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Valboski

Control TV Volume w/Flirc

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Hey everyone, I have a question that has probably been answered a million times but no matter how I search I can't seem to find the answer.

I would like to use my flirc to control multiple devices if posible, i.e. TV chanel, AV Receiver, Fire TV... Was hoping to use it with an HTPC remote that I have been holding onto for a while to get everything in one package.

Is this possible or do I need to break down and buy the Harmony remote and use it in conjunction with my flirc? I don't have my flirc yet, due on Sunday from Amazon. Looking forward to playing around with it and appreciate any help anyone can give me.

William

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Do I understand correctly, that you want to control other devices from HTPC with Flirc plugged in? If yes, then it's possible with Flirc v2 (the metal one) as it has IR blaster diode built-in. The command line tool flirc_util (you install it together with Flirc configuration software) has a send_ir_raw command, which takes raw IR data formatted as a series of comma-separated values (times in microseconds) and transmits the signal using the IR blaster LED in the Flirc.

But you need to take some things into account:

  • There IR LED is not very strong. It may require a direct line of sight between the Flirc's IR window side and the other hardware's IR receiver window. It may depend on the sensitivity of the receiver in the hardware you want to control.
  • There's no built-in automation for transmitting. The Flirc's main focus is still on controlling the PC (or other USB Host hardware) to which the Flirc is connected. This means that you can't configure the IR signal to be automatically¬†transmitted by the Flirc itself in response to a different IR signal. You need some kind of software or scripting on your HTPC, which will call the flirc_util command line with correct IR data. If you use Windows, then software like EventGhost or AutoHotKey should be able to do that.
  • The IR control is prone to interference if more than one IR transmitter is sending control signals at the same time. For example, if you want Flirc to send a command to your TV when you press a button on your HTPC remote, then there's a high probability that both signals (from the Flirc and from the remote) will interfere with each other causing the TV not to recognise the signal from Flirc. This is the same situation as when you'd try to use two different remotes, pressing buttons on them at the same time. IR remote control doesn't have any mechanism for collision detection or avoidance.

So to sum it up, it's possible, but the usability may vary depending on your needs and hardware.

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