The Honestech nScreen Deluxe is a small box that you connect to your TV via a HDMI cable which then allows you to stream digital media from your PC, smartphone or tablet directly to your telly. If you're using the device with a PC you can also have it wirelessly mirror your PC screen to your TV.
The nScreen is physically pretty small. Measuring 135x82x26mm, it's a little bit smaller than your average router, but looks very similar due to the glossy white plastic used on the top of the unit and the matt black used on the front and side edges. There's no control panel on the front and it doesn’t come with any remote control. In fact, apart from the power button on the rear, everything else is controlled by software on either your PC or mobile device.
Peak around the rear and you'll find a HDMI port along with a mini-jack AV output that can be used for outputting composite video to set's that don’t have HDMI. There's also a USB port, which seems to be only used for firmware updates, and an Ethernet port. The nScreen also has Wi-Fi built-in. Power comes via a pretty standard external wall adaptor.
Hit the power button on the back of the unit and an LED on the top lights up in green to show you it's on. It also displays a basic homescreen on your TV that shows the nScreen logo along with the box's Wi-Fi Access Point name and current IP address.
However, before you can make any use of it you first need to install some software on your computer, phone or tablet. The PC software is included in the box on CD-Rom, or alternatively you can download it from the company's website. Annoyingly this is protected via a serial number printed on the CD-Rom's paper cover, so you'll need to be careful not to lose it.
Alternatively you can download a free app for iOS devices from Apple App Store for from Google Play for Android phones and tablets.
When the nScreen first starts up it creates its own Wi-Fi Access Point. To connect to this you need to log off your own router and connect to the nScreen's network using the password provided in the manual. Of course, this means that you lose internet access. To get around this problem Honestech has added an Ethernet port on the rear of the nScreen so you can connect it into your home network and have it share the internet connection back to your laptop via Wi-Fi.
It's not very well explained in the manual, but there is also an alternative way to configure the nScreen's network feature so that instead of setting up its own network it joins your existing one. To do this you need to start up your browser, log into the nScreen's web console and change the network option from Access Point to either the Ethernet or Wi-Fi Client options. Setting up the networking in this way is probably a lot more convenient for those who are likely to use the nScreen in a home setting.