Photo Courtesy Video Without Boundaries
The MediaReady 4000 from Video Without Boundaries is an integrated DVD player and Internet device which provides access to a wide array of different forms of media. It is designed to be tied into your existing home entertainment center, acting as a home media server with a 40 GB hard drive to store music, pictures and video.
Broadband access for the MediaReady 4000 is supported through a 100 Mbps internal Ethernet connection or a PCMCIA 802.11 wireless card inserted into a PCMCIA slot on the unit. Through this connection most typical Internet functions can be completed with applications, based on Linux, which are viewable on your television. Web pages can be surfed, email checked and audio and video streamed and downloaded.
Media file types supported span the gamut. Disc types include DVD, VCD, SVCD and CD/CD-MP3. Audio and video files include MP3, WAV, Mpeg-2, Mpeg-4, DiVX, RealMedia and photo formats include JPEG, BMP, DIB, GIF and PNG. Audio CDs which are played on the MediaReady 4000 can be ripped, files managed and playlists created on the included Linux based media jukebox software.
For those wanting to connect to other computers and computer accessories like digital cameras several choices exist here as well. USB 2.0 and Firewire/iLink support are provided through several ports. The MediaReady 4000 can also connect to other computers on a LAN through the previously mentioned Ethernet or wireless to share media.
With regards to integration into an existing home entertainment system, almost all forms of video and audio connections can be considered. On the back of the MediaReady 4000, video outputs are available for composite, S-video, VGA and component while video inputs for pass through include composite and S-video. Audiophiles will be happy with the outputs which provide support for stereo RCA and electrical and optical S/PDIF with Dolby Digital Pass Through. Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround comes native as well for compatible DVDs and CDs.
Other entertainment features already available on the MediaReady 4000 or planned (the device has an upgradeable platform so new features and content can be offered) include video on demand scaling up to 720p, games, karaoke, and an audio jukebox.
The unit is currently pricing on the Video Without Boundaries website for $449 and includes an infrared keyboard and wireless remote, both with built-in trackballs.