Project Spotlight – Slim Devices

Several years ago, we engaged with a startup in Mountain View, California called Slim Devices. They were a small consumer electronics manufacturer, developing a product that would stream MP3 files from a PC to a home theater. Slim Devices contracted with Celadon to design and manufacture a custom remote control for their new product called “SqueezeBox”. A review of the SqueezeBox can be found here:

Slim Devices selected the SC33 remote control, since this OEM remote control model had a key layout that would work very well for their user interface. They were able to select an IR protocol that they were very comfortable using in the decoder of their device and provide the command table for the 29 functions that were to be enabled on the remote. They were also able to select the colors and graphics of the different buttons on the keypad, based on functionality, as well as select the font style and text that was to be printed on the keypad overlay. Once the product specifications were finalized, first article samples were prepared and submitted for validation testing and manufacturing approval. An example of the artwork proof is below:

Artwork specification for the SC33 remote control

After a few years, Slim Devices gained a large following with digital audio enthusiasts and their business grew considerably. They had decided to develop a newer version of the SqueezeBox digital audio player, as well as a high-end audiophile product and had decided to develop a new remote control enclosure to match their new products.

Based on successful business relationship, Slim Devices again chose to contract with Celadon to develop and manufacture their new custom remote control. Slim Devices was working with a local industrial designer for the look and feel of their new player, as well as the remote control. The designer provided Celadon with 3D concept renderings for the new remote control. The new remote control design had a high-end aesthetic, using a hot stamp foil on the top case, stylized rubber keypad and optional backlighting. This model would be manufactured in black and white, as well as with a backlit keypad for their audiophile product. Celadon provided mechanical design services for all of the internal features of the new plastic enclosure, rubber keypad and printed circuit board, as well as provided guidelines for tolerances between components, best manufacturing processes and material recommendations.

3D Rendering of a custom remote control enclosure

After the final design was approved by the customer, tooling fabrication and PCB development activities began. Within about 8 weeks, the first release of samples was provided for the customer to review. Functional remote samples were provided for the customer to test their software and make any necessary updates. Minor modifications were made to the molds to improve the keypad actuation and fit of the various components and final samples were provided to the customer for mass production approval.

Pictures of three different OEM remote controls.  Two remotes are black and the center remote is white.

Celadon values long term relationships with customers and prides itself on being a full service remote control manufacturer. Celadon can provide industrial, mechanical and electronic design services, as well as products for low volume and higher volume applications. For any project inquiries, please contact us for a free consultation.