Submission by Jason Starkie – IR Distribution on a budget – As your Hi-Fi and Home Cinema set-up grows there usually comes a point where you want to put everything into a cabinet or on to shelves.
This can cause problems as more often than not your IR remote(s) no longer have line-of-sight with your equipment and consequently no longer work. Enter the Keene IRDA. This handy gadget receives the IR signal from your remote and redistributes it to up to five discrete IR transmitters. It can even be direct cable-connected to any IR repeater you may have (eg Powermid etc). The Kit will mix and match with other Keene products to solve more or less any IR problems.
I have attempted twice to construct and IR amp and distribution circuit using two different circuits (one based on the famous Nigel OR 555 design) each time without producing anything reliable my fault I’m sure.I even e-mailed Ian B [Ian@Mollyology.com] a couple of times for help.
I have been following the links on Zantech & Buffalo and even looked at importing some items into the UK to save money, but came to the conclusion it would end up an expensive solution. Anyway imagine my surprise when I spotted an IR Distribution kit from Keene electronics IRBKIT consisting of an Amp, mains adaptor, 1 high power wand, one low power wand) all for £34.99 (£29.78 ex VAT)
The only extra items I needed were two Standard IR receiver (40KHz – suitable for most domestic equipment) [IRSR] £7.99 (£6.80 ex VAT) to complete the project. Standard delivery is about £2-00 bringing the total cost to £52 inc vat and delivery for a two zone system with future expansion at £7-99 each. The unit does come with some interconnecting cables but these are only long enough to mount the unit for example behind a closed AV cupboard.
I got round this running some standard telephone cable between rooms and soldering a Stereo Jack plug to each end of the cable.