Review: Kanex XD a must-have for iMac/Blu-ray fans
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Review: Kanex XD a must-have for iMac/Blu-ray fans



I'm a major fan of Blu-ray discs, and one of my favorite possessions is my 27-inch iMac. Apparently if it's up to Steve Jobs, never the twain shall meet. Which is why the Kanex XD from Kanex (http://www.kanexlive.com) joins EyeTV's hardware and the Sanyo VPC-HD2000A Dual Camera as two can't-do-without peripherals for my super-sized iMac.

The US$150 Kanex XD will go on sale Monday, May 17 (I received an advance unit). It allows you to bring HDMI content into the 27-inch iMac and use it as an external LED display. You can use it as a display for a PS3, Xbox 360 and (my favorite use) Blu-Ray player.

What of the Wii? It doesn't have HDMI output, only a RCA cable connector. In order to use the Nintendo gaming system with the XD, an RCA to HDMI converter is needed. You can find out how to make this work by going to http://kanexlive.com/blog/2010/04/did-you-know-you-can.html .

The Kanex XD is designed exclusively for the 27-inch iMac. Once everything is set up (and we'll get to that in a moment), you can toggle between Mac OS X and XD playback by using the hot key: Command+F2. What's more, you can toggle volume and brightness controls through your wireless Bluetooth keyboard. The Kanex XD supports two-channel audio pass-through.

Set-up is simple IF you do in in the proper steps. Connect the three-foot MiniDisplay Port cable (which is included with the Kanex XD) to your iMac and have the included three-foot HDMI cable connected your Blu-ray player, PlayStation or XBox. However, neither the the MiniDisplay Port cable nor the other end of the HDMI cable should be connected to the Kanex XD yet.


Now power up your Blu-ray player/XBox/PS3 and connect it via HDMI to the Kanex device. Next connect the MiniDisplay Port cable leading from your iMac to the other end of the XD. It may take a few seconds for the iMac display to read the signal. The LED light on the MiniDisplay Port side of the XD should light up after a correct connection.


However -- and this is very important -- you'll have to make sure the video input source is set to 720p. You'll need to do this by connecting the PS3, XBox or Blu-ray player to a TV or another monitor to set the resolution to work with the iMac.

That's because the iMac only accepts two input resolutions: 2560 x 1440 and 1280 x 720. The first resolution isn't supported by a PS3 or XBox because the highest resolution output supported on those is 1920 x 1080, or 1080p. But since the iMac doesn't recognize 1080p input resolution, the sources must be set to 720p for proper video pass through and for the iMac to recognize.

For the PS3 and XBox 360, it's not big a deal since these devices almost never output above that resolution. However, it severely limits the 1080p capabilities of Blu-ray player. Oh well, this isn't Kanex's fault, and perhaps future iMacs will change this.

Overall, if you want to connect your video game console to your iMac, the Kanex XD is the way to do it. And if, like me, you have a growing Blu-ray connection and want to be able to occasionally watch 'em on your Mac, this is a great option until Apple gets its Blu-ray act together.

Macsimum rating: 9 out of 10

-- Dennis Sellers

 
AAPL
$101.32
Apple Inc.
+0.74
GOOG
$582.56
Google Inc.
-0.81
MSFT
$45.15
Microsoft Corpora
-0.07
MacNews Search:
Community Search:

Latest Forum Discussions

See All
view counter

view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter

Trolls vs Vikings Update Adds Over One H...
Trolls vs Vikings Update Adds Over One Hundred Levels, Reduces Item Cost, and More Posted by Ellis Spice on August 22nd, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
SNK Celebrates the 20th Anniversary of T...
SNK Celebrates the 20th Anniversary of The King of Fighters With a Big Sale Posted by Ellis Spice on August 22nd, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
It Came From Canada: Star Wars: Commande...
With a brand new Star Wars trilogy on the horizon, prepare yourselves for Disney and George Lucas’s space fantasy throwback to be more omnipresent than ever before. So it should come as no surprise that new adventures in that galaxy far, far away are coming to mobile as well. The latest example? Star Wars: Commander. We check to see how strong the... | Read more »
Swing Copters Review
Swing Copters Review By Jordan Minor on August 22nd, 2014 Our Rating: :: DIE TRYINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad The creator of Flappy Bird is back with a vengeance.   | Read more »
Beam Me an Update Scotty – Star Trek Tre...
Beam Me an Update Scotty – Star Trek Trexels Receives its Biggest Update Yet Posted by Jessica Fisher on August 22nd, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
The Outcast Review
The Outcast Review By Nadia Oxford on August 22nd, 2014 Our Rating: :: HANDS OFF. WAY OFF.Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad It’s easy to see what The Outcast is trying for, but its execution needs a lot of work.   | Read more »
HeroCraft Unveils New iOS Game, Marble D...
HeroCraft Unveils New iOS Game, Marble Duel Posted by Jessica Fisher on August 22nd, 2014 [ permalink ] HeroCraft is developing a new chain popper game called Marble Duel, wh | Read more »
Brain+ Review
Brain+ Review By Nadia Oxford on August 22nd, 2014 Our Rating: :: DIM BULBUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Brain+ is just another entry in an over-saturated brain-training marketplace – and not a particularly fun entry, either.   | Read more »
The Witcher Battle Arena – New Gameplay...
The Witcher Battle Arena – New Gameplay Trailer Revealed Posted by Jessica Fisher on August 22nd, 2014 [ permalink ] Based in the Witcher universe, | Read more »
Max Gentlemen Review
Max Gentlemen Review By Jennifer Allen on August 22nd, 2014 Our Rating: :: OUTSTAYING ITS WELCOMEiPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad Max Gentlemen seems pretty quirky initially but that appeal wears thin soon enough.   | Read more »
All contents are Copyright 1984-2010 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.