D-Link DivX Connected Media Extender Unboxing & Setup

As we approach the release of D-Link’s DSM-300 DivX Connected media extender, I (and several of my blogosphere buddies) have been offered an advance look at the set-top box. Like a Windows Media Center or Sage TV extender, the DSM-300 primarily relies on Windows-based software to serve up your digital media (and I’m told a Mac equivalent is in the works). Thus far, I’ve only unboxed and configured the unit – joining my wireless network was painless (device maxes out with 802.11g) and the enclosure is attractive. I’m also pleased to see they didn’t skimp on accessories… The unit ships with an HDMI cable. While I don’t need one, many will – and it’s a consumer friendly touch. Assuming things remain on track, we can expect general availability within about a month priced similarly to the UK (99 British pounds = ~$200?). I’ll have more to say at some point, though Brent will probably beat me to a formal review.

7 thoughts on “D-Link DivX Connected Media Extender Unboxing & Setup”

  1. Well, the codec support isn’t quite what you might hope for–basically DivX, Xvid and VC-1? No MPEG-4, h.264, MPEG-2, quicktime, etc. So unless you get all of your video off bittorrent, you’ll have some transcoding to do to live with this box for video.

    Same thing for audio, MP3 and WMA (unprotected presumably). No AAC or FLAC or anything else.

    Not too impressed. Will be interesting to see the GUI for photo and video viewing though. Assume there is no “video rental” or even youtube/hulu/Netflix streaming support.

    Probably too limited.

  2. Unless it can support all the same formats as Sage HD and Popcorn Hour, it’s DOA. Even the mythical SlingCatcher has better format support. Plus, it maxes out at 720p??? No, thank you.

  3. I’ve been studying the docs – they officially claim 720p support, but depending on file format and bitrate it can do 1080p. I also believe there’s a beta H.264 plugin, though I’m not sure if it transcodes on the fly via PC or if it brings native support to the box.

    So far I’m impressed with the plugin and theme architecture – I expect better community stuff to come along once this is released in the US. Also, so far, been having problems with the remote control. I swapped batteries, so I’m not sure if it’s a hardware defect on this particular device/remote or if there’s interference from the plasma, Wii, or something else it can’t overcome.

    I agree the space is getting crowded, and for those of us with other devices (PS3, Xbox 360) that already have some extender functionality it’s going to be tough going. I already play Xvid on my 360…

    Haven’t tried the music streaming and photo features yet.

  4. I find the music streaming and photo features about as useful as the comparable features on my network connected Series2 TiVo, not very useful at all. The video streaming has been phenomenal, particularly for folks who catchup on TV through bittorrent.

    I have had the same issues with the remote. I have read in the DivX Connected forums that it may have to do with other proceses running on the server PC. There have been many firmware updates over the past year and the stability has improved dramatically.

  5. I heard that a Hulu plug-in was demoed at the U.S. launch party at Cinespace in LA earlier this week… hopefully bloggers in attendance will post more details (wiping drool)…

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