Belkin ScreenCast AV 4 Review
So what exactly is the Belkin ScreenCast
AV4? In essence, this product basically allows you to wirelessly
transmit up to four AV devices to your FULL HD TV without the need for
cables. You basically connect your AV devices (e.g. Blu-ray Player, XBox
360 Gaming Console, TiVO unit and Digital Media Player) into the
transmitter and then connect your TV into the receiver.
This basically removes the clutter of
cables to your home entertainment setup and this product can even be
wall mounted to make your room even tidier. This means that all your
1080p content, digital audio and even 3D content is streamed with a
minimal (if any) loss at all.
The technology behind
this device is the 5GHz Wi-Fi® spectrum which assists in reducing
interference in order to produce high quality video and audio. The
result is quite outstanding. You also need HDMI devices to use this
product and although it does support standard digital TV's, a FULL HD
(1080p) is recommended. For those tech heads, check out the features of
the Belkin ScreenCast AV 4 below.
Connect 4 HDMI
For devices like a
Blu-ray player, DVR, gaming console and cable box
Keep devices out of sight
Store AV equipment
up to 100 feet* away—in a cabinet, even in another room.
High Quality Picture
resolution, and 3D video.
High Quality Sound
Up to 51 channels of
control. Just point your remote at the TV, and ScreenCast does the
480p (EDTV), 720p (HDTV 2D & 3D), 1080i (HDTV), 1080p (FHDTV 2D &
2D Video Resolution
Compatibility: Up to 1080p 60Hz: 480p / 720p / 1080i / 1080p VGA,
3D Video Support:
All mandatory HDMI 1.4a modes: 720p 50/59.94/60Hz, 1080p 23.98/24Hz
3D Format Support:
Frame packing, side-by-side, top/bottom
As mentioned, the Belkin ScreenCast AV 4 allows you
to stream up to four AV devices to other parts of your room and house
in glorious FULL HD, including 5.1 surround sound and even 3D images. That's right, with the
Belkin ScreenCast AV 4 you can stream Blu-ray movies, your TiVo content and even
your PlayStation to other parts of your home without the need for
intensive cabling modifications as its all done wirelessly.
Best of all, you don't need any
degrees in computer science or electrical engineering to install this
product as Belkin have ensured to keep this very simple. That means no
matter what your AV knowledge is and as long you know where to plug the
HDMI cables and the power, that is pretty much all the knowledge you
need for a successful installation.
Uses the 5GHz Wi-Fi®
spectrum to minimize interference and provide superior video and
Works with protected
content like Blu-ray Discs (HDCP-enabled)
Up to 100ft*
line-of-sight wireless connectivity; can go through walls and other
solid objects over shorter distances*
Compliant with WHDI™
standard and interoperable with other WHDI-compliant products
Up to 5.1 channels
of high-definition audio†
The contents of the
Belkin Screen Cast AV 4 includes the following items, ScreenCast AV 4
Receiver, ScreenCast AV 4 Remote, ScreenCast AV 4 Transmitter, Power
Adapters for Transmitter and Receiver, 3ft High Speed HDMI® Cable, Quick
Install Guide, User Manual on CD & IR Blaster Cable.
As soon as we took the ScreenCast out of
the box, we noticed that
the product itself looks quite stylish
with it jet black design and classic Belkin blue lights on the devices.
The design of ScreenCast AV 4 is quite sleek and the transmitter roughly
measure around 23cm (l) x 14cm (w) x 3cm (h) with the receiver measuring
at 17cm (l) x 12cm (w) x 3cm (h). Definitely quite a small product.
The installation of the
product was a breeze. I chose the "easy setup" which is displayed inside
the box and showed me how to install the product quite quickly. Firstly,
I installed the receiver into my TV via the HDMI cable and then
connected it to the mains. Next, I installed the transmitter into my
various AV devices and then connected that unit to the mains. The only
tricky aspect of this was that I had to move my cables around inside my
The only messy aspect of the installation
is the infra red blaster which is a cable connected to the transmitter
with four LED receivers on it. This is used to transfer the remote
control signals of the original devices (E.g. Blu-ray Player or TiVO)
back to the transmitter in order to manipulate those devices like
changing channels or watching a movie.
The distance covered by
the Belkin ScreenCast AV 4 is 30 metres without walls or 10 metres
through walls. It should be noted that Bluetooth remote devices like the
PlayStation DualShock Controller or PlayStation 3 Remote Control do not
work with the device. However as these two items use Bluetooth
technology, the distance that these can operate at is quite impressive
and should work in conjunction with the Screen Cast AV 4.
Once this was all installed, I simply
turned on both devices, got the credit card sized remote and was ready
to rock 'n' roll. On the TV that had the receiver connected, I basically
had to select my language which was "English" and then had to setup the
names for the devices connected to my transmitter which include names
such as Blu-ray, Gaming Console or more generic names like source 1, 2,
3 and 4. This whole process took a few minutes to complete!
The first thing I
tested was my PlayStation 3. Amazingly enough, I could actually watch
movies on my PlayStation 3 wirelessly to my TV and even in another TV at
the other end of the house.
In our testing, we
noticed no loss of video or audio quality between our devices. Apart
from testing my PlayStation 3, I did test the unit on my XBox 360 and
this worked equally as good as I played a variety of games and surfed
the net with it. TiVO was flawless as was our standalone Blu-ray player
which streamed perfect video and audio.
For those users with 3D
enabled televisions, the Belkin ScreenCast AV4 supports this format and
once again there were no issues. I tested the product between two walls
which was bordering on 10 metres and there was an occasional pixel
glitch every now and then but considering how random this was, it was a
moot point. Watching Batman Returns in the next room as it streamed FULL
HD video and 5.1 audio sounded like a wired connection through our
surround sound speakers. Truly amazing. It should also be noted that
there is a slight pause switching between source devices which is around
The only thing that I would have liked to see on this device is that if
it had a switch or HDMI splitter on it. This would then allow me to
connect an additional TV into the device and by pressing a switch, I
could swap between that TV or stream it to another TV. However this is
not what the device has been designed for but one can dream. I also like
how Belkin have future proofed this device by including a USB port on
the back of the transmitter which should any updates be available,
allows you to update the Screen Cast AV 4 for new HDMI devices.
For a recommended retail
price of around $299AUD (March 2012), the Belkin ScreenCast AV4 is a
very affordable solution for those users who want to rid themselves of
their cabling mess without any loss of video or audio quality. At the
end of the day, I cannot fault this device and I would highly recommend
this to anyone who wants a very powerful wireless cabling solution.