Installation and Testing
As a media streaming device the MediaHome V8 can be used without a HDD installed for simply streaming web TV via the nTV service or for watching YouTube videos. For best results we recommend installing a hard drive which unfortunately is not supplied with the device.
To get this device up and running is quite simple, you can either use the provided composite cables or you can use your own HDMI or component cables to connect the device to your TV. Once connected and powered up the device is ready to use, it is really that simple. However for more advanced users there is the option to tweak video settings for the best performance on your TV as well as playing with the network settings to allow networked access to any media you will be saving on this device.
To test the device we are going to copy some high-definition videos onto a HDD and install that disk in the device. We will then attempt playback of these files whilst also testing the built in features such as the nTV service which boasts being able to allow you to watch movies in HD and TV instantly.
First of the HD playback test. The video file we used was the same file we used when testing the ICYBOX IB-MP3011PLUS - “G.I. Joe - The Rise of Cobra”. As before the file type is .mkv and the resolution is Full HD 1080p.
In testing of HD playback we were very surprised in that the MediaHome V8 started playback almost instantly whereas most other devices we have ever tested tended to take at least a few seconds to get their act together. We also liked being able to use the “Go to” function on the remote to skip to a specific time of the film, this is a nice change from the norm of having to fast forward your way through the movie if you don’t happen to have chapters set out in the video file.
With regards to YouTube playback it was nice to see that the device seems to default to playing the highest quality stream available of the selected video. This means if YouTube has the option to play the HD version of the stream, that’s what you will get. No pixelated YouTube videos here simply pure viewing pleasure.
The nTV testing was the next thing on the cards. Sadly, it didn’t live up to Noontec’s hype. Most of the internet TV channels we tried came up with error messages saying “Cannot play media Type” whilst the rest seemed to just time out on use. Not exactly HD movie streaming. Mercifully features such as the regional news pages seemed to work which allowed use to catch up on the latest goings on as well as the latest football scores.