Feeds
85%
WD WD TV Live

Western Digital WD TV Live

HDD media player revamped with networking

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

Review We liked the first version of Western Digital's WD TV box. It was released in December 2008, barely nine months ago, but WD has already rolled out its successor.

WD WD TV Live

Western Digital's WD TV Live: now with networking on board...

There's no substantial change to the functionality: WD TV - now called the WD TV Live - is a compact media player that has no storage of its own. Instead, you use its two USB ports to connect external hard drives, cameras and the like, and the WD TV will cast their contents onto your telly.

As before, the box has an HDMI 1.3 port and a composite-video output, though this time the three RCA jacks - yellow, red and white - have been replaced by a 3.5mm headphone-style jack that's converted to RCA by the bundled cable. WD TV uses the same mechanism to provide component-video support, which is new to this edition.

The big change, however, is the addition of an Ethernet port and tweaks to the firmware to allow you to access folders shared on your network. WD really should have built Wi-Fi in too, but it would rather sell you an optional USB wireless adaptor. Maybe that makes sense to WD's North American design team, but few folk in the UK have Cat 5 cabling on tap. WLANs, on the other hand, proliferate, and WD really should have integrated it into the box.

For a moment, we thought it had. The WD TV's Sony XMB-inspired UI contains a "Wireless Favourites" panel with in its Settings area, allowing the box to remember five separate WLANs' SSIDs and passwords. But no, this is only used if you have said wireless adaptor.

WD WD TV Live

...but not wireless

Remembering multiple WLANs makes sharing content with chums child's play. Hook up your hard drive, connect your friend's, and WD TV's file management facility will let you select music, movie or photo files en masse and copy them from one storage medium to another. It's no drag-and-drop, but it's not particularly hard to do with the unit's small, nice remote.

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
Apple takes blade to 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display
Shaves price, not screen on mid-2014 model
iPhone 6 flip tip slips in Aussie's clip: Apple's 'reversible USB' leaks
New plug not compatible with official Type-C, according to fresh rumors
The agony and ecstasy of SteamOS: WHERE ARE MY GAMES?
And yes it does need a fat HDD (or SSD, it's cool with either)
FEAST YOUR EYES: Samsung's Galaxy Alpha has an 'entirely new appearance'
Wow, it looks like nothing else on the market, for sure
YES YES YES! Apple patents mousy, pressure-sensing iVibrator
Fanbois prepare to experience the great Cupertin-O
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
TV transport tech, part 1: From server to sofa at the touch of a button
You won't believe how much goes into today's telly tech
Apple analyst: fruity firm set to shift 75 million iPhones
We'll have some of whatever he's having please
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.