AV receiver offers unique flexibility and possibilities when building a home cinema. For instance, remote control settings for multi-room systems are diverse and bring convenience and comfort. Furthermore, a receiver can be used to build a full-scale home entertainment system, including multi-room setups. Such entertainment systems can transfer video through your apartment or house. Here, an AV receiver serves as a hub, being the heart of the system.
At the same time, you won’t necessarily have all the control over the whole system from any room. For example, you may have a chance to control the volume depending on your setup but may be unable to turn the system on or off or make your mp3 player play another track.
And that doesn’t sound very encouraging, right? But hold your horses and don’t get disappointed with the idea of having a comprehensive home entertainment system, as there are still options to control the entire system with ease and joy. And now I’ll tell you exactly how to do it.
An RF remote control
RF remote works excellently if your separate rooms are less than 100 feet away from the AV receiver. Regarding cost, RF (radio frequency) remotes come for approximately the same price as IR (infrared) ones. Yet, keep in mind, if you are one of those lucky owners of large houses with many rooms, you need to keep track of the remote attentively. Or get ready to face the challenge of searching for it all over your place and then find it in the most apparent place after wasting a tremendous amount of time. The good news is that you won’t need to change your place to use this solution. So, how does it work?
Your AV receiver already has a remote, but it is an IR one, which has no use unless you are in the same room as the receiver, TV, BlueRay player, etc. Thus, you will need an RF receiver to convert RF signals into IR. It will also require special IR flashers to send the signals to devices that only support infrared commands. A flasher is a cable plugged into an RF receiver and should be placed in front of the device (TV, AV receiver, etc.) IR sensor. Most frequently, you can find it upfront.
Altogether, apart from the limited 100 feet distance, it is a reliable and convenient setup providing complete control over the multi-room home entertainment system.
A wireless IR repeater system
Talking about other remote control options, using a wireless IR repeater system can make your life much easier. It would require several programmable IR remotes. Some remotes that come together with your devices (TVs, players, etc.) may work fine.
The idea behind the setup is that the transmitter converts the IR signal to RF when you give a command using the IR programmed to control other system components. Then it sends the RF signal to the dedicated RF receiver, which translates it back to IR and sends the command to the AV components using IR flashes.
This setup is straightforward and can expand to multiple rooms without significant changes to your place. While being cheaper, it is less convenient than the RF remote system. You are still limited to the 100 feet range and will need to install the IR receiver and RF transmitter close to an AC outlet.
A wired IR repeater system
A wired IR system is the most reliable and interference-resistant option. It works great if your place is still under construction. In this case, you will have a chance to install the control wires right into your walls, concealing them from others. It creates a neat and professional-looking setup.
It requires an IR remote and dedicated IR sensor to share the room with your AV equipment. It will receive signals from the remote and relay them to an IR hub connected via wires. Hub will receive and process the signal, creating the command and delivering it to the right equipment using IR flashers.
Such a setup can easily extend the range of 100 feet, allowing the creation of massive multi-room configurations. However, it is the most difficult one to make.