Originally Posted by zoro
Thanks Damian! Just based on your experience what do u think it will compare with $100 or so refurb a110 or new $179 a200?
Well, I still have an A110 (I don't use anymore, one day I will get my $hit together and throw it on ebay what some other gadgets!!!). I would easily choose the HD300 over the A110, just purely based on the upgraded specs. Now when comparing the A200 (which a few weeks ago was actually on sale on Amazon for $150!) to the HD300 it becomes a little more challenging. Pricewise they are about the same. You can get the A200 for $179 + free shipping. The HD300 is $150 + I think shipping is around $10-$20.
As far as the player itself, the biggest drawback to the A200 is the cheap case and fan. You can mod it like I did here
but now the cost just increased by nearly $60+. I honestly haven't found the fan to be too bad but others who are more sensitive to noise have had issue with it (I have a 3yr old and 1yr old boys at home, so I can block out any noise!!!). The HD300 on the other hand is fanless and about half the size of the A200 (so you can easily mount on the back of the TV). Also, the A200 supports an internal drive whereas the HD300 does not (not sure if that is important to you)
On the software side I would say that the stock UI of the HD300 is better then the A200 (although the library refresh on the HD300 drives me nuts at time). However, if we are talking just standalone mode (i.e. you would not get the additional SageTV MC software and run in extender mode) the PCH A200 offers a lot more potential to enhance the UI (through jukeboxes such as YAMJ, flash support, etc...).
From a playback side, I would say both players are pretty much neck and neck.
I don't know if I answered your question or just added to the confusion!!!