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  • ender707 - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    Every time I see one of these reviews for media player, I wonder how it compares to the Xbox and PS3 in terms of streaming video etc.

    Does any one have any input on how these stack up to the current consoles?
  • MGSsancho - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    These devices exist because Sony and Microsoft refuse the listen to their customers and supports formats for media we have. Had Microsoft and Sony had more backbone then none of these other devices would really exist. Reply
  • Tetracycloide - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    Even if the Xbox/PS3 were the best over-the-top boxes they could possibly be there would still be a market for competing devices that don't have the added cost of including expensive gaming hardware. The NTV200 is $70 on amazon right now for example. Reply
  • Matt355 - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    Very true. I have a Xbox and a playstation and the Boxee Box is still my go to device. Because it plays everything. Since I purchased it about 2 months ago at Best Buy for $89 vs $300 Xbox and $500 Playstation. it has never failed to play anything and will stream video from my iPhone to the TV like an Apple TV. I get all types of News, Anime and even Adult channels free through streaming. With a dedicated Netflix button and all without ever using more then 15W. Reply
  • Matt355 - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    The Xbox has very limited codec's and needs most video transcoded for streaming even ones it should play if they don't have 2 channel audio, No mp4 with dolby digital audio, It will not allow files over 4g to stream unless their wmv, has no web browser, No mkv, and is the only device that makes you pay extra for viewing Youtube, hulu and Netflix, $60 Xbox Gold account required.

    The Playstation is a lot better as a media hub. free streaming of Netflix, Hulu and Youtube. CEC so you can use your TV remote, and plays my Blu-Ray disc's But the browser is horrible, No mkv files and forget Blu-ray disc backups with Cinavia

    The Boxee Box has become my go to device. It simply plays everything and mine has a dedicated Netflix button.
  • Death666Angel - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    Considering that neither Xbox360 nor PS3 can play back the .mkv format and lack support for certain codecs, they are pretty limited in terms of usability. Unless one goes through the process of building their library based on these two devices, most people are better off with a dedicated media player or a small HTPC. :-) Reply
  • bknight555 - Thursday, February 09, 2012 - link

    PS3 can play MKV if encoded with proper codec (PS3 has native support for H.264). There is a catch though, the file needs to be copied locally on the PS3 file system.

    Just last night I copied 30 gig of Cowboys & Alliens rip (transfer via Java PS3 server took about 4 hours). Once the file was copied successfully I was able playback with no issues.
  • Sivar - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    3 letters:
    M K V
  • ender707 - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    Thanks for the feedback everyone, I think I have a better understanding of the limitations of the consoles vs the media boxes now.

    I think that there are a probably a lot of people like me who already own an Xbox / PS3 who wonder if these devices could provide a benefit to them that the consoles can not provide.

    It seems that there is, thanks again.
  • gudodayn - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    Why are these Net-TV remote controls so basic .......
    I would like for once see one with a simple keypad!
  • JoeMcJoe - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    That remote looks ok.

    I have the Boxee one, its terrible, worst remote ever.

    The interface to the Boxee is pretty poor also, I have it because it plays MKVs and DVD ISOs great. I hope it plays Blue ray ISOs one day too.

    I use a Qnap NAS.

    The PS3 interface is great.
  • Matt355 - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    When I first got my Boxee box it needed to update its software, its Still not as polished as the Apple TV But its good. I like the remote because it makes using the web browser easier and mine has a dedicated Netflix button. Reply
  • damianrobertjones - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    Personally I have little faith in Neatgear at this point in time

    I purchased said router only to find that it wouldn't retain an ip address for anything over 30 seconds. No review mentioned this which was odd so I now think twice before thinking about anything 'netgear'. Plus, obviously, the wireless dongles can be a bit pap at times
  • OzzieGT - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    One thing which is sorely lacking is how the box handles local streaming (file shares, DLNA, etc). This is a very important feature in a box like this for me. Reply
  • ganeshts - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    There is nothing around this unit's price point which has all these premium video features and also support for media over local networks. (Roku has some sort of Plex support, but it is really very spotty and there is no native codec support most of the time).

    As I said in the concluding remarks, go with the WDTV Live SMP which has better local media support and also has almost all the premium VoD services one would use..
  • Brovane - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    Why would NetGear launch this box and leave out Amazon Vod? Reply
  • Matt355 - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    I Know. it must be licensing or something because its not on Xbox, Playstation, or even Boxee. I mostly see it on Tivo. Reply
  • sulu1977 - Friday, December 23, 2011 - link

    Where's the web surfing capability? If people can surf the web on a tiny cell-phone, wouldn't it be far more logical o be able to surf the web on a big TV? Reply
  • shorty lickens - Saturday, December 24, 2011 - link

    I just got my mom the Roku LT for Xmas. According to this article, the Netgear is slightly better for the same money.
    Oh well.
  • HiFreak1c - Saturday, December 24, 2011 - link

    Actually, Xbox360 can stream MKV w/ Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound through windows Media Centre. It just can't play DTS is all.

    Addon for WMC:
    Codec support:
    Codec support: http://

    Mine works fine most of the time, apart from a few issues with it locking up and stuff. I'm going to replace it with a HTPC soon, but for the mean time it works fine as a poor mans alternative to a proper HTPC build.
  • raquel - Monday, December 26, 2011 - link

    I don't understand why you're saying this is better than the Roku when the only advantage it appears to have is Vudu support. I don't know anybody who uses Vudu.

    I don't know anybody who uses Amazon video, either. But everybody uses Netflix, and Roku has a better Netflix client. And Roku supports Hulu, which is pretty popular. And the cheap Roku costs less than this. And it supports supports Crackle, which the cheap people who buy these cheap boxes will appreciate since it's totally free. This thing isn't going to catch on like the Roku and it'll never have the support of Roku -- like keeping the Netflix client up to date, and like MKV support which Roku has now.

    I just don't see how this has anything going for it except as a cheap Vudu player if you're a huge Vudu fan and you don't have a PS3 or Xbox or Blu-ray player that supports Vudu.
  • ganeshts - Monday, December 26, 2011 - link

    My comparison holds water as long as you can grab this one for ~$50. Let me explain:

    The cheapest Roku 2 is only 720p, so the latest Netflix client and full 1080p is wasted in it. There is no wired Ethernet support and Wi-Fi is not universally reliable in the 2.4 GHz band, particularly in crowded neighborhoods. Netgear says this will get 1080p Netflix and supports wired Ethernet. Hardware-wise, this is surely one in the bag for NTV200.

    On to Vudu.. I am really not a big fan of the non-buffet services, but the quality of titles streamed on Vudu has to be seen to be believed. It is nice to have that extra option (say, when you want to rent a good quality movie once a month).

    Roku needs your credit card even to setup the player. NTV200 doesn't. That alone is a good enough reason for some people to avoid the Roku :)

    Playing back local media with Roku is often not worth the hassle.. The time and effort taken to get that up and running (often with a media server running all the time on a PC) is often worth more than the ~$20 one would save over the WDTV Live SMP.

    If you have got only $50 to spend, I still suggest going the NTV200 route (if only for Vudu). If you can spend more, get the WDTV Live SMP. Personally, I think Roku is surviving because they were the one of the first guys in this media streaming market, and they have a huge advertising budget. Technically, the WDTV Live SMP is miles ahead. And price wise, the NTV200 at $50 is what I would recommend in the general case. Of course, individual requirements might vary.
  • raquel - Monday, December 26, 2011 - link

    Best Buy and Staples have it for $60. It's a great deal if it's what you want. I just don't see there being many people saying, "I want to pay for premium streaming services but I need a box less than $100."

    If you're a big enough geek to have ethernet running through your house and you're paying for more streaming services than a cheap Netflix account, the WD TV Live has everything the NTV200 has plus Hulu Plus and Spotify and local media support.

    I guess I'm just biased towards the Roku. I watch a lot of Netflix, and everything has a pretty terrible client and an even more terrible remote. The PS3 Netflix client just recently got updated so it doesn't crash all the time. Most of the remotes have a bunch of tiny buttons that are all the same size. The only thing I can really stand to watch Netflix on is the Roku and the Wii. But if I liked the NTV200's Netflix client and remote and thought it would get good support and updates in the future, I would think it was the best thing ever.
  • LoosCarl - Sunday, January 01, 2012 - link

    Get this Netgear NeoTV (NTV200) Streaming Player from Amazon, if you missed it: Reply

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