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Mediagate MG-35 -- new firmware available - Page 2

post #31 of 4195
Dana C.... thanks for the update. Called Bob about the pricing issues....he says he got the thumbs down for price adjustments from his higher ups. They're in the process of negotiating with the manufacturer on pricing as well. He mentioned a lowered price of $199, which really isn't that far off from the $205 that I paid. I've bought from Shop4Tech in the past, and they're a pretty good place to deal with. But since I'm in California, I'd have to pony up sales tax, so for me it's not too different on price.

Any early reports on IFO network play???
post #32 of 4195
I'm still testing it's other features and currently waiting on a reply from Airlink Tech regarding IFO DVD Streaming..

The unit is a small compact enclosure, very easy to tranport. After I fully test it this weekend in a true recording studio enviornment with it's S/PDIF Optical output and S-Video, I'll be able to report the full brunt of what the M-35 can do. I can, however tell you this, I currently use another product that I believe has been made by Airlink Tech for Ximeta called the NetDISK , and it has ethernet abilities too. I've had it for a year and must say, it too is an outstanding NAS drive and for only $170 with 120GB drive included. I was able to save my company 4k over highend NAS storage devices.

I plan to purchase 10 Mediagates after serious testing this weekend for the recording studio so that each studio can access, manipulate both Audio and Video content not to mention storage.

I plan to purchase serveral Mediashare minis too when they hit the market this month.
post #33 of 4195
It enables you to do file surfing from multiple sources on TV using a remote controller.
I havent seen any feature that allows you to copy between other devices while useing the remote when it's connected to a TV. I'm still testing it.
post #34 of 4195
My MG-35 has been delivered to my home just in time for the weekend! I'll definitely try to have some concrete results to share on IFO network streaming later tonight.
post #35 of 4195
jwtseng,

I'm looking forward to reading your report.

By the way, what firmware version is it using? Do you plan to upgrade to 1.4.0?
post #36 of 4195
I'll probably get the basic lay of the land on the unit's functionality before applying any firmware updates. I'll definitely check to see which version it comes with, though. I'm still at work for today!
post #37 of 4195
Okay everyone!

The MG-35 works as advertised! It's a fairly sturdy unit...basically an empty enclosure with a few neat-looking LEDs that can be turned off if desired. I basically plugged it in to power, ethernet, and component video and optical audio and BAM -- it just works. Found my Terastation NAS and was able to list all the VIDEO_TS folders on it (albeit in some strange non-alphabetical order). A couple clicks later with the included credit card style remote and I was playing DVD video with full menu IFO navigation!!! The video and audio quality is more than acceptable to me. I have the MG-35 putting out 720p over component with dolby digital sound to my receiver. DTS tracks seem to stutter a little, but it's probably related to my LAN setup. So this little box is doing everything I currently asked for in terms of streaming IFO DVD network play. All without any configuration on my part! A hearty thumbs up from me! Now I'm off to program it into my Harmony 880 remote.
post #38 of 4195
BTW, firmware out of the box is 1.3.2, I believe. I'll get around to updating it one of these days. I haven't really tried out the other functions like music play and photo play. I don't figure I'll use these functions much at all. The simplicity of the box is quite amazing...makes you wonder why all these other "media players" just don't get it.
post #39 of 4195
The DVD manager function support to play DVD Ripping File same as original DVD.
Make a folder and then save all ripping file into the folder. After connecting TV(or Monitor),select VIDEO_TS.IFO file at the folder. Make sure that all the ripping files including VIDEO_TS.IFO from one DVD title will be located at one folder.

(The above information is from the 3.5 Play DVD Files instruction page(43) from the Mediagate M-35 manual)

And yes, I do confirm that it plays IFO files
post #40 of 4195
Yes, the MG-35 plays DVD rips with full IFO navigation intact over my network!!! It's great! Interestingly, ALtech now lists a MG-35N player that looks pretty cool.

I have just updated my firmware from 1.3.2 to 1.4.0. The biggest improvement that I have noticed is that now my lists of DVD movies is now in alphabetical order!!! Before they were just in some kind of random order (maybe modification date). Update was easy and straightforward. No problems thusfar!
post #41 of 4195
Thanks for the reports!

As far as I can tell, the only difference between the MG-35 and MG-35N is the enclosure.

According to a post on another forum, version 1.4.0 adds support for ISO playback. So whether you have IFO files or an ISO file, the MG-35 can play them.
post #42 of 4195
Does any one know what kind of codec the MG-35 has? Can they be ugraded whn new version come out? What video player are they using, can this or the UI be customized?

I am thinking of getting one for the kids but would need the ability to see pictues of the movie , click on the picure and play the movie.

thx
wz
post #43 of 4195
[quote=I am thinking of getting one for the kids but would need the ability to see pictues of the movie , click on the picure and play the movie.

thx
wz[/QUOTE]


Me Too !

Cheers,

Requis
post #44 of 4195
I have some preliminary results on the Mediagate M-35.

After inserting the hard drive which is very easy, unscrew four large screws on the ventilated side of the M-35 and slide the cover off the enclosure- very easy and simple.

I decided to connect it directly up to my HDTV and used a Netgear XE102 Ethernet adapter to connect it to my home network.

I then powered on the TV and then the M-35.

I setup the M-35 to use video 4 using the supplied video cables. I then select video 4 on my HDTV to see the Mediagate menu. The menu has two large icons, one says Mediagate, the other says PC-Network.

The instructions in the manual say to use the remote and press the SETUP button to configure/save the Mediagate settings for your TV. After you save all your settings, it returns you to the main menu.

Everything was pretty simple, but when I tried to access the icon titled Mediagate, it was greyed out and would not let me select it. I thought I did something wrong, but in short, I simply had a defective hard drive. I replace the defective hard drive with a new Seagate 160GB hard drive and formatted it-(Note:Mediagate can only be formatted while physically connected to a PC using the USB cable), the Mediagate icon then allowed me to select it.

The manual says that in order to use the PC-Network option, you have to share a folder on a PC. The Mediagate can access shared folders on a computer network. In my case, it was Windows XP Pro ,Home,Me, and Windows 98SE.

I was somewhat impressed until I tried to play my first AVI file. It said the AVI format was not support ted- I tried 10 AVI files and not one worked- bummer!

I tried all the other formats and they work fine.

The biggest problem I have with the unit, is that it does not support NAS(Network Attached Storage)- I just found that out today from Airlinktek Tech Support. I was wondering why the M-35 did not show up as a NAS drive on my network while connected via Ethernet. Tech support said they are releasing a new firmware that will allow NAS access locally but not Ethernet/Internet- bummer!

Because it has a PC-Network option and allows you to connect to shared folders, I'll keep the M-35, and wait to see what the NAS firmware update does.

Oh, the M-35 does not require a hard drive if you only want to use the PC-Network option. You can use the M-35 right out of the box with out a hard drive.

I will also be testing the M-35 with a Lantronix's UBox, a compact USB-to-Ethernet Device Server to make it into a NAS drive.

I hope this helps.
post #45 of 4195
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dana C View Post

The biggest problem I have with the unit, is that it does not support NAS(Network Attached Storage)- I just found that out today from Airlinktek Tech Support. I was wondering why the M-35 did not show up as a NAS drive on my network while connected via Ethernet. Tech support said they are releasing a new firmware that will allow NAS access locally but not Ethernet/Internet- bummer!

What do you mean by NAS access locally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dana C View Post

I will also be testing the M-35 with a Lantronix's UBox, a compact USB-to-Ethernet Device Server to make it into a NAS drive.

With the tvix, it will operate either as a media player, or as a USB client, but not at the same time. When you plug in the USB cable while it is in media mode, it powers down. It then comes up in client mode when you apply power again.

How does the -35 work?
post #46 of 4195
Anyone using this combined with a linux box running samba as the place to store the data instead of a windows box shared?

Another question. When you select play movie I'm assuming it gives you a listing of just the files in that directory. So if you have a ripped dvd you'll have a directory with that dvd title as its name. When you select the folder does it automatically look for a video_ts.ifo file and play or do you need to scroll through the files in the folder and select it by hand?
post #47 of 4195
Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeAlletto View Post

Anyone using this combined with a linux box running samba as the place to store the data instead of a windows box shared?

jwtseng is using a Terastation, which is essentially what you describe.
post #48 of 4195
That's right, the Buffalo Terastation runs some flavor of linux and does SMB. It was recognized by the MG-35 automatically and has been able to serve DVD files without a hitch. I still plan on installing a hard drive into the MG-35 enclosure, but it works just as well empty.
post #49 of 4195
Right now, the only thing I am using the MG-35 for is to play these DVD rips that are stored on my network drive. The only other feature that I have tested is the Photo slideshow function, which seems to work well. The biggest beef I have about the Photo slideshow is that you have to set up a playlist everytime one JPG file at a time. I can't figure out a way to select a folder full of JPGs and have it play the slideshow that way.
post #50 of 4195
I just got my unit. I set it up and ran a few videos shared from my XP box. All good. I upgraded the firmware to 1.4.0 and things don't work. Major hangups when streaming from the network.

I downgraded the firmware to 1.3.2 and everything is happy again.

I'd appreciate a confirmation of this from others.

Thanks,
Greg
post #51 of 4195
gregz,

What kind of hangups? The most trouble I always get is a few dropped video frames, especially in movies with DTS soundtracks. I think it's bandwidth related. Of course, I didn't do much testing under 1.3.2 before upgrading.
post #52 of 4195
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwtseng View Post

gregz,

What kind of hangups? The most trouble I always get is a few dropped video frames, especially in movies with DTS soundtracks. I think it's bandwidth related. Of course, I didn't do much testing under 1.3.2 before upgrading.

I am on my own 10/100 switch with no other activity, so I don't think bandwidth is the problem.

I ran Napolean Dynamite and the menu was jerky and had mpeg-related breakups (minor). I ran a divx5 avi file and the thing had serious breakup and eventually got completely garbled and froze up.

I had not a single glitch with either both before going to 1.4.0 and after backing off to 1.3.2.
post #53 of 4195
Was Napolean Dynamite a straight DVD rip with IFOs and VOBs? If so, that's definitely much worse than I've experienced. Are you serving from a dedicated NAS or from another PC? I suppose system activity may have something to do with uneven streaming. I wonder if there is some way to increase the streaming buffer on these units? Maybe Dana C can pass this along to the AL tech support.

I think the only difference in my setup is that I'm streaming from a NAS box. But I've got a lot more network activity too. A couple Macs surfing the web, streaming music over AirTunes, etc. In fact, I just went out and bought another 5 port 10/100 switch in order to hook up the MG-35.

Well, good luck. Maybe another firmware update is in the works.
post #54 of 4195
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwtseng View Post

Was Napolean Dynamite a straight DVD rip with IFOs and VOBs? If so, that's definitely much worse than I've experienced. Are you serving from a dedicated NAS or from another PC? I suppose system activity may have something to do with uneven streaming. I wonder if there is some way to increase the streaming buffer on these units? Maybe Dana C can pass this along to the AL tech support.

I think the only difference in my setup is that I'm streaming from a NAS box. But I've got a lot more network activity too. A couple Macs surfing the web, streaming music over AirTunes, etc. In fact, I just went out and bought another 5 port 10/100 switch in order to hook up the MG-35.

Well, good luck. Maybe another firmware update is in the works.

It is a file rip from DVD Decrypter (so 'yes' to your question). The earlier experiment was at work.

I did the same thing again at home, where I have a Terastation. Same deal. I didn't mention it in my last post, but the box locked up a few times as well. No response to the remote or the buttons on the box. Just a frozen screen. It would also spontaneously reboot. The new firmware is very much less able to deal with streaming over ethernet. In additional to much more poor performance, it does not gracefully recover and often locks up.

When going from 1.4.0 back to 1.3.2, the box locked up several times. It wasn't able to read the firmware file from the network. I had to stop ALL other network activity to the Terastation before the 1.4.0 MG-35 was able to read the file.

I can say with a great deal of certainty that general network performance is very flakey with 1.4.0.

My recommendation is to stick with 1.3.2. I'd like to have ISO capability, but I can live without that.

Just because I am frustrated: 1.4.0 is crap.

Does someone have a pointer on tech. support?

Greg
post #55 of 4195
I decided to test the M-35 with a Silex-SX1000U USB Server(1 USB Port, 1 Ethernet ) because it was less then the Lantronix and I only needed 1 USB port not 4. If this works, the M-35 will show up on a Network as a NAS Drive.

Al Tech has not responded to my email regarding the NAS firmware update. I sent them another email today.
post #56 of 4195
So with this silex unit, the the MG-35 shows up like a networked drive? That sounds pretty cool. I have yet to install a hard drive into the MG-35, but your results on this testing may push me to do so!

BTW, regarding the issues you've been having...I wonder if you would get the same problems playing the same DVD rip (Napoleon Dynamite) from the internal drive on the MG-35 as with network play. This would at least eliminate network issues.

I find your report of problems interesting in the sense that we seem to have fairly similar setups with the Terastation and Firmware 1.4.0 and DVD Decrypter file mode rips (IFO play). I've noticed none of the issues that you have. I wonder if you have a bad unit? That would suck. It is strange though that downgrading to 1.3.2 makes the issues disappear. I didn't notice any problems with either firware version.
post #57 of 4195
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwtseng View Post

BTW, regarding the issues you've been having...I wonder if you would get the same problems playing the same DVD rip (Napoleon Dynamite) from the internal drive on the MG-35 as with network play. This would at least eliminate network issues.

I find your report of problems interesting in the sense that we seem to have fairly similar setups with the Terastation and Firmware 1.4.0 and DVD Decrypter file mode rips (IFO play). I've noticed none of the issues that you have. I wonder if you have a bad unit? That would suck. It is strange though that downgrading to 1.3.2 makes the issues disappear. I didn't notice any problems with either firware version.

I think I will throw a drive in there tonight and see what I see.

I actually ordered two units, but they only put one in the box. Bob is sending another along and I will test that one similarly.

Do you have jumbo frames enabled on your Tera (I don't)?

Greg
post #58 of 4195
Quote:
Originally Posted by gregz View Post

Do you have jumbo frames enabled on your Tera (I don't)?

Just check my Terastation config pages and I do not have jumbo frames enabled. Looks like there is jumbo (4100 bytes) and super jumbo (7481 bytes), though. I guess it never hurts to try, but I don't really understand what the settings are for. Can you enlighten me?
post #59 of 4195
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwtseng View Post

Just check my Terastation config pages and I do not have jumbo frames enabled. Looks like there is jumbo (4100 bytes) and super jumbo (7481 bytes), though. I guess it never hurts to try, but I don't really understand what the settings are for. Can you enlighten me?

This controls the IP frame size. It is generally useful to have the larger packets when dealing with GigE. It has nothing to do with the issues I am seeing, I'm sure. I just want to check everything that might be different between our setups.
post #60 of 4195
I just wanted to give you an update on Mediagate M-35.

I finally got an email from AL Tech, and they said they are still working on the NAS firmware and will release it when it's ready.

Lastnight I tested the M-35 with a Silex SX1000U USB Device Server and it worked. The M-35 now shows up on the Network. Transfers are a little slow with large files, but it definately works. In fact, the Silex will basically convert any USB dvice into a Network device. When the M-35 is connected to the Silex box, the M-35 will only work as a USB network drive. After files are added to the M-35 via the network, you have to chose disconnect from SIlex SX Virtual Server menu to disconnect the M-35 in order to use the M-35 with a TV or shut down the computer when your done. Then unplug the USB cable from Silex box for the M-35 to work on the TV.
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