AC Ryan Veolo 4K

AC Ryan Veolo 4K
AC Ryan Veolo 4K media player.

Consumers have to realise that the media player is not always at fault if a digital movie does not play.

People tend to download movies from various sources and blame the device for not being able to handle the file, but no one wonders how the file was encoded in the first place.

AC Ryan's Veolo 4K managed to play the bulk of my test-video files with ease. While there were some volume issues with certain movies, I will not blame the player, because frankly, I am not sure of the video's encoding method in the first place.

The player easily handled subtitle files and managed to keep up when I skipped ahead to a scene or timecode. It also easily played a wide selection of container formats, such as Mpeg, AVI, MKV and MP4 files.

The player touts 4K compatibility and on a technical level, it means it is able to decode HEVC H.265 files in 3,840 x 2,160, 4K resolution. On the downside, 4K files are huge and not easy to find, so while I was able to test small 4K files, I was not able to test a full-length 4K movie on it.

The greatest advantage of the Veolo 4K is not its hardware features, but simply that AC Ryan did a good job of running Android on it.

Many Android players I have tested tend to perform sluggishly, but not this one.

Once I installed the Astro file manager, it easily detected my network-connected hard drives and was able to stream movie and music files using the player.

The app drawer is well designed, with large icons laid out in a grid. I would recommend junking the included controller and picking up the Veo Navigator air mouse ($39).

This takes up one of the two USB slots, but a motion controller does make navigation much easier. While this is not as precise as LG's Magic Remote, it gets the job done.

If you have a 4K TV and are thinking of buying the Veolo 4K to stream 4K content to your TV via Netflix or Amazon Prime Video, you may want to think again.

The hardware might be able to handle 4K, but Netflix and Amazon have updated their 4K apps only on 4K smart TVs. Their Android apps are still running 1,080p videos.

A question I expect to get is how to download and install Netflix and Amazon Prime Video into local devices, as neither service is available here.

From a browser, go to Amazon.com and download the Amazon AppStore from the website. Register an account and download the apps not available locally.

Amazon is an online retailer so it is not illegal to get an account and download free apps from the service.

You do need a separate VPN service to subscribe and access those services, but that is another story for another day.

The only hiccup I faced was that each time I turned the player back on, Amazon required me to log into my account, whereas Netflix had my log-in details stored.

- The Veolo 4K is a sturdy media player even if the 4K aspect of things is a bit of a stretch.

sherwinl@sph.com.sg

TECH SPECS

Price: $229

Processor: RK3288 Ultra Quad-Core Cortex-A17 SoC

Memory: 16GB

RAM: 2GB DDR3 RAM

RATING

Design: 3/5

Performance: 4/5

Value for money: 3/5

Overall: 4/5


This article was first published on Feb 11, 2015.
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