Sony’s 4k Media Players Compared

Sony-4k-media-players

Last week, Sony announced pricing and availability of the FMP-X10 4k Ultra HD Media Player. The FMP-X10 effectively replaces the FMP-X1 that hit stores a year ago, and is currently available for pre-order with an estimated ship date of July 15, 2014. The older X1 model is currently on backorder from Sony, so getting either one of these players at this point in time isn’t as easy one would hope.

The Sony X1 and X10 play a major role in the evolution of 4k video, also known as “Ultra HD” or “UHD.” The media players are essentially DVRs that download digital movies to play on a 4k TV.  Without a digital service to download 4k movies from, how else would consumers get to enjoy 8.3 megapixel video? There is no standard 4k disc format, and online 4k content is limited.

Sony’s FMP-X10, unfortunately, does not solve all the problems with lack of content. For one, the player (like its predecessor) is only compatible with select Bravia 4k TVs. And, Sony’s Unlimited 4k digital movie service only stocks Sony-owned movies. (Let’s not forget there are other studios besides Sony/Disney.)

Nevertheless, the Sony players make the best attempt so far at giving consumers quality 4k content to watch. And, Sony and FIFA have partnered to produce some of the 2014 World Cup in 4k. Now there’s something to look forward to!

The most notable differences between the two players start with the shape — the new X10 is a square box rather than a cylinder. Hard drive capacity has also changed. The older X1 has 2TB while the newer X10 has half the amount with 1TB. However, each model can be expanded with an external drive connected via USB. Another big difference is the X10 has built-in Wi-Fi, the older X1 requires an Ethernet connection. And, the new X10 comes with a remote, while the X1 requires you have a compatible Sony TV remote.

Let’s take a closer look at how the two players compare.

Sony 4k Media Players Compared

FMP-X1  FMP-X10
Internal Hard drive 2TB 1TB
External HDD support Yes Yes
SD Card Slot 1 Front No
USB 2.0 1 Rear 2 (1 Front, 1 Rear)
USB 3.0 1 Front No
HDMI Video/Audio Output 1 Rear 1 Rear
HDMI Audio Output 1 Rear 1 Rear
LED Network, HDD, Power HDD, Power
Video Signal Output 2160p (3840×2160) 2160p (3840×2160)
USB Playback Yes No
Supported Media Formats X XAVC S, AVC (H.264), HEVC (H.265)
HDMI AV Separation Mode No Yes
Video Compression Resolution 3840 x 2160/30p, 3840 x 2160/24p Up to 3840 x 2160/60p
Wi-Fi (Built-in) No Yes  (802.11 a/b/g/n)
TRILUMINOS Color Enhancement Yes Yes
Remote Control No Yes (RMT-D304)
Size 9.8 x 2.1 x 9.8 in (250 x 54 x 250 mm) 9 13/16 x 2 x 9 13/16 in (250x50x250 mm)
Weight 4.84 lbs (2.2 kg) not available
Preloaded movies/videos 50 free videos/Elysium download 50 free videos
Movie Storage Capacity About 45 (Average 38GB per title) About 20 (Average 38GB per title)
Feature Push Download Contents X
Feature X Netflix
Feature X X10 Music & Media Player
Feature X Web Help Guide
Compatible Sony 4k TVs XBR-X850A, XBR-X900, XBR-X900A XBR-X850A, XBR-X900, XBR-X900A
Price $699 $699

*Please note this chart may be modified/expanded as we learn more about the FMP-X10.

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Jeff Chabot

Jeff Chabot

Jeff has a background in photography, video and television production. He writes about technology, broadcasting, home theater, and digital entertainment.

6 Replies to “Sony’s 4k Media Players Compared”

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  3. Jeff Chabot says:

    Ted the 4k TV must support the latest HDMI standard and HDCP 2.2 copyright protection. Luckily, your Sony 4k TV model is supported. Here is a list http://store.sony.com/sony-4k-ultra-hd-media-player-zid27-FMPX10/cat-27-catid-All-Internet-Players

    I would suggest the newer model, even though with smaller HD, because it comes with a remote and has built-in WiFi. Storage space can be expanded via USB to external drive.

    By the way, save a few bucks. Amazon has the X10 player for $489: http://amzn.to/1gtQUrs

  4. Ted says:

    I have a XBR70X850B Sony 4K new TV and I want (or basically need) a new Sony Media Player.
    They make and still sell at places the original released in 2013 FMP-X1
    Some people say it’ll only work on certain TV’s?

    New Model is the FMP – X10. The new X10 offers only 1 TB Hard Drive compared to 2TB!! They also removed the SD Card Slot and USB Ports but decided it’s an excellent value at ummm..$699. It offer’s only half of what the previous years model offered and I am wanting to know if my new 4K TV will work with the FMP X1 or the FMP X10 or both or neither. I see lists on the internet and nobody seems to know the answer. Please email me asap! I’ve invested several thousand in a new 70″ 4K TV plus a new 4K Upscaling Blu-ray Player, plus new A/V center to put it all on and it’s all Sony stuff and I cannot even get a simple answer one which model, x1 or x10 or neither or both will work on my new setup. I’m trying to buy more SONY products!

  5. JAS says:

    Video compression resolution is nothing new and perfectly normal. All formal audio/video compression standards include a specification for supported resolutions.

  6. John Fak says:

    “Video Compression Resolution”

    lol

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