on May 6, 2015
I wanted to get a few frames for all my photos so I started a bit of research. I could hardly find any comparative reviews so I decided to buy the top two best sellers on Amazon.
Both of them have to be connected to a web account so explored their websites as well.
1) Read the Terms of Service!! Call me skeptical, but security of my photos is very important to me. the terms for nixplay were very clear. I own my photos, that’s it ! .
For pixstar there were a few red flags a) very ambiguous as to who owns the pictures b) French law and French courts ..whaaat??
2) The frame quality. Really depends on what you like.. pixstar is shiny and nixplay is matte.
3) Both frames were easy to connect to wifi and pair; nixplay did receive an update on the frame when I connected it to wifi, which is a good sign of a dedicated company
4) The web-service – none of them are close to what I would be happy with but pix-star’s is just too old, too out-dated and just not for me
5)Pix-star does come on top when you talk about the number of third party service it connects to but frankly speaking I only use dropbox, facebook and Instagram. So not that useful for me; may be very useful for someone else?
6) The display quality is where I was sold on nixplay. I don’t care about resolution, I don’t care about pixels but I do care about how my pictures look and they look far better on nixplay. Your pictures get reduced to a very bad size when you upload to pix-star; just try downloading it back and you will know.
There are a lot more little things that I can mention but nothing beats having a motion sensor on the frame; you might not realize it now but you definitely need it. Not saying pixstar's useless, but just not in the same league.
on March 7, 2012
Just got the frame and was really excited. Became very disappointed quickly when it would not stay online, frame kept freezing,remote control froze, etc. The only way to fix the freezing was to unplug and re boot.Did this about 10 times until I finally just gave up. The company website contains no phone numbers however the email address i sent my complaint to responded almost in real time and advised me that the only fix was for them to send me a new unit.
They are sending me a new one that should be here in 4-5 days along with a return lable/postage for the return. Hopefully, i can change my 1 star rating to 4 stars soon.
Will update as soon as issue is resolved
just got the frame from DHL, opened it up , plugged it in and poof..it just works!
I have to say a word about the customer service from Arnaud, this guy literally sent me dozens of emails keeping me informed with the progress and with instructions to hook up the new frame. Once I got it going, he helped me every step of the way . Its working great, pics look great ....perfect:)
This sort of service is why I can feel very honest about changing the review to 5 stars. The first frame might have been defective, but the customer service for the replacement more than made up for it.
this was WORLD CLASS SERVICE..BEST IN MY LIFETIME
thnaks again Arnaud, for going MILES above the call of duty.
When my 17-inch digital picture frame (Impecca 17-Inch Digital Photo Frame with 4GB Internal Memory Stores 16,000 Photos and Full Function Remote Control (DFM1700) - see my review) recently bit the dust after some 20 months of 24/7 problem-free service, I first considered and ordered a "NIX 18.5 inch Hi-Res Digital Photo Frame with Motion Sensor, 16GB USB Memory, Photo & Video - X18B" (see my review), available here on Amazon.com as a possible replacement. I just wanted a stand-alone frame for local use and was not interested in any WiFi/Internet capabilities for online album creation and picture sharing.
The newer WiFi-capable version of this frame also was a potential option (Nixplay 18.5 inch Wi-Fi Cloud Digital Photo Frame. iPhone & Android App, Email, Facebook, Dropbox, Instagram, Picasa - W18A).
I ordered a Nix despite the fact that I had an unfavorable experience with one of their frames ordered in December 2011 (NIX 15 Inch Hi-Resolution Digital Picture Frame, 1GB Internal Memory, Photo, Video, Music, Split Screen Option - Plug & Play X15A - see my review). The difficult and sporadic functioning of the wireless remote with the small blister buttons that uses a round watch battery as its power source was one of the main reasons that I soon returned this frame to Amazon.com for a refund.
Now about three years later, I really didn't expect to once again encounter problems with the remote control provided for a completely different photo frame by the same manufacturer - but I did. Just like the Nix frame 3 years ago, the remote functioned inconsistently. Not only did the desired button invariably have to be actuated several times for anything to happen, but it also was necessary to move the remote around to get it properly aligned with the sweet spot of the IR sensor on the right side of the frame for it to work at all. I really have no time for such things and promptly returned the frame for a refund; any included remote control really needs to function seamlessly, no excuses!
Afterwards, I stumbled upon this slightly smaller 15-inch Pix-Star frame with a 4:3 aspect ratio which properly displays pictures taken in portrait mode with a digital camera - unlike the 16:9 aspect ratio of the 18-inch Nix and NixPlay frames. This frame happily has a truly seamlessly functioning remote with real buttons that is powered by two easily available AAA batteries. It also comes with a two-year warranty which is extremely unusual for a digital photo frame and has proven itself to be a more than adequate replacement for my now no longer functioning Impecca frame.
Although I am - as previously mentioned - not currently interested in using the WiFi capabilities of this frame, I did briefly try out these functions after first easily connecting to my local WiFi network and then creating my personal online account on the Pix-Star website. Everything does work as advertised! And if nothing else the frame's WiFi connectivity will ensure that I always have the latest available software update installed to keep it functioning optimally with whatever improvements may be developed in the future.
This is a great frame even if you are not availing yourself of its Internet capabilities: It seamlessly plays the slide show consisting of 1588 photos on my SDHC card for 17 hours every day like a real trooper - never any glitches. To optimally display all of my photos, I did first resize them to match the frame's resolution of 1024 x 768 pixels with FastStone Photo Resizer software (freeware available on the Internet). If you do decide to upload your pictures to your free account on the Pix-Star website and display them via WiFi, it is my understanding that all of your photos will be automatically resized online and thus resizing software will not be needed. The display itself is crisp and sharp with excellent color reproduction and the fact that the frame can be set to automatically turn on and off at specified times of the day is an added convenience that I regularly use.
I especially like the following slide show options that are available on this frame:
1) A truly (not pseudo-) random display mode
2) Twelve different image transitions available; I have the frame set to automatically go through all of these in random order.
3) A large variety of available time intervals between pictures, from the very short to the extremely long and everywhere in between with no omissions/gaps. My personal favorite is 30 seconds.
4) Ability to display a single image (my personal favorite) at a time or a collage of 4 or 5 images
5) Smart fill function which stretches a picture - if necessary - to fill the screen only when its aspect ratio is close to 4:3 to avoid too much distortion
Additional non-image-related options are also available on this frame such as appointment reminders, games, weather forecasts, and the ability to play web radio stations from all over the world. I haven't used any of these features yet and it is unlikely that I ever will since - for me - a digital picture frame is all about displaying pictures properly, reliably and consistently. This is something that this Pix-Star frame does exceptionally well! Nevertheless, it's nice that these additional features are available for those who can put them to good use.
Overall, I really have nothing of any significance to criticize about this digital photo frame. The only recommendation that I would have for the manufacturer is to make an even bigger frame available in the near future, specifically a 17-inch or 19-inch model with a 4:3 aspect ratio. The currently available frames in this large-size photo frame market niche are truly horrendous (see my reviews). An even larger Pix-Star frame with the same top-notch, 5-star technology and reliability as is exhibited by the 10.4 and 15-inch models is something that I would purchase in an instant.
UPDATE ON 06/08/2015
When my otherwise perfectly functioning Pix-star Frame would no longer successfully updated its firmware automatically via the Web or even locally from an SD card, the manufacturer immediately sent me a brand new replacement frame with postage paid both ways. Now that's great customer service (Thanks, Arnaud!).
on January 11, 2014
This product might very well be the best on the market (I don't know). But it underdelivers with respect to the need and the possibilities.
-There does not appear to be an auto-delete feature, so grandma will be inundated with old photos if she doesn't figure out how to delete (i wouldn't say it's difficult to figure out how to delete, but if your mother is like mine you may be called repeatedly on the telephone to log into her account and delete the old ones yourself)
-The multiframe account feature is a great idea (allows you to email photos to multiple frames using one email address), but it is clunky to implement (need the passwords for all the frames) and then the option mysteriously disappears from the web site home page (i began to sign up, left to get passwords for siblings' frames, when I came back the option was advertised, but the link to sign up had disappeared).
-Clunky user interface. Multiple option menus are not straightforward. There is no touch screen, so you're entering data qwerty using toggle arrows (annoying but not a deal killer). In general the user interface has the feel of a product that was developed three years ago and not updated particularly.
In short, it's a great idea, but the product really underdelivers relative to the possibilities.
on December 4, 2011
I got this frame for myself, then bought a second one for my mum. When these frames are working they are amazing. I have both frames synced to Picasa accounts and it works perfectly. Sending pictures in emails directly to the frame is also very cool and works great.
The only issues I have had were :
* 2nd frame refused to go off on the timer. Instead of going off, the screen just dimmed. This had to be fixed with a hardware swap. The customer service was extremely responsive so I got a replacement pretty quickly.
* both frames have had intermittent wifi issues. The biggest of which was when the frame was moved from one house/wifi network to another. The very first time you connect to a wifi network, the connection is easy. If you then try to connect to another network things start to become difficult. I also have problems with the frame not seeing my wifi network. The only way I have been able to get around this is to change my SSID, then the frame sees the new SSID, then I change the SSID back (to what it was before), then the frame sees the network and connects fine.
I recently got a software update pushed to the frame so I am now running 2.051, instead of 1.858. This version seems to be more stable, but more time and testing will tell for sure. Now I have to work out how to update the 2nd frame, which is 7000 miles away, and is currently not able to connect to it's original wifi network.
on January 2, 2012
This photo frame lives up to its billing. We bought this photo frame for my Mom, who is very non-technical (does not "do the Internet thing"). We have a large family and I really wanted a way for my brothers and sisters to share photos with her. Initial setup was intuitive and easy, using the included remote control, and took less than 5 minutes. Unlike the Kodak WIFI photo frame, which I also own, NO software is installed on your computer - it's all online, and free. It took maybe another 5 minutes to navigate the website and register the frame. Within 15 minutes of opening the box I was sending photos from my phone (which is not a smartphone).
Here's how their website works: Each Photo Frame has its own unique serial number. You create an email address, type in the serial number, and after about 30 seconds or so you'll see the photo frame has displayed that email address at the bottom of the screen. Now just share that email address to family and friends and - voila! - they can use Gmail, Yahoo mail, smart phones, or dumb phones to email pictures instantly to the frame. So far (one week), the website and downloads have worked with no glitches. The website online FAQs and learning videos, however, are pretty poor.
You can also link to lots external photo-sharing services and Facebook photos, but that takes a bit more tech savvy and work. Oh: and if people get out of control, you can either whitelist or blacklist email senders. I can go online anytime and see all the pics on the frame, delete any or all pics, or directly download new ones. My Mom can do the same with her remote control. Just today I went online and saw my brother copied 5 pictures to the Frame via his USB stick.
Cosmetically, the Frame's not much to look at, with a rather unimpressive black plastic frame. The Kodak frame looks much nicer. But the brightness and contrast, color and viewing angle are all Good, in my opinion. It won't display video. You can also stream internet radio, display the current weather, the current date and time and do other silly things which come under the heading of "Look What I Can Do".
Confession: I am an IT professional, so maybe it was a bit easier for me. BUT: I know well-designed, user-friendly software, and it's part of my job to choose, purchase and deploy software that non-technical people will actually use. The PIX-Star people did a good job with this.
When searching for a birthday gift for my 77 year old mother I happened upon this digital photo frame. I liked it because of the 10" size and for the WiFi capabilities. When I read that the frame would be paired with a unique email address so that anyone with the address and authorization could send the frame photos I was sold on it as a gift idea.
The frame also has the ability to play music from a micro SD card, or via preset Internet radio stations of various genres. The ability of the frame to receive voice messages and videos was also a selling point, and justification enough for me to spend a bit more than anticipated on this item.
UNBOXING & SETUP:
The frame seems well made and has VESA mounting holes on the back of it, so that the frame could easily be mounted to a wall. It ships with an AC power adapter and a metal dowel (pictured to the back of the frame) which props it on a desktop. The frame is about the same size as a standard 8x12" frame, and not much thicker.
There is a remote in the box with two AAA batteries. Install the batteries before powering on the unit if you want to use it with the frame to set it up. There are also buttons on the back of the frame to navigate the menu if the remote is lost or out of batteries.
The on/off switch on the back of the frame is a little tough to see, but once you plug in the AC and flip that switch to 'on', the frame starts setting itself up by showing you an onscreen menu.
You will need your WiFi password to connect the frame to wireless internet; on which most of the functions of the frame will rely. After entering the password on my Mom's frame, the photos I'd sent to it began to immediately populate the screen.
NOTE: You can setup the email account for the frame ahead of time if giving it as a gift, and add or remove photos as desired both via a PC on the Pix-Star website, or on the photo frame itself.
WHAT I LIKE ABOUT THIS PRODUCT...
1. It's super easy to setup and works as promised.
2. The pictures look great on the screen - true colors and great resolutions (if the photos also had this).
3. The internet radio and music via micro SD card feature is really nice to have in addition to the ability to add external speakers.
4. The onscreen Menu interface is clear and easy to use.
5. You can email photos downloaded to the device to other people, with the frame, which makes a computer unnecessary for the frame user.
6. The remote is easy to use, with clear navigation.
7. Friends and family can sent photos, videos and audio messages to the frame with ease using the FREE Pix-Star Snap apps for iOS and Android and via email (also free).
8. No hidden charges or fees for the Pix-Star service!
9. Internal storage on the device is very good, and you can add more with a micro SD card (not included). With 300 pictures and a voice message, only 3% of the internal storage was being used.
10. Easy to see date and time feature.
11. Lots of Settings that allow for personalization of how you view photos; as singles or in various collage styles, and in varying speeds and with various transitions.
12. Weather info is useful and up-to-date with web based interface.
13. Social media can be connected to the frame so that pictures posted on sites like Facebook, can also automatically be sent to the frame.
14. Photos that the user doesn't want on the frame can easily be deleted in the Settings Menu.
15. High capacity internal storage means not having to worry about sending too many photos to the device, and if it does get 'too full' it's simple to go online to take photos off the frame without losing them. I think the max is something like 20,000 photos without any additional storage added, which for most users will be more than enough.
WHAT I WISH WAS BETTER...
- Build quality seems good, but not 'high-end'. Time will tell how it holds up with continued use.
- Backlighting on the remote would be a useful addition.
- The games are not really a useful addition as the remote control is the only way to navigate them without a touchscreen interface.
- The instructions that come with the frame are a little confusing, but I found that going to the Pix-Star website and clicking 'Support' and 'Knowledge Base' was helpful. This address: pixstar.uservoice.com/knowledgebase is a good place to check if you have questions as to the functionality of your frame.
- The option to untether from the AC power and go on battery power would be nice.
The ability to easily send photos via PC, smartphone or tablet to the Pix-Star digital frame is a wonderful feature, and the main one that interested me when I purchased it as a gift. It was simple to register the frame, pick a unique email address for it, and begin sending photos to the email which automatically showed up on the frame after it was connected to wireless internet. My sister and I now have a way to share photos of our kids with their grandmother almost instantaneously, as well as voice messages and videos.
There's a lot more to this frame than others of its size and price range, and the FREE Pix-Star service seems to work very well. The apps are FREE too, and worked well on both my Android smartphone and my iOS devices (iPad Air 2 and iPhone).
This product has lots of features (be sure to read the product description and go to the Pix-Star site to read more...) and is well worth the money if you have someone who is not tech-savvy, but still wants to enjoy staying connected to family and friends. It would also be a good choice for
My Mom loved hers and I recommend it to others for its ease of use, multiple functions, and clear, bright screen.
on October 13, 2012
I bought this photo frame for my wife. She loves it. The picture is very bright and does well, even in a room with lots of sunlight. I wish there was a way to avoid having a power cord, but I can't think of any way to get rid of it.
The interface/menu in this frame is extremely simple and easy. I love the remote. The frame has a timer feature that will turn on/off the frame at pre-set times (ie...off at night etc). It also allows you to setup an e-mail address, so you or others can e-mail pictures to the frame (the default method requires you to approve a picture before display, but this can be customized). You can also add pictures to the memory card. There are other features in this frame, but I listed the ones I use/enjoy the most.
My main advice is to get a good memory card. Don't get a cheap/slow card (this is extremely important). Slow mem cards make the pictures jittery and transitions very slow. If you use a slow card, it will make the frame pretty much useless. I tried using a mem card I already had around (which was a slower card) and I thought the frame was broken. It was absolutely horrible. Then I upgraded to a recommended/faster card and all the problems were fixed.
I would highly recommend this frame. It just works and is simple to use.
on March 29, 2015
Great features, but bad image quality. The demo picture comes up with brightly saturated warm colors, and the viewing angle is great. Then my photos (which looked great on a competitor's frame, on my phone, and on my PC) are washed-out and green-looking on the pix-star. The product is simple to get photos onto, but there's no point if they look bad. Returning this product.
on May 3, 2013
Overall this frame has more features and works better than my last frame. The last frame I had was a Toshiba but they stopped supporting online service and then it went bad after 3 years. Hopefully Pixstar will stick around. I really like this frame.
Supports most online photo sites.
Has plenty of built in memory.
Has ability to setup remotely via website.
Easy to set up if you know your home network.
Has ability to receive pix via email.
Built in timer is nice to turn on and off
Remote is flakey (I had to repeatedly repress buttons and it doesn't work well in a lit room).
For some reason "E7" shows up on my pictures (It is a small watermark in the upper right corner), see update below.
I'm a dope, the "E7" is printed on the screen protector which I should have removed!
Only 800x600 but it looks pretty decent even at this resolution.
Would I buy this again? Absolutely. This is a great frame and would be perfect for placing in another location with remote setup as long as it has internet. I know that some complained about the wifi. Mine is working well about 20' from my access point and it is also picking up wifi from my neighbors, I don't seem to have any problems with it. So far I am using it with Facebook, Picasa, Flickr, and Pixstar website without any issues. Picasa at first rejected it due to security concerns but I got an email from Google asking me if it was a valid request and when I responded it works fine.