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Revision as of 18:23, 5 May 2011

Once upon a time I found a Z-630 PreAmp Controller on ebay, with a remote included. Then I discovered that the preamp doesn't have a built-in IR receiver, so it wasn't useful as shipped. The idea is to install keypads around the house which are wired to this controller. It can route audio from 6 inputs (tuner, DVD, MythTV box and so on ;-) to 3 "zone" outputs, so you can have separate material playing in 3 different rooms; and it also acts as an IR repeater, so the IR receiver which is integrated into the keypad in each room can receive signals from the remote for whatever device you are using to play music, transmit the signals across the wire to the Z-630, and it re-emits the signal using an optional IR blaster, hopefully to be received by the equipment which is sitting in the same rack in your media room, under or on top of the Z-630. So that's the dream. But they have a racket going... you're supposed to buy Elan stuff only through a dealer/installer, at inflated prices, and you're not supposed to understand how it works, or be able to program anything without buying dealer-only software. So finding all the parts on ebay and documentation on the net took a while. At one point I'd bought some keypads from another seller, but he shipped something else instead, a sort of audio and IR patch panel made to be installed at a remote location from the controller. The person who got my keypads wasn't interested in swapping for this thing which he'd actually bought (guess he liked what I bought better). So I bought some more keypads from yet another seller. Never did get them hooked up (no doubt, they'd end up needing programming anyway)... but before that point I'd already discovered that it's possible to buy just the IR receiver, so I got one of those, figured out the wiring, and was finally able to use the remote that came with my Z-630. So for a couple years I just used it as my main preamp in my home theater room, connected to a blu-ray player, MythTV box, Squeezebox, a spare 1/8" cable I'd connect to a laptop sometimes for Netflix, and the output going to a Phase Linear Model 200 Series Two.

So here's how to wire up the IR receiver for the remote, should you ever need to do the same sort of thing:

Elan-IR-receiver-wiring.png Elan-remote-and-keypad-rj45-pinout.png