Mediagate MG-25

Conclusion & Final notes

The Mediagate MG-25 fulfils its promise to be a portable media player. The interface, with one or two exceptions, is professional and easy to use and brings digital media files firmly into the living room. The quality of video and audio is as good as a DVD player, and supports most MPEG4 codecs allowing you to store a library of movies and music in one compact unit.

The player would be ideal for conferences and holidays, or any situation in which you want to watch movies, but don’t want to use a computer, or a DVD player and a stack of DVDs. The price is about three times that of a standard external drive case, but is not excessive, and the ability to store and playback all your movies more than makes up for it.

To conclude, the Mediagate MG-25 is an excellent little device, and will definitely be receiving a lot of use in the future.

Points of note:

  1. The Mediagate MG-25 is produced by AL Tech of Korea, and is also available with different brandings (the H&B AV-512, for example). It has not been tested, but the firmware of other brands should be identical. Maybe someone can confirm?
  2. Depending on drive, the unit can occasionally make clicking noises. This is not a fault of the MG-25 itself, but just an inherent problem in using a hard drive.
  3. Directories marked as read-only do not appear in file browser
  4. Some bugs exist, notably incorrect filename ordering, and some timestamps being reported as 1970
  5. An RGB mode appears in the display configuration, but is not selectable. Viewing the literature for the H&B AV-512, they do state that RGB output is available.
  6. The H&B AV-512 also states that subtitles in SSA, SMI, and SUB format are acceptable. Maybe there is a difference in firmware, or maybe the tested subtitle files were invalid.
  7. The file browser does not wrap from bottom to top. This is a nuisance when it comes to navigating large directories.
  8. The device really needs more customisation options. For example, it would be wonderful to see the option to load background graphics from the disk, rather than the firmware.

Links

Extra notes after extended usage

I’ve used the MG-25 pretty extensively for the past few weeks and have noted a few more problems.

  • If you select ‘time search’ while fast forwarding, the ‘fast forwarding’ text remains overlaid on the video and cannot be removed.
  • Audio synchronisation problems were found in several files, although these tended to be very heavily compressed videos.
  • Major video problems were found in some episodes of The Simpsons. The video would slow and stutter and reach a point where you couldnt progress any further. It was sometimes possible to bypass this by stopping the video and restarting. No problems were found playing the files on a PC, and the encoding is identical to ones used in other files that work perfectly. Maybe the MG-25 just doesn’t like The Simpsons.

Updated Firmware

A link from an MG-25 forum has directed me towards the LMG-100, a re-branded MG-25 by LG. They have a newer firmware (1.3.3) that fixes many bugs, as well as adding several features. These include:

  • File time correctly displays on NTFS drive
  • MP4 audio playback
  • Custom background picture
  • Subtitles on MPEG files
  • MP3 playback while viewing photos
  • Screensaver

It’s nice to see that LG have picked up on the device as a big company may ensure future updates.

Version 1.4 firmware

The AL Tech website has firmware version 1.4.0. The changes for this version include:

  • Better playback & navigation with MPEG/VOB
  • Better file navigation (including the ability to jump from the top to bottom of the list!)
  • Improved subtitle support
  • Improved video output for 25 fps movies

Version 1.4.6 firmware

Proof that the MG-25 is still being updated – a new firmware (as of 10th April, 2006). Not a lot of changes here:

  • Memory function, recalling where you last played
  • JPEG fade effect
  • ‘Unknown bugs modified

I’m not sure what the last point means – they accidentally fixed some bugs but didn’t realize it?

Version 1.4.7 firmware

Although mislabelled in their index as 1.4.6 firmware for an MG25P (whatever that is), this is 1.4.7:

  • Repeat mode
  • ‘Unknown bugs cured’

You gotta love those unknown bugs!

Version 1.4.8 firmware

Updates are still going strong on the MG-25, even though it is several years old now. The latest addition promises these changes:

  • Fix MP3 play error
  • Forward/rewind in increments of 10s, 60s, and 10 minutes by pressing 1, 2, and 3
  • Control subtitle position
  • Option to remove slideshow background music
  • Can change display colour when choosing files
  • Start/stop noise removed (!)

Version 1.4.9 firmware

A bug fix release

  • Random play
  • Fixes non-working play button when enter is used to play a movie
  • Fix playing of two ISO movies
  • Display version number in setup menu

Version 1.5.0 firmware

  • Repeat function added for audio. (Use repeat key on remote control)
  • Changed color for currently playing MP3 file
  • MP4 File bug fixed

110 thoughts on “Mediagate MG-25”

  1. Hello!
    I have a problem, and would like to ask if anybody had something like that. I’m in NY and obviously have an NTSC TV set. By mistake, I clicked on a PAL Tab in MG-25 setup window, and now I can not see anything on the screen to change it back to NTSC.
    Any solutions? Is there any way I can reset the player?
    Thanks in advance!

  2. Has anyone had any luck playing High definition video??
    Ive tried .ts and .mkv files converting them but no luck yet 🙁

  3. Anybody know whether the MG25 supports large hard drives (say 250GB+)? I love my little MG25, but only have 8GB left on my 80GB drive.

  4. I have 2 questions:

    1] Can anyone point me to a link where I can download the latest firmware.
    2] Does anyone have the 4 digit device code for the remote so that it can programmed into a universal remote?

  5. Hi

    I fell asleep holding my remote , when I woke up it was on a screen to do with screen resolution (dpi’s) and I thought I would change it, I think I choose 720? 740…dunno, then turned of the media player and went back to sleep…when I tried to turn it on in the morning, I couldnt see the screen. player is working and I reformatting the HDD just in case, I thought that would reset it but no, took the drive apart reassembled it still same, blank screen../

    can I reset it without plugging it in the TV, like through my pc? n e suggestions would be awesome.

  6. Hi I have managed to change the video display on my unit and cannot see anything now on screen. I am looking at my control but cannot see the F1 key to cycle through the options to get the correct one. Can you tell me where the F1 key is on the remote control please?

    Cheers

    Andy

  7. heya everyone,

    noob question- got a mg-35 changed my setup by pressing the wrong button under the video tab. now i only see blue and i do not have my remote control. what do i do. how can i reset my setup or settings without the remote.

    thanks

    ice noob

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *