Antec Veris Multimedia Station Premier Review

ajmatson - 2008-09-16 18:57:48 in Gadgets
Category: Gadgets
Reviewed by: ajmatson   
Reviewed on: November 12, 2008
Price: $89.99

Introduction:

These days so much is going on with our computers and you constantly have to switch windows when you need to find information or if you want to control options like the sound volume. Maybe you want to watch a DVD without having to get up and use the mouse to pause or rewind every single time. What could make your multimedia life so much easier? How about a multimedia display and controller. With one of these you could simplify these minimal tasks without having to put a lot of effort into them. One of these multimedia panels is the Antec Veris Premium which takes your life and makes it so much easier. The Veris Premium is a multimedia station that not just shows you the information you need but allows you to set it up to simplify your life.

 

Closer Look:

The Antec Veris Premier came packaged in a heavy duty box to keep the unit and the accessories safe. The front of the box has a picture of the Veris display while the back of the box tells a little bit about it in several different languages. The sides of the box show the specifications for the unit and the applications best suited for the Antec Veris Premier.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Opening the front flap of the Veris case lets you get down into the nitty gritty. On the top layer is the remote control for the unit. Underneath the remote is the Veris unit itself secured tightly to prevent any damage. Included with the Antec Veris Premier is the remote control, the driver/software CD, a manual, a power bridge to control the system and provide power to the Veris, mounting screws, batteries for the remote, and a USB header adapter for the unit.

 

 

 

Closer Look:

The Veris Premier from Antec gives you quick access and display information for your multimedia. The unit takes up the space of two 5.25 inch drive bays and is made of aluminum with a smooth black finish. The top of the Veris is the display which is a single color blueish display that outputs information such as a graphic equalizer or system information for quick access. The bottom half of the Veris Premier has the controls for the system which makes access easier without having to back out of a program to make changes like to the volume.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The back of the unit is where the control board sits. This is where you plug in the power adapter and the motherboard power lead to turn the system on and off. The multimedia buttons give you quick access to different multimedia tasks such as controlling the volume or a DVD video. You can also quick launch different applications using the application buttons for music, DVD, and more.

 

 

The Veris is run via USB interface however if you want to not use a USB port you can take the included adapter and attach it to one of the free USB headers on the motherboard. This keeps everything nice and clean without having to route the cable out of the rear of the case.

 

 

The remote control included with the Veris Premier is a full featured remote control which not only allows you to control media functions but other functions of the computer such as mouse control as well. This remote is also compatible with Windows Media Center and Media Player if you do not want to use the iMon software.

 

When the display is installed and setup there is information that is displayed according to how you have it set up. Here is a few shots of the display in action to give you an idea of how it looks. The first picture is the scrolling system information and the second picture is the graphic equalizer when music is playing.

 

 

Now that everything is out let's get it configured for use.

Configuration:

The Antec Veris software comes two fold. First is the controller software which runs the Veris Premier display unit and the remote control. This software is very easy to use and gets the job done without a lot of frills. The menu is a tree style system for navigating broken down in several categories. The first category is the setting section. The settings section allows you to select the remote control you are using with the unit as well as set the commands for when buttons are pushed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The next section is the Option tab. This section allows you to select the system devices to use such as for sound, set up the news and webcasting services to pull information from, update the software, and allow the iMON to be controlled by third party software. Just a note that 3rd party software is not supported and may disable the unit all together. There are no plugins that are available for the iMON software so using 3rd party software is at your own risk.

 

 

 

The last tab is the iMON Utilities tab. This section is where you control what the main startup program is when the program button on the remote is pressed, the settings for the Frontview program which displays system information and other important data you choose, and timers you can set for specific events. The Front view can be set to a specific task or in Automode which displays the current program running which is usually the system information.

 

 

 

If you right click on the volume icon there are several tools available for you to use. First is an Application Launcher which gives you quick access to multimedia software installed on the computer and second is a virtual keyboard which allows you to type when only using the remote control from a distance without having to connect a keyboard to the computer.

 

 

The iMON Media HD software is a player with built in codecs to play all types of media including BluRay high definition video. The software mimics the Windows Media Center software and is very easy to navigate and get started.

 

Features:

 

 

 

 

 

Testing:

There is not much to testing the Antec Veris Premier as it is a tool for you to use but none the less there are some areas it can be graded on. First and most important is the functionality of the device. Does it do what it is designed to do and second how easy is it to learn and use for both the tech minded and the average Joe who wants it to make things simpler for him. I wanted to expand on these two areas a bit for the testing section.

Testing Setup:

 

Functionality:

Overall this device performs very well and does make life easier. I noticed several times during gaming when I had to adjust the volume. Since my speakers do not have a volume control knob instead of having to put the game window down and adjust the sound in Windows I just turned down the volume knob on the Veris and I was all set. No more getting killed by being AFK for a few seconds. Also for watching movies and listening to music, which I do quite a bit on my computer, being able to push the quick button on the Veris or the remote and start up my program of choice for each one and start going. Since I have had the Veris I have been using it more for listening to my music then I have my home theater system. From a geek point of view the display does show system information but only what is pre-setup with the iMON software. You cannot change the way the system information is displayed or display your own custom information.

 

Ease of use:

The Antec Veris Premier is very easy to use and figure out once it is installed. Being tech savvy, the manual was not much of a help when installing the Veris so an average user might run into some trouble getting it installed and set up. Once it is up an running though the software takes over and away it goes. Very easy and simple to use. The remote control software is edgy though. There is a small circle on your desktop that shows when the remote control software is running. If this does not load on start up, which happened a few times, or is clicked off their remote is useless and the Veris might appear broken since it is non responsive. Putting the software in the task bar might have been a better choice.

 

On a scale of 0 to 100 percent here is how I broke down the Antec Veris Premier:

 

 

 

Conclusion:

The Antec Veris Premier is a very useful tool for anyone wanting more control over their computer's multimedia functionality. This controller opens a whole new world of uses for your system and makes it very easy to get the information. If you are putting together an HTPC then this device would be invaluable to you especially with the fully featured remote control that is included with the unit. Most devices I have seen their remote controls are their downfall but this is not the case with the Antec Veris Premier. Another nice thing is that I had no problem installing and running the Veris Premier in Windows Vista so it is as fully compatible as Antec claims it is. If you are wanting a nice display for your computer that is also very easy to use then I encourage you to take a look at the Antec Veris Premier. It will complement your system very nicely.

 

Pros:

 

Cons: