When this first arrived in the box I was filled with excitement and as I opened the box I was filled with amazement.
The Sonic itself was absolutely beautiful, but the instructions although looking aesthetically pleasing, are a bit all over the place, it took me a while to set up and is not as difficult as it looks once done. And the weight of the Sonic feels nice too.
The display case is great and even continues the look alien underneath it. The Sonic itself fits in nicely and I love how it looks on display.
Overall this sonic, how good is it...? Out of 10... 11
This is a brilliant little device! I was somewhat hesitant about buying this after reading some of the more negative reviews on Amazon...after all, who wants something like this to just sit on a shelf looking pretty when it cost £60? And a lot of the positive comments were more about it being a piece of Who merchandise and looking good rather than it being good at being a remote control...
However, I decided to take the plunge (Geronimo!) and treat myself to an early birthday present and now I can see why everybody was raving about the Sonic's look and feel. The materials used in it's design certainly give it a fantastic appearance-shiny in all the right places-and the weight (as mentioned by others before) is substantial leading me to guess that it's internal construction is pretty rock-solid. And yes, the prongs on the end don't open, but I certainly wouldn't be embarrassed to have this in my jacket pocket at a cosplay party as the rest of the device certainly compensates for it.
So, how does it measure up as a remote? Well, practice mode is incredibly handy when it first comes out of the box. Some of the gestures might come naturally (push and flicking in all directions, for example, leave you feeling somewhat Smith-esque), while others like rotating anti-clockwise or tapping one of the sides where you don't seem to have a spare finger might take you a second go. Programming was easy but it took a while deciding on what functions needed to go where. The instructions are very comprehensive and should give you all the details you need to get up and running, even if they are a little sprawled out: it isn't a "linear" manual like most electronics but this is intentional-the manual is supposed to be like a collection of pamplets, post-it notes, Gallifreyan guides and newspaper cuttings. All in all it adds to the quirkiness of the product.
In spite of some of the other reviews which said it was a bit of a pain to use, I personally found controlling the TV with it a breeze. Don't get me wrong, I'm certain it's faster (and probably easier) to press a button on a conventional remote...but not half as much fun!!! It makes channel hopping a pleasure as you give the Sonic a quick flick left or right and I've found myself turning the volume up or down just for the hell of it quite a few times. That said, I certainly wouldn't suggest giving one to any grandparents or those without a techno-logic inclination. For some, I'm sure it probably requires a bit too much patience, practice and precision to ever become a viable alternative to a "proper" remote and I guess that comes down to the individual. But I really wanted this to be a good product and after about a half a day of practice I can see myself using my assortment of TV, DVD and set-top box remotes less and less.
In conclusion, it is a fantastic piece of memorabilia just as other reviews have said and does look very good on a mantelpiece sitting on it's stand but it does also work very well as a remote...just give it some practice and persistence! I might ask for the 10th Doctor's Sonic for Christmas!
Great gift for anyone who is a doctor who fan.Bought for my adult son and he loved it.Best christmas present ever. Programming instructions a bit complicated..but got there in the end.Arrived promptly.Quite exspensive but worth the money as it makes an unusual gift.
When I first showed it to my son in action, he thought I was playing a trick on him with another remote control in my pocket!
The unit (there's a joke there!) has 3 memory banks and the initial temptation is to program it with one memory bank for each device. Don't !!!
In our house, we have different rooms, with different equipment. I programmed my unit for each room, but with the same functionality.
example; In memory bank A (selected by the only button which is on the bottom of the screwdriver) Gently rotating clockwise = volume up on TV Gently rotating anticlockwise = volume down on TV Tap on the left = Mute TV & Mute off TV Tap on the right = Power off TV Tap on the Top = Select from favouries on Cable unit Stab forward = select / OK on Cable unit Swipe up = menu up on cable unit Swipe down = menu down on cable unit etc. etc
Programming is done by learning from other remote controls for your devices. So if you haven't got the original remote or a universal that knows your codes, you're in trouble.
The screwdriver has an accelerometer inside which detects movement in all 3 axes and is quite effecient. Before you programme, start in the practice mode. It's worth it!
The sound effect mode is just annoying, so I only use silent mode which gives reassuring clicks to let you know that it knows you have requested an action.
There is a password function (Why??) which can be set too easily and then you have to start again, so avoid that!!
If the batteries get low, you will start getting random results!!
The biggest problem is putting it down!!
1: because it's fun 2: because the impact on a surface frequently triggers an un desired signal!!
I wont say anything about how it looks, as that is spot on. It is a heavy bit of kit, well made and looks exactly as the prop used on screen. It is easy to program, once you've worked out how to do that in the first place. A series of presses on the button located at the bottom of the remote allows you to access the various functions, and the memory store. The FX sounds are fun, but you can turn them of by setting it to silent mode. The only gripe I have is there's no lock button, which means if you have decided to use the clockwise/anti clockwise rotation setting for the volume, and it rolls when you set it down, then it will turn up or down inadvertently. This can be said about most of the functions, until you've learned how to control you movements. It does come with a handy display case, that you can use to rest the Sonic on when not in use, and this has solved some of those problems, but again, the only way to stop it functioning by accident, is to power it down, which means hearing the power up noise and the voiced introduction every time you want to watch the TV or listen to music. It is a beautiful item handcrafted, and well made, and a must for any collector or fan of Doctor Who.
After pre-ordering the Doctor Who Sonic Screwdriver Remote Control I was very impressed when it arrived..
The Doctor Who Sonic Screwdriver Universal Remote Control was designed and built by The Wand Company, who have had a previous hit with a Harry Potter themed remote. This time round its the Doctor's favorite tool which gets a make over, allowing you to program three separate memory banks with 13 different movements, meaning a total of 39 remote control commands can be stored.
The included display case is a nice touch, it's likely the novelty factor could wear off in which case putting this on display is an excellent idea, bring it out to show off your geek credentials to your friends.
Ironically to get the Sonic Screwdriver working you need an ordinary screwdriver to fit the required batteries. Once fitted you power the Sonic Screwdriver up via a button on the bottom of the device. That button is important as it helps you switch between the Sonic Screwdrivers different modes:
1. Practice Mode - To get the hand of the gestures, it tells you what you've done rather than play sound FX. 2. Control Mode - Once programmed in you use control mode to fire IR commands out. In this mode you get the special FX sounds. 3. Quiet Control Mode - Same as above but without the sound FX. 4. FX Mode - Doesn't fire out commands, but does play sound FX when you make gestures.
To make use of the commands you'll need to spend some time sitting down with the Sonic Screwdriver Universal Remote and your other remotes, each command needs to be fired at the screwdriver for it to learn it. It's a time consuming experience, especially when compared to the Logitech Harmony Universal remotes which can be programmed via a PC application, but this process does help you to think about what gesture should go with what command and this does cost half the cash.
Then comes the fun bit...testing out the device! It has to be said, there is something deeply satisfying about pointing a Sonic Screwdriver at a device and using it to control, in a quick test I used it on my amp to skip music track and skipping between tracks has never been so much fun.
A nice feature is that it tells you when the battery is starting to run low, by that I mean it LITERALLY tells you, no flashing lights or battery bars, it speaks to you. This is also put to good use during practice mode, speaking the commands you are trying out.
It can be a bit twitchy on some of the commands, in my case leading to music tracks being skipped accidentally. However, this might be down to inexperience using the device.
Overall this is a great little gadget that's not that expensive, perfect if you're looking for a birthday/Christmas gift.
To see a video of the Sonic in action please visit: [...]