After several hours of research, I have finally made my selection of the 5 best presentation remotes among more than 20 models currently on the market. My favorite is the Logitech Spotlight. It's a little expensive, but its features are simply unbeatable. Mouse mode, zoom mode, timer mode, and more - you'll get the best value for your money!
I like the look of this remote control and it gives it a modern look. It has an LCD screen with timer, clock and silent vibration function to help you manage your time, which can be handy if you have a limited time for your presentation. A mini USB receiver is also included so that you can set up your presentation remote control with ease. This wireless presenter adopts a high quality microchip. They had a great time with the remote control's range of up to 100 meters!
In other words, you will never be out of range of your device. What's more, you'll have 360-degree control! Automatic frequency hopping technology is also included to avoid any type of annoying signal interference with another device. The multifunctional design supports the following functions: next page, previous page, full screen, black screen, countdown timer and clock setting. The countdown timer can be very handy to manage your time during your presentation, it is always good to know how much time we have left so we don't spend too much time on this or that slide. The full screen key has two functions: the full screen function at the touch of a button and a long press on the key to activate the black screen.
This presentation remote control has the good idea to be rechargeable, no need to bother buying batteries to make it work! A 300mAh rechargeable lithium polymer battery is built in. Simply charge the presenter wirelessly via a USB cable on the computer or via the wall charger. The device is compatible with all Windows since version 2003 (including XP, Vista, 7, 8 and 10), Mac OS, Linux, Android and Powerpoint, Keynote and Prezi. Just add the iOS and you could say it's a universal presentation remote control! Moreover, this pointer is compatible with USB 1.1, 2.0 and 3.0 ports. As far as compatibility is concerned, the manufacturer has done its best to simplify your task. There is a big drawback however, the manual is in English, no way to find it in French, which can make the search for the time setting functions, countdown timer etc. somewhat difficult.
Red Star Tec PR-819
This remote control offers an elegant design despite its low price. All black and curved, it is pleasing to the eye. In terms of design, you can still deplore the size of the USB receiver, a little big which spoils the elegant appearance of the remote control. This presentation remote control has the good taste to be compatible with all operating systems and devices. What's more, it's simple to install as there's no software required, just connect the remote to your device and it's ready to use.
This presentation remote control is perfect for users who are a little technophobic due to its ease of installation and use. No driver to install, no software, no computer hassles! This allows you to make your presentation with your hands free without having to stay close to your computer or desk. Five functions are available on the remote control: Next Slide, Previous Slide, White Screen, Launch Powerpoint slides (PC exclusive) and finally a power button. In terms of ergonomics, the remote control has been rather well thought out. Indeed, it's both small enough to fit in your hand, but has buttons big enough so that you can confidently press the function you want to activate without having to look at your presentation remote.
Be careful though if you use a Mac, you will have to configure the keyboard in US for the pointer to work, which is a bit of a shame because it's not always easy to do when you don't know your hardware very well. The 2 AAA batteries that make it work are not supplied with the device, but at this price we could already have guessed it, it is necessary to reduce the costs. The laser pointer comes with a wireless USB receiver, which has the good idea to be installed in a pocket to avoid losing it. To install the presentation remote control, simply connect the wireless USB receiver to one of the ports on your computer and make sure your computer recognizes the receiver. That's it! You're ready to use your pointer. What's more, this remote control has a red laser pointer so you can highlight the key points of your presentation.
The design of this presentation remote control reminds me of a kind of big USB flash drive. The body is made out of aluminium alloy, which is a nice texture for an object of this type, but I don't know, I find the design a bit... something is missing. The keyboard is made of silicone to give a comfortable feel. But design isn't everything and we'll see if this presentation remote delivers on its promise of functionality and ergonomics. First of all the laser pointer, which is green, which changes us from the endless red laser. It has the good taste of being easy to see on any presentation screen, even in a brightly lit room.
The level is easy to handle and the use of this device is pleasant. Also note the power of the laser which, as promised by the manufacturer, can be seen in any conditions. It is of course able to turn pages, play slides, and has a black screen function for Powerpoint presentation. The wireless range of this device is 100 meters, which means that you won't find yourself too far away from your device to make your presentation with your hands free. This device operates on a 2.4 GHz radio frequency. It's good to know that this is a free frequency, so it can be used all over the world.
This device is capable of turning pages and supports full screen and black screen mode. Simply press and hold the page up or page down buttons to activate the full screen mode or exit it. The presentation remote control is equipped with a USB receiver that supports plug and play technology. This means that no drivers are required. It is compatible with Windows 2003, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10, Mac OS and Linux. One point that surprises me somewhat here is the lack of compatibility with Android, while the pointer of the same lower-end brand we saw above is compatible with Android.
Here is a presentation remote control whose ergonomics have been well thought out. The next page button is the largest, allowing you to move forward in your presentation without having to look at your remote control to move forward. I like the shape of the device, a little "ovoid" and it looks nice. This presentation remote is compatible with all major OSes, including Windows, MacOS, iOS and Android. One can deplore, however, the lack of Linux compatibility, which would not have eaten bread. Of course, this pointer is also compatible with all major presentation software, whether PowerPoint, Keynote, Google Slides or Prezi.
The unit has a range of 20 meters, which should be more than enough for most uses, but still amazing when you see cheaper presentation remotes offering a range of up to 100 meters! A "Presentation" application is compatible with the device, allowing you to customize button functions, monitor battery life and set up an on-screen stopwatch. You'll need to download the application from logitech.com. The presentation remote connects to your computer via its USB receiver or Bluetooth technology (we'll come back to this Bluetooth issue later). When you're not using this device, you can place this USB receiver in a dock built into the R500 remote. This way there is no risk of losing it!
When the battery is low, the R500 switches to power-saving mode, which disables the laser to extend the battery life, allowing the presentation to continue for an additional week. The R500 has a one-year battery life on a single AAA battery when used normally. So there's more to come. Let's get back to this Bluetooth system. First of all, this one is only compatible with recent OS like Windows 10, Mac OS X10.12, iOS 8 or Android 5.0. Moreover, under Windows 10, many users have complained about the fact that you have to re-associate the Bluetooth to the pointer each time you use it, which is a bit annoying. Moreover, it is not clear that some additional functions are only accessible with the Presentation software that you have to go get yourself and download. It's not the most ergonomic choice I've seen.
With a price tag like this, this presentation remote control is not for everyone, but rather for professionals who use this kind of tool on a daily basis and who need features that will probably seem somewhat "gadget-like" to the average person. For your information, this is the TEDX speaker pointer, which is a worldwide reference. First of all, its design is very elegant, very fine. In a way, you can feel it's high-end just by looking at the device. This pointer has a customizable interface. All you have to do is install the Presentation software found on the logitech website.
This one is very simple to set up. What's a bit of a pity with this system is that it's not possible to lend it to someone. The most interesting functions are indeed related to the program. The functionalities of this device are quite impressive it must be said! For example, you can directly zoom or highlight a part of the screen, which can be very useful. How does it work? Well it's simple, an integrated giroscope looks for the pointer on the screen. And, I insist, you don't need an additional sensor to use this feature. The pointer reacts to the finger and the eye, perfect! You can also turn the pointer into a real mouse. You can choose a hyperlink on the screen and click on it! You can also start or stop an integrated video.
Other features are available, such as the black screen and timer. Another interesting feature is the possibility to program timed steps that cause a vibration in the hand each time the time is up. Handy if you want to make presentations that are set up like music paper. The operating range of the device is 30 meters, which is very good, even if it is less than some of the competition's pointers, but do you really need more than 30 meters of range? But back to the design. This one is perfect: the pointer fits well in the hand and gives a feeling of robustness. What's more, it's designed in such a way that it's almost impossible to get the wrong button blind. The Bluetooth / USB receiver combination has also been well thought out. In addition, the receiver can be stored in the remote control, which drastically reduces the risk of losing the small USB receiver. The Logitech Spotlight remote is optimized for compatibility with Windows and MacOS and, of course, all major presentation software, including PowerPoint, Keynote, GoogleSlides and Prezi.
How to choose your presentation remote control?
Several criteria are taken into account when purchasing a presentation remote control. We'll go through them here to help you choose the right device for you.
Each remote control model has a different design style. The design refers not only to the shape and structure, but also to other points such as the colour or the arrangement of the buttons (which we will come back to later).
Ease of use is also important. Having equipment that makes you feel comfortable is of paramount importance. For example, a pointer with an ergonomic handle is much more comfortable than a pointer without a handle. A handle with a large enough surface area to grip the tool with ease should be preferred. If it has more than one non-slip finish, it's better, especially if you tend to have sweaty hands. There are also presentation remotes available with a textured, rubberized handle. If the controls have smooth, soft-touch contours, that's also a bonus.
The shapes offered by the manufacturers are extremely varied. Older models will tend to be more compact, but also more imposing than newer models. In general, these pointers will simply mimic the shape of a TV remote control and provide an ergonomic handle to ensure a comfortable grip.
The layout of the buttons
I told you we'd get back to it! The layout of the buttons varies, as does the number of buttons. Minimalist models will only use 3 buttons despite the features they may contain. There will also be presentation remotes with up to 6 buttons, especially those with shortcut keys. In any case, the indispensable buttons are the forward, backward and stop buttons. It will also be interesting to see how the buttons are placed, some of them have a more intuitive layout than others.
This criterion may seem less important than others since the laser will only have the function of pointing. A point that may be more important, is the color of the beam. Most pointers offer a red laser beam. This has the advantage of being economical and suitable for pointing objects on a board or screen. In addition, the red laser is clearly visible, even in a very bright place. The green laser, however, can also be another choice, as its beam is all the more visible at night. It should also be noted that the green laser is ten times more visible than red pointers with the same output power. This is why some presentation pointers use this technology (and we find some in this comparison).
Functionality level there is food and drink in this comparison. If you've read through it at length, you'll probably find that the functionality differs from one presentation remote to another. With a high-end device, you'll get the most convenient and professional-quality features. Some of these great features include mouse mode, zoom mode, and shortcut keys. Don't overlook the timer feature that will allow you to program the time of your presentation. If it is accompanied by a countdown timer visible on the remote control, it's even better and will allow you to manage your time during your presentation.