You want to get the most out of your TV. You want to be able to watch it whenever and wherever you go. Slingbox devices are designed to help you with that. In this post, we will discuss the comparison between Slingbox M2 vs 500. Which one is better for the money?
Continue reading to learn further about:
– The design and dimensions of each Slingbox device here
– The maximum video quality of each model
– The connectivity options available on each model
– The distinctive features of Slingbox M2 vs 500
– The mobile apps for Slingbox M2 and Slingbox 500
– Which Slingbox that gives the best value for the money
These two models look very different. Slingbox M2 follows the design and layout of its predecessor, Slingbox M1. In fact, most of the hardware is identical to that of the predecessor. It has a thick, bulky body with a black finish and a flat top surface. See also: Roku 4 vs Roku Ultra.
Unfortunately, the flat top surface is often a source of problems. It seduces people to put things on the top of it. However, this is not recommended at all. Putting things on the top of it may cause the unit to overheat. So, you should put the device in a safe place that allows good air circulation and avoid placing anything on it.
Nevertheless, Slingbox M2 is fairly compact with a rectangular body, so it is easy to fit into any room. The controls are on the front, whereas the connectors are all placed on the rear. The housing is solid and sturdy.
On the other hand, Slingbox 500 comes with a unique design. It looks like a piece of contemporary art. It has a twisted shape, which prevents you from putting anything on the top and causing the unit to overheat. The housing is made from matte black plastic, and there is a durable, scratch-resistant textured finish protecting the whole surface.
As usual, the controls are on the front and the connectors are on the rear. Compared to its sibling here, Slingbox 500 is quite larger. The body somehow doesn’t look as thick due to the skewed shape. But it has a wider footprint, so it requires more surface area.
There are a few notable differences between Slingbox M2 vs 500 in terms of video quality. While they both support a maximum video resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels (Full HD), the maximum frame rates differ.
The maximum input quality supported by Slingbox M2 is 1920 x 1080 pixels at 25fps or 30fps. This is generally sufficient for most TV channels. Most TV broadcasts are between 24fps – 30fps. In addition, Slingbox M2 also supports 1920 x 1080 interlaced at 50fps or 60fps. An interlaced signal essentially displays each frame twice, hence the twice higher frame rate. An interlaced signal can reduce flickers, but often at the cost of details. The maximum output quality is similar.
On the other hand, Slingbox 500 supports a maximum input quality of 1920 x 1080 pixels at 60 fps. So, this model can play most TV channels as well as YouTube videos. Most TV channels don’t go above 30fps, but if you want to stream at 60fps from the Internet, this is the way to go. However, note that the maximum output frame rate is only 30fps.
Most of the connectivity features of Slingbox M2 vs 500 are similar. They both support Ethernet and Wi-Fi, so you can connect them to your home network however you want. Both have composite video inputs, audio inputs, and component inputs.
However, Slingbox M2 doesn’t have an HDMI input. It also lacks a USB port. So, you can only use the traditional input options. This is not a big problem if your TV does not have an HDMI output.
Slingbox 500 comes with an HDMI input. You can use this port to stream from your TV. The HDMI connection also enables live sports stats as well as the gallery view. In addition, there is a USB port which allows you to connect an external hard drive directly to stream content. If you don’t have a device that performs that functionality yet, the USB port is certainly very handy.
Slingbox M2 does not support simultaneous inputs. Slingbox 500 support simultaneous inputs; the company also recommends simultaneous HDMI and component connections to get around encryption issues which may prevent some channels to be streamed through the HDMI port.
Both models come with IR remotes. So, you don’t need to fiddle with the on-board buttons all the time. The IR remotes are accurate and reliable. They seem to register the commands properly all the time.
Both models can also work with DVR devices. This is very convenient. With a DVR device, you can record your favorite movies and TV shows so that you can watch them later without commercials. The setup is pretty simple. You need to connect the HDMI and component outputs from the DVR to the inputs of your Slingbox. Then, connect the DVR to your TV with an HDMI cable. Your Slingbox can also help you view and manage the recordings.
One of the nicest things about Slingbox M2 is that its initial price already includes all of the mobile apps. With Slingbox M2, all of the iOS and Android apps are available for free. You can download and use any mobile app that you want, including the SlingPlayer mobile app which is needed for watching your TV through a mobile device.
On the other hand, Slingbox 500 comes with a built-in YouTube app and YouTube Web Gallery. It also has Blockbuster On Demand, which allows you to watch various on-demand movies. The SlingPlayer for desktop is available for free. But the SlingPlayer mobile app has an additional fee.
Slingbox M2 vs 500
In general, Slingbox 500 is more recommended. The primary reason is that it supports higher video quality. In addition, it also has better connectivity features. In addition to Wi-Fi and Ethernet, it also supports HDMI and USB. This model has a better design that prevents overheating.