Asus HDP-R1 O!Play – a great deal!

Earlier in the year I was looking for a small Media Player which is capable of playing any video format on my TV. Also it should include some online add-ons like playing Youtube Videos or Shoutcast Streams. I ended up buying the Asus O!Play HDP-R1 for 70 € at amazon. The device has an USB aswell as an eSATA connector for playing HDTV movies from external HDDs. Additionally the device is easy to hack, which gave me the possibility to try out some custom firmwares.

A useful link is the website MoServices.com and their forum. Here you can download modified firmwares from other ASUS devices like the HDP-R3, HD2 or O!Play Air which are running on the HDP-R1 and give you some useful add-ons.

I am using my HDP-R1 on an old-school CRT TV. The O!Play Air firmware is real beauty, but is to overloaded for a small CRT screen with PAL resolution. My recommendation after 5 month of testing is the Asus HD2 firmware in this thread. It is installed in a minute and gives you the following add-ons to the shipped firmware:

  • More beautiful UI with 4 selectable skins (with optimized skins for PAL resolutions).
  • Access to Youtube and Shoutcast streams.
  • A webinterface, making it possible to install even more add-ons with one-click.

These add-ons cover up a lot of things you may want to do with your media player. The most interesting one´s are probably the integration of an ftp server or a samba file server, in order to offer file access within the network or internet. Although I have to say that the access speeds over the network are slow and are not comparable with a high-end NAS – for accessing your files from the internet it´s definitely enough performance!

Another interesting add-on are RSS Readers: With them you are able to integrate flash streams from Xtreamer. They host a lot of free movies and other interesting stuff, but it never worked for me (I never gave it a deeper investigation).

The device itself is nearly unbrickable – so no worries about trying out some self-hacking!

Overall you get a great device with the HDP-R1 on a HD2 firmware. It´s fast, looks beautiful and seriously plays every video I ever put on the external drive. As an addition I can use it as a NAS/FTP server and play Shoutcast Streams and Youtube Videos on it. It´s HDMI output with Full HD makes it a safe investment for the future! For a price of 60-70 €. I can really recommend that small media player.

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About sitweak
Monitoring, Network, Firewall, Mobile Security. I´m totally into that stuff!

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