Media Players, Reviews

Hands-On: Iomega Screenplay Director HD

SP_Director_HiAngle
Manufacturer: Iomega Product: Screenplay Director HD
Price: £179 Web: Iomega

Whilst there’s still no sign of the digital media receiver hitting the mainstream in 2009, manufacturers are still working hard to crack the market by releasing a variety of networked music and video players, some with storage and some without. Iomega’s Screenplay line has been around for a little while, and the move from standalone storage to networked storage with media playback is a simple one for the brand. The Screenplay Director HD is Iomega’s latest offer in the DMR space, offering a choice of 1 and 2 TB networked drives with a host of media features including a wide range of format support, 1080P high definition playback via HDMI, internet content (RSS, Podcast, YouTube et al) and advertised support for torrent files.

SP_Director_HiAngle

What’s in the Box?

The Screenplay Director HD, as you’d expect from Iomega’s top of the line digital media player, comes equipped with a host of cables and connectors:

IMG_1781 IMG_1783 IMG_1785 IMG_1786 IMG_1800

In the box you’ll find:

  • ScreenPlay Director
  • Remote control
  • Power supply
  • HDMI cable
  • USB cable
  • Composite video cable
  • Quick Start Guide and Solutions CD
  • FAT32 format utility
  • Iomega Protection Suite software (via download) :
    • Iomega Quik Protect
    • Retrospect Express HD (PC)
    • Retrospect Express for Mac
    • MozyHome Online Backup 2GB Free (PC/Mac)
    • McAfee Anti-virus software (PC)

    Note that you’ll need to supply your own networking cable if you wish to connect the ScreenPlay Director to your network over Ethernet. Wireless networking options are available, but again, you’ll need to purchase the adaptor separately. The good news, however, is that Iomega do supply an HDMI cable in the box, so no need to rush out and get clobbered by a retailer for a high price, high margin equivalent.

    Specifications

    The ScreenPlay Director HD supports playback of a decent range of file formats, including:

    Video

    • MPEG-1
    • MPEG-2 (AVI, VOB)
    • MPEG-4 (AVI, DivX 3.11, 4.x, 5.x, 6.x, XviD)
    • H.264
    • WMV
    • AVCHD
    • VC-1 (SMPTE 421M)

    Supported file extensions include: avi, asf, divx, mkv, mov, mp2, mp4, mpe, mpeg, mpg, m4a, m4v, vob, xvid, ifo, iso (DVD ISO), WMV, FLV, TS

    Music

    • MP3
    • AC3 (Dolby Digital Encoding)
    • WAV
    • OGG
    • WMA
    • AAC (non-DRM)
    • FLAC

    Photo

    • JPEG
    • BMP
    • GIF
    • PNG
    • TIFF

    Supported Interfaces

    • 10/100 Ethernet for wired network connection
    • Wireless Ready support for Iomega WiFi adapters (sold separately)
    • USB 2.0 for computer connection and external USB devices
    • AV PAL/NTSC — native to 1080i/1080p
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    Terry Walsh is the founder of We Got Served. He started the community in February 2007 with a mission to help families, tech enthusiasts everywhere figure out the technology needed to run the modern home and small business. He's the author of a number of guides to Windows, Windows Server and OS X Server and runs his own successful publishing business. Born and raised in Liverpool, England, Terry has been awarded Microsoft's prestigious Most Valuable Professional Award each year since 2008 for his work on We Got Served.
    • FLAPS 15

      Got one yesterday… I agree with the above.
      Had some troubles to keep NETWORK flowing without interruptions (was happening every 2~3 min…) using Wired.
      Went to the IOMEGA website and downloaded the latest Firmware, and indeed… resolved the problem.
      Some MKV files don't play the sound, not sure if it is because the sound is on some format (digital) or because I’m not using optical, only HDMI.
      I'm sure more firmware updates will appear soon.

      • Siddu

        Flaps..Need your help!
        As u said u updated the new firmware…I tried the same..But its not happening!
        Mine version is 1.4.0.38 ….the new one is 1.4.0.70
        as instructed online…..i did the same..but the player reads my pendrive but not the latest firmware . why?? can u help me how u did it!!!

        • Sandy

          Connect the USB pen drive containing the update to one of the ports behind. Start your player and go to Settings and then Version. It should say detected new version and should run the update software …
          Managed to update my player to 1.4.0.68 last week.

        • RizMemon

          I have the same problem and the answer provided below doesnt work. Anyone know why the player is not reading the update file from the USB drive and how can we make it do so? Thanks!

          • michael

            make sure that the file is not in the folder for the device to recognize it.

    • Ray

      I got two of these yesterday and I feel ripped off … the interface is appalling (i cannot stress that enough….brutal) and the startup time isn't much better either, I have the latest firmware.
      I am sorry I didn't get an Apple TV… the Apple TV doesn't have the capacity nor does it play as many formats but at least its useable.

    • John Mason

      Installed the last update v1.4.0.68 as per instructions,then checked to see if it had done so,it did.I played a few music videos ok.I later put it back on,it will boot up to normal screen then go off,tried a few times same thing,it also does'nt register as drive on my computer via the usb lead,it is now defunct.The other drawback for me when ir was working that video music files don't shuffle only mp3's etc,the older screenplay does.Not a got buy.

    • Finn

      if MKV audio is DTS it does not process the audio. you will have to convert to Dolby Digital.
      i use popcorn software, its free and takes about 10 min.

    • Pedro

      Don't agree that it supports a wide variety of video formats. More than half of my mkv's don't play well on this and there's lots of films where for some reason or another it can't read the subtitles. Big mistake buying this one, should have bought a second eGreat instead.
      When it does read the subtitles they are miserably small and I haven't found any way of changing their size. DTS files have no sound (the eGreat just downmixes them to stereo) and there's no way to move a specific point on a file.

      • BoB

        DTS files do have sound, it just sends it out through the digital audio out instead of thru the hdmi or rca outs

        • Ipradon

          Hi Bob! I hav conected the digital audio from the screenplay director to a Creative 5.1 speaker that do support Dolby Digital. Still there is no audio. Any idea?

    • Christian

      the worst thing i have ever bought, no support for most videos, and there's always something wrong with playback, i thought you can have a dvd menu that you can use.

      • Carlos Silva

        If you need to use the drive with DVD format files (VIDEO_TS and AUDIO_TS) you can convert those files to an ISO. The player plays ISO files beautifully as per DVD menu.
        If you don’t want to do so, just click on the VIDEO_TS.IFO and the DVD manu will appear.

        Cheers

    • HAKAN

      HELP PLEASE

      iomega screenplay director HD mediaplayer subtitle problem.

      konuşmaların altyazısı 2 defa yazıyor ekrana , bu problemi nasıl çözebiliriz.

      yardımlarınızı rica ederim.
      teşekkürler

    • smartypants

      i need codec to play itunes movies is there any out there

    • Carlos Silva

      Did upgrade to version 1.4.0.68 and resolved issues with Network (Wired) and some MKV files. Tried to install newer version 1.4.0.70 and have the same problem as reported: Systems does not read automatically the file. Chated with technician on line and he could not help me, promissed to check what the problem is… probably we will have, soon, a new update.
      Regarding the Sound… if it is DTS it does not process the sound via HDMI. I'm using my optical connection to my YAMAHA amplifier and sound great. Let's hope this new update brings new stuff for this drive.

    • nasir

      just got one for myself thinking of putting the torrents to work directly by online. But cant understand how to get it done.
      Did any one tried? please let me know
      Nasir

    • rex

      My new iomega screenplay Director is not recognised by pc, using windows vista.
      Please I need help with instalation

      • Hvanli

        unplug the devices USB from computer. switch off the iomega. Connect the usb back to the computer. Turn power on (iomega) wait for the laptop to read the device. If it does not work try it one more time. It did for me

    • realinstintc

      my is also not supporting sound of mkv files. what can i do

      • Anna

        Should be a DTS audio , Mine works when sound output connected on a Optical Audio/

    • Leslie

      To do with the optical cable i guess, will get a cable tomorrow to test…

    • Leslie

      I got the cable today and the sound is working with the optical audio on the .mkv files with dts audio, I connected it straight to my amp and it seems to be good.

    • guest

      I just got one of these, can't play flv files. Couldn't get PC to see the drive over USB to only via network. Turns out you have to just have USB connection to start with, then PC will recognise as hard drive. Plug in USB before powering drive on as well. I have taken some home DVD's to ISO format (using Roxio creator DE on my DELL) and got them to playback from internal hard drive, but it's really slow. Also can;t get YouTube to play anything and torrents…. will try firewall settings on my router to see if it's blocking the Iomega.

      • Anupam Dhanuka

        Hi

        I am having the same problems with YouTube and Torrents. YouTube does not work and Torrents never seem to start downloading anything.

        Really frustrated with this! The biggest reason I bought this device is defeated. PLEASE SOMEONE HELP!

        • Francois

          I have exactly the same problem , and pretty much the same reason I bought the device as well!!

          Is there someone out there that can help??

    • michael

      can somebody help me, I can access the device via RCA but I cannot use it using my HDMI cable. I tried 3 cables already. My TV is 42" Full HD Phillips

      • juan

        I had the same problem, i upgrade the firmware to latest version and then rebooted the Iomega. It did recognize the HDMI cabke after that

    • Alex

      I have the same problem – I can access the device via RCA but I cannot use it using my HDMI cable. Any solutions? Thank you

      • Anna

        Try clicking on the PAL / NTSC button after connecting the HDMi.

    • Ulhas

      My pc can't recognize it. Works fine with TV.

      • Anna

        Power on the device after connecting the USB. Dont use Remote when connected to Computer

      • Bren

        The same problem. Computer cam't recognize the Screenplay Director HD. How to resolve it???

    • Julian

      My PC (two of them) wouldn´t recognize it, bought a usb hub (better one with it´s own power supply) connect to pc through that and it worked. It only needed to be turned on and off after connecting to hub to be recognized.

    • http://www.techjunoon.com/ Greeshma

      Looks like a cool gadget. Will be an asset to the electronic junk inside my room. B)

    • Micheal

      I was told to fomart all the partitions of my screenplay director by one of the support team staff wen my player was showing a no signal video black screen after connecting it to the TV.That was after it was working b4 and it stopped.After formating and connected it to the TV screen, it still showed the black screen. I tried to download and update the fireware as instructed but it gets had c'se it hardly shows the Iomega screen menu anymore for me to update it. it only displayers the black screen. Does anyone have any idea abt this.

      • CatMan

        I have the same problem, but only on the HDMI connection.
        I spoke with the support @ Iomega and they told me that:"It looks like a hardware problem" so they offered to exchange it for free.
        I will send it, but after New Years.
        P.S. I was hopping they will come out with a new firmware.
        Ciao

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      Nice. Have you considered throwing adsense on here in more places? I think you'd probably benefit from it like I have on my X-Mini Speaker website

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    • Adrian

      Doesn't update automatically… Download the file and paste it directly into the update folder on the drive!

      Anyone know why the sound is sometimes out of synch?!? Even if the file plays perfectly on my laptop?!?

      P.s. Damn Iomega dongle and connecting to my home wireless network doesnt work at all! Instructions are awful!

    • Rohitf

      I agree with many of the comments here…piece of crap.

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    • AndyB

      I've had one of these for a few months and definitely would not recommend. Haven't experienced too many issues with sound or playback. The software interface is just sooooo intolerably slow. Takes an eternity to start up. Once up and running, browsing the files stored on it is no better. One of my reasons for buying it was to store and play an extensive music collection. By the time this thing starts and browse to the required directory I've lost the will to live. God help you if you want a directory starting with a letter towards the end of the alphabet.

    • bernie

      all of the comments are right this screenplay director is a piece of craft..they said its 1080p but when you look at the resolution settings its only 1080i, and you cannot play youtube either..i would not recommend this piece of shit…its been 5 months since i got mine there's no update for the firmware until now…

      • anil

        I Agree with Bernie. I does not support Youtube. It always says content not available

        • Balbir

          After the firmware update to 1.4.0.92 it worked fine but No idea what happened a month ago it is not able to buffer it at all.

    • rook1e

      setting up the network is a pain, i cannot get it to connect directly to my laptop either wired or wireless but i finally got it to work wirelessly through my bt hub
      1gb of video takes 20 mins to send this way
      torrents seem to be limited to their recomended ones only,

    • ozranger

      This is one piece of junk.., don't BUY! I regret wasting my money for the very first time on something!
      Horrible interface and no firmware upgrades!!!

    • Harvey

      I bought a ScreenPlay TV Link DX HD Media Player
      When I play Pandora on it i get no Sound???
      Please Help
      Thanks

    • Stan

      Does the iomega ScreenPlay TV Link DX play youporn video?

    • Guest

      Iomega will never release a new firmware the fixes the youtube problem, so for you out there thinking that the issue will be fixed I can say , it will not, the update team have stopped (after order from Iomega) programming the firmware to screenplay pro and director models.

    • Shaz

      This thing is really, really awful.
      – Does not play many MKV's. Some it plays but only sound
      – Can't read the subtitles at times. On one ocassion they came but disappeared after a while!
      – Plays some images and does not even read some.
      – Has several codec problems. Very inconsistent.

    • MMc2K11

      Piece of shit, avoid at all costs!

    • Bobby

      Don't buy this shit !!! Really losted money !!!

    • lilmodi

      how i can work the subtitle on it

    • dean

      Iomega screenplay director firmware

      Is it possible to get the firmware for this? i accidentally deleted
      this and would like to recover all my movies and photographs please
      it boots up to the part where it says searching for usb keys and then starts the process again

      Is it possible to get the firmware for this? i accidentally deleted
      this and would like to recover all my movies and photographs please

      it boots up to the part where it says searching for usb keys and then starts the process again

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