EZCast minibox is a 4K@30fps, protocol agnostic, cast device. There is quite a lot more to it, so this mini-review will explore some of those hidden use cases.
Why do you need an EZCast MiniBox?
And that is the real question because as much as consumers can use a ‘casting’ device, they are far better off with Google TV (Android) or Apple TV (iOS). These devices are purpose-built to find and cast content from a smartphone or tablet to a TV.
Not to say that EXCast MiniBox can’t do that (well not all of it) because it is more of a device-agnostic cast. It supports EZCast, Miracast, screen mirror, EZAir and more casting protocols. It works with Android iPhone, Windows, Mac, Chrome OS, Cloud, DLNA, and Google Assistant and Alexa.
No, this is more of an education, business and prosumer device.
Connect to the MiniBox SSID with the onscreen password
That is it
Widows can screen mirror. The Surface has a 3:2, 2736×1824 resolution and we had to change that to 1920 x 1080 to mirror. This is a limitation of any cast device, and you won’t get the full screen unless you have a cast screen and monitor match.
Android (or iOS)
Download the app from Google Play or Apple Store
We had a little more trouble with Android setup until we realised that MiniBox could only wirelessly connect to one device at a time. Disconnect from Windows (MiniBox Wi-Fi SSID) and connect to the smartphone. And as you will see, it supports a lot more screencast protocols. It will stream in portrait or landscape to match a monitor orientation.
Scan a barcode on the TV screen.
Select mirroring. Android will not cast audio in this mode
Select mirroring and then EZMirror that does support audio. This is similar to Chrome mirror
Samsung SmartView or OPPO Screen Mirroring or Apple via EZAir.
It also supports Samsung DeX wirelessly
MiraPlug (Android app) – should be similar to Apple Lightning
You can plug a USB-A connector (to the USB-A port on treh MiniBox) and a USB-C connector to your phone and install MiraPlug app (works with most OTG devices) to mirror your screen. The MiniBox supplies 5V/.5A so it will slow charge a phone.
It also flashes up a warning about privacy that everything you cast will be visible to whatever casting protocol you use.
EZCast clarifies that as a Chinese company, it is subject to Chinese law. We have reviewed EZCast products before and find it a reputable, long-term company.
Overall, it is no more intrusive than Google or Facebook – at least it will limit any advertisements to its products. If you have sensitive information, it may be best to use Google TV or Apple TV devices.
Other EZCast services
We did not test these fully; some are for Asian markets.
EZChannel will search videos across media sites
Video/Photo/Music stream and playback from the casting device
DLNA – cast from a DLNA network storage device – works flawlessly
Cloud – cast from a cloud server – works flawlessly
Voice control – Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa (with access to all the content sources above)
Digital photo frame
It uses either Gigabit Ethernet (best) or 2.4 or 5Ghz Wi-Fi 2T/2R MIMO to connect to the router and the casting device. Maximum distance from the router is about 10 metres although it can lose frames after 6m if there is a lot of Wi-Fi congestion.
It may have issues casting DRM (digital rights management) copyright material. Miracast gets over that.
Maximum is 4K@30fps. While that is fine for 24/30p movies, high frame rate games get jaggies. And we found that movies could drop out if you did not have a strong signal.
Voice assistance setup is quite complex and comes via the EZChannel feature. Manual here.
The more you explore the EZCast MiniBox, the more goodies you find. I really like the portrait mode for smartphone mirroring.
We can’t recommend it as a simple consumer device. Why? While the setup it intuitive it is not as simple as it looks with several options. But once you master it, then it works as advertised.
And we get the feeling that anyone looking to buy a casting device will be savvy enough to know what they want – this seems to tick all boxes.
EZCast MiniBox – device agnostic audio and video casting (review)
Value for money
Ease of use
Once set up its flawless
Offers several cating options outside Chromecast
Love the portrait cast for smartphones
Need to understand casting and what you want to achieve