I had never used an Android device before, but aside from some interface clunkiness, it wasn't too hard to navigate around on the device. While many people have touted the device's video playback, internet, and gaming abilities, I was far more interested in its potential as a power efficient music server.
At home I have a Bose Wave® radio II, but I don't always want to start a computer to use Soundlink—which inevitably requires a time consuming Bluetooth re-pair almost every time I use it. Nor do I always want to use with my iPod, which due to its capacity, has song file bit-rates that sound somewhat flat on the Bose. I've always wanted a reliable, but inexpensive music server with a wired connection to the Bose that had ample storage and a usable interface. Preferably with the capability to play FLAC or ALAC. Synchrotech had already tested the MK802 with USB Hard Drives, so there's no worries about large music collections.
While the specifications for the MK802 Android 4.0 Mini PC don't list FLAC as one of its audio CODECs, the specifications for the Android 4.0 do, so the first thing I wanted to try was FLAC playback. It turns out that FLAC files play just fine on the device. I also tested a variety of MP3 and AAC files with the MK802. Things were looking pretty good at that point.
If there was one issue I had with the native Android audio player was that it didn't display the album artwork for any of the files tested. I asked a friend who has had a variety of Android phones and tablets and he said that he wasn't sure why that was happening, and suggested I try other music players like Spotify and WinAmp for Android. The former has problems with the screen orientation for the MK802 and promptly displayed its interface upside down. No matter what we did, we couldn't get Spotify to display correctly. Hope that's something that will get fixed in the future. We couldn't get WinAmp for Android to run at all on the MK802 Android 4.0 Mini PC, even though we installed it via Google Play (née Android Marketplace). Any other suggestions for a robust music player better than the built in version are welcome. Displaying album cover art is pretty much a must considering it's a unit for TV display. A visualizer like the one in iTunes would be a nice bonus too. What did run well was Pandora, but unfortunately that doesn't give us the option to play our own files.
I'm looking forward to another loaner unit in the future to run more experiments.