Media Players: Actiontec and Prismiq
last few years, the typical living room has transformed itself
into a true entertainment center. Gaming consoles, home theater
systems, PVRs (Personal Video Recorder), and living room computers
are present in many homes. Moreover, an operating system (Windows
XP Media Center Edition) has even been put on the market to
suit this shift. However, we always want more out of products;
we can’t content ourselves with a gaming console that
only serves to play games.
devices have to be able to accomplish multiple tasks (i.e.
the PS2 can also be used as a DVD/CD Player). Therefore, electrical
appliances since as Digital Media Players have been created.
With these objects, the meaning of “entertainment center”
has taken a whole new meaning; they enable a person to stream
media stored on a specific computer onto a television or an
audio system. In other words, a Digital Media Player lets
you network your entertainment center.
said, today we present to you two Digital Media Players courtesy
of Actiontec and Prismiq and battle them out to see both their
strengths and weaknesses. Let the fight begin!
1: The Units
start by presenting each unit. Let’s start with Actiontec’s
Wireless Digital Media Player package’s features the
unit itself, a remote control (which we shall discuss later),
a power cord, an 11 Mbps wireless PC card, a triple RCA A/V
cable, an S-Video cable, a quick start guide, two AAA batteries
for the remote, and a software CD. As for the unit itself,
it is of a slick and stylish silver color. With dimensions
of 9" x 1.25" x 6”, it snuggles quite easily
in any room. This device which weights 4.05 lbs is mostly
made out of metal. Therefore, when it is in your hands it
feels and looks robust; it sure doesn’t leave you with
the feeling that it will break at the slightest impact.
of the unit, we can find a remote IR receiver and three LED
indicators: Power, 10/100 (wired connection), and Link/Activity
(wireless connection). On its left side, we can find a wireless
slot (CardBus/PCMCIA card slot). As for the rear of the unit,
we can see the following connections:
- 1 Power
110/100 Mbps (Auto-sensing and auto-crossover) Ethernet RJ-45
Audio Out Ports
(RCA and Optical) 1 Left Channel (RCA)
Right Channel (RCA)
1 Composite Video (RCA) 1 S-Video
Component Video (RCA x3) 1 DVI connector
sure is a handful of connections! With this digital media
player, you are sure that you will be able to connect it to
any television, computer (or network) or sound system. I can
proudly say that the first time I saw this device I was both
quite amazed and surprised to see such flexibility.
examine Prismiq’s offering.
WDMP package is composed of the main unit, a remote control
(we shall also discuss later), two AAA batteries for the remote;
user’s and setup guides, a quick start card, an Ethernet
cable, a triple RCA A/V cable, an S-Video cable, and a power
adapter. In addition to this, you can also purchase a wireless
keyboard (which has great functionality and will also be put
to the test along with the remotes). The unit itself is made
mainly of thick dark plastic and measures 9" x 1.5"
x 5.25" (W x H x D). It’s a tad taller than the
model from Actiontec. However, it only weights 1.5 lbs; when
you hold it, it practically feels like there is nothing in
your hands. Therefore, I did tend to handle this device a
bit more carefully. I’d also like to say that although
this unit is still somewhat stylish, it doesn’t looks
as good as the DMP011000-01 (Actiontec’s model) in the
living room or on top of a TV.
its rear we can find the following connections:
- 1 S-video
1 composite video
2 RCA audio (L/R stereo)
1 Ethernet interface, 10/100Base
1 CardBus/PCMCIA card slot
most certainly noticed, the Prismiq Media Player is not as
garnished as the DMP011000-01. Quite frankly, I was kind of
disappointed when I saw so few possibilities. Nevertheless,
this unit was launched in 2002 (unlike Actiontec’s device
which is fairly new) and still offers the basic needed connectivity.
we’ve examined both units and their package, we can
say that Actiontec wins Round 1. The wireless card in the
package is a plus for Actiontec, even though Prismiq offers
higher quality guides and an Ethernet wire. In addition, the
DMP011000-01 is more stylish and offers a better output interface.
In terms of connectivity Prismiq might offer what you need,
but Actiontec gives not only is necessary: it gives u a whole