Feature Articles

PC Show 2012 - TVs & AV Products Buying Guide

PC Show 2012 - TVs & AV Products Buying Guide


Media Players - AC Ryan & ASUS

More than Just a Media Player

While enthusiasts who need to dabble with a variety of content and delegate a system to act as a media server still prefer to go the HTPC (home theater PC) route, for average customers with less than extreme needs, a simple do-it-all media player is often more than sufficient. Not content with being just a locally-connected playback device, many media players now tout the ability to stream from online TV and radio stations. Some can even browse the Web and hook up to social networks, thus becoming a credible alternative to the more expensive Internet-enabled TV. And recently, vendors have started to base their media players off the Android OS, thus opening up a world of apps to the user. 

As many media players now don't support for an internal hard disk drive, when buying one, make sure it has the right connections or services that allow you to access your media content. Does it have a USB port; is one enough? Do you need a card reader? Is it DLNA compliant, so that you can get to files residing on other DLNA-enabled devices? What network sharing functions does it have? What online services does it support? Are there any hidden costs?

Also, know that support for most popular formats shouldn't be taken to mean support for all formats. If there's a particular video format that you always play, it's wise to scrutinize the specs sheet to ensure that it indeed is supported. Better yet, bring along some test files to try them on the spot.

 

AC Ryan (Level 6, Hall 601)

 

AC Ryan Veolo Smart Android Hub

The Veolo is a full HD network media streamer, Internet TV web browser, and more. The browser supports HTML5, Flash and Chrome V8 JavaScript. Running on Android 2.2, you can download Android apps through AndroidPIT, an Android app market. Getting it online can be done either via the built-in gigabit LAN or wireless-N interface. The RF 3-in-1 remote combines a QWERTY keyboard and a wireless pointer for ease of text entry and swift swiping navigation.

  • PC Show Price: $259
  • Usual Price: $329
  • Promotion: $10 discount for Citibank card members
  • More Information: HWZ Review

 

AC Ryan Playon!HD Mini 2

The Playon!HD Mini 2 lets you enjoy radio and TV stations on the Internet. You can connect with your friends on social networks, such as Facebook and Twitter, chat with them on MSN, and share photos on Picasa and Flickr. With its gigabit LAN connection, you can easily stream HD files over the network. Tons of formats are supported, including MKV, RM, DVD-ISO, and BD-ISO. It's extremely quiet too, as it doesn't use any fan for cooling.

  • PC Show Price: $159
  • Usual Price: $199
  • Promotion: $10 discount for Citibank card members
  • More Information: HWZ Review

 

Brochures
Click here for AC Ryan media player brochures.

 

ASUS (Level 6, Hall 602; Level 3, Newstead Booth Concourse)

 

ASUS O!Play TV Pro

The HDMI 1.4-ready O!Play TV Pro isn't just a media player that's capable of playing back over 50 formats, such as ISO, MKV, RM/RMVB, MP4, and 3D formats such as H.264 MVC. It also comes with a built-in DVB-T digital tuner so that you can access and record over-the-air digital TV programs onto its internal 3.5-inch HDD. This all-rounded device supports a slew of online entertainment services, such as Picasa, Flickr, Facebook, and YouTube. It also comes with gigabit Ethernet, 802.11n Wi-Fi, and USB 3.0 support.

  • PC Show Price: $299
  • Usual Price: $309
  • Promotion: All ASUS media players come prepacked with HDMI cable

 

Brochures

Click here for ASUS media player brochures.