

join:2006-04-02
Bloomington, IN

I want to know about the xr13 which is refered to in the article in the post post



telcodad

join:2011-09-16
Lincroft, NJ
kudos:3

said by joejoejeo:

I want to know about the xr13 which is refered to in the article in the post

Sorry, I could not find anything for "XR13" when I searched the FCC site, but I did find the FCC OET Exhibits page for the XR8: »apps.fcc.gov/oetcf/eas/reports/V···MG3-4868

The last link in the displayed list will bring up the XR8 user's guide, where the XR13 is mentioned:
quote:
COMPATIBLE DEVICES:

SET-TOP BOXES AND DTAS

The XR8 can be used for out-of-sight
control with the set-top boxes and
DTAs listed below:

DTA
uDTA
RNG100
RNG110
RNG150
RNG150N
RNG200N
DCX3200
DCX3200-M
DCX3400
DCX3400-M
DCX3501

 
XFINITY REMOTES
Xfinity Remotes that can be paired
with the XR8 include:

XR2
XR5
XR11
XR13

joejoejeo

join:2006-04-02
Bloomington, IN

i know that the XR11 remote is also the x1 remote with voice control but what is the XR13 remote



telcodad

join:2011-09-16
Lincroft, NJ
kudos:3

said by joejoejeo:

i know that the XR11 remote is also the x1 remote with voice control but what is the XR13 remote?

IDK, maybe a newer remote targeted for use with "X3"?


Thespis
I'm not an actor, but I play one on TV.
Premium
join:2004-08-03
Keller, TX
reply to telcodad

How does this differ from what these guys have been doing for years? Not only RF remotes, but IR routing to individual emitters. They can individually control any device in the cabinet, even duplicate devices.
»www.universalremote.com/
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joejoejeo

join:2006-04-02
Bloomington, IN
reply to telcodad

it is now listed on the »www.urcsupport.com/index.php homepage and also on »www.urcsupport.com/html.php?page_id=814 and also there is a pairing guide »www.urcsupport.com/html.php?page_id=811 and also there is a user manual »www.urcsupport.com/images/upload···_B01.pdf


joejoejeo

join:2006-04-02
Bloomington, IN
reply to Thespis

Universal Remote Control is different then Universal Electronics »www.uei.com/



telcodad

join:2011-09-16
Lincroft, NJ
kudos:3
reply to joejoejeo

said by joejoejeo:

it is now listed on the »www.urcsupport.com/index.php homepage and also on »www.urcsupport.com/html.php?page_id=814 and also there is a pairing guide »www.urcsupport.com/html.php?page_id=811 and also there is a user manual »www.urcsupport.com/images/upload···_B01.pdf

Thanks, I see there's more box models listed there than those listed in Comcast's XR8 user guide on the FCC site.

joejoejeo

join:2006-04-02
Bloomington, IN

Yes because the Comcast's xr8 user guide lists only the cable boxes they provide and the generic version would have to have more boxes because of that version not being tied to a specific cable provider



Thespis
I'm not an actor, but I play one on TV.
Premium
join:2004-08-03
Keller, TX
reply to joejoejeo

I understand that. I was just wondering why this is news when somebody else has been doing it well for a long time.
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telcodad

join:2011-09-16
Lincroft, NJ
kudos:3

said by Thespis:

How does this differ from what these guys have been doing for years? Not only RF remotes, but IR routing to individual emitters. They can individually control any device in the cabinet, even duplicate devices.
»www.universalremote.com/

Not sure what you exactly mean, but this is not just about controlling multiple equipment via RF. The XR8 is the first small, simple adapter I've seen that uses the external IR receiver input on many current and older STBs/DTAs to allow them to be used with paired, RF remotes.

This now provides a solution to the problem many people have had with using multple IR-controlled boxes in the same room/area: »How to power up RNG boxes seperately


Thespis
I'm not an actor, but I play one on TV.
Premium
join:2004-08-03
Keller, TX

Don't get me wrong, it's a cool idea. The only difference I see is that this uses an RF receiver that's plugged into the IR input on a device, while the URC system uses a small IR emitter at each device. The end result is the same. To each his own...
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SpHeRe31459

join:2002-10-09
Sacramento, CA
kudos:1

1 edit

said by Thespis:

Don't get me wrong, it's a cool idea. The only difference I see is that this uses an RF receiver that's plugged into the IR input on a device, while the URC system uses a small IR emitter at each device. The end result is the same. To each his own...

The end result is not always the same, the IR to RF back to IR relay stuff has indeed been around for a long time, but it's still prone to the same issues as any IR solution, in that somewhere in the chain the commands may not get sent properly.

I think what you're missing is that there is a special serial-type port on the back of most cable boxes that takes raw IR input codes directly. What's more the remotes this is used with are RF natively, so they aren't even sending out IR signals.

So it should be more reliable because this isn't just another IR transmitter system that's IR blasting the signal in the vicinity of the box (like a generic IR system would). This is a cable box specific device that takes those codes via RF (from an RF native remote) and directly sends them as raw IR (basically special hexadecimal) codes serial data into the back of the box.


Thespis
I'm not an actor, but I play one on TV.
Premium
join:2004-08-03
Keller, TX

I agree, but the system I'm talking about uses a remote capable of either RF, IR or both specific to each device. In the system I'm using (URC MRF-250 with MX-350 remotes), the remote is RF to the base unit and IR from the base to the device via an individual IR emitter at each device. This is not an "IR Blaster". The MRF-350 is capable of transmitting raw IR over the serial interface. My system is about 15 years old. The MFR-350 was introduced in 2006.
»www.mito-oem.com/media/pdf/MRF-3···d5cd193b
»content.abt.com/documents/6071/mx350_man.pdf
In my opinion, this is a more versatile system, as you can use it with devices that have serial inputs and those that do not.
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