NZXT DOKO Review
Published: 23rd February 2015 | Source: NZXT | Price: |
Setup and Streaming Performance
The setup of this device is very straight forward, first you need to download the latest version of the DOKO's PC software on the PC which you want to stream to the DOKO, this software can be found on NZXT's website here. Once installed on your PC you will be able to use that PC to communicate with any NZXT DOKO that is connected to the same network, provided the software is running at the time.
To setup the DOKO itself you will need to connect it to your TV via HDMI, and give it power and access to your network using the provided power and ethernet cables. Once it is connected it will then download it's latest firmware, after that you are ready to start.
Once both devices are running the screens of either device will be like the first two screenshots below, from here you can use the mouse and click on the PC/ DOKO that you would like to stream to/from. This can be done from either device.
After this is done both devices will be streaming to each other. Please note that all my initial testing was done with both my host PC and the DOKO connected to my network through ethernet cables, not through wireless or powerline.
Remote PC/ Video Streaming
One of the potential use cases for the NZXT Doko is as a remote PC or as a video Streamer, in this scenario the 30FPS limit of the DOKO is nigh unnoticeable and not lag was noticed when I did tasks like writing up articles for the site, sending/reading emails and general internet browsing. During my many hours of using this device for work very few visual artefacts were observed, it was almost like I was working directly from my PC.
Streaming video was very simple, all that you need to do is open you media on your PC like you would usually do and play it on your desired media player. This means that pretty much every form of media can be played on this device.
You can use the front USB ports on the DOKO to connect USB thumb drives or any other USB storage device to play media on your DOKO. Any device I hooked into the front USB ports acted like they were connected directly to the host PC, so any mouse, keyboard, controller, storage or other media device will work on the DOKO.
Game streaming with both the host PC and the DOKO connected through Gigabit ethernet and under this scenario all games played pretty well at 1080p 30FPS, maintaining the 30FPS framerate throughout testing. No controller or mouse lag was noticed while playing a large selection of games.
One bug I noticed when using the NZXT DOKO that I had experienced was that the framerate would no be maintained at 30 if my game was playing on my host PC at a resolution above 1080p, which being a user of a 1440p monitor meant that I had to manually change my in-game settings to a resolution of 1080p. After that all the games I played maintained a framerate of 30FPS.
Being a PC gamer I noticed the difference between 30FPS gaming on the DOKO to 60FPS gaming on my gaming PC, but after a short while I was no longer bothered by it. When allowing my housemates and other friends play games on the DOKO, none of them saw the 30FPS limit as an issue or even noticed it before I told them, which is surprising because a few of them are PC gamers.
All in all with the 30FPS limitation, you can call the experience on the DOKO very console like.
The DOKO also provided me the change to do some Multiplayer gaming on my pc, as we were easily able to connect multiple controllers and play competitive games like Skullgirls and Nidhogg. We also were able to play games my PC version of the Jackbox Party Pack, so I could play games like Fibbage XL, Drawful and YOU DON'T KNOW JACK in my living room, which is great as my bedroom, where my PC is located cannot accommodate the games max of 8 players.
During my testing I monitored the power consumption of the NZXT DOKO, which was found to consume a maximum of 7W. Obviously this did not include the energy required to power the host PC, but that will vary from user to user.
Usability when using Powerline adaptors
After using the DOKO on a wired connection, I decided to go against NZXT's recommendation and try to use the device on a powerline network. Here my host PC is still connected to me router via a wired connection and the DOKO will be using a powerline connection.
Sadly during this test the unit was able to cope well with video/media streaming, a scenario where latency does not matter much, but in gaming the unit was simply unusable, with noticable input lag and a lower delivered framerate. I would not recommend gaming on this unit through a powerline connection.