Skip to main content

WD's Elements Play: Storage, Media Player in One

Hard drive manufacturer Western Digital quietly announced a stand-alone device for HD media playback. Called the WD Elements Play, the device packs either a 1TB or 2TB internal drive, component, composite, and HDMI connections. This makes it ideal for media storage and easy playback for any standard or HDTV.

"An easy, affordable way to supersize your movies and photos on your big-screen TV, and play your music collection on your home entertainment center," the company said. "Simply connect the drive to the TV and you’re ready to enjoy all your digital media in Full-HD 1080p resolution."

The WD Elements Play provides Full HD video picture quality (1080p) and DTS 2.0 digital audio. It also has several USB 2.0 ports and supports popular formats like RMVB, H264, MKV, PLS, M3U and more. Automatic Play lets the user select a media file to play when the unit boots while an easy, intuitive interface provides DVD-like navigation, photo slideshow capabilities and more.

So far Western Digital hasn't provided pricing or availability.

  • ananke
    So, this is WD Live with a HDD slot inside? Anybody knows what chipset they used in this? Is it Netflix capable?
    Reply
  • puddleglum
    So how do you get the media on the player to begin with? Just over USB? I don't see any inputs for a tuner/DVD/CD etc.
    Reply
  • chomlee
    Other than using a 3.5" drive, it doesn't sound like this is anything really new.

    I have a Patriot Box Office that I got from newegg for $140.00 total with a 500 gig 2.5" HD and it works great. I think the only thing that is needed now is the availability of Hulu, netflix, NBC Universal plugins etc. These are the things that Boxee Box was going to change but that has been delayed until november.
    Reply
  • chomlee
    puddleglumSo how do you get the media on the player to begin with? Just over USB? I don't see any inputs for a tuner/DVD/CD etc. The beauty of these devices is that if they are network capable, they are seen as a drive on the network that can be copied to etc. So, the answer to your question is that mainly you move files through the usb connection but you can also transfer them over the network if you have a box with a network connection.
    Reply
  • as interesting as this sounds i much prefer to see a WD live with eSata connections, gigabit LAN and HDMI 1.4 capabilities, that will just rock especially if they allow it to accept external blu-ray drives
    Reply
  • nevertell
    chomleeOther than using a 3.5" drive, it doesn't sound like this is anything really new. I have a Patriot Box Office that I got from newegg for $140.00 total with a 500 gig 2.5" HD and it works great. I think the only thing that is needed now is the availability of Hulu, netflix, NBC Universal plugins etc. These are the things that Boxee Box was going to change but that has been delayed until november.Boxee FTW!!!
    Reply
  • Gigahertz20
    nevertellBoxee FTW!!!

    The Boxee Box is not going to be a good media player for those that like to watch HD movies with high bitrates. It has been reported that it will either not play or have trouble playing anything over > 10Mbps. So if you are a torrent person that downloads high bitrate .mkvs or you want to rip your bluray collection and be able to play them back, forget about it. Stick to the decode engines of the Sigma Design processors in the WD TV Live/Plus and the Popcorn Hour line of players if you value high bitrate play back.


    Reply
  • ares1214
    Thats nice...I care more about GF108 and Bulldozer info though :P
    Reply
  • Gigahertz20
    No wired/wireless networking support kills it for me. Also there is no component video output like this article states, the official site says it has component video in the specs as well but the pictures of the device and the interactive 3D view show that it does not.

    This product should be called a media storage player because that is all it can do, play back movies stored on the internal HD. No internet, no network, no ability to play back your movies stored on network shares = fail.
    Reply
  • tranzparentl
    Popcorn Hour FTW! but seriously, an internal HDD is the main reason the popcorn hours are so much better than the other devices. Maybe this one will be decent. Competition is always good.
    Reply