No. of Recommendations: 2
The best, relatively cheap learning remote I've seen is the Sony VL900:

The list price is $60, but you can find it for $40 several places, such as Etronics. This used to be my primary remote until I bought a TC 1000. The learning functions are very flexible, any key can take any function, though only 3 buttons accept macros.

I don't like the feel of the TC 1000 very much. It's a touchscreen remote, the keypresses sometimes don't register, it can be hard to read, and the backlight is dim.

The TC 1000 has one advantage, though, which is that the labels and layout are programmable. My wife was forever asking how to turn on the TV with the old remote, because she couldn't remember which button did what. She was also frequently trying to do things like press "play" without selecting the VCR first, and of course "play" doesn't mean anything to the TV.

Now, under the "watch DVD" screen, there's a button labelled "DVD on." It switches the TV to component input 1, turns the amplifier to Video 2 (which is the optical input from the DVD player), and turns on the DVD player. There's a "DVD off" button which turns TV, amplifier, and DVD player off. Etc., etc.

As I said, though, the buttons are often unresponsive, so while you can get one for $90 (I paid $60), since it's discontinued, it's probably not the remote you're looking for.

- Gus
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