Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Wireless for the SageTV HD Theater Has Arrived

We told you that the SageTV HD Theater was getting wireless soon, but didn’t know how soon.  Well the wait is over because SageTV announced that the latest SageTV HDTheater (HD200) firmware beta has been released for the masses.  In this beta includes support for Wireless N via a supported wireless N USB dongle.

They are starting with support for a single adapter at this point although there may be more in the future.  The supported adapter is a 802.11 a/b/g/n network adapter from 'Encore Electronics' - model #ENUWI-N.  The adapter is available at Newegg and on sale for $16.99 (sale ends Thursday) so go get one already!

ENCORE ENUWI-N USB 2.0 802.11n Wireless Adapter

Newegg (affiliate) ENCORE ENUWI-N USB 2.0 802.11n Wireless Adapter $16.99 (save $23.00)

I also see the Enuwi-N priced at $14.99 plus $4.99 shipping at an Amazon Store (affiliate)

I’m sure you can find it at other stores as well.  It officially supports G and N networks.  I would highly recommend you stick with wireless N to get the best chance of a good experience with this – especially with HD video.

SageTV had this to say about their testing of the device and the HD Theater:

In our testing we've been able to get 20-30 Mbps on G networks. On N networks we're able to achieve 40-50Mbps.  These numbers will of course vary depending upon a wide variety of conditions including device placement, access point location and signal interference.
This device uses the Ralink 2870 chipset; so other devices which use the same chipset *may* also work; but have not been tested and are not officially supported at this time. However; if you do have success using a different wireless device with the same chipset, please let us know.

The firmware update also includes

  1. Updated file sharing code for better compatibility
  2. Fix issue with some large mkv files index (Also for HD100)
  3. Fix audio video sync issue of some AVI files with non standard encoding of audio offset (Also for HD100)
  4. Fix audio on some AVI files that had 0 size audio blocks (Also for HD100)
  5. Various core fixes (Also for HD100)

Read the official announcement at the SageTV forums and this post listing the complete firmware update


So what if you don’t have a Wireless N router or switch and want to get in on the wireless action?  Well I always say don’t use wireless for streaming video unless you definitely have no wired option – but there are those times you just need wireless.  Here are a few decent routers as options for you (links all Newegg affiliates):

1. WRT400N

LINKSYS WRT400N Simultaneous Dual-Band Wireless Router

LINKSYS WRT400N Simultaneous Dual-Band Wireless Router on sale for $113.60 Free Shipping! a really good deal in my opinion.


2. DLink DIR 825

This D-Link is one I had multiple people suggest to me.  It’s true dual band and feature-rich

D-Link DIR-825 Xtreme N Dual Band Gigabit Router $129.99 Free Shipping


3. DLink DIR 655 2

D-Link DIR-655 Xtreme N Gigabit Router $94.95 Free Shipping – another good price


4. Linksys WRT610n

LINKSYS WRT610N Simultaneous Dual-N Band Wireless Router $132.99


If you have your own suggestions on Wireless N routers let us know in the comments.  I’ll be reporting on how well the wireless works with the HD200 soon!