Media players have become mass market devices in the last couple of years and you can pick up a wide range of sub-£100 players these days. They all come with network connectivity and support for a wide range of file formats and possibly even a space for an internal hard drive. And, in that, Plextor’s PlexMedia player doesn’t differ too much, except that it supports an optional USB Blu-ray drive.
The PlexMedia player itself is a feature-rich device with a wide range of connectivity options including HDMI 1.3a, three USB 2.0 ports, eSATA and Gigabit Ethernet, to mention a few. It also has space for an internal 3.5-inch hard drive and one of the USB ports can be fitted with a Wi-Fi USB dongle. This would make a well-rounded player already, but it doesn’t stop there.
Plextor has also thrown in support for BitTorrent, UPnP AV, UPnP SSDP, DLNA and Samba, all of which are useful things to have support for if you want to connect your media player to your home network or the Internet. It can also act as a NAS (network attached storage) box.
While we keep talking jargon, the PlexMedia will also play back just about any file format you throw at it, including a few slightly less common ones. Plus, it has support for high-end audio such as Dolby TrueHD 7.1 and DTS-HD MA 7.1.
But what really sets the PlexMedia apart from the competition is the fact that you can hook up Plextor’s PX-B120U USB BD-ROM drive to it. The PX-B120U is a top-loaded Blu-ray drive which you can use with your PC, but when it’s connected to the PlexMedia, it will play Blu-ray movies, just like any other BD deck. It even supports interactive BD-Live content, although you’ll need a USB stick or a hard drive attached to the PlexMedia for this to work.
Sadly, Plextor aren't able to share any potential retail pricing with us for its two new devices at present, but both should be available towards the end of the summer.