Perhaps the most important aspect of any home-entertainment system is how you control it. What good is a pristine picture and sublime sound if members of your family—or even you—can't easily enjoy it? Each device has its own remote control with a different layout, making it nearly impossible for anyone to operate the system effectively.
One solution is a universal remote, such as the new Harmony One from Logitech. As a member of the Harmony family of universal remotes, the One offers some unique features and capabilities far beyond most others. Even better, it has improved on its predecessors, which were already my favorite universal remotes. Logitech conducted extensive ergonomic tests to determine the best design, and they were wildly successful.
A universal remote operates several components by issuing their infrared (IR) codes from a preprogrammed database; some can also "learn" the codes for devices not in their database. There are many such universal remotes available today, but most share a common problem—they're difficult to configure and use.
All Harmony remotes solve these problems quite elegantly. First, they are designed around activities, such as watching TV, playing a DVD, and listening to a CD. The Harmony remotes treat the A/V system as a unified whole rather than a collection of components.