The A.C.Ryan Fluxx is one of the most powerful media streamers slated to hit the market in the first half of 2011. In fact, it will probably end up being classified more as a premium set top box, rather than a plain media streamer.

The company also seems to have an exciting refresh lined up for their Realtek based products. The UI on these models is one of the best we have seen implemented on the Realtek platform. That said, we do have some gripes with respect to the fact that there is no official support for DTS-HD passthrough in the Realtek models, while the Fluxx is OK in that respect. AAC also doesn't seem to have multi-channel decode to LPCM unlike the Fluxx. BD-ISO support looks likely to be BD-Lite in nature for both the Fluxx and the Realtek models. While disparity in the GUI and responsiveness of the user interface is expected when compared to Fluxx, it would have been nice to have the same codec compatibility / supported features across the board. Will our wishes be granted? We will know soon when the models hit the market.

A.C.Ryan PlayOn! Series
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  • warisz00r - Tuesday, January 18, 2011 - link

    Has to be one of the silliest company logo ever.
  • vol7ron - Tuesday, January 18, 2011 - link

    It's like the A.C.Milan football club, but not.

    Perhaps we'll start seeing more initialized names in the future as the stand out and probably are more likely to be remembered these days because of that - afterall, the past 75 years companies have really used the one word approach. I'd like to see the marketing research behind it.
  • joebrooks - Tuesday, January 18, 2011 - link

    Please read the title of the post you replied to.
  • rickcain2320 - Tuesday, January 18, 2011 - link

    Its an asian thing, they like esoteric logos which may not make sense to the western brain. We prefer violent logos like arrows, flames, explosions, and we name our systems "Extreme", "Ultra", "Mega".
    Thats why video card manufacturers put werewolves with metal armor carrying battleaxes on the front of the box. The asian market may just have some japanese dude with long blonde hair and big blue eyes on the front.

    The Realtek logo works, when I see the crab on a chip I know where it came from immediately.
  • Samus - Tuesday, January 18, 2011 - link

    While I agree with your interpretation of Western logo choices (arrows mean moving forward, flames/explosions mean powerful, etc) opposed to Eastern culture usually revolving around the ocean (Daewoo logo is a Seashell, Realtek is a crab, many designs of products, specifically vehicles and motorcycles are inspired by sea creatures...)

    I have to completely disagree with the terminology aspect of your comment.

    Mega/Ultra/Turbo/Extreme/Super are synonymous with marketing and branding of almost all Eastern (and to some degree, European) products. American's specifically are NOT kean with these terms as they are inferior to our 'Premium' brandings, usually directly translated into numbers or abbreviations. Classification is paramount to product success in the United States, and identifying something as Super, Turbo, Mega, Extreme, etc, doesn't differentiate a product enough as 1, 2x, 3G, or XLS, XLT, Limited, or S, SE, SES, etc.

    You'll find most, if not practically all products in the United States that have the words Mega/Ultra/Turbo/Extreme/Super are actually non-American products, and are marketed here similarely because of a lack of understanding between the culture shift of differentiating markets.

    Many recent examples:

    Ford "Ecoboost" instead of "Turbo" (obvious exception is Intel Turbo mode) although turbo in the American market has a bad standing with vehicles because of poor quality turbo-charged vehicles in the 80's.

    i-Product generations (iPhone 3, 3G, 3GS, 4, etc)

    Windows XP, Vista, 7, editions: Home, Home Premium, Professional, Ultimate.

    Gasoline: No longer referred to as Super Unleaded, rather "Premium" "V-Power" "Ultimate" and specifically based on numbers/octane. Most countries around the world have one choice for unleaded fuel, and it's usually 95 octane and marketted as just petrol.

    GHz. Higher is always better, right? Think of the Pentium 4...

    Hard disks: 5400/5900/7200 RPM. Marketed as Green, Blue, Black editions by WD, XT (high performance editions) by Seagate.

    I know what you're thinking. Ultimate is a type of "Ultra" and XT is a type of "Extreme" but the words don't trigger the same power as the acronyms. XE, XT, etc market better than "Extreme" just like windows XP marketted better than "Experience".

    These days, when most people hear Super, Mega, Extreme, they're likely to come up with some homophobic stereotype in response.
  • jabber - Thursday, January 20, 2011 - link

    Whilst I have no issue with a crab as a logo, what I do hate about the RealTek logo is that in this day and age you will have a lovely row of 32bit hi-graphic icons and then the crappy 8bit Win 3.1 style Realtek sticks out like a sore thumb.

    Looks like you have 15 year old software installed.

    Its the little things.
  • ckryan - Tuesday, January 18, 2011 - link

    The real tragedy is that these media players, and my HTPC, would both benefit greatly by having access to my HD cable service. Unfortunately, it's very difficult to make it work, on the pc or otherwise.

    If I could get a media streaming device with a built in cable box (true two way), that I could use with a CableCard and record HD content, I'd be happy. I'd feel a lot better about my ridiculous cable bill. The fact that AC Ryan doesn't think a media streamer/DVR would be of interest to the market irritates me, as I know many people who would dig such capabilities. The only real option (for PC anyway) looks to be the Ceton 4 tuner card (I believe that's the name. It's a heathy chunk of change, and may not even be a real product yet (or ever, not real sure). They sure as hell don't sell this kind of stuff on the Egg.

    I think the HTPC market and premium media streamer market could be huge in America with just one or two key advancements or capabilities. Just OTA won't cut it. The Cable companies need to keep making a case for their services with so much digital content. I think there is a compromise that could make everyone happy.
  • jcompagner - Tuesday, January 18, 2011 - link

    this is exactly the same here in Europa (the netherlands)
    Also there a very good multi tuner HTPC that works perfectly with the Cable provider would be a very good thing to have

    I am currently using things like that with FireDTV cable tuners, but those are all hacks and the company even stopped selling the tuners.

    Problem is that all those dedicated tuner boxes are just horrible to use. All of them that i know of that work for my cable company still work with time based recording.. Come ON!!!! thats so last century, i don't do that since i started to use Windows XP mediacenter now i guess 6 years ago... "Series recording" is all i want from a cable box.

    The extra nice thing about a HTPC is that i plays also all my other stuff.. The Windows 7 Media center really has a quite perfect UI and feature set.. I still don't get why Microsoft is unable to push this through, its one of there best products!!
  • vol7ron - Tuesday, January 18, 2011 - link

    My next HTPC build will include the Ceton InfiniTV 4 tuner/recorder. 2 CableCARDs, 4 simultaneous streams.

    I've been asking Anand to review it for some time, but he's like "no, i'm going to pretend you didn't ask." Why the hell do I want an HTPC that can't record? The purpose is to replace the set top provided by the cable company, with unlimited amount of space.

    If all these HTPCs can only "stream", then why do I care?
  • ganeshts - Tuesday, January 18, 2011 - link

    It is difficult for even reviewers to get hands on the CableCard tuners.

    Alan has had a pre-order up for ages, but yet to receive it.

    We are making all efforts to review all systems of interest to readers.

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