Pulse-Eight Motorola NYXboard Hybrid Remote Reviewby Ganesh T S on April 5, 2012 4:55 PM EST
We have come to the business end of this short review. The lists below summarize the pros and cons of the Pulse-Eight Motorola NYXboard Hybrid Remote.
- Potential to reduce remote clutter in the household
- Ability to take advantage of HDMI CEC capabilities (when bundled with the HDMI CEC adapter from Pulse-Eight, the RF mode can also be used for this purpose)
- RF and IR combination is quite useful in HTPC setups
- Excellent RF range (more than 38 ft.) and decent IR range (around 18 ft.)
- Solid construction makes it a pleasure to use, and hands down, the best remote to use with XBMC (in our opinion)
- Accidental key presses on the underside of the remote are rightfully ignored
- The mouse feature (Fn + arrow pad) is as good as it can be in the absence of a trackpad
- Single profile availability for IR programming, i.e, unlike the Logitech Harmony remotes which can have multiple devices configured, this is a learning remote where each key can be programmed to correspond to only one key from another remote in the IR mode.
- Remote is very sensitive to orientation. Casual remote usage (such as holding the remote at an angle to the horizontal plane -- as is common when one is couch surfing) is bound to shift between the keyboard side and the remote side which is sometimes frustrating for the users
- The IR remote's spread / operating angle is a bit on the lower side, which is irksome if one is used to a device-specific remote with better operating angles.
- The absence of dedicated Alt and Ctrl keys renders the remote incapable of replacing a full-fledged keyboard / mouse combination if the HTPC is used for extended periods of time outside of XBMC or any other 10-foot UI program
- Orientation sensing makes it a pain to use with Firefox (or any other program which might use F7 for any purpose)
In summary, the Pulse-Eight Motorola NYXboard Hybrid Remote is a very good addition to the HTPC setup in most homes, provided the user's expectations are set right. Given the price of the unit (less than $70), and the feature set offered, and comparing it with competing solutions in the Harmony series / Boxee PC remote, one can say that the NYXboard is indeed worth the price.
However, we hope to see some issues fixed in upcoming versions of the remote. Taking care of the IR remote's operating angle and the over-sensitive tilt sensor are a must. A keyboard with more features and a way to manually override the tilt sensor would be icings on the cake.