Digital media players that are available locally are typically from your known brands such as Western Digital, Iomega and maybe Seagate. Xtreamer is also a popular choice for the enthusiasts. Now AC Ryan is another name quite unknown here but this Danish-made player is very popular in Europe (along with Xtreamer) and also in Singapore.
I even bought my own AC Ryan Playon!HD a couple of years back and it’s been happily chugging along attached to my home network with a 1 TB disk inside. Now AC Ryan is being distributed here as well but only the AC Ryan Playon!HD Essential and AC Ryan Playon!HD for now. The smaller units like the mini will arrive in a month or so.
The AC Ryan Playon!HD Essential is a Full HD media player on a minimalist box that can accommodate 3.5″ HDD (up to 2TB) inside as well as memory cards, USB sticks and external drives. It has a complete set of AV connections such as composite, component (RGB) and HDMI. It can play full 1080p videos including BD-ISO files and supports a range of audio even DTS-HD Master Audio. A silent mini-fan is installed to provide ventilation inside the unit.
The AC Ryan Playon!HD on the other hand is very similar to the Essential except for the BD-ISO playback support. The main difference is that this player has a LAN port for you to connect to your home network which makes it a very decent NAS when you put a 2TB disk inside. When connected to the network, it can use the internet so you can download torrents off of it instead of getting it from your PC. I still prefer using my PC for my torrents though. You can also purchase an optional WiFi dongle if you want to go wireless with it.
I haven’t had any problems playing all sorts of video files (even RMVB and FLV are supported) with my Playon!HD and it even supports subtitles from SRT to IDX to SUB. My only complain about it is the lack of physical buttons on the box in case I ran out of batteries on my remote. I didn’t like the old UI too but the latest firmware has a lot of improvements with it. I just updated last weekend so I’m still looking for something to complain about the new UI.
- AC Ryan Playon!HD Essential – Php5,300
- AC Ryan Playon!HD -Php8,300
- (no HDD included)
I bought my PlayOn! HD online from Singapore for about the same price but Customs jacked it up to 11k. Anyway, Php8,300 for the PlayOn! HD is just the right amount I would pay for something complete like it. Php5,300 for the Essential is the same as the Xtreamer SideWinder we recently reviewed here but you’ll be getting a bigger box and component video connection.
Stores carrying AC Ryan media players:
- Sight & Sounds
- Architectural Audio
- AV Shop
- Listening room
- Listen up
- SGT Home Theater
- Cebu Circuits
- Acoustic Dimension
- Audible Illusion