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A.C. Ryan Playon!HD and Playon!HD mini review

by Parm Mann on 17 August 2010, 12:58 3.5

Tags: Playon!HD, Playon!HD mini, AC Ryan

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qazka

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Introduction

With a NAS in your home and a smartphone in your hand, today's digital multimedia collection is available on demand almost anywhere in the world.

Yet it's ironic that the big-screen TV in the living room somehow manages to remain disconnected and out of reach of your videos, images and music.

The biggest names in the industry - including Microsoft, Google and Apple - have all tried to solve the living room conundrum, but no one set-top box has yet conquered the mainstream.

Instead, niche high-def media players such as the Popcorn Hour, Western Digital TV and Compro T1000W are finding fans in an increasingly-popular area of the market with their no-frills approach and their ability to playback almost every format under the sun.

Joining those ranks is Dutch manufacturer A.C. Ryan. It's a name that might sound unfamiliar, but the company's two network media players - the Playon!HD and Playon!HD mini - attempt to tackle all of your multimedia requirements in a small, tidy package.

The players, pictured above, may look modest, but when connected to your TV they promise to play/stream a range of media formats that's about as all-encompassing as it gets.

Right out of the box, both the Playon!HD and Playon!HD mini will support all of the following:

Video Formats Supported:

AVI / MKV / TS / TP / TRP / M2TS / MPG / MP4 / MOV / M4V / VOB / ISO / IFO / DAT / WMV / ASF / RM / RMVB / FLV resolution up to 720p / 1080i / 1080p / BD-ISO

Video Codecs Supported:

MPEG-1 / MPEG-2 / MPEG-4 SP/ASP/AVC (H.264 | x264) / XviD / DivX / WMV9 (VC-1) / RealVideo 8/9/10 (up to 720P)

Video Output Supported:

PAL / NTSC / 480p / 576p / 720p / 1080i 50Hz / 1080i 60Hz / 1080p 50Hz / 1080p 60Hz / 1080p 24FPS

Audio Formats Supported:

MP3 / MP2 / WMA / AAC / FLAC / WAV / OGG Vorbis / PCM / LPCM / MS-ADPCM / LC-AAC / HE-AAC / COOK / RA-Lossless

Audio Output Supported:

Stereo
Dolby Digital AC3 5.1 (passthrough & downmix to stereo)
Dolby Digital Plus (passthrough)
DTS (passthrough & downmix to stereo)
DTS-HD Master Audio (passthrough core stream & downmix to stereo)
DTS-HD High Resolution Audio (passthrough core stream & downmix to stereo)
FLAC 7.1 (passthrough & downmix to stereo)

Image Formats Supported:

JPEG / HD JPEG / BMP / GIF / TIF / PNG

Subtitle Formats Supported:

SRT / SMI / SSA / IDX / SUB

Whether you're enjoying a simple MP3 or playing back a catalogue of Blu-ray BD-ISO disc images, the Playon!HD seems to have you covered.

And, more importantly, pricing starts from just £89.99. Intrigued? Read on to find out more.