HDX 1000 NMT Player Review

HDX 1000 NMT Player Review




After over a week of playing around with the HDX 1000 Media Player, I am convinced that this is a great device to have especially if you’re mostly watching downloadable shows. It has some quirkiness but let me share why I think this media player is worth considering.

The HDX is made of solid aluminum casing with a black, brushed metal finish. The size is enough to fit a single HDD with capacities of up to 1 Terabyte. The design is simple but elegant, yet does not compromise the construction (you’d get the feeling that it can take some heavy stress test and won’t easily break open or damaged). In contrast, what initially turned me off of the Popcorn Hour was that it seemed shabbily made with thin pieces of metal screwed together.

At the front, you’ll see the LED power indicator that turns blue in active mode and red while asleep or suspended. On the left side is a card reader (to plug in your memory card from your camera). At the back-side, there’s power switch and a plethora of ports — S/PDIF optical and coax audio, stereo analog audio, HDMI, composite video, LAN port, 2 USB ports (one being used/connected to the SD card in front) and a USB slave. The outputs are also gold plated for better signal quality/performance.

The USB port accepts external drives, thumb drives while the USB slave can be used to hook it up to your PC so it can read off all the media stored in it.

From the last time I tried the platform, the menu/navigation system was a bit awkward and sluggish. I believe that part was fixed and the system is now very responsive and the movies loads fast. The menu is simple and intuitive — select an attached device (media source), pick the media type you want to view, select the file and then hit play.


 

I’ve tried hooking up the HDX on a 32″ 720p Samsung HDTV and a 42″ 1080i Toshiba LCD TV with great results. Video output quality is top notch and there are no noticeable MPEG artifacts when playing the MKV movies that came with the 1TB hard drive. And while I used the HDMI port for best output quality, I wasn’t able to run it with a Blu-ray player (for comparison) so I settled with Xvid and Matroska movies (the HDX supports a lot of media types, codecs and video containers, half of them I’m not even familiar with).Â

While movie load quit fast (3-4 seconds), viewing photos can be a little frustrating. Loading a 500KB photo averages around 7 to 8 seconds while playing an mp3 song takes about 4-5 seconds. The system is obviously not optimized for photo-viewing (I love the way Apple TV does photo slideshows).

The best feature IMO is the Torrent client which allows you to download movies directly into the player. That saves you in electric bills compared to running the torrent downloads from your PC. That doesn’t count the various web services that it supports – YouTube, Veoh, Metacafe, Flickr, Picasa, Shoutcast, CNN News, BBC podcasts among others. Internet connection is drawn from a LAN cable or a WiFi 802.11n USB dongle (a TP-Link Wireless USB, sold separately).

Here’s the clincher though — the HDX 1000 and the Popcorn Hour A-100 has the same hardware platform and firmware  (full specs here). Both are powered by a Sigma Designs SMP8635 processor designed and manufactured by Syabas. According to the tech specs though, the HDX has 512MB 64-bit internal DDR RAM while the PCH A100 only has 256MB. They even have the same wireless remote controls.

That being said, it all boils down to the minor differences in the details and the design implementation as well as the pricing. Personally, I liked the make and construction of the HDX.

End Notes:
Price – HDX 1000 Networked Media Tank
– without hard disk drive: Php15,900
– with 640 GB Western Digital Caviar Green: Php20,200
– with 1 TB Western Digital Caviar Green: Php22,600

Check out http://www.hdx1080.com.ph for availability.



Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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23 Responses

  1. Darren says:

    I will go for 1TB drive solution~

  2. brian says:

    nice. I am planning to set up a home theater in my room, I might consider this.

  3. calvin says:

    uy very nice. too bad wala akong hd capable tv. hehehe. sayang yung WDTV cannot download from torrents unlike this one.

  4. Sir, where can we buy this gadget? i want to buy one.. thanks

  5. Eric Yu says:

    The HDX 1000 supports Standard-Definition (SD) TV’s too; composite (RCA) video and audio connectors are standard on the device.

    It’ll be ready to play back your content in HD whenever you decide to upgrade you television :-)

  6. ill definitely consider this

  7. hi sir yuga!

    nice review and now I am having second thoughts of buying one even with the extravagant price. just my two cents, for everyone, why not buy a separate 1TB drive and buy the HDX without a drive. I think that might save people almost a thousand bucks. I just saw a 1TB drive for around 5k pesos in PC Corner.

    @calvin
    how does the WDTV compare to this performance-wise and price-wise minus the torrent capability?

  8. Is this already available in the market?

  9. yuga says:

    Check out http://www.hdx1080.com.ph/ for full specs and availability.

  10. alejojoe says:

    wooooooh, this is one nice toy! for movie addict like me. this is a gift from above. time to save for the best. axxo, fxm, fxg and klaxxon you are all going to be exploited now. : )

  11. Enteng says:

    Do you still need a usb WiFi dongle to download directly to the NMT?

  12. Enteng says:

    “Internet connection is drawn from a LAN cable or a WiFi 802.11n USB dongle (a TP-Link Wireless USB, sold separately).”

    – got it! :-)

  13. eat1ng says:

    @Reel Advice: Usually NMTs (like this and the PCH A-***) with optional 1TB drives are pre-loaded with 180-200 high definition movies. So if you have time to download these much movies, you can buy separate hard disk.

    It is strance that this device doesnt support flac eventhough it supports lossless surround formats.

  14. eat1ng says:

    @alejojoe: axxo and the others provide us with quality movies good for watching on a PC with <22″ monitor. But with an HDTV, you should play nothing less than 720p (with dts tracks) with this monster.

    @yuga: Does this support playlists (m3u or pla), provide options like play a folder (including subfolders), shuffle and other things that the PCH-Axxx can’t do? I have a PCH-A110 and i agree with most reviews that it is a very good video player but not an audio player. What can you say about the audio playback capabilities of this HDX MEDIA (video & audio) player?

  15. Eric Yu says:

    @eat1ng: The HDX 1000 supports FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec)

  16. Eric Yu says:

    @eat1ng: HDX 1000, PCH-A110 and similar Syabas-based NMT’s can run a number of 3rd-party software such as Music Jukebox.

    Here are some of the capabilities of Music Jukebox (currently on stable release Ver. 6.5):

    · Scans all your music folders and generates an HTML menu that can be displayed on your NMT
    · Automatically downloads album art
    · Supports music genres
    · Skinnable interface
    · Easy navigation using the remote control (‘P-L-A’ opens Playlist page, ‘R-O-C’ opens Rock Genre page)
    · Build, run and manage playlists
    · Shuffle (random) play mode

  17. mel says:

    I have bad experienced on the Torrent client of two different (brand) NMT players. Before, I used to download HD movies through NMT but after 4-5 months, the unit itself stops working but the hard disk is still good. Fortunately the units have six month warranty.

    Most NMT players have poor ventilation not unless you leave the aircon running while downloading.

  18. Chris says:

    Nice galing full HD..

  19. Doodles says:

    except maybe for the part that the hdx could download hd videos directly from the net, i’d stick with my western digital tv (price P5,400) player which is capable of playing hd content from my 1tb western digital mybook essential (price P5,300)or any other external hard drive enclosure or flash drive. a lot cheaper than the P22K equivalent combo of hdx and caviar green.

  20. Tomyomgoong says:

    pricewise the WDHD is the cheapest option, however, if you want to organize your movie/video selection the NMT (HDX 1000 and PCH A110) is better. With NMT you can connect to the net via a wireless or wired option and watch youtube videos and a lot more.

  21. Hi

    My HDX (with 1t disk) sometimes refuse to turn on. the lights are on but only after another turn OFF turn ON with the power switch it turned on.

    Any idea ?

    thank you
    eli

  22. wala lang says:

    doodles: Where did you buy your WD HD media player? I’ve read good reviews and price is reasonable.

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