Buffalo Technology LinkTheater

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Buffalo Technology LinkTheater
  • Expert Rating

    4.50 / 5

Pros

  • Progressive scan, high-definition, straightforward wireless network playback

Cons

  • Minor glitch in requiring the user to set the DVD region manually

Bottom Line

The Buffalo LinkTheater is packed with features, including support for high-definition, progressive scan, wireless networking, and compatibility with just about every popular media format imaginable.

Would you buy this?

Buffalo's LinkTheater is a top-notch network media player packed with powerful features. On paper, it's an impressive piece of kit. The device handles a massive range of video formats including DivX, XviD, QuickTime, WMV and all flavours of MPEG. It also supports all common audio formats ranging from MP2, MP3, OGG, WAV, WMA, M4A and AC3, and popular image formats. In fact, given the solid codec support, there's very little that the device won't play. The progressive scan DVD player also has no trouble reading burnt DVDs and CDs, and offers full support for HDTV formats right the way up to 1080i.

The LinkTheater features a stylish design with a slim (6cm) front face and mirrored finish. It is relatively wide, measuring 42cm across (with a depth of 27cm), but it should still fit in most home entertainment units. Power and playback buttons run along the bottom edge of the fascia, and there's a USB port for attaching external hard disks, digital cameras or memory keys. The back panel offers composite, component, S-Video and HDMI video connectors along with RCA, coaxial and S/PDIF audio outputs and an Ethernet socket to interface with a home network. The LinkTheater includes 802.11b/g Wi-Fi, but there is no external antenna. The device also ships with a matching silver ergonomic remote control. It's clearly laid out; however, the relatively small text is hard to read in a dimly lit room.

Setup takes around half an hour between unpacking the device and installing the software on the host PC. Only Windows software is provided, so Mac or Linux users are out in the cold. One elegant feature encountered during setup is the AOSS (AirStation One-Touch Secure Systems) button on the front panel that allows the device automatically detect and configure security settings with compatible devices (though there's no provision for WPA security).

After adding media and finishing the software configuration, the device is free to play back media files. The Link Theatre offers a slick black interface that's quick and easy to navigate via the bundled remote, and the system remained responsive during testing. All tested media played back smoothly without skipping or glitches. The only minor issue that we found was with the DVD region setting. By default, the device ships with a preset to handle region two DVDs, and you have to change the region setting before it will handle local (region four) discs. An instruction card is bundled to help you make the switch, but it's still something that should be done at the factory prior to shipping.

The region issue is an extremely minor fault for what is otherwise a stellar network media player.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

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.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

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.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

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.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

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.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

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!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

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.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?