As one of the leading manufacturers of digital photo frames, Nixplay has a good selection of different products that should fit most people's needs. I tested the 10.1-inch widescreen Nixplay Seed, one of five different frames in the Seed lineup.
It's priced similarly to other frames of the same size, it has a beautiful display, and setup only takes a couple of minutes. Let's take a closer look to determine whether or not it's the right frame for you.
10.1-inch widescreen digital photo frame
Bottom line: The widescreen Nixplay Seed is a feature-rich frame with a classic look, and although the display offers beautiful color and contrast, the 16:10 aspect ratio might not be for everyone.
- Quick and simple to set up.
- Power cable doubles as a kickstand.
- Looks like a photo frame.
- Some will miss built-in ports.
- 16:10 aspect ratio not for everyone.
What you'll love about the 10-inch widescreen Nixplay Seed
The Nixplay Seed comes out of the box just about ready to go, requiring only that you plug in the braided power cable to the flexible "kickstand." It's a smart design that eliminates the need for large, clunky backs, and allows the stand to sit vertically or horizontally with just a twist of the cable. Once you choose a language and connect the frame to Wi-Fi using the included remote control ― remember, it's useless without an internet connection ― there's a quick firmware update before you're shown a serial number that links the frame to your Nixplay account (which you'll also need to create).
|Display size||10.1-inch IPS widescreen|
|Display resolution||1,280 x 800|
|Compatible formats||JPEG, JPG, PNG|
|Dimensions||9.4 in x 7.1 in x 0.9 in (238.7 mm x 180.3 mm x 22.8 mm)|
Once linked to an account, you can use a web browser or the Android or iOS apps to create playlists, share photos, and add albums to the Seed. Photos saved on your PC, your phone, or in services like Facebook, Instagram, Dropbox, Flickr, and Google Photos can all be quickly selected and dropped into the frame's internal storage, of which there is 4.9GB of usable space. Photos that aren't currently displayed on the frame can be kept in Nixplay's cloud, where you have 10GB of free storage.
The 10.1-inch display has a matte finish that does a great job cutting down glare, but the brightness can be cranked up to a point where external light shouldn't interfere with the onscreen picture. The 1,280 x 800 resolution looks crisp on something this size, and the IPS panel lets you clearly see images from just about any angle. The Seed's smart kickstand makes it easy to switch quickly between landscape and portrait, and the frame will quickly recognize how it's sitting and make display adjustments on the fly. If you feel like the frame isn't quite displaying true color, there are full RGB adjustment options built in.
There are plenty of other settings that can be tweaked using the included mini remote control, like brightness, clock, captions (which can be added to any photo), sleep schedule, and motion sensor. There are also a number of transition effects to choose from, and you can eliminate black bars with the "fit to screen" option that blurs the edge colors and extends them to fill the screen without distorting the original image.
What you'll hate about the 10-inch widescreen Nixplay Seed
Most digital photo frames come with USB and SD ports, but Nixplay has done away with any physical connectivity other than the power cable. It's all cloud-based, and though I really don't mind this approach, especially with Nixplay's simple app and browser UI, others might find it bothersome to take the extra step. Have photos saved on a hard drive? You have to connect it to your PC, pull the photos into the Nixplay browser UI, then set up an album and playlist. It's not a big deal for most, but others who are used to removing an SD card from a camera and popping it straight into a frame might wonder why they upgraded in the first place.
Other than that, the only thing to watch out for is the 16:10 aspect ratio. Since my photos are essentially all snapped on a DSLR or phone, none really fit the frame properly, though you can choose to eliminate black bars by making images fit with blurred color. If you're looking for something with a standard 4:3 aspect ratio, the 9.7-inch Nixplay Seed is likely a better option.
Nixplay Seed bottom line
The widescreen Nixplay Seed took me less than five minutes to set up, and from there the user experience is about as painless as possible, as long as you don't go in expecting to plug a thumb drive or SD card straight into the frame. When entering a room, you notice the picture before you notice the frame, something that can't be said for all similar products.
The IPS display gets bright enough to shine even on sunny days, and the matte finish and wide viewing angles let you see the picture from just about anywhere. As long as you don't mind a 16:10 aspect ratio, this is an excellent frame that comes with a one-year warranty and 30-day money-back guarantee.
Cale Hunt is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. He focuses mainly on laptop reviews, news, and accessory coverage. He is an avid PC gamer and multi-platform user, and spends most of his time either tinkering with or writing about tech.
So, what am I missing here? For less than $170, can't you get a tablet that can do all of this and more? Surely there is an app that will do all of this on tablet?
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