Almost zero config
I was keen to try the stick with a tablet, and managed to get a BlackBerry PlayBook connected up easily enough, though I had to use a mains transformer to provide the USB current - not the wireless solution you might hope for.
Both the dongle and receiver have only two LEDs by way of display, and unique among consumer electronics kit - as far as I can remember - neither of them is a power indicator. One light goes on when a connection is made, the other when video is being transmitted, so when the power is connected nothing happens at all.
The receiver works best when mounted vertically
But once both ends have power the "Network" indicator illuminates, and when video and audio is sent into the dongle it faithfully renders at the other end. The quality is all I could hope for. Despite passing two walls to get to my screen, the 5GHz signal didn't waver at all - until a third wall was interposed, at which point it dropped out completely.
Controls are limited to a single button on the stick, and an IR window on the receiver for the supplied remote control, one of the credit-card-sized models you tend to get with this kind of kit. It works, but you wouldn't want to use it very often.
Fortunately you won't have to, as the devices don't need much configuration.
The button is supposed to downgrade the picture quality to boost the range, but I couldn't see a lot of difference in either when it was pressed.
The core proposition - connecting HDMI devices to send HD video -works impressively well. Sadly, the rest of the experience is less fulfilling and the product feels a little too focused on the technology and not enough on the experience.
If you really need to send HD video wirelessly then this is a good way to do so. But you might want to wait until some of the more-trusted brands get involved. And hope that the price comes down too. ®
More Streaming Media Kit Reviews
Crystal Video wireless HDMI kit
£200 buys a lot of...
Yes I know about all of your Victorian houses/terraces. Its not rocket science you know? Routing cables behind walls is something sparkys do day in day out.
Wireless "solutions" work until they become popular, then they don't work at all.
Fit some sockets - and if you're renting either sort it with the landlord or move. Provided you use a decent sparky most landlords will be quite happy for you to do it - try to get them to pay half/deduct from rent though as it IS an improvement.
There's a finite capacity to radiated signals in an area. The capacity with conducted signals (ie wired) is limited only by how many you can cram into the area.
But if you're using a cable then you still need to plug it into the HDMI port. So if the socket is on the back then the telly still needs some clearance. An HDMI socket on the top/bottom/sides would be neater and you can find plenty of tellies with those.
I agree about sticking the cable in the wall though.
I suspect it means "without *re*compression", as actually wirelessly transferring entirely uncompressed 1080p video is I think beyond the capabilities of any wireless technology outside of the lab today...
Any reason you're keeping the appearance and actual size of the receiver a secret?
It's router size you say?
I have two routers, a Netgear DG834 and a Draytek 2820vn. The Draytek is more than twice the size of the Netgear. Which one is the size of the receiver?
You can always get...
a 20-foot (er, 5m, sorry) HDMI cable for 20 quid... but that cable doesn't get happy when you trip over it.
Yes, I have the cable, and no, I didn't trip over it, but the HDMI plugs don't seem too sturdy to survive such a feat. Yes, 5m cable, I can comfortably seat on the living room, fiddling around with my laptop, and connect it to my TV across the coffee table and 2 lounge chairs, with no noticeable drop...
My father is not happy with tripping cables, so...
If it was just 20 quid...