WDTV Live Hub – time for an upgrade?
Each year Western Digital come out with a new WDTV player – this year it’s the WDTV Live Hub with a 1TB internal 2.5″drive and a new interface.
I usually treat myself to an upgrade around Christmas and flow the older models down the line retiring the oldest but I’m still um’ing and ar’ing this year.
The Live Hub seems to be the same WDTV Live with a new skin on the current Live platform, a new form factor and an internal drive. From what I’ve been able to find out the Live Hub it also won’t be getting any of B-Rad’s love anytime soon either. So I would be tied to WD updates.
Saying that – I must admit I’ve only applied B-Rad to my old WDTV (original version) and I kept the family unit on original WD firmware & updates – also B-Rad for WDTV and Live is now based on a much older version of the firmware. I still think B-Rad firmware provides more features than the original firmware but the latest WD official version added a heap of new internet features and I haven’t seen B-Rad keep up.
The WDTV Live is also only $98 at Officeworks at the moment compared to $299 for the Live Hub. I’m considering getting another WDTV Live for upstairs http://www.officeworks.com.au/retail/products/Technology/Data-Storage/Media-Players/WDBAAP0NBK
I also just filled up my 1TB drive attached to my WDTV Live and Officeworks currently have a great deal on the 2TB WD Elements drive – only $128 so I purchase one and have just migrated to the 2TB WD elements drive and it works fine with the WDTV Live.
So I already have 1 TB of data and that would immediately fill the WDTV Live Hub, I now have a 2TB drive I can plug into it to give me 3TB of storage if I get one.
The WDTV Live Hub also has a new interface, remote web control and true HD stream…
From what I’ve seen also a better remote to imediately jump to the location you want, alpha keys (like a mobile) to improve text entry – and you can also plug a USB keyboard into the WDTV Live Hub for better searching.
At the end of the day it’s still a WDTV Live with a 1TB hard drive, a new interface and some other useful features – hence the um’ing and ar’ing.
For the record, I held one in my hands at JB Hi-Fi tonight and put it back on the shelf telling myself I would do more research first. I’m not yet convinced that it has better performance than the WDTV Live.
Any interface changes also need to be easy for the family to use and pass the 7yo usability hurlde.
For me to take the decision to upgrade also means there is a resonable upgrade from the current WDTV Live. I’m not in the US where most of the firmware upgrades of the WDTV Live have been focused, maybe if I establish a VPN to the US I coud realise more of the benifits. For Aussies, the jury still seems to be out on the WDTV Live Hub.
At this stage my advice is HOLD
More research on WDTV Live Hub is required…
In the mean time – snap up one of the curernt WDTV Live media players – they are awesome and you can’t go wrong.