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Dvico TViX HD M-6600N review: Dvico TViX HD M-6600N

The M-6600N is a feature-rich PVR let down badly by stability issues.

Alex Kidman
Alex Kidman is a freelance word writing machine masquerading as a person, a disguise he's managed for over fifteen years now, including a three year stint at ZDNet/CNET Australia. He likes cats, retro gaming and terrible puns.
Alex Kidman
4 min read


Dvico TViX HD M-6600N

The Good

1080p support. 802.11n built in. Wide variety of file type support. Dual-tuner. 1TB of storage. UPnP.

The Bad

Frequent lock-ups. Dual-tuner recording but no playback simultaneously. Some features not working at review time. Inconsistent interface.

The Bottom Line

The M-6600N is a feature-rich PVR let down badly by stability issues.


Dvico's built its previous PVR models on a very simple design idea — boxes. They're just little boxes, and the previously reviewed R-3300 and 4130SH were pretty much the same box. The M-6600N is a similar kind of box, although in the interests of living room decor, there's no front panel buttons at all, just an LED display showing the current task at hand and a clock. Instead the controls sit on top of the box, which gives it a certain minimalist chic. It could be a problem in a tight AV cabinet, however.

One thing that hasn't changed is the remote control, which is identical to previous models. It's laid out well enough, with squishy rubber buttons that are pretty easy to use.

Aside from remote and the M-6600N itself, you'll also find a thick instruction manual, USB type A to B plug, composite cable and an HDMI cable in the box.


Dvico's product page for the M-6600N describes it as "Simply the best multimedia player ever". That's a huge call, and undoubtedly heavy on the marketing hype side. At least from a features sense, though, the M-6600N does have some impressive capabilities. It's a dual-tuner PVR with a 1TB user replaceable hard drive. As a media player, it'll support .mkv, .mpg, .avi, .wmv, .divx, .vob, .tp, .ts, .trp, .dat, .iso, .ifo, .m2ts, .mov, .flv, .rm, .rmvb, .asf, .mts and .mpeg files. Codec support covers XVID SD/HD, MPEG-1, MPEG-2 (MP@HL), MPEG-4.2 (ASP@L5, 720p, 1-point GMC), WMV9 (MP@HL), H.264 (BP@L3, MP@HL4.1) VC-1 (MP@HL, AP@L3), RealVideo 8/9/10 and FLV (H.263).

On the networking front, there's support for both 10/100 Ethernet and 802.11n wireless networking. UPnP support is built in, as is the older file sharing facility used by other Dvico PVRs. Two USB ports are supplied for direct file playback, although it's rather annoying that they're both rear mounted and above the Ethernet port, as this makes plugging drives in a chore. A front-mounted port would be a great addition to the M-6600N's successor.


The M-6600N booted up quickly for us in its initial installation phase, and at first glance it's a great improvement over older Dvico models with a smoother carousel style selection system. Dig a little bit under the surface, however, and it's much the same basic style that Dvico's had for a while. It's less user-friendly than some PVR models, but not actively obtuse to use for the most part.

Our biggest problem with the M-6600N supplied to us was product stability. The M-6600N seems to like rebooting or locking up a lot.

Testing dual-tuner recording, for example, we set up recording on SBS One, and switched over to Channel 7 for our secondary input. The moment we hit record, the M-6600N rebooted itself. Call us picky, but that wasn't quite what we were shooting for. On reboot, we had to scan for channels again, making us even more irksome. When we finally did get dual-tuner recording going, we headed to play back a file, only to discover that this is a hard limitation of the M-6600N. You can't play back any files while recording at all.

Networking was equally irksome. We struggled to get the M-6600N to recognise our wireless network, and once it did, it patently refused to actually pick up an IP address of any kind. We eventually gave up and forced an IP address onto the system, but that's networking esoteric that not every PVR owner will want to fuss with.

The M-6600N features a number of internet specific features such as YouTube playback — at least in theory. On our review unit YouTube functionality was disabled. Dvico's official line on this is that YouTube's changed the streaming server protocol it uses, and this will be fixed in a future firmware upgrade. We're wary of that point, however, as Dvico has promised big on previous TViX units with the assurance of "future firmware upgrades" that have been few and far between. Certainly, don't buy this unit right now for YouTube functionality, at the very least. Likewise, there's an in-built weather application, but Australia's currently not a listed country for weather. It's great if you want to know what the weather's like in Azerbaijan, though.

Despite its big promises, the M-6600N falls into exactly the same trap as previous Dvico PVRs. There's an awful lot of promise and flexibility here that you just don't get with something like a TiVo, but there's a big difference between the M-6600N and a TiVo. For the most part, TiVo works.