First Run

When powered on for the first time, the NSZ-GT1 requires a relatively straightforward setup process including a step to pair the remote with the device (which, had I known, would have saved significant time and unnecessary battery swapping when I tried to power it on using the remote), overscan configuration, selecting a standby mode, network configuration, providing/creating a Google account, STB and cable/satellite service selection as well as TV and [optionally] AVR setup. All told, the process took about 15-20 minutes to complete only complicated by locating the IR sensor on the STB.

Detailed Settings

I found the NSZ-GT1’s settings placement in the various submenus to be somewhat unintuitive, so it is fortunate that many users will find the default values acceptable with only one exception—and even that is only essential to enable network based features found in Profile 2.0 Blu-ray discs. That said, there are several options worth detailed discussion.

During the initial setup process, I configured the NSZ-GT1 with a wired Ethernet connection, but given the device's file playback limitations (discussed in more detail later) there is no need for more bandwidth than WiFi can provide so it is a perfectly viable option. The device contains a dual-band (2.4/5 GHz) radio with support for 802.11 a/b/g/n as well as WPS. So, connecting to the access point was very easy; even preferring the 5GHz SSID on the dual-band D-Link DIR-825 used in testing.

By default, the NSZ-GT1 decodes HD audio (Dolby TrueHD/DTS-MA) to PCM during playback. The main benefit of this feature on most players is that commentary audio tracks can be mixed with the primary audio during the movie. Navigation sounds on the menus are also enabled. Generally, I prefer to let the AVR decode audio. Disabling the HD audio decode feature enables HD audio bit streaming initially. However, it does not consistently restart the stream after using a transport control (pause, fast forward, etc.) on DTS-MA titles; only one of the five discs tested functioned properly with audio available afterwards. While it was possible to restart audio playback by cycling through audio tracks, that workaround is less than ideal. Until Sony fixes this issue, it is better to leave this setting alone (HD audio decoded to LPCM).

As noted earlier in the remote discussion, if your display and AVR support CEC the experience is much better with it enabled. Most vendors prefer to brand CEC, and Sony is no exception in this case opting for “Control for HDMI” (Panasonic calls it “Viera Link” where Denon goes with “HDMI Control”).

Most HDTVs will work perfectly with the “Auto” default setting for colorspace, which outputs 8-bit YCbCr 4:4:4 to the TC-P58VT25. It is great that this level of color control is presented to the user should there be any issues with what is automatically set (I assume it is based on EDID), but for those with downstream hardware that prefer YCbCr 4:2:2 (i.e. some dedicated external video processors) an additional option would be optimal.

One of the frustrating (and limiting) aspects of the device is how focused it is on enabling a single GTV user. We will discuss this in more detail later, but nowhere is it more obvious then when trying to add an additional Twitter account.

Unboxing Impressions User Interface and Apps
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  • Aloonatic - Wednesday, December 1, 2010 - link

    OH, i keep forgetting (as i'm in the UK) that these US prices often don't include taxes, as well as how much PS3s are these days :)

    You gotta really want to use Google TV to bother with one of these things/

    Are those sorts of services used much in the US? Can't see these things catching on in the UK without being freeview/digital TV PVRs as well, such is the importance of the BBC, and cost of broadband with the traffic limits that have crept in over the last few years.
  • xype - Tuesday, November 30, 2010 - link

    Welps, looks like another Google product with Serious Potential™.

    What happened to the tech reviewer that they are always talking about "future updates" with some products/companies. The piece is in stores _now_ and it's making its first impression on the consumers _now_. And God forbid those are people who have a mobile phone running Android 1.x still, because the "future update" never materialized.

    Google doesn't just _not_ get certain aspect of a non-geek's life, they also don't understand that they're only going to get a certain amount of shots at the consumers before they earn a "Always Alpha, not worth the money" badge.
  • xype - Tuesday, November 30, 2010 - link

    Spellink mistake, should be " the tech reviewers that..", as I'm not singling out Andrew here. :P
  • strikeback03 - Tuesday, November 30, 2010 - link

    So if this goes like Android phones have, in a few years it will really be something to see. That said, early adopters will either have to do things on their own (like rooting old phones) or accept that as early adopters they don't always get a finished product. As always, people should see enough to buy a product based on what it is now and what they know they can do with it, not future hopes.

    That said, as-is does this do ANYTHING as well or better than other CE devices? at least until its rooted it seems like it might be a tough sell even to tech-geeks.
  • babgvant - Tuesday, November 30, 2010 - link

    LOL :)

    Sony has a good history of updating their BD players, so I'm not too worried that the player will be stuck in the current state forever. For e.g. the BDP-S570 (the better player referenced in the last section) shipped without 3D and Netflix; both were added via firmware updates.
  • babgvant - Thursday, December 16, 2010 - link

    There should be an update to both the NSZ-GT1 and Revue coming very soon. Should bring a better Netflix app and DD pass through along with many other updated for the Sony.
  • marvdmartian - Tuesday, November 30, 2010 - link

    Limited file recognition/playability, a remote that looks like a netbook (without the screen), and the typically atrocious Sony price? Really??

    Personally, I can think of a half dozen other players/systems that I'd rather hook up to my home entertainment system, that won't cost any more, but have much greater capacity/ability.
  • cyberpdx - Friday, January 14, 2011 - link

    I just returned a Jan'2011 purchased Sony NSZ-GT1 to my local Best Buy store. I had uit for about 10days. Here are some comments and reasons for the return......:

    - Nice design of box
    - Easy set up

    - Remote does not control the channel up/down on my Sony Bravia TV (huh?)
    - Remote mouse does not work very well....very slow to move cursor at times.
    - On screen display is very confusing to navigate.
    - Netflix was a key reason for me to buy this, but I could only get in about 50% of the time.
    - USB ports on back of box are not general purpose (is this for "Sony only products"?)
    - Frankly, not very good content. No ABC, CBS, NBC online.
    - No PDF reader on Google TV s/w

    There are many more to list. I thought about keeping the unit until the next s/w upgrade comes out because I expect Sony/Google will fix some of these things, but I did not want to risk it. Besides, there are surely better & cheaper units coming out from different manufacturers within the next 6months and I am content to wait. Until then, I am still packing my note pc from my home office to my Bravia in the living room and watching Netflix and web surfing the easy way.

    Good try Sony, but you fell flat on your face (from a dedicated Sony fan, by the way).

    GRADE: C-
  • CraigHerberg - Sunday, January 16, 2011 - link

    My major beef regards dropped frames. Specifically, when watching sporting events in high def, the screen frequently looks jittery, as if it is dropping frames. Also, when playing back home movies in 1080p, the screen frequently pauses, thereby making the movie virtually unwatchable.
    This box has no problem with with 720p home movies. Blu ray discs present no problem.

    Craig Herberg
  • tletourneau - Wednesday, June 13, 2012 - link

    Perhaps an updated review my be in order seeing that HonyComb has been released for these devices and has made some mojor changes.

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