April 24, 2007

MvixUSA 760-HD in house


Well our MvixUSA 760-HD has finally arrived and we can't be more excited to put it through our battery of tests. We have only just set it up and are seeing how it performs, but it looks like this could be our holy grail of media centers. We have yet to get to a point of frustration of find any true bottlenecks.

It has an elegant look and has so far past all of our tests, the most important one being that it just works out of the box. No one should have to spend hours searching the Internet trying to find answers on how to get their cool new product to work. We followed the directions and in a matter of minutes we were able to see our files on the TV.

We will have a bunch more articles coming up on this amazing product and a special one that pits the 760HD against the Apple TV, stay tuned.

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

April 22, 2007

Yamada HTV-200XU - 21st century boombox


A Germany company called Yamada has released a new product that re-invents the traditional boombox. This sucker comes with a DVD player and a 7" LCD screen. So not only does it play your music over the attached speakers, but it also can play DVD movies in a variety of disc formats that include:

  • DVD R/RW
  • DVD+R/RW
  • CD
  • CD-R/RW

The DVD player plays both MPEG-4 and DivX files and can be used to view JPEG photos too. It also sports a USB port that allows you to hook up either a computer or a MP3 player to play music. And if all this wasn't enough it can also hook up to your entertainment system via:

  • S-Video
  • Composite
  • Stereo and digital Coax line-out

We aren't sure if this will be available in the States but it seems like a very cool new idea. Its mobile so you can take it with you and has the ability to hook into you existing entertainment center if you want to 'dock' it at you home. We'll keep you posted if we find out any more about this

via ubergizmo

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

April 19, 2007

SanDisk Digital Photo Album


The SanDisk Photo Album is a very cool little utility product that is sure to find a lot of success in the world. Basically it is a flash card reader that can output to a TV. So lets say you are visiting friends and you want to show everyone pictures of your new baby, instead of having everyone look at the display on your camera, you can just plug this into the TV, put your storage card in the Photo Album and bam, pictures on your TV. And as if that wasn't enough it will also let you play music and video via the TV as well.

Media formats that it supports

  • CompactFlash Type I/II
  • Secure Digital (SD)/MultiMediaCard (MMC)
  • Memory Stick/Memory Stick PRO
  • SmartMedia/xD

It also sports a USB input on the back allowing you to use a USB thumb drive for viewing your media. With the small size and the wide compatibility of input media we think this is a sure fire winner for great travel product or a very cheap way to view things on your home TV when company comes over. How far we have come from the old days of setting up the projector with the slides to now just plugging a device into the TV and boring your friends with ease.

At Amazon.

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

April 14, 2007

Slingbox Pro Review


The Slingbox by SlingMedia has been around for awhile and it has really proven to be a great little device. When we first read about the Slingbox we have to admit that we smiled and thought that this would fail in a matter of months. Well boy were we wrong. Not only has the Slingbox not failed, but it has thrived.

Targeted to those with fast home connections and the desire to watch their TV anywhere else in the world the Slingbox has become the perfect companion. For those not in the know the Slingbox hooks up to your DVR, cable box or whatever you have that is grabbing TV off the airwaves and, via a computer in your house that has a fast internet connection, will allow you then to watch it from anywhere else.

ArrowContinue reading: "Slingbox Pro Review"

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

April 3, 2007

Creative's new Xdock shown at CeBIT


Creative debuted a very interesting new line of products at CeBit this year. They are calling the technology X-Fi for "Xtreme Fidelity". The Xdock is at first glance just another run of the mill looking iPod docking station. But in reality it is so much more.

With the Xdock you can stream music to the rest of your house by purchasing extra receiver units and attaching speakers to them. Each unit has the ability to output its music through attached powered speakers or to a home audio system. That way you can have one iPod service your entire house.

It also comes with S-video and composite video connections allowing you to display photos and videos from your iPod to your TV. Creative has attempted to make the all in one media station based around an iPod and by the looks of it they have succeeded.

ArrowContinue reading: "Creative's new Xdock shown at CeBIT"

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

April 2, 2007

Review of MythTV


For those of you with some technical know-how and that are looking for a product that not only does it all, but does it all and then some, you should think about MythTV. MythTV is an open source software package that can do just about anything with your home media. It can act as a PVR, video viewer, photo viewer, mp3 player, game emulator, RSS feed reader, weather viewer, and a dvd player. And if it can't do something you want, odds are someone has already written a plug in to do it.

The reason we say that you need some technical know-how is that this is a Linux based software package, and the installation, depending on which flavor of Linux you install on, can be challenging. We played around with this about 3 years ago and then again just a few weeks ago and the improvements blew us away. First off the install is fairly simple now following a pretty standard install script that most computer users have seen before. The interface is very smooth and responsive and the themes that come bundled are gorgeous.

ArrowContinue reading: "Review of MythTV"

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 29, 2007

AppleTV Stops User Hacks


Well it looks like Apple just doesn't get it. There are reports coming out that apparently people that have hacked their AppleTV's are seeing their hacks go bye-bye. Engadget has a good write up of what is going on.

One of the things we have found is that the devices that leave themselves open to hacking seem to always sell better. And we aren't talking about hacking devices to do illegal things, just extending the device in ways the developers did not originally intend.

Take for example the Hauppauge MediaMVP that we reviewed earlier. Obviously it isn't one of the greatest device out there, but since they have left themselves opened to be hacked they have turned a mediocre product into something that has sold much better then it would have otherwise have.

So we think that Apple might have made a blunder here. Maybe they have some grand reason why they would push more software onto their devices and closing all the doors that people have found, but we personally think that if someone wants to add a SSH server to something that they purchased then they should be able to. But, thats just us, we aren't Apple now are we :)

We will keep you updated as we learn more about what can and can't be done with the AppleTV.

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 23, 2007

First Impressions: AppleTV


We received our new AppleTV today and we set about our usual routine of ripping the box open as fast as we can and racing over to our entertainment center to hook it up. Once we opened the box we had two immediate thoughts: first, I can't believe they shipped this thing with that puny little remote. Sure we knew that was coming, but we were just hoping that they would have come to their senses and given us something with slightly more functionality. Our second shock was that the only cables that shipped with the box were the power cables. No ethernet, HDMI, or any other cable that you could use with it. We didn't think it much to send at least one! Let us hook the damn thing up right away. Don't make us hunt for cables.

After the initial shock wore off we slowly walked over to our media center, plugged it in and hooked it up to our network and to our HDTV via HDMI cable. Once it booted up we were given a code that we had to enter into iTunes. Once that is done the unit is 'paired' up with the iTunes server. We then can either copy files to the device or tell it which files in our iTunes library it should play.

ArrowContinue reading: "First Impressions: AppleTV"

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

March 19, 2007

Aitech Pro PC/TV Wireless PC to TV Converter


Anitech has a product that on the surface seems like a great little device. Hook one of the two included components up to your computer and the other to your TV and you will be able to stream video wirelessly across this link.

They claim a maximum resolution of 2048x1536 which is strange since we can't figure how that would work on any HDTV in existence. We really aren't sure which segment of the market they are trying to target with this device since reviews we have read complain about the lack of communication between both devices if they are not in the same room.

If your PC is in the same room as your HDTV why would you want to send video to it wirelessly. We assume there is someplace where this would be handy, we just can't think of one as of yet :)

But like we always say, we are just happy that more and more companies are testing out this space and trying to bring more products to market. We couldn't be happier about that aspect.

At Amazon.

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

March 13, 2007

Mvix MV-5000U Multimedia Player


MvixUSA's MV-5000U is a new approach to networked music and one that we think you will come to love. Usually the products that we cover deal with being hooked up to the network so you can keep your files in once place and play them over your entertainment center.

Well the MV-5000U takes a different approach. Basically you hook this up to your PC via USB 2.0 and transfer all of the files you want to the internal hard drive( not included with purchase ). Once you have all of your music, photos and videos on the device just move it down to your entertainment center and hook it up to your TV and stereo.

ArrowContinue reading: "Mvix MV-5000U Multimedia Player"

David Ficocello at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

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