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ScreenPlay TV Link from iomega

screenplay-tv-linkSometimes, simple is good. And in the ScreenPlay TV Link from iomega, that’s exactly what you have. A simple device that you can hook up to any TV–component, composite, and SCART connections included–and play video files off of a USB drive, be it flash or a portable hard drive. If you have a HDTV, you can also hook it up with HDMI, but the cable isn’t included in the package.

What I had been doing to watch videos on my TV was to bring my MacBook down to my living room, hook it up with a Mini-DVI to composite cable, and use Front Row or Boxee to navigate my way to my videos to play. Works, but it’s a bit bulky and the video quality wasn’t always great.

This device works better. I did have a little difficulty when I first hooked it up, most likely because I have a nearly 20 year old television, but the included quickstart manual tells you how to resolve this problem. Shortly, I had a screen showing me a list of some of the movies I had shoved onto a USB thumb drive and plugged into the back of the unit. I could easily navigate with the remote control and select a video for viewing.

Why didn’t I have all the movies listed on my screen? They all weren’t encoded properly. The ScreenPlay TV Link doesn’t support every video encoding format, but it does support several common ones, including DivX and directories straight from a DVD!

After reencoding the videos that weren’t displaying on the list, I tried again. They were all there and played on my ancient TV in excellent quality!

Certainly there are other, more capable devices out there, but for what I need, this is perfect for both my home use and when I travel. It even includes interchangeable power prongs for US, UK, and EU use! I just wish it came with a small travel bag, but beyond that, it’s a fantastic buy!

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