LaCie LaCinema Rugged HD multimedia player
LaCie's LaCinema Rugged HD is one of the pricier and more capable hard-drive-based portable digital media adapters on the market
- Lots of codecs supported, attractive design, excellent 1080p video playback
- Poor remote control, occasional file errors
The LaCie LaCinema Rugged HD is one of the pricier hard-drive-based portable digital media adapters on the market, but it's also one of the more capable.
Price$ 349.00 (AUD)
Note: pricing for this product is in US$.
LaCie's LaCinema Rugged HD is a hard drive that attaches to your PC's USB port, and it's a multimedia player that outputs the video, music, and images that you copy onto it to your TV via HDMI or composite/analog outputs. It's price (US$339) is above average for a hard drive-based portable digital media adapter, but it's also significantly better than average, with 1080p output and 500GB of capacity — enough for 100 DVDs' worth of video, even at 1080p if compressed properly.
Annoyingly, I ran into a snag with the LaCinema Rugged HD right off the bat thanks to its sub-standard remote control. Only a complete redesign will rescue the remote, which unfortunately achieves simplicity at the cost of reducing its ease of use. Pressing the Play button is the only way to drill down the menu tree from the main page, even though a four-way rocker button just beneath it could perform the same function — and does, except when you're in the main menu. Another problem: Because the rocker button steps through menu levels continuously, I repeatedly overshot my intended target. In contrast, the on-screen menu — though it lacks the preview function of WD's TV products — is easy to learn and use.
The LaCinema Rugged HD handles significantly more multimedia formats than does the non-HD LaCinema Rugged, including wave audio and WMV video files (such as WMV9 HD). Other supported codecs are MPEG-1, MPEG-2/HD, MPEG-4, XVID, H.264 HD, and VC-1 video, and MP3, MP4, OGG, and WMA audio. No Apple lossless or FLAC; sorry musicians. Regrettably, though the unit rendered a bitmap and .GIF image correctly, it refused to play one of my larger .JPG files and locked up trying to display a .PNG file. The unit also failed to display a standard H.264 version of Assault on Precinct 13 that I had on hand. Playback of other media was excellent, especially video at 1080p via the HDMI port.
The LaCie Rugged HD is an international product. The AC adapter comes with three changeable prongs. The case is handsomely rendered in black plastic with a wraparound rubberised strip. Rubber shock absorbers inside the case provide further resistance to damage from falls, though you should still handle it (and any other hard drive) with care.
It's nice to see that LaCie has beefed up its codec support with the HD version of the LaCinema Rugged. The drive still needs some tweaking, but it's now a roadworthy, handsome device with presentation-quality output. Now if only LaCie would do something about the pitiful remote.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: Is the world ready for a 4K phone?
- 2 Mazda MX-5 (2016) review: Absolute driving purity
- 3 Sony 75-inch UHD TV (X9400C) review: Sony and Android are a winning duo
- 4 LG 55EG960T OLED UHD TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera UHD TV review: good hardware, fragmented software
Best Deals on Good Gear Guide
Latest News Articles
- Samsung's 4K Blu-ray player debuts locally in May
- Report: Amazon wants to take on Spotify with a new music streaming service
- Apple is reportedly seeking exclusive content for the Apple TV
- Apple's Q1: Record $US18.4 billion profit, but iPhone sales are slowing
- CES 2016: Top 10 trends
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- FTApplication Support AnalystVIC
- CCCitrix Systems EngineerNSW
- FTAxway API DeveloperNSW
- FTAndroid DeveloperNSW
- CCHybris Developer - Global Digital AgencyNSW
- FTNetwork Systems LeadVIC
- CCDesktop Support Engineer/Service Desk AnalystNSW
- CC.NET DeveloperACT
- CCApplication Support AnalystNSW
- FTLogistics Systems ManagerNSW
- FTJava or Ruby Web DeveloperVIC
- CCSenior Business Analyst, Online Gaming SystemsNSW
- CCInfrastructure ConsultantNSW
- FTTechnical Support EngineerNSW
- CCOracle CC&B Technical AnalystVIC
- CCMid-level DevOps EngineerNSW
- CCContract System Analyst (JAVA/J2EE/SQL) 160205/SA/881Asia
- CCProject Manager IT infrastructureACT
- CCWintel Engineer with Sharepoint 2010 / 2013NSW
- FTInsight / Customer / modelling - Analyst (Data Scientist)NSW
- FTAnalyst: Business Intelligence & AnalyticsVIC
- FTProject Manager | Defence projects | NV1/NV2 cleared | Canberra basedACT
- CCContract System Engineer (Lotus Domin) 160129/SE/vccAsia
- FTSenior Front End Developer Required Working World Leading Digital TeamVIC