|Welcome to CEDIA Expo 2005!|
The CEDIA Expo is the second largest home theater event in North America, second only to the premiere electronics show, CES, held in Las Vegas. But with CEDIA’s exclusive focus on the home theater and custom installation businesses, it is quickly becoming a prime event for A/V companies to launch and demonstrate their latest wares.
This year’s show was larger than ever, with over 26,000 in attendance and more than 500 exhibitors split between the Indianapolis Convention Center and the RCA Dome. This was the first year that we’ve seen absolutely every available square foot of space occupied. Even side hallways that are normally abandoned were chock full of booths. So what was the news in remote controls this year? Read on and you’ll see!
It’s really hard to miss AMX at the show – huge booth, big signs, lots of desktop and in-wall touchscreen controls to draw you in. But what we didn’t expect to see from them – indeed ever – is a traditional hard buttoned remote control. No, we’re not pulling your leg! With unusual retro styling, the svelte Mio Modero R-1 is an infrared-only remote that looks like nothing else on the market and gives users complete handheld control over complex AMX systems.
The R-1 features 45 backlit laser-engraved buttons that feature an unprecedented level of customizability. With AMX’s KeypadBuilder software, a programmer need only enter exactly what the buttons should say, then submit that order to the company where, for a fee, those labels will be custom engraved on keys and sent back. By default, 6 buttons select devices, 3 activate macros, while the remaining 36 control specific device functions. Now if only someone would figure out how to get those labels to change between devices! The keypad also includes a large chrome menu cursor ring and two chrome volume and channel toggles. At the very top of the remote is a small reverse-backlit LCD screen that indicates the current mode, among other things.
The Mio Modero’s extremely bright backlighting is automatic, but not via a manual button or traditional motion sensor – instead two chrome side rails sense when the remote is held and activate the light. The remote is also spill-resistant thanks to a full-length rubber keypad that protects all internals from liquid damage. No pricing was announced, however the R-1 is expected to be available by the end of the year.