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D-Link Boxee Box review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £200
inc VAT

It supports tons of file formats and has access to hundreds of online services, making the best media streamer we've seen.


If you know the service that you want to use, the alternative is to go to Apps. There’s a wide range of options here from iPlayer and YouTube to Fail Blog. Apps can work in different ways. The YouTube app, for example, works full-screen and lets you search for videos; iPlayer gives you an interface that lets you search and add videos to the Watch Later list, but playing a video takes you the iPlayer website.

Apps isn’t just for video: there are apps for popular websites and one to launch the browser, so you can browse the internet on your TV from your sofa. You can also add your own repositories of apps, and the Boxee website has a superb list. If you’re getting overwhelmed, you can add apps to your Favourites list to make them easier to find. Some apps contain adult content, but the Boxee Box can be set to hide this from view and require a password before viewing any potentially unsuitable content.

D-Link Boxee Box

Impressively, the Boxee Box can also act as a standard media player, accessed through the Files menu. All you have to do is tell the Boxee Box where to look on your network. It supports both SMB file shares and UPnP media servers. For each folder or server you add, you just have to tell the Boxee Box what type of files are stored there (music, photos and videos).

It then scans the files to find out what you’ve got. Impressively, it can work out what’s a film and what’s a show (TV programme) based on the content, and then displays a relevant thumbnail. For example, Boxee detected the Shark Tale HD WMV file as the full film and showed a thumbnail of the film poster. If a film can’t be categorised it appears in Unidentified Videos in the Files menu.

The list of supported video file types is immense and all of our WMV, DivX, Xvid, VOB and ISO files worked flawlessly – check out the Specs page after you’ve red this review to see the full list of file types supported. All local videos can be resumed from where you left off. Occasionally, videos wouldn’t fit the screen completely and we had to adjust the settings on the video screen, including the image position and zoom level to eliminate black borders.

Music lets you browse by Artist and Album, but you can’t create your own playlist, which is a touch annoying. If you’re using a UPnP server you can access playlists by directly browsing the server, plus any other ways that the server cuts the music – our Windows 7 PC also presented All Artists, All Music, Composers and Genre when accessed directly. Playback is otherwise fine.

Likewise, photo viewing works well, letting you browse the folder structure of your server. If you’re using a UPnP server you can also browse by the attributes it sets, such as Picture Playlists, Albums, Rating and Keywords from a Windows 7 PC.

USB storage and memory cards can also be browsed directly from the File interface, which is great if you’ve just got back from holiday and want to see how your digital camera shots came out, or have a video you want to watch.

With its ability to collate media from the internet the Boxee Box is more than just a media player and we loved having access to lots of online services, such as iPlayer. However, as a media player it does a great job with a huge range of support for media files. The excellent interface is a joy to use and makes other media streamers look old fashioned. With the new firmware ironing out the bugs we initially saw, we don’t hesitate to give it our Ultimate award.

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Basic Specifications

Rating *****
Media Streamer type streaming multimedia receiver

Audio Compatibility

Audio MP3 playback Yes
Audio WMA playback Yes
Audio WMA-DRM playback No
Audio AAC playback Yes
Audio Protected AAC playback No
Audio OGG playback Yes
Audio WAV playback Yes
Audio Audible playback No
Other audio formats FLAC

Video Compatibility

Other video formats MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, H.264, WMV9, XVID, DIVX, VC-1

Image Compatibility

Image BMP support Yes
Image JPEG support Yes
Image TIFF support Yes

Network Interfaces

Wired network ports 1x 10/100
Wireless networking support Yes

AV Interfaces

Minijack line outputs 0
Minijack headphone outputs 0
Stereo phono outputs 1
Coaxial S/PDIF outputs 0
Optical S/PDIF outputs 1
Total SCART sockets 0
HDMI outputs 1
Component outputs 0
S-video output 0
Composite outputs 0
Other connectors 2xUSB, SD, SDHC, MMC


Size 114x114x114mm
Power consumption standby 0W
Power consumption on 12W

Server Compatibility

Software included none
UPnP Yes
iTunes No
SlimServer No

Buying Information

Price £200
Warranty one year RTB

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