New Digital Video Player I found: In Dec 2014, I discovered that China has made a tiny $30.00 Digital player, that hooks up to TVs and projectors, and plays video files and audio, from a common usb Flash Drive, and a common SD Card that digital cameras use.
Until this unit came out [USB SD MMC HD 1080P MKV AV Port HDMI Video Audio Digital Multi Media Mini Player] people had to screw with trying to get their computer to loop files to do FX in their windows. As simple as this may be for YOU, many people called me [ha ha, instead of the Geek Squad], and asked me how to loop playback on their MAC of PC. As easy as this should be, I know from experience that lots of times, the players just don't work as well as a standalone DVD player. Now, this combo Video and MP3 player, smaller than a Cell Phone will make The Digital Future Happen. I bought one to test, and it's full HD that supports a number of digital Video, Audio and even Picture files. GOOD BYE DVD and BLUERAY!!!! Good by Computer playback, hello to simple device to make all our lives-of-virtual effects easier.
I realize that in this Halloween Forum Community, there are many new members, and many didn't attend the trade shows I went to [spoke or exhibited at], 1999-2010 usually under the name Outrageous Media. So a quick repeat: I have a personal interest in digital video players, because I do consulting with major attractions. Commercial Digital Player units have been in use in museums, theme parks, kiosks, to play back video on TVs usually. In 2007-2008 I worked on, a big Russian Museum Project, where FX scenes were video projected in various ways. That museum used digital players too, but they were $300.00, and some HD versions now cost $400.00, so to find one that works for $30 bucks is great for the home haunter, or even a professional who likes to save money.
I've personally wanted to do away with DVD all together. And I've always felt that the internet was a logical and instant way to deliver digital goods, just like sending an email. That future is a little closer now with this Digital Player is out there. Basically it operates exactly like a Blueray Player. It has a hand held remote control that looks just like a DVD or Blueray remote, and it has REPEAT for repeating the effect of choice, just like repeating a DVD chapter with a certain effect. I only did a few experiments so far for quality. My main concern was function and HD quality. It played back a HD H264 mov file just perfect. I did a side by side comparison of an original video clip, and then the copy sent through the internet, and redownloaded to my computer. The playback was identical!!!
The unit also has a few other neat features. It has audio out, and both HDMI for HD TVs and projectors, but it also has standard 1990's era Composite Video out, so that you can use it with all of the non HD video projectors [which I'd estimate is probably 99% of them]. As I said, it's the size of a cell phone, can easily be velcro'd to the side of a video projector, or nearby, making it so incredibly easy to use for Virtual Effects projection. Before I forget, I'll give anyone interested an idea of where to get one. I only know of one source, ebay, where I found it. I know there's some kind of "Frowning over ebay links on almost every forum", so I'll just tell you the item number if you wanted to check it out. It's 181499380591 from a warehouse in the USA called Grabstocks. I DON'T know where else one can find them, so for simplicity here it is. And NO it's not my company or ebay listing, I do not sell equipment. I'm just trying to help out the forum members with new tech.
Some experiments I have planned for this is to try operating two of them together from one remote. The benefit to this would be to run two "cooperating" video clips at the same time. In Russia we made water run out of a hole from one projector and across the floor on a 2nd one. It could be two gangsters having a shootout. The ability to activate and loop two identical length video clips would be incredible, because it lets you do a Two Projector or 3, 4 scene, allowing an interaction between the two projected images/virtual scenes. So that's on my next test. But at this point, it has my eye. Think of it is taking your current video projector, and instead of messing with the DVD player, or Blueray, you simply use this digital player - keeping everything close together, in one spot. If you like the idea of Digital File Playback, but NONE of the available USB Projectors are bright enough for your larger effects, this USB SD MMC HD 1080P MKV AV Port HDMI Video Audio Digital Multi Media Mini Player is the answer.
Lastly - How long will it last? GOOD QUESTION, $30 - compared to $300.00. I don't know, but it may prove cheap enough that you can buy a few extra. I honestly don't know at time point. I do know my HUGE year 2000 Polaroid Brand DVD player at $400.00 that weighs 40 lbs, still works, where NONE of my smaller, cheaper and newer units ever lasted more than 5 years, and this old beast is still working.
Check it out, I think it's part of the new digital future. JON HYERS