Packard Bell Fast Media Remote Author: cantstraferight -- Posted: 2007-05-15
Manufacturer: Packard Bell (www.packardbell.com)
Product: Packard Bell Fast Media Remote
Where: ebay seller tekgems
The Packard Bell Fast Media Remote was originally bundled with Packard bells high end computers but they stopped selling it with their computers they sold them on to other companies. originally selling for $14-$9 it has now reached the rock bottom price of $0.99
what do you get
sticky pad (for receiver)
and that's it no drivers and no batteries
First impressions of the remote.
Its doesn't feel too cheap but for some reason it was hard getting the batteries in.
There are 32 buttons in total
12 are for numbers "and * and #"
8 are for media things like menu and volume
4 are directional
2 feel like they are for left and right mouse button
5 are for computer things like cd, messenger, phone & help
and the last 3 are marked aux 1-3
but there are no media buttons like play, pause stop etc.
Although the directional pad has 8 arrows there are only 4 buttons and you cant push 2 at the same time.
First impressions of the receiver
The cable is six and a half foot long and it uses a serial connection (com port) so some newer computers might not be able to use it.
It has a double sided sticky pad so you can stick it where ever you want it
First attempt at testing the remote
It only worked about one in three times I pressed a button and sometimes it would count a button press as two. I later found out that some serial ports don't supply enough power for the receiver so some laptops and some computers will not be able to use this remote.
After I couldn't get it to work on one computer I tryed it on a different computer and it worked fine
setting the remote up in windows is a bit of a pain
First you have to install wlirc
The you have to configure the remote
you I've the remote a name then press some of the buttons
after that you must give the name of each button and and press it 10 times
luckily if your too lazy to do that you can grab a pre made config file at the Lirc website
After all that your computer will know if you push a button on the remote and it will know what button but it doesn't know what to do with it.
Some programs may support lirc or with a plug-in they can support it but most don't so you need to use another program to translate the remote button presses into keyboard (and mouse) button presses. I used IREX which is setup through a text file so it can take a while getting it setup right.
Once everything is setup I would make backups of all the files as you don't want
After all that it works pretty well. Its got a good range and doesn't need to be pointed right at the receiver to work.
Modding possibilities and other information
Its a white colour so you should be able to paint the remote or receiver whatever colour you want. you could also mount the receiver inside of a case to keep things tidy
I tryed the receiver with other remotes and out of the 4 I tryed I was able to get one to work with it so it is possible there are other remote you could use.
pros and cons
Its very cheap
It does can control your computer
It takes too long to configure it
It might not work with every ones pc
If you want a cheap remote to control you mp3 or xvid box or maybe you just want to control your main pc then this could be the reaomte for you if your willing to configure it.
If you are looking for a remote for a high end media pc i would go with somthing like the mce remote or the all in wonder remote.