ASUS O!Play Mini Plus review -
Much like in our other Media Player reviews, I want to answer the most essential question that some of you MIGHT have; what in fact is a media TV player? Well, this is a self-contained unit with some dedicated hardware that has a focus on dedicated content delivery functions.
In the case of the O!Play Mini series that is content playback of photos, music, but most of all video content. That said, the O!Play Mini Plus has everything it needs to play 1080p video (Full HD), complete with Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel surround.
Typically when we build a HTPC (Home Theater PC) we tend to put down significant money for a motherboard, processor, memory, power supply, storage and the chassis. And if the unit does not have a graphics subsystem, we often add a dedicated graphics card as well to be able to enjoy full 1080P content. A simple HTPC starts at 250~300 EUR realistically, whereas Media Players as powerful as today's tested one, start at 100 EUR.
This is what a Media Player does best, play back high-definition content. These ASUS units are based on a 500 MHz Realtek 1185 IC, specialized in those flavah-flaf media capabilities.
The Asus O!Play Mini measures 151.85 x 106.7 x 29.03 mm with a weight of only 175g, and capable to play 1080p video playback. It comes with a 4 -in-1 Card Reader ( SD/ MS/ xD/ MMC) and supports a very wide range of multimedia files, such as MPEG1, MPEG2, MPEG4, RM, RMVB, VC-1, H.264 video formats, JPEG, BMP, PNG, GIF and TIFF image formats and MP3, WAV, AAC, OGG, FLAC, AIFF, Dolby Digital AC3, Dolby Digital Plus, DTS 2.0 +Digital out, Tag ID3 for audio files.
To create an immersive audio experience, O!Play Mini Plus HD media player supports Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel surround to create high quality sound.
- 1x USB 2.0 port
- 1x S/PDIF connection
- 1x Network connection (Gigabit)
- 1x HDMI 1.3a connection
- eSATA/USB combo port
- Normal (4:3)
- Widescreen (16:9)
- 480i, 480p, 576i, 576p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p
- Up to 24 bits
- Dolby Digital
- DTS 2.0 + Digital Out
- Dolby TrueHD 7.1-channel is supported as well
Supported audio formats
- MP3 (CBR, VBR 32~320kbps), MP2, WAV/PCM/LPCM, AAC (Mpeg 4), AC3 (Dolby), FLAC, WMA, WMA Pro, OGG
Supported video formats
- Mpeg 1, Mpeg 2, Mpeg 4 (ASP), Mpeg 4 (AVC HD/H264), WMV9, VC-1, MKV, AVI (Mpeg 4/AVC), DivX, VOB/ISO/IFO, DVR-MS, ASF, MOV (Mpeg 4/H.264), DAT (VCD/SVCD), FLV
Supported picture formats
- GIF, BMP, JPEG, TIF/TIFF, PNG
When we look purely at the video side of things we notice that the box can play back anything you can think of, including HD MPEG 2/4, H.264, WMV9/VC-1 and RM/RMVB (up to 720p) codecs in AVI, ASF, DAT, FLV, MKV, M2TS, MP4, MOV, M4V, RM, TS, TP, TRP, VOB/ISO/IFO, WMV, and xVid/DivX containers with SRT, SMI, SSA, IDX and SUB subtitles and full menu video previews. And yes, there's even proper support for 1080P 24 Hz (yay!).
Very interesting is the integrated Wireless 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi functionality, though for hig-def content we really recommend using that Gigabit Ethernet jack.
Other specifications includes one USB 2.0 port, one USB 2.0/eSATA combo port, composite video and audio and HDMI 1.3 outputs to connect with a monitor.
Asus O!Direct and Asus O!MediaShare allow you to stream multimedia wirelessly from your smartphone and tablet to HDTV. With all of the features, Asus O!Play Mini Plus media player is a true HD multimedia experience for music, photos and movies. Not bad for a product with a price tag of 99 euros.
ASUS recently released its new compact HD media player, it's called the O!Play Mini and this is the Plus edition. The O!Play Mini Plus TV Media Player allows you to play digital films, music and photos directly on your TV with High Definition quality (1080p) and does a thing or two more.