Sheryl Canter

Control a Bose Wave Radio with a Universal Remote

The picture on my new 40″ Samsung LCD HDTV is amazing, but the sound, not so much. So I plugged the audio output of the television into the auxilliary jack for my Bose Wave Radio (model AWRCC1). Much better! But then I encountered a new problem. When the TV audio is external, the TV remote can’t control it. Luckily the radio has a remote (otherwise I’d have to walk across the room to mute the TV when the phone rings), but I’d rather have the TV volume on the same remote as the rest of the TV controls.

First I tried to set the auxilliary button on my Time-Warner Cable remote to the Bose radio. The cable remote instructions list these codes for Bose audio equipment: 070, 170, 224, 374, 409, 460, 532. I tried them all, but none of them worked. So then I tried the scanning method, holding down the channel button until the radio turns off. But it never turned off.

I did an internet search on controlling Bose devices with universal remotes and found a plethora of contradictory information, none of which solved my problem. So I called Bose customer support. Their products may be pricey, but they sure have good customer support. I got someone on the phone immediately, and he was knowledgeable. He explained the problem instantly and gave me the solution.

And now I’m sharing it with you.

Universal Remote Control URC-WR7

Universal Remote Control URC-WR7

You Need a “Learning” Remote

Many people think that the Bose codes don’t work because Bose remotes use radio frequencies rather than infrared. But this is only true in their high-end home theatre equipment. The Bose Wave Radio remote does use infrared, but – and this is the missing piece – Bose did not set up codes for programming a universal remote. You can’t find the right code because there is no code. To control a Bose device, you need a universal remote with “learning” capability. It has to be one of those remotes where you put the original remote nose-to-nose with the universal and “teach” the universal by pressing the corresponding buttons.

You don’t need a $200 Logitech Harmony remote to do this. I spent some time looking at the extremely complex manual for the Harmony and decided no way. I found another remote that is nearly a tenth the price and, in my opinion, far better: Universal Remote Control URC-WR7. I got it for $27 at Best Buy. Amazon is currently selling it for $21.44.

It took just a minute to get it working with my Bose Wave Radio. Even better, I have it set up so the volume controls for my TV and Blu-ray both use the Bose device. You can’t do that with any other universal remote. It’s a feature they call “punch through”, and it’s fantastic. You can make functions from any device available from any component. A reviewer for the Sony Universal Remote complained that it switched to the TV component whenever you pressed the volume control, so beware of that one!

Tip on using the learning function with the Bose remote: Holding down the volume Up or Down button is a different command than a single press of Up or Down. You need to program both into the universal remote.

The URC-WR7 also has macro capability. I set it up so when I turn the TV on or off, the Bose Wave Radio turns on or off, too. There are other things you can do with the macros – I haven’t finished exploring all the features.

So no, you don’t need a separate remote for volume if you use a Bose Wave Radio to output the audio for your TV. It’s easier and cheaper than you think – you just need the right universal remote.


[[Edit, 10-Dec-13: It turns out that the information the Bose Tech Support guy gave me was incorrect. While it's still very handy to have learning capability in this remote and I use it heavily, there is a code that works for the Bose Wave Radio - at least to control on/off and volume: 409. I discovered this because my original WR7 stopped working and I bought a new one. The new Bose code was listed in the booklet for the new remote.

However, the code does not work with every button. If I use the AUX button, it works; if I use the AUD button (where I want to put it), it does not work. I've found this problem with other devices, as well. For example, the code for my DVD burner works on the DVD button, but not on the CD button. This is irksome because I want to put my Blu-ray player on the DVD button and the DVD burner on the CD button. This thing where not all codes work with all buttons is an annoying limitation in the WR7. I don't know why you can't use any button for any device.]]

Bookmark and Share

36 Comments

  1. Sheryl Canter:

    There’s a way to find out the code after using the learning method. The Bose Wave Radio code appears to be 083. But it doesn’t work – I tried it on the Time-Warner Cable remote. The only way to get it to work is the learning method.

  2. Sheryl Canter:

    One more thing I discovered… The remote for the DVR I rent from Time-Warner Cable also is made by Universal Remote Control. Maybe that’s why I can access all the special cable features with the URC-WR7 remote – colored buttons, etc. Too bad the learning function is disabled on the TWC remote – I tried it.

  3. Dave:

    Sheryl, I have the same issue. Renting a DVR with remote from AT&T uVerse, with a Universal remote. Have you learned anything new?

  4. Sheryl Canter:

    I don’t understand what you’re asking. Are you having a problem?

    This post is only about remotes from the company “Universal Remote Control” – an unfortunate name for a company because it’s also the name of the device so it’s confusing. I got my URC to do exactly what I wanted – nothing more to learn.

  5. Marshall:

    Hello Sheryl,

    I have a few year old Olevia Syntax LCD HD TV. The speakers seem scratchy coming from the STB and I have a Bose Wave Radio, so I thought I would try what you outlined. Just started playing with the universal remote last night. Question, which button controls the list of recorded programs in the DVR? Looked around on the remote and pressed a few buttons, but could not find the list. I can record and get to the menus.

    Thank you.

  6. Pranav:

    Sheryl, I have lost my bose original remote, and so it wont turn on. I got a Sony learning remote, but it requires the device to be turned on to make the learning mode work. Did you need the Bose turned on when you set it up with your universal?

  7. Sheryl Canter:

    The on and the off signals are the same for most devices (and definitely the same for the Bose radio), so getting it to turn on with your learning remote is the same as getting it to turn off. I don’t think the radio needs to be on.

    Note that you probably can pick up a replacement Bose remote on eBay for not too much.

  8. Julie:

    we lost our remote to our bose system. Can we still get the universal remote to get it to work

  9. Sheryl Canter:

    I just answered the identical question. You need the original remote. Check eBay.

  10. Teddy:

    Thanks for this recommendation. This remote solved the problems I was having with needing 4 or 5 remotes especially the Bose Wave Radio. I have gone back and bought them again for family to use because I like this one so much!

  11. Scott S.:

    I have a URC Universal Remote it’s the Atlas DVR 1056.
    This Remote DOES have codes for the Bose Wave Radio.
    You DO NOT need to learn on another remote.

    The Code for the Bose Wave Radio is 1841 as per http://www.urcsupport.com/

    Radio Turn ON & OFF.
    Tune Channels
    Control Volume
    Numeric Pad for Presets
    etc…

    Some Other features such as Alarm / Sleep etc.
    DO NOT work but for 80% functionality it’s not that bad.

    Will definitely get you through if you lose or break that
    credit card remote that comes with it.

  12. Sheryl Canter:

    I didn’t try this code so I can’t confirm it works even partially. I already have a 100% functional remote through learning and I wasn’t going to erase that.

    But if you have a learning remote like the one I reviewed here, then learning is better than a partially working code. 100% functionality is better than 80% functionality.

  13. gerard:

    The radio remotes are only 10 dollars at Bose. Don’t know if ebay would be much cheaper.

  14. Diamond Bangle Bracelet:

    Hi Sheryl

    this is great info, not just from you but your posters as well. Here is my question and i am hoping somebody will know. We just purchased the wave radio and have it connected to our lifestyle 48 surround which is in another room so that we can play our stored music as well as internet radio etc. The 2 units are connected with boselink. The bummer part is that the remote that comes with the wave will not activate the boselink, it has to be the lifestyle remote BUT… you have to alter the channel switches inside of the remote which is a pane in the butt. Optimum situation would be to have a second lifestyle remote. These are not cheap obviously. Ebay is an option for a used one. Do you think the universal remote you mentioned will activate the lifestyle 48? Does anyone else have options? Thanks to all in advance.

  15. John Matson:

    The code 224 worked for me on a Time Warner UR5U-8780L remote and Bose Wave Radio/CD

  16. Robert:

    Have you or one of your bloggers had any success with a Roku box and the Universal Remote Control URC-WR7 ?
    Rob

  17. Malcolm:

    FYI, Universal is nice, but for the Roku App from Roku, Inc. is the best Roku remote with the ultimate functionality for the Roku. If you have a smart phone, just use it. Oh yeah, the reason I’m here… I have the Bose AWRCC2 Wave radio system (Older), and the Direct TV remote was able to control some of the main functions on my Bose. They didn’t have my model listed so I had to go through 1 by 1 until I found one that worked.

  18. steve strickland:

    I have att u-verse service and unable to program the remote to my Bose system. all the codes dont seem to work and the controller doesnt have the learning key. what can I do? Thanks

  19. Sheryl Canter:

    Steve, the subject of this blog post is how to use a learning remote to control Bose radios, and recommends a learning remote that I particularly like. If you read it, you’d have the answer to your question.

  20. Pat:

    Hi, I have a Bose Wave Radio connected to my 46 inch Samsung Smart TV. Sound is 200% better. How do I program the Samsung Universal remote so it will adjust the volume on the Bose or can I program the Direct Tv remote to adjust the volume on the Bose? One good thing TV and Bose cut off with the Direct TV Remote. Thanks for any solution.

  21. Tobias:

    we just bought a Vizio TV
    the TV remote channel & volume controls TURN ON our Bose CD Changer and eject CD’s as well.
    How can we solve this?
    Universal remote?
    change the rf frequency on one or the other?
    I called Vizio they say you can’t change the frequency code on their tv remote?
    any chance of changing it on the Bose 6 CD changer?
    thank you for any suggestions.

  22. Sheryl Canter:

    Pat, as it says in my blog post, you need a learning remote to control a Bose radio because it doesn’t use codes. The universal remote I use is linked in the post. It has a particularly nice volume control feature, also explained in the post.

    Tobias, I’ve never heard of two devices using the same frequency, as you describe, and I suspect it’s not solvable. You can’t change the frequencies used by a device – that’s built in. I’d call Bose. They have outstanding technical support, and if anyone can find a way around the problem, they can.

  23. Sheryl Canter:

    I’ve now tried all the different codes that various commenters have recommended to control the Bose Wave Radio. None of them work on my radio – as I suspected they would not (since Bose technical support told me there is no code that works). I even entered the exact modem number on the bottom of my radio (AWRCC1)on this page:

    http://www.urcsupport.com/html.php?page_id=289

    …got back the code “1629″, and tried that. It did not work. It says, though, that this is “the most popular code for my brand”, not that it’s the code for my model, the Bose Wave Radio.

    So I stand by what I wrote in my original post. You need a learning remote to control the Bose Wave Radio with a universal remote. I suspect that the people who said they were able to use codes to control their Bose radios don’t have this particular model.

    A universal remote with learning capability can control all your equipment and replace all your other remotes (for most things). So the answer to “how do I get the remote that came with my system to do this?” is, you don’t. Go buy the remote I linked to in the original blog post, and use that instead of the remotes that came with your equipment.

    No remote can solve frequency conflicts. As far as I know, the frequency that a piece of equipment uses is hardwared, and cannot be changed.

  24. Chris:

    For the Wave Music System (radio w/ CD, predecessor to the Wave Radio III), the Time Warner Cable UR5U-8700 and UR5U-8780L work partially (power/volume/seek up/seek down) using code 827. If you need to switch between AM and FM, you can do that by temporarily programming in code 532 and pressing the 2 and D buttons.

    There seem to be other functions available using these two codes that may require the iPod dock or loading a CD. My older Time Warner Cable remotes don’t seem to support either of these codes, including the UR5U-8400 do not seem to support these codes.

  25. michael:

    I have a new xfinity XR2 remote and a Bose remote for a wave unit (3-2-1 series II dvd Home entertainment system)
    I can not get the xfinity remote to control the Bose sound level. Can you help me

    Michael F. Gianotto cell 848-565-4488

  26. Bill Haughton:

    The thin remote is only $15 from Bose online, free shipping, so that may be the path of least resistance, if your remote broke or was lost.

  27. Sheryl Canter:

    This blog post is about an especially good remote for controlling many devices at once. It does not describe a workaround for not having the original remote for the Bose Wave Radio (model AWRCC1). Despite claims to the contrary in various comments, this particular radio only can be controlled by a non-Bose remote by using the learning function – which is why it’s so handy that the Universal Remote Control URC-WR7 has this function. Not all do.

    That means:

    To control the Bose Wave Radio with the Universal Remote Control (the topic of this post), you must own the original Bose remote.

    Michael – this post has nothing to do with the xfinity XR2 remote. I recommended a different remote. Why would you think this is a good place to get support for a different remote?

    I don’t know how the comments to this post have wandered so far afield. I wish people would actually read the original post.

    Note: I am now deleting comments that are completely off-topic – e.g. questions about Bose music systems, questions about completely different remotes, etc. If you don’t see your comment, you know why.

  28. Danny Random:

    I bought a GE universal remote from Walmart for not much over ten bucks. It works for most functions as previously described in prior posts. Listed under Audio devices in the manual chart, there are three codes provided for BOSE; 0672,0774, and the winner for mine,0775. Although I have recently purchased a refurbished original BOSE brand remote from ebay for $24 so I can reclaim the full functionality of my original wave radio, the GE remote has worked fine, and I really appreciated it while I belabored acquiring a $50 replacement.

  29. Sheryl Canter:

    I don’t know what Bose system you have that this code works for, but it does not work for either of the Bose products I own. It would be good, if you specific a code, to also specify the exact Bose model that it works with.

  30. avabeans:

    Sheryl Canter-LOL you have far more patience than I do. My head would have exploded by the third stupid comment. LOL

  31. Michael McKenney:

    Hoping you can answer this. I have set my WR7 so that when in TV mode, the volume actually controls my Bose Wave radio volume either up or down, as well as the mute button. My question is, when I have a movie that the sound is very low and still difficult to hear even with the volume on my Bose all the way up, how can I then ALSO have the LG TV volume turned on and then be able to adjust that volume with the WR7 at the same time? Hope I’ve been clear, and that you have a suggestion. Thanks!

  32. Sheryl Canter:

    On any particular device, you either can use the volume associated with the device, or you can use the punch-through feature to associate the volume with a different device (such as the Bose Wave Radio). If you want to control the volume from two different devices from a single device button, then you’d need to use the learning feature to make some other pair of buttons control the volume for the second device.

    You also can make almost any button into a macro, so conceivably you could use the volume control buttons to raise or lower the volume on both devices – TV and radio.

    The easier way to do it would be to not use the punch through – let the volume on the TV button control the actual TV volume – then press the button associated with the Bose Wave Radio when you want to control the volume for that. It’s just one more button press.

    I’ve never had a problem with the volume being too low when coming through Bose speakers. (I now use Bose PC speakers rather than the Bose Wave Radio.) It sounds like something is wrong there.

  33. Michael McKenney:

    Thanks for you quick answer Sheryl! I would probably follow your suggestion of using the Aux button only for the Bose and controlling volume with that and forego the punch-through feature, except for the fact that my wife “hates” technology and refuses to have to toggle back and forth between aux and TV just to control the volume.

    Regading the volume problem, my Bose goes up to 99, and there are some movies that are very hard for my wife to hear (she has hearing problems). I might try the Bose PC speakers, however.

    I did like your suggestion of using the learning feature to make some other pair of buttons control the volume for the second device, but I’m not sure if I quite understand the mechanics of actually doing that.

    Anyway, thanks so much for your answer; very much appreciated!!

  34. Sheryl Canter:

    The concept of switching between different remotes by pressing the buttons labeled TV, SAT/CABLE, DVD, etc. is not that complicated. I’m sure your wife can figure out that – if AUX is the button that controls the Bose Wave Radio – she just needs to press AUX first, and then all the buttons on the remote control the Bose Wave Radio.

    I just added a note to the original blog post. I finally found the code for the Bose Wave Radio. It’s 409. But it doesn’t work with all the WR7 device buttons. It works with the AUX button, but not the AUD. I discovered that not all the WR7 buttons work the same way (I included that info in the edit, too.) I wanted to put the Bose Wave Radio on the AUD button, so I had to use the learning feature to do it. But the 409 code only transfers on/off and volume, so to add the other features I would have needed to use the learning function, anyway.

    The learning function isn’t hard to use. It’s explained in the manual. Press the component button you want to train and Enter at the same time until the component button lights up. Then press the button you want to assign and after that, with the two remotes nose-to-nose, press the button on the original remote that does what you want the WR7 button to do. If it transferred correctly, the button will blink 3 times. If there was an error, it will blink 5 times and you just have to do it again. When you’re done, press the component button and Enter simultaneously again, until the light on the component button goes off.

    The instructions for macro programming are in the manual. None of this is hard – you just have to read the instructions.

  35. Michael McKenney:

    You’re right, of course, that my wife actually can ahd has figured it out, but she just is one of those people who don’t like computers/technology in the first place, and just doesn’t like messing with buttons.

    Anyway, thanks again so much for your time and patience!

    Best regards,

  36. Blake Lemmons:

    Would you possibly know what the on, off, and up down volume ir codes for the Bose solo? Or where I can find them.
    Thank you

Leave a comment