PROS / The main up and down arrow rocker is perfect for scrolling through pages.
CONS / The supplied wall charger is cheaply made and a power cradle is much needed.
VERDICT / The Logitech Harmony 700 has fantastic features and is well worth the investment.
The Logitech Harmony 700 universal remote was able to wiggle its way up in the ranks and make our number two spot in the side-by-side comparison. Having our number one product, Logitech Harmony One as competition is sure to put a strain on any universal remote's ego. The Harmony One has proven superior because of its LCD color touch screen and power cradle. The Harmony 700 was able to accept its Top Ten Reviews Silver Award with grace and pride, however, due to its gorgeous LCD color screen, two-year warranty, fantastic help and support and a great list of features.
The Harmony 700 is less expensive than the Harmony One, and rightly so, due to its lack of a touch screen and disappointing power management situation. An interesting fact to think about when reading our review about the Logitech 700 universal remote is the jump from the One's 15 devices to Harmony 700's six devices. While we think this product is definitely worthy of its number two spot, we have to wonder why Logitech made that decision which decreased the functionality of this remote.
One design element missing from the Harmony 700 universal remote is the power cradle. Because of this, rechargeable batteries are used in its place. While the batteries can last up to a week or longer, the process of using two cables to plug the remote into a wall outlet can be tedious. However, our favorite feature was born out of this lack of a power cradle. The motion sensor on the advanced universal remote helps the battery status indicator on the screen stay within the green power zone much longer than a remote without the sensor would. When left unattended, the remote shuts off, and with a gentle shake, it comes back on.
The activity buttons are located conveniently at the top of the universal remote. With one touch, you can watch TV, a movie, listen to music or get technical support help. Below the activity buttons and the LCD color screen on the Harmony 700 advanced universal remote are additional programmable buttons; they are color coordinated, making them extremely simple to use and to see. The red, green, yellow and blue buttons are grouped together and can be programmed to your favorite devices with one-touch ease. Along with the groupings of the activity buttons, we also love the fact that Logitech added a rewind and skip button to this universal remote for additional ease.
Like the Harmony One, we would have liked to have seen this universal remote equipped with both the infrared (IR) and radio frequency (RF) capabilities. For the price tag on the Harmony 700, the ability to turn on your television or audio equipment through the entertainment center doors should be an included benefit.
The Logitech Harmony 700 is shaped much like the Harmony One, with a beautifully sleek ergonomic body that fits perfectly in the palm of your hand, adding to that overall viewing experience.
Not distinguishable from the many photos of the individual universal remotes online, the matted black finish on the 700 is actually more to our taste than the advanced universal One remote. On the Harmony One, there is a black glossy finish that attracts fingerprints and must be wiped down frequently. We appreciated the simple black matte of the Harmony 700 that is easy to keep clean and free of marks.
Another feature we appreciated is the intuitive design of the buttons on the universal remote. Each button is sculpted to be a different size and shape, making identifying the buttons simple. The backlit control buttons are an absolute must for universal remotes, and of course, the Harmony 700 has this feature, making late-night channel surfing easier.
The LCD screen on the Harmony 700 has bright vibrant colors and all text is easy to read. The one qualm we had with the screen, however, is that in order to see these vibrant colors, text and programmed channel buttons, you have to be looking at the screen straight on. When tilting from side to side, the screen becomes dark and unreadable.
Help and Support
Like all Logitech advanced universal remotes, the help and support options are fantastic. The 700 is no exception. Live support is ready to assist you whenever a problem arises. Like the Harmony One, the 700 also boasts a help button on the remote itself that allows you to access all of the help forms and guides for fixing your problems. Infrared learning is available to assist you in becoming an expert in taking full advantage of the infrared technology programmed into your remote.
We were impressed, and a bit surprised, with this particular universal remote's warranty. Unlike its counterparts, the Harmony One and the Harmony 650, Logitech has given this advanced universal remote a two-year warranty instead of the standard one year. We are not sure why the Harmony 700 is an exception, but we were pleased, and we know consumers are, too.
While researching this product in length, we did find some information that was unsatisfactory. Unlike the Harmony One with its power cradle, the Harmony 700 universal remote comes with a wall charger and two rechargeable Eneloop batteries. The charger, as consumers vented, is cheaply made and is not up to Logitech's standards. The batteries, however, can remain charged for up to a week and, if needed, can be replaced with two AA batteries, since replacing rechargeable batteries can be a tad more expensive.
Ease of Use
The Harmony 700 universal remote, despite its many functions and features, is quite simple to use and program. When you purchase this advanced universal remote, you receive a package with the installation CD software and USB cable included. At the top of the Harmony 700 is a USB port. Simply plug the USB cord into the top and connect it to a PC or Mac, and the device will be recognized by the computer. From here, Logitech has a database of 250,000 devices from 5,000 brands. Many customers mention they were able to find all of their devices brands, and all of the years, too. While the setup has been professed to be simple, it can be time consuming. This is your universal remote, so you will have to program your six devices to this new remote.
We must look at this ease of use for those who do not have the internet at home, however. For many, the simple hookup and download information is not simple at all, and not even possible. If you do not have internet access at home, the simple setup will be impossible for you. If you are in this situation, we would recommend our number four universal remote product, the Philips Prestigo SRT9320, which has a setup wizard on the remote itself.
The Harmony 700 universal remote is a fantastic product created by Logitech. Although it won't pop the popcorn for you, the Harmony 700 has almost every feature you will need for your entertainment experience. We really wish Logitech would have included a power cradle with this advanced universal remote instead of having a cheaply-made wall charger. We also wish the Logitech Harmony 700 would have had RF connectivity technology. Besides the lack of these features, however, we were very pleased with the capabilities of this remote and know you will be, too.