The Top 7 Media Streaming Products Available Today
Well we have reviewed a lot of different devices over the past months and we are here to say what we think our the top 7 products on the market today. Why 7, well we are just sick of top ten lists, thats why. There are a lot of things to weigh when you are deciding on which device makes the list.
For us here at Networking Audio Video, one of the most important aspects of any media streamer is ease of setup. If your average person off the street can't open the box and get this thing to work then it won't be widely adopted, plain and simple.
We also had to decide if we were only going to include products that could stream all media types or also include specialized devices that only did audio, video, or images. After much internal debate we decided to include all the devices out there even if they only streamed one type of content.
Well enough boring setup, on to the list!
- 7) Apple's Airport Express. This small cheap device has given a lot of people an easy way to stream their iTunes music to their stereo. There a plenty of more complex and fully featured options out there, but the Express made it so easy that anyone could hook it up and enjoy the wonderful world of networked music.
- 6) Netgear EVA8000 Digital Entertainer HD. Netgear updated their first attempt at producing a world class media streamer with the release of the EVA8000. They added a ton of options and the ability to play back just about any type of media you threw at it. The reason it isn't higher on the list is that there were complaints about Software problems, UI clunkiness and the fact that there are a lot of great products out there.
- 5) TViX HD M-5100SH. We love what TViX has been doing with their products and the M-5100SH is one of their best. It will stream just about any file type you can throw at it and use either an internal hard drive or stream from your PC. Also they can output 1080p over their HDMI port. A very solid product.
- 4) Slimdevices Squeezebox 3. It pains us that this is only 4 on our list since this might be one of our favorite products we have reviewed. While this device only streams audio it does it so well that is will change the way you listen and think about your music collection. The ability not only to have all of your digital music at your fingertips, but also the ability to customize how you hear that music is amazing. We have owned our Squeezebox for many months now and we are still giddy about it. Slim Devices went all out to squeeze( no pun intended ) as much high end technology into a small cheap media player and the software that drives it. For anyone that has wanted to listen to their music without having to deal with CDs this is a great choice.
- 3) Sonos Wireless Music Streamer. We never thought that we would have another pure audio streamer listed ahead of the Squeezebox, but after we had some time to play with it we were completely blown away. Sonos has put a tremendous amount of thought and technical knowhow into creating what we believe is the best pure audio streamer on the market. Nothing can touch its ease of use and the beauty of the remote. This system can be used by complete tech novices and geeks alike. It was a joy to play with and we basically had nothing bad to say about it.
- 2 AppleTV. Apple released the AppleTV earlier this year and they put media streaming on the map. This is Apple's second appearance on this list and that is proof to us that they are committed to embracing the new age of digital media. They started with the Apple's Airport Express and now continue with the AppleTV. It is not without its flaws, but with the name recognition of Apple they have turned on an entire new segment of the populous to the joys of ridding your home of the clutter of CDs and DVDs. Having everything digital and having the ability to watch of listen to anything at a moments notice. Many people didn't even realize the options they had until they heard about the AppleTV. We know that there is still a lot of ground to cover before home media streaming becomes just another normal thing like owning a computer and buying songs off of iTunes, but with a company like Apple in the mix it won't be that long.
- 1) Mvix 760HD Wireless Streaming Media Center. Well our number one choice is the Mvix 760HD. We know people will probably not agree with this choice since there are a few blemishes with it, but it was our feeling that it did so much right that the few things it didn't do we could over look. One thing we have been waiting for was a device that could play all the ISO's we had on our server. This amazing little device had no problem doing that and more, we rarely come across a media format that it can't handle. Add to that a vibrant community that is actively trying to make the device better and you have a great Media Center that hasn't even hit its peak yet.
OK so there is our top 7. Didn't see your favorite device in the list? Let us know, we are always on the look out for new devices and if we missed one please add a comment and let us know. We are interested in what you guys think are the best on the market.
Read More in: Audio Streaming | Image Streaming | Mvix | Squeezebox | Video Streaming
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Posted by David Ficocello at July 20, 2007 2:54 PM