Right now I have a couple Apple TVs and and WDTV Live. The Apple TVs work great but are basically only used for Netflix and streaming stuff from my iTunes library. I have my entire DVD library ripped as ISO and obviously the Apple TV won't handle that. I bought the WDTV Live box just for that purpose, to play back the DVD ISO files. It does a decent enough job but is underpowered and is somewhat unstable and sometimes won't find my network drives, stutters when playing files, etc.
So, I"d like to replace that WD box with a better solution if one exists, here are my requirements:
1 - Must be able to play either DVD ISO files or properly handle DVDs stored in the Video_TS folder structure, would prefer ISO but can convert my collection to the other if needed.
2 - Needs to be a stable device
3 - Needs to have a good video scaler or the ability to pass unscaled video over HDMI so that the scaler in my AVR can do the work.
4 - Needs to have a good UI, doesn't have to be on par with the Apple TV but needs to be something my wife can use and navigate.
5 - Needs to have network capability with SMB, the files are on a network drive with SMB.
I don't care about online streaming services like Netflix or Hulu, I've got those covered elsewhere. Basically all I need is a device that will stream my DVD collection from my network drive with the highest fidelity possible.
Is your firmware up to date? I had an older WDTV before I got the live and it was having some issues, but after updating it worked fine. When I got my Live the first thing I did was made sure the firmware was up to date (and it wasn't).
Might want to check that before giving up hope on it and spending money on something new.
I would tend to blame your network for these issues until proven other wise. I have both the NeoTV 550 and the new WDTV... DVDs are a breeze for both and outside of HD audio I'd take the WDTV every time. I will say the NeoTV 550 has played HD video and audio flawlessly... 50 or so movies and counting.