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208 posts

Master Geek


Topic # 88645 19-Aug-2011 23:23
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Greetings,

I'm looking at purchasing a AC Ryan Playon HD Mini 2 Full HD

Any thoughts on this unit good or bad?

I like the 1Gbit Ethernet as I have a 1Gbit LAN and a 3TB NAS already.

I have an olde TEAC Freeview receiver (less said the better) that can record to a USB in TRP format and note the AC Ryan supports TRP playback (maybe not the audio encoding but TS-Doctor can sort that)
That aside, it looks like a good balanced unit for the price and all the minuses on the reviews don't impact me.

Have a Realtek HD audio driver (5.1 multi-channel) on my Notebook and it's OK for what I want so AC Ryan quality shouldn't be to bad.

Has anybody attempted to plug a USB 2.0 Blu-ray/DVD drive (LG BP06LU10 External Blu-ray) into this unit or any other Media Player unit and will it read native media or are we lacking the supported codec/drivers.
Just thought I'd ask.

What I'm looking for is 1Gbit Ethernet(Must), Component Interface, HDMI(1.4a bonus),
Optical Audio SPDIF(Coaxial OK), good GUI, good support for media, ShoutCast(or other Internet radio) and Gmail would be a bonus.

Thanks for any thoughts shared.

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  Reply # 509272 20-Aug-2011 07:23
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I have an original playon mini.

Just updated the firmware last night in fact (the GUI 2.0 is certainly nicer to look at).
I use a WiFi connection - so cant comment too much on the ethernet connection - just stream from my PC to a 50" TV in the lounge.

The unit plays pretty much everything I have thrown at it.
It seems to upscale the picture pretty well too.

Looking on their forums you would see a lot of grizzles about the firmware updates - I gather a lot of that is due to the SDK that Realtek provides - but they seem to be on top of that now.







Nothing is impossible for the man who doesn't have to do it himself - A. H. Weiler

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  Reply # 509283 20-Aug-2011 08:41
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Does the ac ryan have any inbuilt jukebox software or does it take a feed from yamj and the like?

ie is the just a file browser?




Previously known as psycik

NextPVR/OpenHAB: 
Gigabyte AMD A8 Brix --> Samsung LA46A650D via HDMI, NextPVR,OpenHAB with Aeotech ZWave Controller
Media:Chromecast v2, ATV4, Roku3, Raspberry PI temperature Sensors and Bluetooth LE Sensors,HDHomeRun Dual
Windows 2012 
Host (Plex Server/Crashplan): 2x2TB, 2x3TB, 1x4TB using DriveBender, Samsung 850 evo 512 GB SSD, Hyper-V Server with 1xW10, 1xW2k8, 2xUbuntu 16.04 LTS, Crashplan, NextPVR channel for Plex,NextPVR Metadata Agent and Scanner for Plex


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  Reply # 509291 20-Aug-2011 09:04
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Posting just to bring to your attention the WDTV Live Media Hub.

I had looked at the AC Ryan, but since WD have released this media player I am steered towards that. 




The little things make the biggest difference.

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  Reply # 509297 20-Aug-2011 09:23
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Shindig: Posting just to bring to your attention the WDTV Live Media Hub.

I had looked at the AC Ryan, but since WD have released this media player I am steered towards that. 


An explanation as to why might be useful to readers.

I've heard good things about the ryan as a straight out player, playing our freeview files with no issues.  But I have a popcorn hour currently and that totally integrates to my pvr (as in can start/stop recordings + live tv) no other media player is able to do this, but it's getting long in the tooth.  And at the moment the AC Ryan is probably my next move.

But having show information (via nfo files, html files?) would be a bonus, so any player that can do that would be worth a look.




Previously known as psycik

NextPVR/OpenHAB: 
Gigabyte AMD A8 Brix --> Samsung LA46A650D via HDMI, NextPVR,OpenHAB with Aeotech ZWave Controller
Media:Chromecast v2, ATV4, Roku3, Raspberry PI temperature Sensors and Bluetooth LE Sensors,HDHomeRun Dual
Windows 2012 
Host (Plex Server/Crashplan): 2x2TB, 2x3TB, 1x4TB using DriveBender, Samsung 850 evo 512 GB SSD, Hyper-V Server with 1xW10, 1xW2k8, 2xUbuntu 16.04 LTS, Crashplan, NextPVR channel for Plex,NextPVR Metadata Agent and Scanner for Plex




208 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 509321 20-Aug-2011 12:40
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I have a QNAP NAS with DLNA/UPnP and more disk space that one can poke a brand  new shiny stick at, so I'm not really wanting to de-centralise my storage solution at this time.

The WD TV Media Hub is just that, a media Hub.

As I have an old school LCD TV (Sony Bravia 40" HD 1080i/720p with no Ethernet, no DLNA/UPnP, with Analogue and no Freeview (Requires Freeview box)) I'm really just looking for a media player to do what my TV can't, which is support Ethernet and DLNA/UPnP at it's core.

Thus the WD TV live box would be in the ball park. And if you can get over the look of it, I'm not sure it has 1Gbit Ethernet. AND can a WD TV live box support streaming Internet radio?

True the AC Ryan forum is very active, but as some say on the forum it's teething problems and a lot of issues are very bespoke to specific issues and setups. Like, "I can't download the firmware from a USB SD card". etc etc.. Lets hope looking forward these are just early adopter issues.

So at this time I'm really just looking at disk-less media players (USB/eSATA HDD is fine though).

The down side is, I've never had a Media Player so I don't have experience in what I really, really want.

But I do have a TB NAS with DLNA/UPnP and a 1Gbit/100Mbit Ethernet, 2.4Ghz/5Ghz WiFi LAN.  Why fork out extra dosh for Media Player WiFi option when you already have the LAN infrastructure . Even my Android phone should be seen by a media Player (given DLNA/UPnP) and at very least I can always upload to the NAS media storage area (Can do that on my mobile already).

I don't have files in any given format that I need to play.

Playing TRP files would be nice, but most codecs have a little moment on the AC3 audio format (TV3) when it comes to playback. So I've given up on any hope of playing those without conversion.

And I'm not looking to spend much more than 200.00NZD

Thank for your replies, this is very encouraging. Wow, a media player, aye.. aye.. aye.

P.S. has anyone seen what those mad monkeys at Warehouse Stationary have:
FlexiVIEW FV-1 Android TV Internet Box 8GB Android 2.2 Flash 10.1 WIFI Samsung Cortex A8 S5PV210 CPU Bluetooth HDMI RJ45Android 2.2 is a bit out dated and surprised one can get a wireless keyboard attached. All credit to them.




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  Reply # 509363 20-Aug-2011 14:49
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You could also include the apple tv in your list $169 RRP

Not so great out of the box, but jailbreak it (need a mini or micro USB cable for that) and then you can put XBMC on it. It has built in ethernet and N WiFi. Apparently there is a way to get the bluetooth going (Its on the chip but not activated I gather). Only has HDMI though - but also has optical audio.
There is obviously a bit of user support/interest out there in hacking the apple TV and XBMC etc.

I would have to say though that at the moment the AC Ryan Playon HD mini give better smoother playback of all video files I have chucked at it though.




Nothing is impossible for the man who doesn't have to do it himself - A. H. Weiler



208 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 509380 20-Aug-2011 16:20
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Apple aye. I'm probably the only person in the world that's never owned an Apple device.
Oh, and the guy on the train from Zambia to Tanzania to see the sea for the second time in his life.

I remember all crowding around in the office to peer at the *New* Macintosh 'PC' in the 1980's.

Have no problem with Apple, just never owned one.

AC Ryan have released two firmware upgrades this month (August) totalling nearly 40 bug fixes and changes.

The complaints about firmware and faults seem to be endless.

It's hard to know at what point the product would tip into a zone where there is more fixes and less problems.

Everything can be made to work with some/alot of effort, but it'd be nice to just plug a device in and have it work without becoming an company development tester.

I see a AC Ryan forum post where people are having Audio issues (still being discussed) when using an ONKYO A/V Receiver. Doh!

There have been five firmware upgrades excluding the original firmware.

That's almost one a month.

I can't remember any product that's had that many firmware upgrades in such a short period of time.

If this is a company being proactive and fixing the major problems and they complete the task, then the Mini 2 Full HD should be a good product as designed. However, in so many case products loose focus and the fixes are never forth coming and you're left holding a lemon, when everyone else has Apples (pun intended).

I'll keep an eye on the AC Ryan forum and see where the mood is going







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  Reply # 509386 20-Aug-2011 16:45
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To be fair to AC Ryan, They actually do have a forum and dont seem to clobber the negative posts.
Many either have no forum or 'sanitise' the posts a great deal.

if you look on any product forum like this, you will only find the 'I have a Kamakuza TV with a 1975 Philips proprietary connector that runs at 13.5Hz and your crap product still wont work with it" sort of post.

The first media player I had was a Mediagate box - around 4-5 years ago. The power brick packed up eventually. Worked fine of 'most' files, but users on their forum complained about newer codecs that it wasnt built for (and would never support).

Certainly be wary if some of the gear that people report issues with is gear you run. Just make sure those complaints are about the mini 2 - they have a slightly different chip than the original mini - The later chip was supposed to support more types of audio from memory.





Nothing is impossible for the man who doesn't have to do it himself - A. H. Weiler

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  Reply # 509409 20-Aug-2011 18:14
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I'd be so much keener on my apple tv if it was able to play our freeview|hd - I think it doesn't like the 1080i




Previously known as psycik

NextPVR/OpenHAB: 
Gigabyte AMD A8 Brix --> Samsung LA46A650D via HDMI, NextPVR,OpenHAB with Aeotech ZWave Controller
Media:Chromecast v2, ATV4, Roku3, Raspberry PI temperature Sensors and Bluetooth LE Sensors,HDHomeRun Dual
Windows 2012 
Host (Plex Server/Crashplan): 2x2TB, 2x3TB, 1x4TB using DriveBender, Samsung 850 evo 512 GB SSD, Hyper-V Server with 1xW10, 1xW2k8, 2xUbuntu 16.04 LTS, Crashplan, NextPVR channel for Plex,NextPVR Metadata Agent and Scanner for Plex


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  Reply # 509654 21-Aug-2011 17:52
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I recommend WD TV Live Hub. I love mine. Gigabit ethernet, smooth, responsive and plays almost anything I have thrown at up to 1080p. Designed to play nice with setups like yours.



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Master Geek


  Reply # 509727 21-Aug-2011 22:47
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JimmyH: I recommend WD TV Live Hub. I love mine. Gigabit ethernet, smooth, responsive and plays almost anything I have thrown at up to 1080p. Designed to play nice with setups like yours.


NO!

Definitely not.
I do not want a media hub, Sam I am.Laughing

One has a 3TB Network Attached Storage (NAS - QNAP TS-112) with DLNA/UPnP and it's own Media Station with Photos, Music and Video. It even has an iTunes Server.

One does not want a media player/hub with a HDD in it. It adds to the cost and is not required.
My centralised 1Gbit LAN where everything else is effectively a thin client... even my mobile phone, already has access to disk storage.

In fact I wouldn't really need a media player if my Sony Bravia KLV-40V300A (Circa 2008) was a 2011 model, given I'd have DLNA and Ethernet.... but I don't.... so I do.

There in lies the rub.

So thus, I need a media player(or think I do) and as I mentioned the WD TV live player is in the ball park.

http://www.wdc.com/en/products/products.aspx?id=330

The AC Ryan Playon!HD mini 2 looks promising with a large selection of media support.

http://www.acryan.com/product/playonhdmini2/specifications/

Maybe an Apple TV

http://store.apple.com/nz/browse/home/shop_ipod/family/apple_tv

Or I could go off and dance with the sugar plum fairies and buy an Android TV media player.

http://www.warehousestationery.co.nz/is-bin/INTERSHOP.enfinity/WFS/WSL-B2C-Site/en_NZ/-/NZD/ViewOfferDetail-Product;pgid=sso.01pJh3A00043GLQg7oNK0000TMoM67EI;sid=M-ZZui5gzLpZumAw-VJ5sD_MFVKNTAjU5xA=?ProductUUID=V1MKBTFxpM0AAAEx5CI4IGdm&CatalogCategoryID=dOgKBTFx1ZsAAAExPqQ4MGcG

The best way to describe the system is that this is an android phone minus the mike and LED screen, it has RJ-45 interface, HDMI, wireless interface, Bluetooth, three USBs and that's about it.
The box fits into an average size hand. It seems to be able to connect to a wireless keyboard.

Then I'll be at the mercy of the Chinese manufacturer for Android upgrades. Lovely.


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  Reply # 510158 22-Aug-2011 21:17
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Personally, I would be wary of the Warehouse stationery option. It's as expensive or more expensive than proven mainstream options, these things always seem to need updates, and you would be at the mercy of an unknown manufacturer for updates and support. At least the WD TV, Popcorn Hour, Netgear and AC Ryan options have known suppliers with track records for support provision.

I would either:

1. Save money on a stopgap and spend $80-$160 on a cheapie or something like the Live, with view to upgrade later; or

2. Push the boat out and spend circa $450+ on a top line model like the Live Hub or Popcorn Hour, with a view to using for several years at least.

Spending almost as much as it costs for a top line proven branded model, on a risky unbranded punt from an unknown (Chinese?) manufacturer, seems like a recipe for disappointment to me. I would be moderately irritated if an $80 cheapie like the one Leemings sell didn't perform as expected, I would be very pee'd off if I spent $400 and that happened.



208 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 510224 23-Aug-2011 00:08
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JimmyH: Spending almost as much as it costs for a top line proven branded model, on a risky unbranded punt from an unknown (Chinese?) manufacturer, seems like a recipe for disappointment to me. I would be moderately irritated if an $80 cheapie like the one Leemings sell didn't perform as expected, I would be very pee'd off if I spent $400 and that happened.


You're very correct.

I was more in the line of thinking... wow! That's different.

An Android with Ethernet, Keyboard and HD display. Something to consider when Samsung (or similar company) offer a device like this with Android 3.1 and OS support.

Talking about insane in the left brain, what about the Logitech Revue.
There is a weird stat on that critter, more people returning them, than buying them.

So... I wonder if WD will 'revamp' the ageing look of the WD TV Live boxes in the style of the WD TV Live Hub.

Then I could buy one of those, save $100.00 (approx price of a basic 1TB HDD) on the price of a WD TV hub.

Any media player I purchase would spend most of it's time just playing Internet radio .. so at what point in a more mature and expensive device, does the whole process just become over kill.

I haven't given up on the AC Ryan Playon!HD mini 2 ...yet.





 



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