HTPC Input devices.....what do you use?

Discussion in 'Home Theater PCs & Equipment' started by MrGuvernment, May 10, 2012.

  1. MrGuvernment

    MrGuvernment [H]ard as it Gets

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    Now that i am doing an HTPC i am digging through the forums to see what devices people use for their HTPC and they seem to vary, if it isnt in the main post, add what you use and why and include pics if you can.....

    Some seems to prefer remote controls like the logitech harmony line, others smaller compact keyboards with built in track pads of balls....

    Help me, and others decide what should we be looking at?

    • How does it work?
    • What is the distance on it?
    • How does it integrate with your software, XMBC, MC or other software?
    • Did it work in windows, linux or other systems?


    items from other threads suggested or used:

    IOGEAR 2.4G Hz Multimedia Mini Keyboard with Trackball, Scroll Wheel and Backlight LED, GKM571R (Black)
    http://www.amazon.com/Multimedia-Ke...B4KQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1336631880&sr=8-1
    [​IMG]

    Lenovo Multimedia Remote with Keyboard N5901
    http://www.amazon.com/Lenovo-Multimedia-Remote-Keyboard-N5901/dp/B0036VO67I?tag=hardfocom-20
    [​IMG]

    Logitech Wireless Touch Keyboard K400
    http://www.logitech.com/en-sg/keyboards/keyboard/devices/wireless-touch-keyboard-k400
    [​IMG]

    Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Desktop 7000
    http://www.amazon.com/Microsoft-Nat...UZBM/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1336632176&sr=8-1
    [​IMG]

    Azend Group MediaGate GP-IR01BK 1-Channel IR Windows Vista Media Center Remote Control and Receiver (Black)
    http://www.amazon.com/Azend-MediaGa...2?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1336631791&sr=1-2-catcorr
    [​IMG]

    IOGEAR Multimedia Keyboard with Laser Trackball and Scroll Wheel, 2.4GHz Wireless GKM561R (Black)
    http://www.amazon.com/Multimedia-Ke...e=UTF8&qid=1328029720&sr=1-1&tag=hardfocom-20
    [​IMG]

    Premium Wireless HTPC Media Center Keyboard with Laser Trackball
    http://www.vidabox.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=8&products_id=10
    [​IMG]

    Logitech Harmony® 650 Remote
    http://www.logitech.com/en-us/remotes/universal-remotes/devices/6621
    [​IMG]

    Logitech Wireless Keyboard K360 (Dark Silver) (920-003366)

    http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Wireless-Keyboard-Silver-920-003366/dp/B004ZKXXAU?tag=hardfocom-20
    [​IMG]

    CE Compass Mini Wireless Keyboard with Touchpad Mouse PC Remote Control
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004VPXLDI/ref=oh_o04_s00_i00_details?tag=hardfocom-20
    [​IMG]

    Cideko Wireless Air Keyboard and Gyro Mouse Combo for PC, Mac, and PS3 (AVK02)
    http://www.amazon.com/Cideko-Wirele...e=UTF8&qid=1332228266&sr=1-1&tag=hardfocom-20
    [​IMG]

    HP Wireless Mini Keyboard
    http://www.amazon.com/HP-XB387AA-ABA-Wireless-Keyboard/dp/B0044DPB4O?tag=hardfocom-20
    [​IMG]

    Wireless USB PC Remote Control Mouse for PC
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001M56DI0/?tag=hardfocom-20
    [​IMG]

    Microsoft Wireless Desktop 800
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003SVSJ1K/?tag=hardfocom-20
    [​IMG]


    Software remotes for devices

    http://www.unifiedremote.com/

    http://www.mobilemouse.com/
     
  2. Valaire

    Valaire Gawd

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    You're gonna want a remote control of some kind as a primary, not a keyboard/mouse. You can use one as a secondary option if you want to browse the web.

    Harmony One here.
     
  3. morgwon

    morgwon [H]ardness Supreme

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    Another Harmony One user here. I also have the Lenovo multimedia keyboard. Might upgrade to the new one for the backlighting. Before that I had a Dinovo Mini. As dumb as this sounds I stopped using it cause the dongle protruded too much from the front on the my Antec Fusion case. Otherwise it was rock solid.
     
  4. Dexter007

    Dexter007 [H]Lite

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    I have the CE Compass device posted by OP. Works perfectly for me in Win7 x64. I use it as a secondary controller with my main controller being a cheapo Rosewill MCE remote I got from Newegg on sale for $15. The Rosewill also works perfectly in Win7 x64 in WMC and using Mediabrowser.

    The Compass I mainly use when working with Media Center Master when I don't feel like going downstairs and remoting into the HTPC from my desktop. Pretty slick little device.
     
  5. Jeffman

    Jeffman Gawd

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    I actually just use a wireless desktop set. I keep them under the table in my living room when I'm not using them.
     
  6. Tactical_Strike

    Tactical_Strike Limp Gawd

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    +1 for harmony one, only if you cant shell out the money for the RF unit. If you do go for the Harmony one check out the Pulse-Eight CEC adapter
    +1 for the K400, but just know that Logitech is bound to come out with one that has a back-light, but that is the only qualm I have with the K400. If you have an i-device you should look at that as another input device. XBMC has a web interface that works well, but there are others on the i-devices that use the same, but with a different skin.
    Distance I have on my k400 is 20 feet reliable, but I have the receiver dongle behind my case inside an entertainment center nook.
     
  7. mattchapman

    mattchapman Gawd

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    Harmony 650 (no need for One unless you want touchscreen). Once you get over the lag it's OK.
    IOGEAR keyboard/mouse combo for those times when you need a keyboard (web browse, fix bios, etc.).
     
  8. AQ_OC

    AQ_OC 2[H]4U

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    Harmony One and IOGEAR Multimedia Keyboard with Laser Trackball and Scroll Wheel.

    I tried the Lenovo Remote with keyboard but it doesn't not feel good in my hand.


    The Laser trackball works suprisingly well for me...I just wish it were a bit small and had a backlit keyboard.

     
    Last edited: May 10, 2012
  9. SirMaster

    SirMaster 2[H]4U

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    I think this is a great cheap solution:
    http://flirc.tv/

    It's a USB IR receiver.

    It lets you use absolutely ANY IR remote control you already have.

    Using the included software you can map any buttons on the IR remote to any keyboard key presses. Then in your media software like XBMC, just map those keyboard keys to the various functions you want.
     
  10. JohnDC

    JohnDC Limp Gawd

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    Harmony One for Remote.
    Rii for mini keyboard/trackpad combo.
    Very happy with both.
     
  11. motolube

    motolube Gawd

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    I use a Logitech K700 but my uses are geared towards the internet and streaming video from it... that's about it so I don't need a remote.
     
  12. Kelvarr

    Kelvarr [H]ardness Supreme

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    Those two and a Harmony 670. I don't use the remote of the mediagate above, but just the IR module.

    • How does it work? - Perfectly fine. In fact, other than for web browsing, I never use the keyboard. It is a failsafe.
    • What is the distance on it? - I get ~8-10 feet with the K400 (receiver is in the back of the HTPC) before it starts flaking out. With the Harmony and IR receiver, I haven't yet reached a limit. It will work at the very back of my room, and even down the hall some, so at least 15-20 feet away.
    • How does it integrate with your software, XMBC, MC or other software? - Seamlessly. I plugged it into my Windows7 MC box, and it was instantly used (once I set up the MediaPC in the Harmony Software). For XBMC, it works perfectly fine if you install XBMC on Windows. For XBMClive or the Linux/Standalone version of XBMC (version 10...not sure about the new Eden v.11), I had to add the LIRC drivers, but once I did that, it worked fine.
    • Did it work in windows, linux or other systems? - See above. Windows 7 and Ubuntu XBMC.
     
  13. staknhalo

    staknhalo [H]ard|Gawd

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    Logitech Harmony 300i
    [​IMG]

    Wireless Xbox 360 controller for Windows
    [​IMG]



    With my WMC setup I don't need a keyboard or mouse. All text input on my plugins can be done via the old school tap to text method with the remote. Any backend work on the HTPC I do from my work rig via remote desktop.

    The 360 controller is used for the games I launch from within WMC.
     
  14. Occidio

    Occidio [H]ard|Gawd

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    Gyration Air remote is what I use. Perfect for WMC and for using using netflix or any other site through a browser. It works like a Wii remote, either hold the middle button and move the mouse around the screen or double click it and move it freely. It also has an added bonus of controlling your music without even touching the computer.
    The IR is awesome also. You can be practically anywhere in even another room and it still works. It has multiple sections like CABTV/AUX/PC/DVD sections with learning functions. I set up my wife's receiver power and volume through it.

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Xeth

    Xeth [H]ard|Gawd

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    Logitech DiNovo Edge

    [​IMG]

    Looks sexy (acrylic + brushed aluminum), uses standard bluetooth, works with Linux, works for months on a single charge, range is fantastic if you use the included bluetooth dongle.
     
  16. Drawmonster

    Drawmonster 2[H]4U

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    My android phone. By far the best remote for XBMC. I have a Harmony One and one of these as well.

    [​IMG]

    The Harmony One has a bug that causes a delay between button push and actual action. So it's to annoying to use. The cheap little remote works well. I use it when I need a mouse to mess with Windows or something. But the Android XBMC app is by far the best. Full featured and pretty.

    Nice post OP. Very good list of HTPC remotes.
     
  17. kemist1117

    kemist1117 Limp Gawd

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    This remote is awesome but is becoming increasingly hard to find since it has been discontinued. I actually ordered a new old stock spare of the dell remote for if mine ever dies.

    As an alternative these chinese keyboards feature similar airmouse functionality, unfortunately probably not quite as useful as the gyration:

    http://www.amazon.com/Koolertron-2-...T4/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&qid=1336765340&sr=8-14

    http://www.amazon.com/iPazzPort-2-4GHz-Wireless-Keyboard-Remote/dp/B006OW1J1M/ref=pd_sim_pc_2
     
  18. JaguarSKX

    JaguarSKX [H]ard|Gawd

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    I use this from IOGear

    [​IMG]
     
  19. dustNbone

    dustNbone [H]ard|Gawd

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    I just use a generic(ish) MediaGate WMC Remote under XBMC/Linux. It's alot smoother and less clunky than a mouse/keyboard, unless you're using your HTPC for web browsing and other non HT tasks you really don't need a mouse or keyboard.
     
  20. Toto

    Toto n00b

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    Im using the same setup but i just got ordered the new Lenovo with back lighting.
     
  21. ND40oz

    ND40oz [H]ardForum Junkie

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  22. tejpis

    tejpis n00b

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    Are there no apps for iPhone/Android that are comparable to a remote like the Harmony One?
     
  23. nakedhand

    nakedhand 2[H]4U

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  24. Drawmonster

    Drawmonster 2[H]4U

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    Yes there are apps. I use the Android and find it to be the best remote for XBMC, bar none. I also have a Harmony One, but it pales in comparison.
     
  25. staknhalo

    staknhalo [H]ard|Gawd

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    There are ones that can control multiple devices, with an IR receiver. I can't recall the name of the 2 I had seen, but one of them almost has a spherical IR receiver iirc.
     
  26. MrGuvernment

    MrGuvernment [H]ard as it Gets

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    great input, was hoping this thread could be useful to find out what people use and such.
     
  27. matteos

    matteos [H]ard|Gawd

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    Xbox 360 controller with joy2key running at startup in background to use it as a mouse, works great in XBMC
     
  28. MrGuvernment

    MrGuvernment [H]ard as it Gets

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    Well hopefully next week i will get my item ordered but still not sure, waiting on the case as well and then i can get this baby built!
     
  29. YeuEmMaiMai

    YeuEmMaiMai [H]ardForum Junkie

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    use laptop, plug into hdmi cable connected to receiver, make selection and close lid. If I am watchine more than 1 movie, plug wireless keyboard and mouse in.
     
  30. gman76

    gman76 n00b

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    I've been looking at the Logitech wireless KB, anyone have experience with it?
     
  31. agent8

    agent8 [H]Lite

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    I just bought a cheap hp windows remote for $15 bucks shipped. The harmonys are nice but I'd rather save the money at this point and worry about it last.
     
  32. MrGuvernment

    MrGuvernment [H]ard as it Gets

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    messing now with my kindle fire and xbmc remote for it, having some issues, i can play video's fine but none of the other remote optins seem to work so far...

    considering a logitech as i can make it control my tv as well.
     
  33. MrGuvernment

    MrGuvernment [H]ard as it Gets

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    for those with the logitech harmonies.. do you need to buy a separate IR receiver?
     
  34. YeuEmMaiMai

    YeuEmMaiMai [H]ardForum Junkie

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    ^if you PC does not have IR remove receiver you will have to buy it
     
  35. radgoos

    radgoos Limp Gawd

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  36. beyonddc

    beyonddc Limp Gawd

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    In my living room, I use Logitech Wireless Touch Keyboard K400.

    I setup a HTPC using Media Portal at my parents' house, and they are using Streamzap PC remote.

    In my bedroom, I am using SnapStream Firefly PC remote.
     
  37. nobody_here

    nobody_here [H]ardForum Junkie

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    nope

    cheap mini wireless keyboard and mouse from Wallyworld for the occasional maintenance although I use a remote connection on my laptop to do most of that anyways

    XBMC official Android remote app (works over your data/wifi connection)....no BS, no WMC, no transcoding to an extender, no dedicated remote