Hot on the heels of Universal Remote's MX-810 comes the oh-so-versatile MX-980, which aims to allow "professional installers to more quickly and efficiently customize and automate" sophisticated home theaters and entire home AV systems. The wand-style device sports a 320 x 240 resolution display, RF capability, an open programming architecture, and the ability to be programmed by any Windows-based machine with a USB port. Other subtle niceties include a motion sensor that automatically turns on the display when the remote is picked up, blue backlighting for all the buttons, a small integrated speaker, rechargeable Li-ion, and built-in compatibility with the firm's MSC-400 Master System Controller. If you hadn't already recognized, URC is clearly aiming for the high-end crowd with this one, and it's safe to say the $599 pricetag further substantiates that very point.

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Universal Remote intros versatile MX-980