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Airpods volume control on apple Tv

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Recently i have been using my airpods 3 and airpods pro at night to make use of spatial audio and dolby atmos listening. I enjoy cranking up a movie in my home theater environment at night without bothering my sleeping partner in the next room. 

heres my dilema. I use an infrared harmony remote (650) for my home theater setup. The latest TVOS does have the ability for the apple tv to learn ir commands but for some reason they left out the ability to control volume of the airpods - without having to go into the control center on the apple TV ans adjust there. Its very klunky to have to do this. 

the only thing i cant seem to accomplish is to have my harmony remote control the airpods volume directly. 

apple seems to force you to either use the remote app on another ios device (the one that is in the control center) or use the apple tv remote, or as mentioned above, to use the control center on the apple tv. 

has anyone figured out a way to control airpods volume with an IR remote? 

 

I dont want to purchase a sofabaton, and i dont want to use a harmony hub. I already have 3 harmony 650s programed up for my home theater that do everything except for this one thing. 

I also  put a suggestion request to apple to have an IR learning function for airpods volume control

 

as an aside, i also have an apple watch, and apple wont let you control airpods volume with the digital crown on the apple tv either  

thanks for any insight

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