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Cheapest way to play a USB hard drive directly onto a TV which has no USB ports

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Hi my mum has a TV with HDMI but no USB ports (panasonic TXL26X20B). It is a few years old and I think was HDready only. I'm looking at the best way to get her to watch stuff directly from a portable … Read More
Cheapasnowt Avatar
7m, 1w agoPosted 7 months, 1 week ago
Hi my mum has a TV with HDMI but no USB ports (panasonic TXL26X20B). It is a few years old and I think was HDready only. I'm looking at the best way to get her to watch stuff directly from a portable USB drive/usb stick. I know most dvd players/bluray players have usb ports but I wanted a cheaper option.

I hears a WDTV media player might be ok and these are available second hand for about £15.

Any other ideas?
Cheapasnowt Avatar
7m, 1w agoPosted 7 months, 1 week ago
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#1
I'd get one of the main Android boxes on here for £20-30. If you have a little bit of technical know how (not much needed). Then dual boot it with LibreElec and it will run like an absolute dream and will display all the media info as well. Then the android side you can have BBC Iplayer, 4OD etc.

http://kodi.wiki/images/thumb/3/3c/Video_library.png/640px-Video_library.png
#3

This seems to be geared to mobile phones as opposed to be a way of plugging a USB hard drive in one side and the tv on the other.
#4
dcx_badass
I'd get one of the main Android boxes on here for £20-30. If you have a little bit of technical know how (not much needed). Then dual boot it with LibreElec and it will run like an absolute dream and will display all the media info as well. Then the android side you can have BBC Iplayer, 4OD etc.

http://kodi.wiki/images/thumb/3/3c/Video_library.png/640px-Video_library.png

I cant imagine my mother , who's in her 70s being able to cope with this.
#5
free box just pay postage?
#6
Cheapasnowt
dcx_badass
I'd get one of the main Android boxes on here for £20-30. If you have a little bit of technical know how (not much needed). Then dual boot it with LibreElec and it will run like an absolute dream and will display all the media info as well. Then the android side you can have BBC Iplayer, 4OD etc.

http://kodi.wiki/images/thumb/3/3c/Video_library.png/640px-Video_library.png

I cant imagine my mother , who's in her 70s being able to cope with this.


What frontend does your mum use now ?
#7
i have a sumvision cyclone micro hdmi 1080p or a xenta hd mini media hd 720p player do your google research and if suitable they are free but you pay postage!
#8
they weigh in at 480 gm each so £3.30 first class
#9
rickryder1
they weigh in at 480 gm each so £3.30 first class

thanks for the offer. Given its not for me and I dont really want to be round every 5 minutes of so I'll look for a branded version.
banned#10
just subscribe her to pron.
Then she won't need a plugin.
I think oO
#11
#12
mikey_d
They rarely support many formats and it'll be SD. Android box is the best bet, can get extremely easy to use apps or interfaces and make it autostart with them.
#13
This suggestion bypasses "watch stuff directly from a portable USB drive/usb stick" but requires no additional external player: you could try moving the media files to SDcard to see if the TV can natively play them. The TVs user manual suggests it may be fussy about the file container - maybe try an MP4 at 480p as that is typically one of the most commonly used containers / resolutions.
#14
Pretty any blu-ray player will play portable HD and most formats. That's how I have done it for years. Try LG or Panasonic as I have had both. I've seen them around £30 second hand or refurb. My first basic LG was only £35

here's any example http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Panasonic-DMP-BDT130-Full-HD-Smart-3D-Blu-Ray-Disc-Player-Miracast-Damaged-Box-/182348472573?hash=item2a74d0e0fd:g:-~8AAOSwXeJYI0-C
#15
paul555
Pretty any blu-ray player will play portable HD and most formats. That's how I have done it for years. Try LG or Panasonic as I have had both. I've seen them around £30 second hand or refurb. My first basic LG was only £35
here's any example http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Panasonic-DMP-BDT130-Full-HD-Smart-3D-Blu-Ray-Disc-Player-Miracast-Damaged-Box-/182348472573?hash=item2a74d0e0fd:g:-~8AAOSwXeJYI0-C

thanks for this. My only concern is that I'm thinking of putting the TV on a wall and so with a SKy + box already there i;m worried about having a largish second box there. She also doesn't use the DVD player we've got attached in the front room!
#16
The trouble with older stuff is that it only supports older formats.

The generic name for what you're after is probably media player. Streaming box may also be worth a look as many of them have USB ports.
#17
August DVB415 with benefit of HD freeview + PVR, or Android media box, both around £22/£23 fulfilled by Amazon new with warranty.
DVB415 https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00Q38S9BU/ or Android box https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01H32JCII/
Check if the DVB415 USB port supplies enough power for a portable drive; the Android box will.
#18
Forget wdtv as they don't support the latest codecs

Just get a £20 android box and stick Mx player app on it

Along with iplayer, 4od,itv player etc

The mini M8s android posted is ideal


Edited By: chocci on Nov 13, 2016 14:12
#19
#20
Get a Black NowTV box and install the USB app on it instructions here http://www.waxedperfection.co.uk/now-tv-usb-working-hd-box
#21
Cheapasnowt
chocci
Forget wdtv as they don't support the latest codecs
Just get a £20 android box and stick Mx player app on it
Along with iplayer, 4od,itv player etc
The mini M8s android posted is ideal
You mean this one?http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/252415562064
That s805-based ebay item is two generations old. The prev mentioned s905 Amazon £23 dlvd option is capable of playing more formats https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01H32JCII/. The latest s905x version is £24.49 and can come with twin IR such as http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/162200472426
banned#22
Does she have a laptop with HDMI? If so, use that. Or a cheap Android TV Box from Aliexpress.

Don't buy the overpriced Android TV boxes from eBay the sellers there tend to make their boxes look amazing but they're not. It's Kodi stuff you can do it yourself.

Edited By: Spasho on Nov 14, 2016 04:23
#23
AndyRoyd
Cheapasnowt
chocci
Forget wdtv as they don't support the latest codecs
Just get a £20 android box and stick Mx player app on it
Along with iplayer, 4od,itv player etc
The mini M8s android posted is ideal
You mean this one?http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/252415562064
That s805-based ebay item is two generations old. The prev mentioned s905 Amazon £23 dlvd option is capable of playing more formats https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01H32JCII/. The latest s905x version is £24.49 and can come with twin IR such as http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/162200472426
What's the benefit of dual IR?
#24
chocci
AndyRoyd
Cheapasnowt
chocci
Forget wdtv as they don't support the latest codecs
Just get a £20 android box and stick Mx player app on it
Along with iplayer, 4od,itv player etc
The mini M8s android posted is ideal
You mean this one?http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/252415562064
That s805-based ebay item is two generations old. The prev mentioned s905 Amazon £23 dlvd option is capable of playing more formats https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01H32JCII/. The latest s905x version is £24.49 and can come with twin IR such as http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/162200472426
What's the benefit of dual IR?
You mentioned "..i;m worried about having a largish second box there..." The benefit of dual IR is that you can hang the Android box off the back of the TV/wallmount, and just have the discreet external IR receiver visible to the front of the TV. You may also wish to consider obtaining a short USB extension lead; the decent 28AWG versions are available from around £0.99+ delivered, e.g. http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/291710837528 or 28AWG USB3 spec from £1.49 dlvd 1st class http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/262522448943
#25
forget all of the above, honestly its all irrelevant to your situation and by the sounds of it, your mum's ability!

get her a sumvision cyclone player. its easy to use, even for a technophobe oldie, and you can SCART it to the back of the TV. i've never had a video that cannot be played on it. and its cheap also, a massive part of your problem, and to be honest, the remote is really quite easy to use and the User Interface is easy too.

My rents have two.
#26
FTOdude170
forget all of the above, honestly its all irrelevant to your situation and by the sounds of it, your mum's ability!
get her a sumvision cyclone player. its easy to use, even for a technophobe oldie, and you can SCART it to the back of the TV. i've never had a video that cannot be played on it. and its cheap also, a massive part of your problem, and to be honest, the remote is really quite easy to use and the User Interface is easy too.
My rents have two.
Maybe helpful to identify with of the 6+ variants of the cyclone you are referring to. OP was offered a Sumvision Cyclone in posts 7&8 for cost of p&p but politely declined.
banned#27
FTOdude170
forget all of the above, honestly its all irrelevant to your situation and by the sounds of it, your mum's ability!
get her a sumvision cyclone player. its easy to use, even for a technophobe oldie, and you can SCART it to the back of the TV. i've never had a video that cannot be played on it. and its cheap also, a massive part of your problem, and to be honest, the remote is really quite easy to use and the User Interface is easy too.
My rents have two.
Any Sumvision Guarantee longer than 12 months is worthless.
They won't honour it.
#28
kester76
Cheapasnowt
dcx_badass
I'd get one of the main Android boxes on here for £20-30. If you have a little bit of technical know how (not much needed). Then dual boot it with LibreElec and it will run like an absolute dream and will display all the media info as well. Then the android side you can have BBC Iplayer, 4OD etc.http://kodi.wiki/images/thumb/3/3c/Video_library.png/640px-Video_library.png
I cant imagine my mother , who's in her 70s being able to cope with this.
What frontend does your mum use now ?

What do you mean?
#29
that's a good point apologies, I was referring to the 2+. I don't understand why the OP chose not to, just saying they want a branded one, which doesn't make sense... as I think, unless I've misunderstood or missed something, it ticks all the boxes. I did a kodi android box for my parents and its just not worth it. they need updating all the time and the ui just isn't intuitive for a non tech person. they gave it me back. unless the brief has changed, a cheap, USB player that'll play all the formats which can be used without HDMI, I don't know why they wouldn't want a sumvision cyclone 2+! bit I'm open to education... lol
#30
Pluun
FTOdude170
forget all of the above, honestly its all irrelevant to your situation and by the sounds of it, your mum's ability!
get her a sumvision cyclone player. its easy to use, even for a technophobe oldie, and you can SCART it to the back of the TV. i've never had a video that cannot be played on it. and its cheap also, a massive part of your problem, and to be honest, the remote is really quite easy to use and the User Interface is easy too.
My rents have two.
Any Sumvision Guarantee longer than 12 months is worthless.
They won't honour it.


what do you want one of them for? I hate sumvision yada yada yada.. these boxes arent exactly fragile, mine going for in excess of 5 years each now.. no issues.. if it breaks, it's another 20quid, hardly bank breaking... :-s
#31
Cheapasnowt
kester76
Cheapasnowt
dcx_badass
I'd get one of the main Android boxes on here for £20-30. If you have a little bit of technical know how (not much needed). Then dual boot it with LibreElec and it will run like an absolute dream and will display all the media info as well. Then the android side you can have BBC Iplayer, 4OD etc.http://kodi.wiki/images/thumb/3/3c/Video_library.png/640px-Video_library.png
I cant imagine my mother , who's in her 70s being able to cope with this.
What frontend does your mum use now ?

What do you mean?


By frontend or in general ?
#32
t i was offering free.. utubevid thought it ideal!
#33
rickryder1
t i was offering free.. utubevid thought it ideal!

rickryder1- I'm really sorry I havent a clue about the product. Does the player play mkv, mp4 and divx? Also is there any way of allowing for subtitle files if they are contained in a separate file?

If the answer to both is yes then I'll have it off you and pay the postage as a solution for her.
#34
Cheapasnowt
rickryder1
t i was offering free.. utubevid thought it ideal!
rickryder1- I'm really sorry I havent a clue about the product. Does the player play mkv, mp4 and divx? Also is there any way of allowing for subtitle files if they are contained in a separate file?
If the answer to both is yes then I'll have it off you and pay the postage as a solution for her.
The sumvision does not play the latest videos (h265} or support subtitles

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