- Poor manual, demands a tech-savvy user
The Mediagate MG-35 is a combination portable hard disk and network media player. It works well; however, a relatively poor manual and tricky setup demands a tech-minded user to make the most of it.
Price$ 299.00 (AUD)
While most media devices on the market either include a hard disk for storing content locally, or are able to play files stored on a networked PC, the Mediagate MG-35 has a bet each way. It's both a network media player and a portable storage device rolled into one. It's designed to pipe video and audio content across a network and play it back on a TV or home stereo system, but can also be used as a portable hard disk to move files around or play media stored on its internal drive.
The Mediagate doesn't ship with a hard disk, so you'll have to factor the cost of storage into the buying price. The unit takes a regular 3.5" IDE drive. Installing the drive should be no problem for anyone comfortable with opening up their PC case; however, those less experienced with technology may need some help from a more knowledgeable friend or relative. Plugging in the drive takes a couple of minutes, and then you're free to connect up the MG-35 to a PC via USB to format the disk and start transferring media across. The device handles many video formats, including MPEG-1, -2 and -4, DivX and XviD. It can play MP3, OGG, WMA and WAV audio files and display JPEG images. There's no support for progressive scan playback, however.
Though the USB connection is handy, the MG-35 also sports an Ethernet port and includes support for DHCP. The Mediagate doesn't ship with any software other than a USB driver for Windows 98, and instead relies on the user being able to tweak Windows settings to set up IP addresses and shared folders. The advantage of using this method is that the Mediagate doesn't specifically require Windows and will work with Linux and Mac OS.
The manual provides step-by-step instructions to help the user through the process. It's poorly written and the instructions can get confusing.
The rear panel serves up a reasonable range of connectors, including coaxial, composite and S-Video outputs, and S/PDIF and RCA audio plugs. The white front face has power, play, stop and navigation buttons, while a small silver and black remote control provides primary access to the machine's functions.
One of the major advantages of the MG 35 is its small footprint; the base measures 9 x 14cm, and the unit stands just 20cm tall. It sits neatly beside a TV in even the most cramped lounge room, and is a solid offering for anyone comfortable with adding a drive to the box and then coercing it to talk with other PCs on a home network. Anyone less comfortable with technology should steer clear, though.
Join the PC World newsletter!
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Lexar® Portable SSD
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Acer Swift 7
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Google Daydream VR headset
Huawei Mate 9
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Surface Pro 4
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Oppo R9s Plus phone: Full, in-depth review
- 2 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 3 HTC U Ultra phone full, in-depth review
- 4 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 5 Venom Blackbook Zero 14 laptop review
Latest News Articles
- Plex Cloud is now open to all paid users
- YouTube launches streaming TV service with 40 channels and unlimited cloud DVR storage
- Up next for Apple TV: 4K streaming reportedly in the works
- Apple’s original TV shows are almost ready for prime time
- Apple snags Amazon Fire TV exec to lead Apple TV efforts
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- And the 2017 winner of the Formula 1 Best Pit Lane Boom Gantry is...
- Behind the scenes with Team Walkinshaw at V8 Supercars Melbourne 2017
- First look at the Formula 1 2017 pit lane in Melbourne, Australia
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTSocial Media ExecutiveNSW
- TPBusiness Analyst | HealthQLD
- TPDigital Platforms ManagerVIC
- FTLead Network Project ManagerNSW
- FTFull Stack Web Developer .NET or JAVANSW
- FTInfrastructure ArchitectWA
- FTFull Stack Web DeveloperNSW
- FTLevel 2 Technical Support OfficerQLD
- FTData ArchitectNSW
- CCWeb Devops EngineerNSW
- FTKey Account ManagerVIC
- FTSenior Technical Consultant - Microsoft / VMWareVIC
- TPProcess Business Analyst - Digital InnovationNSW
- FTDevops EngineerVIC
- CCSenior Developer - Oracle - TelcoVIC
- FTPerformance Tester and Automation Tester (Brisbane-based)ACT
- FTOracle eBusiness Functional Consultant. (Procurement)NSW
- CCBusiness Analyst- Data GovernanceNSW
- FTEnterprise ArchitectQLD
- FTSeeking all Java Developers!NSW
- FTDrupal Developer - SeniorQLD
- FTNetwork Solution ArchitectVIC
- FTLead DevOps EngineerNSW
- CCSenior Full Stack Web Developer - Port MacquarieNSW