Review (January 2014)
By Kevin Nakano
Remote Technologies Incorporated (RTI) has introduced the new SURFiR companion remote designed for the iPad®, iPhone®, and iPod touch® user. While all of us love our tablets and phones, they are not always the most convenient for controlling simple A/V tasks such as changing volume or switch channels. The SURFiR remote allows users to incorporate the Apple® devices that they already own as the main graphical interface for their control system, while adding the convenience of tactile control with hard buttons, and eliminating the numerous screen swipes needed to control frequent and simple tasks. To further enhance the experience for the user, the SURFiR can track which electronic device is being controlled by the RTiPanel app and automatically control the same component. This offers powerful and intuitive control in an inexpensive remote. It's a clever idea that was missing from the powerful capability of the RTiPanel. Without it, I often found myself reaching for the original IR remote to perform simple tasks, but now that is not necessary and it is all in one simple device. Now users can have both a rich and powerful graphical interface for advance functions and a simple, user-friendly ergonomic remote for basic controls fully integrated.
The SURFiR remote is designed to work with any of RTI's powerful XP control processors, and requires minimal programming for the installer, lowering overall cost and making it simple to integrate into any system. The SURFiR offers support for Apple devices as well as Android®-based smartphones and tablets. Some might think that the word "iR" in the name implies that the SURFiR operates using IR or infrared to send commands. This is not to say that it cannot support sending IR commands through the XP6, just that the device itself does not use IR for communication due to unreliable line-of-sight issues. Instead, the SURFiR remote requires an RM-433 or the two-way ZM-24 2.4GHz Zigbee Transceiver Module to communicate with an XP series control processor. One of the advantages of the two-way ZM-24 is that users can user the remote finder beeper feature. It is not compatible with the RP-1, ZRP-6, MRP-64, or RP-6.
The SURFiR worked perfectly in our system, adding the familiar look and feel of a conventional remote with fully customizable buttons. While it is not intended to replace the more powerful tablet-based user interfaces, it does offer convenient control of commonly used functions.
- Kevin Nakano
Projector: Anthem LTX-500v (aka JVC DLA-HD950) 1080p LCoS Projector
|Review - At a Glance|
RTI - SURFiR Companion Remote
* There is no USB port on the SURFiR. Programming is done in Integration Designer which generates a "code key" that is input on remote keypad.
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