Pros Easy connections to home entertainment system; well-thought-out usability menu functions.
Cons Difficult wireless setup; tricky Windows Media Connect setup;
Summary DMS-320RD media player with DVD player and 5-way memory card reader was not a breeze to install. Overcoming the combined security features of Windows XP and the wireless router made the initial installation difficult. The DMS-320RD quickly detected the presence of the SSID of the home wireless network. Progress halted there for quite a while until I disabled the security of the wireless router (Linksys WRT54G), replacing it with an allowed wireless client MAC access list. Until I made this change, the DMS_320RD’s wireless connection request caused the Linksys to hang, requiring a router reboot. This would be quite annoying by itself, but it also caused my PC to lose its internet connection as well. Establishing wireless connection led to the next hurdle – establishing a server on the PC to provide media. D-Link provides its own Media server application, but it won’t serve WMA files with DRM (digital rights management) of the type you purchase and download from MSN, Wal-Mart, Napster, etc. To play those files, you must use Microsoft’s Windows Media Connect application. No problem since it’s a free download from Microsoft, and easy to install. Adding folders of music, photos and videos is easy and straightforward. Since I had already organized my 20GB of music into play lists via Windows Media Player10, I expected few problems. Unfortunately, each music download provider seems to put your purchased music into different folders, and I was not careful enough in combining them together. Therefore, I had to specify several music folders for sharing, and in the right order, before the DMS320RD and Windows Media Connect could play together. The tip-off is when Windows Media Connect shows a sharing status “Shared with errors” and the DMS-320RD reports "Unable to access this media.” You must clean up those sharing errors before the hardware and software will play together. After consulting Microsoft’s website of FAQ’s for help on Windows Media Connect, I was able to clear sharing errors to finally listen to some music. Sadly for me, at this point my television died, in a most unfortunate coincidence. It’s difficult to select music when you’re flying blind (since the DSM320RD’s menus appear on your television.) I connected another TV, and now life is good. I can listen to music, and view photo slideshows.
Other comments: the DSM320RD’s remote control has problems with button debounce- meaning that one button press sometimes appears as though you had pressed the button several times. This made menu navigation tedious.
The firmware upgrade took about 15 minutes.
Feature enhancements: display album cover artwork while playing music like WinMediaPlayer does; after all, the jpeg’s are sitting in the same folders with the music. It’s not that hard to find them. Enable the remote’s “Display” button for this feature.
Pros It does a few things ok.
Cons Terrible Rhapsody interface. Terrible, and I mean TERRIBLE video playback.
Summary I've been trying to jimmy this product into usefulness forever, and I've just given up. For Rhapsoldy files, it doesn't allow fast forward or rewind of music. For video files, unless you have your video encoded in the absolute perfect way, forget watching it on this machine.
Almost no AVI's play. Almost no MPEG-2 encoders create output that will play. It will play Video_TS directories, but if your directory has a filename that has *1*.* and then nine others and then a *11*.* file it will play the 11th clip right after the first clip. Argh.
You can buy Nero Recode and spend 3 hours recoding all your video into MPEG-4's but not all of them will play. Which ones do and don't is a mystery.
Save yourself the headaches. This is not worth it.
Pros All-In-One. A Bunch of options for hookup.
Cons No Album Art. Needs Media Player 11 Style Interface
Summary I had the same setup problems as one of the other users had with it not recognizing the media Server. I had to disable all the security features on my Linksys Router and work backwards. When that didn't work I had to call tech support which was really hit and miss. Three support people later we figured it out without having to install Windows Media Connect.
Playing with it was a joy at first. Now I am finding all the problems and issues.
- It needs album art but nobody offers it now so I will have to live without it for now.
- Wish I could type a letter in to get to an artist or album without having to wait for page after page.
- I would like to rate music as I hear it but I can't do that using this device.
- There is a little problem with aspect ratio as all the images seem to be sqwished and just not right no matter what aspect ratio you set the DSM-320RD to.
- you need to make sure you have a good quality originals in order to enjoy the system.
- Some small jitter is some videos so far but more use will help me figure out how to record any future videos.
- Digital photos never look that good on a TV but the system seems to do a pretty good job.
- Wish you could do a slideshow of a few directories as you can only do a slideshow from within one directory.
- Haven't had a chance to play with this yet but really....a DVD player is a DVD player no matter what everyone else says.
- Don't have much of a use for this as I don't feel I should have to pay to listen to music. Don't think I will use this feature unless I can use Yahoo's Launch.
- WOW, this will be cool. Other people's digital cameras without wires.
In conclusion, I researched this for over 6 months, waiting and waiting for something better to come out and if I waited any longer I would have went CRAZY. I am sure now that I have it within two months everything I was looking for will be in some other unit.
I gave it an 8 out of ten as it is the best out there right now but there are some really simple things they could have done to make it the best for a long time. Hopefully a firmware update will fix the simple issues and not have to buy another unit...but that is not what corporate america is about now is it?
Pros media cards can be used as opposed to the wireless features.
Cons difficult to set up, tech support was of little help.
Summary I would definitely think twice about purchasing this product. The unit that I have can only play AVI files. It will shut down at will, and video files are extremely choppy unless wired directly into the router.
Pros PC Folders on my TV with remote control
Cons Mult-step setup ( as easy as a wireless router)
Summary I have many audio files and video files that I want to play on my TV. With this media player, I can reach any computer in my house. TVersity software (better than the included) allows me to identify what folders that I can to "stream" to the TV. File compatibility is (mostly) solved with the TVersity software. Might be something better. I haven't seen it!