Sony on Tuesday announced the forthcoming release of two new LocationFree Base Stations and the LocationFree TV Box. LocationFree is Sony’s line of video “placeshifting” hardware — it enables you to watch video content wherever you want, using wireless networking and a Mac, PC or Sony PlayStation Portable (PSP) gaming system.
Sony does not include software to make LocationFree hardware to work on the Macintosh, but has instead licensed IO Data to make a Mac software package instead.
The new LF-B10 and LF-B20 base stations feature a black-paneled slim design that Sony says integrate well into any home entertainment center. They feature A/V inputs that integrate the base stations with your TV, DVD player, DVR or camcorder. Connecting the base stations to a wireless network, you can watch video from those sources on your home network or over the Internet.
The new base stations support Advanced Video Codec (AVC), or H.264, a highly efficient video codec also supported by Apple in QuickTime 7. Sony claims that AVC support enables the new LocationFree base stations to support smoother video at “less than optimal” frame rates. They also feature simplified setup.
The LF-B20 model also works as a wireless bridge, to connect directly to an existing wireless home network.
The LocationFree TV Box is a device that connects directly to a TV and receives content from a remote LocationFree base station, so you don’t need to wire the TV to your home entertainment center, and can watch LocationFree content without having to rely on a computer or PSP.
All three products will hit retailers in October. The LF-B10 and LF-b20 will retail for $200 and $250 respectively; the LocationFree TV Box will cost about $230. IO Data’s Mac LocationFree software costs an additional $39.95.