Surprisingly high-quality video at 720p; decent quality at 1080p.
Some compression artifacting; advanced 3D games don't work.
Last year, Warpia’s Wireless PC-to-TV AV adapter convinced us that ultra-wideband was a viable means of wirelessly transmitting video, so we were enthused to hear about the company’s StreamHD, which is capable of transmitting 1080p video from a PC to another display. We were even more enthused to find out that it actually works.
We found the StreamHD capable of transmitting video at distances of up to 22 feet with very little degradation or stuttering. The greater the distance, the more important line of sight is.
So how does it all work out? Pretty great. We tested the Stream HD across a variety of system and room configurations involving laptops, desktops, projectors, and big-screen TVs. We tested the device in the Maximum PC Lab, a home office, and a fairly typical living room setup. In all cases, we found that the StreamHD not only works, but it works surprisingly well.
When we streamed HD videos from Vimeo’s website in 720p to our Epson 1080p projector, we were surprised to find that the two versions were nearly indistinguishable from each other. There was a tiny bit more compression artifacting visible on the big screen, but you had to look carefully to find it. When we challenged the StreamHD by transmitting a Blu-ray rip of V for Vendetta from our laptop to a 46-inch LED display, we were pleasantly surprised. Yes, there was noticeable banding, particularly in dark scenes, but it wasn’t anything near as bad as we expected. In short, it was watchable.
With fantasies of playing Total War: Shogun 2 on the big screen with no cables, we tested the StreamHD with gaming. This took a bit of Windows wrangling; we had to set our projector as our primary display, and even then we experienced bad enough flickering that the game was pretty much unplayable. Whether it’s a driver issue, bandwidth issue, or simply some weirdness of trying to shunt the Direct3D stream to another device, we don’t know. But we do know it doesn’t work.
So you can’t have it all, but we still consider the StreamHD an invaluable and convenient asset for tethering a PC to a big screen—or any size screen, for that matter.