Marco is a volunteer for an organization (NSW Australia) that builds custom aids for people with disability, and has recently been looking at a project to create a ‘very large button’ IR remote control for a cable TV Set Top Box (STB). The custom unit needed basic functions (Channel Up/Down, Volume Up/Down and Power On/Off). Commercially available large button remotes have buttons that are still too small and/or they have too many buttons. Soon he hit a roadblock trying to capture some difficult Foxtel signals and searched all over the web looking for a solution. Needless to say, nothing worked out for him until he came across AnalysIR via Google. Once he started Troubleshooting the Big Button Infrared remote control with AnalysIR the root cause of his problems became obvious.
The project brings back memories of our own Custom TV remote control using Arcade style console and Follow up: Custom TV infrared remote control using Arcade style console. Fortunately, our project is no longer needed as the user has regained enough mobility to use a standard remote.
Troubleshooting the Big Button Infrared remote control with AnalysIR
Marco has created a comprehensive 4 part series covering the whole project and makes an excellent read.
Big Button Remote Control – Part 1 – Design and Prototype
Big Button Remote Control – Part 2 – Foxtel IR Protocol Saga
Big Button Remote Control – Part 3 – Software Implementation
Big Button Remote Control – Part 4 – Completion
In part 2 Marco kindly acknowledges the role AnalysIR played in making this project a success…be sure to read all of his posts to avoid making the same mistake in your own IR projects!
Once you have read Marcos posts, you should then have a look at Infrared receiver showdown – TSOP34438 vs VS1838B winner revealed to see why using only quality IR components from companies like Vishay is important if you want to avoid a ‘saga’ like the one encountered by Marco above. You should also be aware that some difficult IR protocols required particular receivers to work reliably.
After we posted this article Marco sent the following encouraging update:
“I spoke to the client’s carers earlier this week, as a follow up, and they said the project has been really successful in getting him motivated to move his arm and fingers.”