The OneForAll Limited Edition SmartControl Universal Remote with Bluetooth Adapter for Sony PS3 is a bit of mouthful but provides PS3 users out there with a remote control option that can also be used across their other Hi-Fi, TV and set top box gear as well. Doug Harman checks out the new "bundled for Christmas" AllForOne PS3 adapter outfit.
OneForAll and their universal remote world can provide remote control access to most devices with a single a unit and here OneForAll introduces their remote and wireless Sony PS3 adapter.
Out of the box you get a pre-programmed (for your PS3 games console) remote control using OneForAll’s SmartControl system allowing it to work with HDTV, DVB-T, iPod docks, Blu-ray, PS2, Xbox 360, Full HD LCD, home cinema systems and MP3 players which means you get seamless control of up to six gadgets. What’s new here is the IR bridge so you can control a Sony PS3 as well and so it successfully consolidates multiple remotes into the one bit of kit. The remote needs feeding with four AAA batteries for power.
You also get a neat little black liveried Bluetooth (IR bridge) adapter that accepts two AA cells or can be connected via a USB cable to the console for power. Configuring (with your TV and PS3 on) is fast however, achieved by going into your PS3's accessories settings menu and clicking the “Register BD Remote Control” option.
You then press a blue button on the rear of the adapter for around 10-seconds until the PS3 notifies you, on screen, it's been accepted. My PS3 assigned my review sample remote control and adapter as “controller 7”. Once connected, the remote control is ready to go and that's it. Simple.
The adapter element of the bundle can be kept near the PS3 or TV and its small enough to make positioning easy, it'll even sit on top of the PS3 at a push if space is short and as it has rubber feet it won't scratch your precious console.
Once you've got the remote and PS3 talking, the controls are a little disjointed at first. A “16:9” button at the top becomes a direct “eject” button. In the central area of the remote, there are the familiar play, stop, chapter skip and scan controls. Below these the “list” and “record” buttons double up as the “top menu” and “select” buttons respectively. Between them sits the pause control.
Below that a large central “OK” button doubles for your PS3's “X” (menu select) controls while the remote's channel up (“+”) and down (“-”) buttons become the “R1” and “R2” shoulder buttons on a PS3 controller. There are no “R2” or “R3” or Start buttons assigned out of the box.
Triangle, Square and Circle button options are dealt with via the remote's menu, guide and back buttons. The PS button from a PS3 controller becomes the “MCE” button and the “Info” button controls display options. Menu navigation is all controlled via the remote's circular four-way jog controlled that surrounds the large “OK” button. Once you've got used to the control layout, the whole package makes a lot more sense than when you first fire-up the remote and adapter.
There are also some other rather features, as you'd expect from OneForAll. You can copy functions from the original remote control for, say, your TV to the remote, you get a “Magic” button that allows you to quickly set the remote for other devices or you can use direct code to set them up, all supplied either online or within the booklet that comes in the pack.
The website (www.oneforall.com/smartps3adapter
) also has software downloads to keep the Bluetooth adapter up to date and it is here you can also get your hands on new codes for adding extra PS3 commands shortcuts. However, my one disappointment here is the software and support all seems to be PC oriented, so Mac users take note.
Having said that however, the software is easy to use. You connect up the adapter with you PS3 controller's USB cable, launch the software and then you can select to adjust settings, which provide you with a way to have status LEDs on or off, and to have a low battery indicator illuminate as the battery power drops. Incidentally, the adapter batteries can last up to a year.
You can create new Macros (new code controls for the remote) or introduce new infrared (IR) codes to instruct the remote to operate additional equipment.
The macros are selected from a simple se to of drop downs within the software's window and once you've made your adjustments and settings, click save, they're transferred to the adapter/remote system and away you go.
The OneForAll Limited Edition SmartControl Universal Remote with Bluetooth Adapter for Sony PS3 is a nice idea as a Christmas bundle and certainly provides a neat triple whammy of PS3 and additional equipment control and to help consolidate your ever growing remote control collection. It works well too.
At a penny short of £50, however, this is probably not the remote system for you if you just require a remote for your PS3. This is because, unless you want that extra control a OneForAll remote offers, which is its raison d'etre after all (it can control your additional equipment and a PS3 too), then there are cheaper dedicated PS3 controllers on the market for around £20 or less.