Well, I've done my initial testing and it's a mixed bag, though nothing that HiMedia can't improve/fix via firmware updates. They seem to be releasing updates fairly quick, which is a good sign.
First, the packaging itself. No manual of any kind and no batteries for remote included, so -2 there, but +2 for included HDMI cable and SATA/eSATA connector cable. I did link to the manual in my first post, so ended up downloading it for myself.
Connected and powered up the player. Fairly quick boot-up. Didn't time it, but seemed to be about 10 seconds (update, timed it: actually 30 seconds in standard mode; 35 seconds with Android enabled)
. Put in USB stick with firmware. Had just unzipped after downloading. When updating, it says nothing found. Went back to the computer and put only the install.img file on USB stick, then it worked. Also, you can only update via USB, so no option for online update via the player.
Next, went into 'Settings'. Set for HD audio output and RAW for others under 'Audio'. For 'Video', selected 1080p/60 and also 1080p/24Hz to 'On'...
Set-up wired LAN, then enabled Samba...
Went into 'Premium Apps'. YouTube, flickr, Yahoo! Weather, etc. Nothing exciting. But, inside 'HiMedia Online', something interesting...
...But, it took a while to load the page and when I tried to play a listed movie, it didn't play even after about 5 minutes. Just got the revolving loading status. These appear to be streamed from somewhere in China.
Now, onto what we're really interested in... full 3D Blu-ray ISO playback. For now, all mine are on a powered USB drive, so none of these were tested over the network (Samba).
Under settings, I started with 'BDMV Navigation' set to 'BD 1.0'. I believe this is what Leo recommended earlier.
I tested out 5 movies at random. Started with 'Avatar' of course. No problems here. Playback started within seconds of selecting the ISO. However, forced subs did not come up. I tried messing with the different subtitle tracks to force it to show, but didn't work. I tried track 5 as shown in this screenshot...
Maybe it's some other track, but forced subs not coming on automatically is disappointing. I even have the subs set to auto-detection for forced I think in 'Settings'...
Next, tried 'Grand Canyon', the IMAX documentary. Plays the 'making of' documentary, not the main 3D movie. As I see no way to switch to the 3D title via the remote, I stopped playback, went into 'Setup' and changed 'BDMV Navigation' from 'BD 1.0' to 'Direct Play'. Opened the ISO back up and this time, it works; the main 3D movie plays. For the rest of my 3D tests, I left it at 'Direct Play'.
Next, tried 'Captain America'. No problems. 3D looks great. Then, 'Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides'. Also, no problems and looks great as this one was shot using native 3D cameras like 'Avatar'.
Finally for 3D (for now at least), tried 'Rio'. I get severe ghosting. I recall playing this movie when I had my Oppo BDP-93, which I wish I still had for direct 3D comparison purposes, but I recall 'Rio' looking absolutely gorgeous via it. So, I went back into 'Settings' for the HD900B and switched 'BDMV Navigation' from 'Direct Play' back to 'BD 1.0'. Re-played 'Rio' and same severe ghosting issue. It's 3D alright, but the picture just doesn't look right. Hope someone can try this movie out on their HD900B. (Turns out this particular title requires you to invert the sync on your TV/projector to get proper 3D).
Thought I'd now try out some 2D. 1080p/24 seems to work perfectly. Tried '3:10 to YUMA' and my Optoma HD33 projector shows 1080p/24 synched correctly; see bottom-right of this screenshot...
I played this movie via Samba using the HD900B's 'File Browser' to drill down into my HPSERVER. Watched about 15 minutes and playback was smooth; no hiccups. This one has LPCM 7.1 audio and it played perfectly.
One issue while browsing my folder with movies was a crackling noise. Not good. The same didn't happen when I browsed via my new PCH A-300, so it's a weird issue on the HD900B.
Tried a couple of HD audio movies, and both DTS-HD MA and Dolby TrueHD pass-through perfectly. The logos on my Onkyo TX-SR608 light-up as expected.
Overall picture and audio quality are both first-rate. No different than PCH A-200/300 in this regard.
Per someone's request, I tested 1080p/60 camcorder files. All played perfectly. No issues there. Mine are mostly from Sony's DSC-HX9V digital camera actually.
Back to forced subs, they're also not supported on MKV's. I tried my 2D 'Avatar: Extended Edition', which when I'd muxed it via MKVMerge to MKV, I'd specifically set the default and forced flags both to 'yes', the HD900B still didn't show them.
Finally, I went into 'Movie' in the main menu. It asked if I wanted to add a library. Chose 'yes', but oops, it only supports content on local drives, not network. That's useless to me as all my 2D (and soon my 3D) movies and TV shows are on my server.
One last thing for now: the UI. It's okay, but not anywhere near polished like say the PCH A-300, which I just started testing. Also, some of the wording is awkward as you can see from the screenshot above. Look how much nicer the A-300 UI looks...
Bottom line, I can live with most of the issues I've listed if HiMedia simply addresses all the 3D-specific playback problems. At this point, the PCH A-300 will be my primary player for 2D content with YAMJ/Eversion as the jukebox. May even try NMJ v2. The HD900B is no replacement for the PCH A-300 (or even 200-series) for now at least. For full 3D, I'll be using the HD900B obviously. Hopefully, all 3D ISO playback issues will get resolved, or if Leo or others can provide workarounds (like 'Direct Play' for getting 3D on 'Grand Canyon' to play), will rely on those. HiMedia should really add the ability to select playlists on ISO's. That way at least we may be able to get the proper 3D title to play.
Continuing on... neither of the bottom two 3D MKV files (ed3d_overunder_24fps.3DTAB.mkv, ed3d_sidebyside_24fps.3DSBS.mkv) Damian linked to above play. I get 'Unsupported Format' error message.
Before jumping into Android, I plugged my Lenovo mini-wireless keyboard and tried out the web browser...
The left and right mouse buttons work, but I couldn't get it to type anything into Google's search box. Tried several times to no avail.
Now, onto Android. Put in a freshly formatted (FAT32 to be safe) 16GB SD card (where actual apps will be installed) and inserted a USB stick (where app APK install files reside) with the two games Leo linked on p.3 ('Angry Birds', 'Fruit Slice'). Here are the Android setup screenshots...
Went into USB stick to install the two APK files for the game apps. The ESC key on your keyboard is very handy here for backtracking. More screenshots (I'm letting photos do the talking here
Now, let's play 'Angry Birds' and 'Fruit Slice'. Let me tell you, this is quite an experience on a 119" screen
These apps run a little laggy, but not bad at all. Using the left mouse button simultaneously with the mouse/roller to do what a simple tap/wipe does on a phone takes getting used to, but I can see apps being fun additions on the HD900. Any more game APK's I can download and install
But, for me, 3D isn't a gimmick, and I'd rather HiMedia focus on getting this absolutely perfect!