Jumpers in a Remote Control?? Why?

I just happened to look at the batteries in my Time Warner Digital Cable remote. Right above the batteries were jumpers!! Why on earth would a remote control need jumpers? There were not any thingies connecting any of them, just about 6 unconnected jumpers. Anyone know what these are for or when someone would need these? Does this have anything to do with programing the remote to work on other tvs? Other universal remotes do not use jumpers, so why would this? I am rather curious. Is there something cool I can do with my remote that I am not aware of?

A variety of possibilities.

Different IR encoding frequencies.

Voltage supply.

MTBF control.

Some more possibilities-

Used to put unit it self-test mode, or in a test mode for ATE (automatic-test-equipment) test

Used to put unit in programming mode at the factory, to burn the latest VCR and TV codes.

Used to set regions with different TV/VCR types (US vs. Europe vs. Japan, for example).

Used to determine what style of remote it is (it’s common to use the same circuit board for multiple products).


LOL! Thanks Zenster! I needed that. Fifty Wonko points to you!

My pleasure Wonko! Glad that somebody got that one.

A cable company passes out thousands of remotes. The usual
idiot consumer has to enter set-up codes for his/her TV
and VCR. “Now let’s see, SETUP 314, enter. Hey, I can’t
change the cable box channel anymore. Oops, forgot to
press TV first.” Time and $ lost to cable company.
Solution: block changes to Cable setup code. How to do

On my new remotes, a very special setup sequence is
required to change the cable setting.

On my old remote (51XXXB00) there’s a jumper block
in the back above the batteries. Once had a jumper
on one of them. Not any more. (New cable boxes.)

Actually useful if you have young’uns of the experimental
but clueless type. After setup, put jumpers on all of

“Watching cable TV since 1957 and still waiting for the
snow to go away.”

It is probably not a row of jumpers but rather a serial port. I have a modest home theatre setup and I use the One For All Cinema 7 remote. Here is the Faq for that remote which states:

O.K. I’ll bite. What does MTBF mean?

Mean Time Between Failures

MTBF= Mean Time Between Failures.


Now I don’t get it. Huh?

I’m not sure I do either. Unless Zenster has some definition other than the standard one in mind, maybe he is implying that the remotes are programmed to fail at specific intervals depending on the jumper settings.

AFAIK, the standard MTBF setting is defined as “guarantee period + 24 hours”.

S. Norman

Sorry, I still don’t get it.

I’m hoping this bump will get some questions answered.

If you had a particularly paranoid, nasty, suspicious mind, you might start to wonder why something that’s guaranteed for 3 months should suddenly break 3 months and 1 day after purchase.

Or guaranteed for a year, worked flawlessly for exactly that period, and then suddenly dies.

The truth is out there…


And you, my friend, will probably find it.