- Software installation is very simple
- Software is installed in "steps", making the installer aware of what is taking place
- Simple layout, providing a fast location of buttons for device use
- Buttons are rubber, not plastic
- Porous rubber-like grips - The best grips on a remote I've seen (you find the same on digital cameras, such as Nikon's DSLRs)
- The Glow button illuminates every important button, making it easy to view in complete darkness
- Remote transmitter is very powerful and covers a wide angle and an impressive range (more than 25ft)
- Changeable faceplates (Silver, Red, and Blue)
- One of very few remotes enabling removal of the top plate, which allows for cleaning from build-up of residue on the buttons and the surrounding cracks
- Help Button actually does what is says
- Online storage of all your special functions and Activities
- Built-in flash memory (if your batteries die, no problem)
After using the remote for an extended period of time, I was impressed with the simple layout, and the very friendly software installation routine. Since the remote uses your computer, it's important the installation goes very smoothly. Logitech was successful in doing this. The setup routines were there to guide me every step of the way. As you can see, I had very few issues with the 676, and the delay issue was more of a request for a change in future remotes, and probably will not affect most users in the first place.
- No Prev button for scrolling through the devices menus
- Allowing for transmission delays, quicker than 100ms?
- Somewhat small LCD viewing area (but still rather large compared to most remotes in this price class)
The LCD size, in most cases, did just fine, but there were situations where I would have liked a larger LCD. As noted above, the size of the LCD on the 676 is still generous, and many remotes I've seen selling for about the same price, don't have an LCD at all.
The handling of the remote was the best I've experienced. It was well-balanced, feeling very comfortable in my hands. Add to the great handling, the grips on the remote, its compact size, the elaborate customization, and you have a winner. The Harmony 676 left me very satisfied, and I have no doubts as to its capabilities.
I give the Harmony 676, a
Footnote on the upcoming Harmony 880...
Logitech informs me the Harmony 880 is their first brainchild of remotes, designed exclusively by their company. I can already see this in the design, and I can't say much at this point, but if you like the 676, you MUST checkout the upcoming 880, which will be reviewed here on DigitalDingus, coming around the middle of May.
Update on the Harmony 880 review (August 18, 2005)
The Harmony 880 remotes have been in large demand, and DigitalDingus has been one of the few selected reviewers to receive one of these remotes. DigitalDingus is very excited and pleased to be on the list. Currently, the Harmony 880 review is in progress...