CNET First Look
Media box is like VLC for your TVThis set top box can play virtually every file type and it does it well.
[MUSIC] Hi, everyone. I'm Iyaz Akhtar and this is the WD TV set top box. At first glance, it looks like yet another Apple TV or Roku competitor, and in some respects, it is. But the WD TV is actually a bit different than those boxes. Let's take a look at the actual device. It's got an an HDMI out. Optical audio port, ethernet, and an analog jack if you want to hook this thing up to an older TV. For wireless you've got 802.11 A, B, G and N and even Miracast support. Now the WD TV doesnt' have any built-in storage but it's got two USB ports so you can attach hard drives. It also comes with this rather large remote with lots of dedicated buttons for things like subtitles, audio, and even a number pad. The remote gives you a hint of who this device is meant for. The interface isn't too flashy with the grid of icons, more apps can be found under this bell icon, there are over 80 apps so far. The WDTV has apps for streaming video sites like Hulu and YouTube. But there's no support for Amazon Video, and notably, it's missing Netflix. Streaming video app load times were pretty slow, with the YouTube app taking about 20 seconds to load. But streaming online video content is not what the WDTV was born to do. This box is all about handling your own personal media library. You can watch content on a hard drive you connect via a USB. Or you can connect the servers on your home network. The WD TV can play pretty much any video file you throw at it. AVI, MP4, MKV and even FLV are supported. Playing back a huge 27 gigabyte full HD video with 5.1 audio over a wired network worked incredibly well. If you hit the options button while playing a video, you can see all kinds of nerdy information like bit rate and codecs. Oh, and that remote with that number pad. The WD TV lets you skip to a specific time code that you can type in, using the number pad. Very cool geeky stuff. If you want to watch online streaming videos all day, this is not the right box for you. But if you're looking to get your massive video library on your TV, the WD TV is hard to beat. I'm Iyaz Akhtar and this is a WD TV. [MUSIC]