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CES 2009: Netgear Upgrades Network Media Players

Gordon Kelly


CES 2009: Netgear Upgrades Network Media Players

Ok I'm blogging this one live from the Netgear conference guys and it looks like we're about to get a flurry of new kit with the primary theme predictably the 'connected home'.

The 'Netgear Internet TV Player' kicks us off. It's absolutely tiny - roughly the size of a deck of cards - plugs straight into your TV via HDMI, comes with a remote and gives direct access to web based video content such as YouTube and premium content on demand like CinemaTV. Even remote bittorent access is available (ISPs are going to love that). Connectivity is via Ethernet or wireless n and rather funky is its ability to plug in a USB drive and play its pictures, music and video.

Next we get the Netgear '3G Mobile Broadband Router'. We've seen these before from the likes of 3 and T-Mobile and like these it simply allows a 3G dongle to be connected so that you can create your own Draft N WiFi hotspots wherever you go.

Finally we're getting the biggie, Netgear's next generation media centre - the 'Digital Entertainer Elite', also codenamed the 'EVA9150'. This is quite the powerhouse supporting bit rates up to 40Mbps (that's full 1080p Blu-ray uncompressed data) thanks to dual band wireless N, an upgradeable 500GB HDD, a huge array of connectivity options (HDMI, composite, component, S/PDIF, 2x USB 2.0, Ethernet, S-video and SCART) and an even larger range of codec support.

Want it all? Ok, here we go. In video: AVI, DivX, Xvid WMV, MOV, M4V, MP4, VOB, MPG, MP1, MP2, ISO, IFO, MKV, TS and M2TS. In audio: AAC, FLAC, AIFF, WAV, LPCM, MKA, MP1, MP2, MP3, WMA, WMA-Pro plus Dolby AC3 5.1, DTS 5.1, Dolby+ / Dolby True-HD, DTS-HD Master Audio and Dolby AC3 5.1 stereo downmix. For pictures: Jpeg, Bmp, Png and Tiff. For Playlists: WPL, ASX, WAX, WVX, PLS, M3U and RMP. Yep, you're pretty well covered - in fact I haven't heard of quite a few of them! At 50.8 x 431.8 x 254 mm and 2.5Kg the Elite is fairly compact too.

Pricing and availability? Surprisingly it was given - though naturally in US-centric form. The Internet TV player will retail at a slightly pricey (in comparison to the WD HD TV) $199 and arriving in the summer. The 3G Mobile Broadband router will go for $129 and hit this month, while the Digital Entertainer Elite comes with a $399 RRP and arrives in February. Let's hope the brutal exchange rate doesn't hit too hard as all three are looking promising.

Technology changes, and so sho

January 8, 2009, 12:22 am

No Ogg Vorbis support?


January 8, 2009, 3:51 am

As it supports Flac it should support Ogg Vorbis just fine.

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