NeoDigits X5000 Networkable DVD player

Is the X5000 just another upscaling DVD player? Nope, it sets out to try and replace an entire HTPC with its enahnced network connectivity. As with with many media extenders, its intentions are good but the UI ends up being pretty damn clunky in the end.

From the article:

We almost forgot. The X5000 has an upscaling DVD player built in along with all the home media options. There isn't much to say about upscaling DVD players these days but the statement still holds true that they do make a difference. How much is questionable, but the player did produce a better image when set to the native resolution of the set verse a standard progressive scan DVD player. The unit has enough resolutions to satisfy just about any home theater setup including 480i, 480p, 576p, 720p, 1080i, and 1080p (plus, a whole bunch more). These output resolutions can be sent via component or HDMI; that's right 1080p over component.

So lets round this up: capable media streaming device, sub-pair PC side software, great audio processing, DVD upscaler, and tons of output resolutions all in a $500 built-like-a-rock package. Is it worth the price of a HD DVD player? We don't know but all we can say is that the media streaming capabilities are slightly better then anything we have used before and it did play every media file we threw at it; including high-def files over a wireless network. If it wasn't for the sub-par software that came with the unit, we could give this player a solid recommendation. However, it's just not ready for mainstream. But if you don't mind finding your own software, or already have a server setup, this is a killer media-streaming device.