Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
Empire's New Tom Cruise Cover
The Jameson Empire Awards 2014
Vote: The Greatest 301 Movies Of All Time!
Rebecca Hall:
My Movie Life

The actress picks the movies that shaped her
Mountain Dew Green Screen
Register now to see X-Men: First Class!
Empire Blogs
Empire States

Back to all blogs Comment Now

First Look: Seagate GoFlex Cinema

Posted on Tuesday December 20, 2011, 15:01 by James Dyer in Empire States
First Look: Seagate GoFlex Cinema

There’s a reason why, even now, Macs refuse to come with Blu-ray drives. It’s not (just) because the late Steve Jobs wanted you to download HD films off iTunes but because the visionary technologist believed that physical media was in the midst of its death throes. Whether he was overstating the matter or not, the rise of digital media and the emergence on these shores of UltraViolet (the studios’ downloadable answer to DVD) certainly mean that digital copies of movies are increasing their foothold in the home entertainment market. The problem is that for most people it’s hard to know how to make the most of it all.

Broadly speaking there are three principle methods of enjoying digital media in your home. The first is to stream directly off the Internet via services such as Netflix or LoveFilm. The Second is to stream your own media files across your home network (which we’ll cover in some depth in an upcoming article). The Third, and arguably the simplest, is to store your movies on a multimedia hard drive, which you can then plug directly into your TV. It’s this latter method that Seagate are pointing people towards with their new GoFlex Cinema, an out-of-the-box media player with generous built-in storage and a pleasing on-screen interface.

The multimedia hard drive market is far from sparsely populated but with a three terabyte model lining up alongside one and two terabyte versions, Seagate is aiming the Cinema at film fans with larger digital collections, or those for whom SD content just doesn’t cut it anymore. Out of the box, the Cinema is a neat, glossy black box pre-formatted for PCs. Thoughtfully, though, Seagate’s software quizzes uses on their platform needs and will either reformat for Macs or cater to cross-platform users by gifting them with Paragon’s NTFS for Mac drivers, allowing Apple’s machine to write to Windows filesystems directly. Once this hurdle is passed, all that remains is to copy all your digital media from computer to drive – though due to the limitations of USB, filling all 3TB will likely be an overnight operation.

With all your media on the drive, it happily plugs into your TV via HDMI (or composite cables if you’re desperate) and after a pleasantly short boot time, fires up the full colour UI. This is a step where a lot of similar drives trip up: LaCie’s otherwise decent LaCinema range having a truly ghastly monochrome menu and only Western Digital’s live series really nailed the balance between aesthetics and functionality. Seagate have no problems in this area as the interface is both attractive and intuitive, presenting users with the option of playing photos, music or video files. Usefully, the GoFlex Cinema doesn’t ask you to place different media in pre-defined folders, you can dump it all slapdash on the drive itself with nary a care to organization and the device will sift through and organize your files automatically when not playing back media. Nice.

Playback is decent, supports full 1080p and will handle pretty much any file type you throw at it, from XviD and WMA to H.264, MKV and even FLAC files for audio. The only slight quibble is that it doesn’t support DTS audio, limiting you to Dolby Digital playback, though that’s hardly a dealbreaker.

All in all the GoFlex Cinema is a well put together media drive that stands apart from a lot of the competition simply due to the size of storage on offer. When you also consider that you can increase capacity still further thanks to a USB expansion port, and that, at £150 for the largest model, it's not that much more than a plain old 3TB hard drive, this glossy box of delights starts to seem very appealing indeed.

So, as a toe in the water of digital media, the GoFlex Cinema (or similar device) is a perfect way to start. The more adventurous among you, or those with truly titanic collections may want to take things a step further, however, and centralize your entire collection on a server, which can channel digital movie goodness all over your home. For the lowdown on that, however, you’ll have to tune in to our detailed follow-up article in the new year.

Login or register to comment.

Currently No Comments

Log in below, or register to post comments
Username:
Password:
Remember Me:

CATEGORIES

Empire States (432)

Under The Radar (317)

Infinite Lives (92)

Small Screen (56)

Words From The Wise (34)

Cannes 2011 (28)

Off The Wire (24)

Comic-Con 2010 (21)

Casting Couch (2)

Oscars 2011 (1)


RECENT POSTS

Why Do People Think Captain America Is Boring?
By Helen O'Hara

Are iPads And Smartphones Changing The Face Of Filmmaking?
By Ben Kirby

Screen To Stage: Let The Right One In
By Helen O'Hara

My Encounter With Shia LaBeouf
By James White

Empire Meets Chris Hemsworth’s ‘Rush’ Alter Ego
By Ally Wybrew

The Case For The Wolf Of Wall Street, Surprisingly Feminist Film
By Helen O'Hara

The Movie Drinking Games Too Dangerous To Attempt
By Helen O'Hara

Screen To Stage: From Here To Eternity
By Helen O'Hara

There's No Pixar Film In 2014. Here Are 7 Steps To Help You Survive The Wait
By Helen O'Hara

‘Is Jackie Chan Dead?’ And Other Amazing Film Questions From Google’s Auto-Suggest Function
By Ali Plumb


RECENT COMMENTS

Why Do People Think Captain America Is Boring?
"what..??!! THIS is news to me..all i've been hearing bout this movie's NOTHING but terrific...  Avengers12
Read comment

Why Do People Think Captain America Is Boring?
"Chris Evans and the entire fucking film is boring, and THAT's the problem, not the character."  Jonny24
Read comment

Why Do People Think Captain America Is Boring?
"Because people are idiots? ;) Earnestness, honesty and a hopeful attitude are jus"  spideed2
Read comment

Why Do People Think Captain America Is Boring?
"Captain America is not boring. Steve Rogers is boring. It's nearly impossible to "  doug64
Read comment

Screen To Stage: Let The Right One In
"Nice to see this review pop up - I was wondering if you'd been to see it, Helen... I agree with most"  gumphd
Read comment

Why Do People Think Captain America Is Boring?
"It's not that the film version of Captain America is uncool, it's the comic book character as resurr"  dansator
Read comment

Why Do People Think Captain America Is Boring?
"I meant to say "I don't have a problem with Cap being old fashioned, which some folks think is "  coyoteone
Read comment

Why Do People Think Captain America Is Boring?
"I don't have a problem with Cap being old fashioned and boring, and frankly, I'm sick of this trend "  coyoteone
Read comment

Screen To Stage: Let The Right One In
"Thanks for writing about this - I was thinking about going to see it but maybe not now. I remember t"  Mpyrereader
Read comment

Why Do People Think Captain America Is Boring?
"Just back from seeing The Winter Solider and for me it's the best of the Marvel films so far. The se"  LustForLeith
Read comment


POPULAR POSTS

Movies’ Most Quotable Lines
566 comments

'It's Just A Bit Of Fun': Why Defensive Fans Are Bad News For Movies
361 comments

Competitive Geek Baiting: Or, How To Start A Fanboy Fight
338 comments

The Avatar Backlash: Evaluatin' The Hater-atin'
303 comments

The Complete List Of Tired Movie Cliches
286 comments

Your Favourite Animated Film
217 comments

Note To Hollywood: How To Get People To Switch To Blu-Ray
192 comments

Food For Thought
132 comments

The Ten Moviegoing Commandments
127 comments

Just The Facts, Ma’am
127 comments


BLOGGERS
Damon Wise (296)
Helen O'Hara (166)
James Dyer (85)
Amar Vijay (71)
Ali Plumb (54)
James White (28)
Phil de Semlyen (19)
Owen Williams (15)
Ally Wybrew (2)
Ben Kirby (1)
David Parkinson (1)


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
The Best Barry Norman Anecdotes From His Empire Podcast Interview
From nearly punching Robert De Niro to the real story about ‘And why not?’

Empire 300th Issue: The Directors' Cut Cover
Spielberg, Whedon, Fincher, Abrams Mann and more take over

Fired! Losing Your Job In The Movies
The lowdown on getting dismissed on film

20 Not So Super '-Men' That Won't Star In A Film Any Time Soon
Forget your Batmen, your Spider-Men and your Ant-Men… Meet 3-D Man (and his pals)

The Making Of Locke: A Filmmaker's Journey
Steven Knight takes us through six pitstops (via Heston Services)

Tom Hardy: A Viewer's Guide
The essential, the recommended, the one for the fans... and the one to avoid

Ten Things To Know About The Spooks Movie
Under the hood of The Greater Good

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save money on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get Limited Edition Collectable X-Men Art Cards

Subscribe today and get 6 issues of Empire plus a set of collectable X-Men Art Cards for only £20!

Subscribe today

Get 12 Issues Of Empire For Just £25
Receive limited edition subscribers-only covers every month Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)