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Review: Wired's Wired4DVD Decoder Card
By Mike
Review date: 2/2/2000

Installing the Card and Software
Intro | Installation | Player Controls | Card Features

The Wired4DVD PCI card installation is covered clearly in the supplied Adobe Acrobat (PDF) file on the drivers CD but I'll include a summary here to give potential buyers a feel for what's involved. Total installation time was just a few minutes.

Here's a summary of the steps involved:

  • Make sure your Mac is shut down and powered off.

  • If you don't have an anti-static wrist strap to use, at least touch the metal part of the chassis (sides of the power supply case for instance) to discharge any static buildup before touching the motherboard or PCI card. Avoid working on carpeted floors as they generate a lot of static electricity that can shorten the life or destroy electronic components.

  • Open the case to get access to the PCI slots.

  • Locate an available PCI slot and remove the slot cover for that slot. (Most Macs have a screw that secures the cover, but older Apple Macs have a plastic tab that is pressed aside to allow removing the slot cover)

  • Remove the Wired4DVD card from its protective bag (avoid touching the connector pins or exposed chip leads) and insert it into the PCI slot and secure it.

    Card Installed in G4 System

  • Connect the supplied cable to your Graphics card
    (using the supplied adapter if you have a Mac connectored video out port)
    and then to the 'VGA IN' (lowest) port on the Wired4DVD card.

    Photo From Wired4DVD Manual
    (Used with permission)

    Below is a photo of my G4 with the monitor and TV video and audio cables connected.

    Wired4DVD Card with Monitor and TV Out Cables Connected

  • Optional: If you want to use the TV out feature - connect the Video Out and Audio Out ports to your TV's Video In or audio amplifier. (Cables are suppled, however if you're using RCA style audio inputs you'll need a stereo mini-jack to dual (Right/Left channel) RCA connector cable. Radio Shack sells these for a nominal fee, but I had several here from past purchases of computer speakers.

  • Close the case and power up the Mac.

  • Software Install: I suggest you download the latest update to the Wired4DVD software at their FTP site. The CD included with my card was not the latest version (1.2.3 at the date of this review). The 1.2.3 update included a later version of the DVD player software.

    The Software installer will create a folder on your hard drive with a readme file, the DVD player application and an appx. 900K PDF file Users/Installation Guide.

    It also installs an extension in the System's Extensions Folder for card support. I did not have to disable any of the standard Apple DVD player extensions on the G4/AGP system used for this test.

The next page of this review covers the DVD Station (Player) controls.

Index of Wired4DVD Review

Intro | Installation | Player Controls | Card Features

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