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View Full Version : Controller: some [early] observations



egd
2008-05-24, 17:11
So, I've had the Duet for a little while now and after the battle to upgrade firmware and render the device useful I've been using the Controller exclusively to control all my SB3s, Transporter and Receiver. What follows are my initial observations (based on using out of the box functionality):

- Once you have the Controller up and running it works pretty reliably
- Being able to browse Albums sorted by Artist still needs to be addressed, but it seems this is underway (thanks Ben). I look forward to being able to browse Album covers, sorted by Artist :)
- I'm pleasantly surprised by the SB3, Receiver and Transporter's responsiveness to the Controller (instantaneous). Somehow I figured there'd be a lag and things wouldn't be quite as snappy as with an IR remote but I was wrong
- I love the fact that I can sit in a dark room and control my music without having to turn on a light. Motion sensor activation of the backlight is extremely useful
- Browsing long album and/ or artist lists can be cumbersome, despite the wheel. It would be useful to have a button-combo or something of the sort to allow you to jump to a letter in the alphabet.
- Being able to control any SB3, Receiver or Transporter anywhere in the house from a single remote is nice plus.
- Searching for something is a PITA. Whilst I appreciate there is currently no alternative, I don't think the clickwheel cuts it as a keypad. Any future version of the Controller would do well to consider a mobile phone type arrangement whereby the keyboard can slide out such as on the Nokia E65 or like. The IR beats the Controller hands down in this area, and is enough reason to keep the IR remote handy - assuming you're not using a Receiver.
- A slightly larger screen would have been beneficial, both in terms of the size of coverart and also in terms of text being more readily visible without having to scroll across the screen.

All told, it's a good first effort that will undoubtedly improve as software enhancements are made, albeit at this point I find it less compelling than I thought I would.