Icy Box IB-MP301 HDD Media Player

Video and Audio Quality

Video Quality

For this stage of the review I will be using a selection of MPEG, VCD and DIVX files to test the video playback quality of the IB-MP301. Each file will be played simultaneously on the IB-MP301 player and via Windows Media Player 10 on a test PC. Both devices will be connected via separate VGA cables to a Xerox XA7-19i TFT monitor allowing me to freely switch between the two VGA inputs for a direct comparison.

The following images are of the IB-MP301 device only, as photographing the screen produced inconsistent images and would make for an unfair comparison if I was to place the photographs side-by-side.

IB-MP301 Screenshot IB-MP301 Screenshot

With both the downloaded music video of "The Gorillaz" and a DVD-to-MPEG conversion of the movie "Carrie", the image quality of the IB-MP301 took me by surprise. Compared to the test PC running Windows Media Player, the IB-MP301 showed much better reproduction of colours and increased image sharpness.

For completeness the IB-MP301 was also tested on a Sony Trinitron 100hz CRT TV with a selection of SVCD clips. Yet again, the IB-MP301 showed good colour reproduction and reasonable sharpness despite being connected to the TV via RCA.


Sound Quality

Being heavily into music, one of the features that attracted me most to the IB-MP301 was its ability to play MP3 files. This coupled with the fact that a hard disk of up to 500gb in size could be installed meant that I'd finally be able to play music from my large MP3 collection without needing to sift through CD's or deal with the limited size of my current MP3 player.

Testing was performed using a Sony STR-DB1080 reciever, with the IB-MP301 connected to the CD input using the included RCA plugs. For comparison I will be playing the same MP3's on a Sony DVP-NS905V DVD/CD player connected to the receiver using a toslink optical cable.

IB-MP301 + AMP

Considering the testing conditions were unfairly weighted towards the Sony DVD/CD Player (using a toslink optical connection), the IB-MP301 still managed to produce good quality sound. On playing tracks such as "Hot Chip - Over And Over", the bass reproduction was deep, punchy and still managed to seperate itself from the higher frequencies. The overall clarity could have been better, but I feel this may have been partly due to the lack of a digital output and budget quality RCA cables.
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Most Recent Comments

12-07-2007, 07:24:23

Rastalovich
Great read m8. All through the descriptions I kept stopping and thinking "hmm ageing tech.." - then getting to the end and seeing the price tag, it`s pretty decent.

I couldn`t see myself buying it to house my DVD collection, as frankly it wouldn`t fit (limiting to 500g), but I could however see myself filling it with all music, photos/pictures and maybe music videos. Even tho that`d probably only take perhaps a safe 200g.

For the price I think it`s great, not a movie thing for me tho.Quote

12-07-2007, 07:32:27

JN
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Rastalovich'

I couldn`t see myself buying it to house my DVD collection, as frankly it wouldn`t fit (limiting to 500g), but I could however see myself filling it with all music, photos/pictures and maybe music videos. Even tho that`d probably only take perhaps a safe 200g.
Yeah agreed. In all honesty I can see it appealing more to people who download things like episodes of Lost, 24, Simpsons etc off the net (note: I don't condone this!) and just want to be able to watch it on a big screen without faffing around burning it to disks.Quote

09-08-2007, 05:34:22

Barnie
one thing i will say is the manual is pretty poor, offers no problem solutionsQuote

09-08-2007, 05:43:12

JN
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Barnie'
one thing i will say is the manual is pretty poor, offers no problem solutions
Hi Barnie, What problems are you having? I'll try and give you a hand as I was the one who wrote the review. If not, we also have a supported Icy Box forum here: http://forum.overclock3d.net/forumdisplay.php?f=148Quote

09-08-2007, 10:42:53

Xebedie
Hi There,

I wonder if, as the reviewer, you would be so good as to tell us what the solution was that Raidsonic provided you with to format a HDD in the unit.

I have formatted a 500g drive using mac OSX, which works ok except for the fact that the unit only recognizes 3000 of the media items stored on it.

When I try to format it using a windows XP machine, the unit doesn't recognize the disk at all.

I have tried to contact Raidsonic myself, but after three days they have not responded.

Yours

XebedieQuote
Reply
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