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Review: Popcorn Hour A-100, Part 2: Video, Audio and Torrent

Posted by matt on July 12, 2008

Previous Popcorn Hour Articles:

PCH boot-up screenFinally, my second part of the Popcorn Hour review.   In Part 1 of my review, I detailed my setup with HomePlug AV.  I’m still using this, but now that 802.11n is coming close to standardization, I’m looking forward to trying some wireless that should leap-frog the HomePlug AV solution in both convenience and performance.  But for now, HomePlug is getting the job done.
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Posted under Popcorn Hour, reviews, tech gadgets

Review: Popcorn Hour A-100, Part 1: Setup

Posted by matt on May 3, 2008

popcorn-hour-open-box.jpgA couple weeks ago, I did my ‘unbox’ review for the Popcorn Hour which was well received, so I thought I would go much more in-depth. This is part 1, which covers setup of the device and many of the setup screens. Later parts will go over video playback as well as all the streaming capabilities.

One of the more interesting devices I’ve used in quite awhile, the Popcorn Hour (PCH for short) is a device that I’d best describe as a cross between Apple TV (which I don’t own, but based on the specs), a media center computer and the some of the on-demand services you’d find on your cable or satellite box. It closely resembles a Mediagate MG-35, which I’ve had for awhile, but does so much more. The kicker is, it’s only $179 (w/out a hard drive) and for the money, is about as good a deal as you can get for the uncrippled feature set.

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Posted under Popcorn Hour, reviews, tech gadgets

Unbox Gadget Review: Popcorn Hour A-100

Posted by matt on March 23, 2008

Okay, so the name is wack, but I’m hoping this device lives up to what it looks like it can do. I just got this, so this initial post is just some pictures.


So what the hell is this “Popcorn Hour“? Well, what isn’t it might be a better answer! I would describe this as what Apple TV should be. A device to hook to your TV that can stream devices from a variety of sources (including watching YouTube easily on your TV), in almost every format (unlike Apple TV), and also acts as a NAS, and you can even plug in thumb drives w/ content on them! (full specs here) It even has Bittorent built in! Pop in a 750GB hard drive, and you’d be set for probably 2 years of entertainment.

Note the ports–component, composite and HDMI (cable included, which is rare). Funny though, no composite or audio cables included. They properly presume you have a ton of them lying around already. No wireless on this, so you need a network connection near by or some HomePlug. Popping it open, interesting to see… not much in there! Room for the IDE hard drive and the power is all in the chip.


Remote is also decent as well–quite a step up from my MediaGate.


Right now, I haven’t even hooked it up yet, so hopefully this review isn’t too premature…but if it is anything like the MediaGate devices I have, then this thing should rock. Also note, that I had to join their list just to get this thing… the availability is quite limited right now.

Look for a full review soon!

Matt’s Popcorn Hour Articles:

Posted under Popcorn Hour, reviews, tech gadgets, Unbox

Boxee Box in-depth Review: a $200 powerhouse

Posted by matt on November 14, 2010

Boxee Box in the HandThe highly anticipated release of the Boxee Box is finally upon us!  Since its debut at CES in January 2010, the thought of a relatively cheap consumer electronics device that could take the place of a typical media PC was indeed attractive.  While most likely initially targeted at those already quite familiar with the Boxee (or XBMC) interface, it is likely the sub-$200 device will bring an entire new market of casual over-the-top video users into the foray. This review will go through installation and use of many of the screens and local media types.

If you find this review helpful and wish to buy the Boxee box, please do so via this Amazon link to help support this site.  Thanks!

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Posted under boxee, reviews, tech gadgets, Unbox