Android - Latest VidOn Box Impressions

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hdmkv Offline
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Post: #1
*** Update 4/9/2015: I'm selling my VidOn boxes, and will only be updating this post with any relevant news from VidOn and owners. I'm now relying instead on HiMedia Q5 4K and Raspberry Pi 2 for my frame-packed 3D & HD audio needs. ***

Update 4/1/2015: VidOn has released a v1.0.0.0 Gotham build for forum members only. With SDK 1.2, which renders XBMC UI at 720p, video playback doesn't stutter as with VidOn XBMC v0.0.0.4 and later. With SDK 1.3 and any version of VidOn's XBMC, it's a different story. So, for best results, use SDK 1.2 and VidOn XBMC v1.0.0.0.

Update 3/14/2015: A relatively new player is now available from HiMedia that offers an alternative to VidOn. Read here. It's more expensive, and has no official support forum, but is a little better overall IMHO.

Snapshot of the VidOn Box (latest state)...
- Official website
- Official forum

Plusses:
  • Cheap (for what you get) at $69.99 shipped, with 1-year membership included (required for HD audio)
  • Clean user interface (UI), with over-the-air (OTA) updates
  • Custom VidOn XBMC (Kodi) based on Gotham that supports frame-packed 3D BD-ISO playback and HD audio bitstreaming (TrueHD, DTS-MA, 5.1 and 7.1); Dolby Atmos supported
  • 1080p/24 and 60 supported
  • Forced subs (for titles like 'Avatar') work
  • Stutter-free playback of high bitrate videos (including 3D ISO's) over wired network or local storage now possible via VidOn's Gotham v0.0.0.4+ XBMC builds (but only with SDK 1.2, not 1.3)
  • Some Android apps run well (read thread)
  • Improved remote (vs. one included at launch)

Minusses (Points in red are items VidOn really needs to fix):
  • No automatic framerate switching, and no 23.976 and 59.940 support yet
  • No ability to switch between left/right-eye first 3D modes. Several 3D titles like 'Rio', 'Drive Angry' and 'Edge of Tomorrow' that have right-eye first will look out-of-whack, unless your display has the ability to switch 3D modes
  • On several A/V receivers (and some displays) 3D ISO's play back as 2D and/or HD audio doesn't work, likely due to HDMI handshaking issues (AVR compatibility list here)
  • VC-1 at 1080p/23.976 plays fine, but 1080i/29.970 is a pixellated mess
  • MPEG2 1080i is stuttery or has lip sync issues; 720p is fine
  • Box could be faster; XBMC lags with large libraries (1000+ movies or TV shows), but VidOn has improved performance a little since launch
  • XBMC set at 720p (and can't be changed to 1080p); thankfully content does play at 1080p. SDK 1.3 gives 1080p XBMC UI, but video playback get worse
  • Membership requirement to get HD audio (although 3D is included without). First year free, and while $15/year thereafter is reasonable, VidOn should offer lifetime option for early adopters (or all) at a reasonable price
  • Box isn't suitable for gaming. Light games work (provided you have an Android game controller or air mouse for some), but heavy games (like Riptide GP2) don't work

I've deleted my initial review/impressions posted here on 10/21/2014 as most of it is now outdated. In fact, if you want to jump ahead in this thread, you can start from p.43. The pages until then are useful to provide history of improvements and issues that remain unresolved. There's also some discussion about VidOn violating GPL, but IMO, not strictly related to the performance of the box.

[H]i-[d]eft [M]edia [K]een [V]ideosaurus
Kodi 3D MVC Hardware Options
My HT Set-up | Intel D34010WYK NUC and HiMedia Q10 Pro
Kodi A/V Samples wiki
(This post was last modified: 2015-04-09 20:48 by hdmkv.)
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christoofar Offline
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Post: #2
Nice writeup. Any issues with out of synch audio? I am seeing this quite regularly on mine , especially on .mp4 files. Have had to adjust almost each one.
The worst part is really the remote - it's range is like maybe 6 feet, narrow beam. Hopefully VidOn team will continue to address things, including getting PlayStore working.
They should just lose their Media Center let Kodi do all the heavy lifting.

AFTV2+SPMC+Quartz+OSMC Remote
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Wolly Offline
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Post: #3
Thanks for your review, hdmkv.

We are producing the new designed remote which you can see the pictures on our forum. You will get it for free.

VidOn Box supports 3D Blu-ray iso playback, but you must play it in playlist mode. You cann't get 3D effect in Menu Mode.

And in the latest update, we have improved the user experience, you can update the software to get better experience.
(This post was last modified: 2014-10-22 05:32 by Wolly.)
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Wolly Offline
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Post: #4
We will update to Gotham very soon.
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Willem55 Offline
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Post: #5
(2014-10-22 04:00)christoofar Wrote:  Nice writeup. Any issues with out of synch audio? I am seeing this quite regularly on mine , especially on .mp4 files. Have had to adjust almost each one.
The worst part is really the remote - it's range is like maybe 6 feet, narrow beam. Hopefully VidOn team will continue to address things, including getting PlayStore working.
They should just lose their Media Center let Kodi do all the heavy lifting.

is your audio going through HDMI or SPdiff?

(2014-10-22 07:38)VidOn.me-Wolly Wrote:  We will update to Gotham very soon.

What happens if you would load kodi nightly builds?
(This post was last modified: 2014-10-22 07:57 by Willem55.)
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Skank Offline
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Post: #6
No 7.1 passthrough? Really?
So you cant play 3d iso when using xbmc on it?
What about dolby atmos in fututre? Support will come?
What about 4k movies?
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Willem55 Offline
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Post: #7
To bad the webpage gives false information.... http://www.vidon.me/vidon_box_software.htm#vidonxbmc
Then this box is cheap because it comes with a membership that supplies the more interesting features http://www.vidon.me/vidon_membership.htm
It comes with a free 12 months subscription but I couldn't find what the next 12 months will cost.
Website is a bit untrustworthy claiming "the best xbmc playback" and then shipping with Frodo..
(This post was last modified: 2014-10-22 09:10 by Willem55.)
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hdmkv Offline
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Post: #8
Quote:Any issues with out of synch audio?
Yes, but slight, and not always. Like with the sometimes slightly jerky video playback. Also, if you skip ahead a chapter, these issues disappear. Wolly, can your devs look into this? I have my box set at 1080p/24 instead of 60; could this have an effect? Would be nice to have auto framerate switching (23.976, 24, 25, 50, 60), but no idea how hard it is to implement.

Quote:...getting PlayStore working
Not a dealbreaker (at least for me as I usually sideload apps), but you're right. If VidOn can't get Pay Store to work, then remove icon as it'll confuse, upset users.

Quote:We are producing the new designed remote which you can see the pictures on our forum. You will get it for free.
Great, thanks. It does look nicer.

Quote:VidOn Box supports 3D Blu-ray iso playback, but you must play it in playlist mode. You cann't get 3D effect in Menu Mode.
Can you explain this better? My rips are just the main movie ISO's (no original menus, extras), so there is only a single playlist.

Quote:And in the latest update, we have improved the user experience, you can update the software to get better experience.
I did my testing last night (just before my first post above). There's already a newer firmware/software?

Quote:is your audio going through HDMI or SPdiff?
HDMI.

Quote:What happens if you would load kodi nightly builds?
What would be the benefit as far as this box is concerned, as VidOn's box has their own fork of XBMC? Guess I could install and test playback quality vs. VidOn's, which uses their own player.

Quote:No 7.1 passthrough? Really?
No, I'm not sure. If you read my first post, I'm guessing 7.1 is being passed as 5.1, but I need suggestions on how I can verify. My Denon 1913 AVR simply shows DTSHD-MSTR.

Quote:So you cant play 3d iso when using xbmc on it?
Right now, not with XBMC or VidOn's own player (both of use VidOn's player). Wolly wrote above I must select playlist, but as my rips only have one, I asked how. Stay tuned.

Quote:What about 4k movies?
No.

Quote:To bad the webpage gives false information.
Wouldn't say that just yet. This is the best of these Chinese Android boxes I've tried so far. If I can get 3D working, verify 7.1 passthrough is as 7.1, and the minor audio synch/video jitter issues are addressed, I'd say we have a winner here.

Quote:Then this box is cheap because it comes with a membership that supplies the more interesting features
Not necessarily. Personally, I don't care about BD menus, mobile, cloud and those premium features listed. All the features listed for the non-subscriber on list you linked, good enough for me.

Quote:Website is a bit untrustworthy claiming "the best xbmc playback" and then shipping with Frodo.
I don't think so. Nothing wrong with Frodo; I was only asking why Gotham wasn't installed instead... and Wolly already posted they'll update to it soon.

[H]i-[d]eft [M]edia [K]een [V]ideosaurus
Kodi 3D MVC Hardware Options
My HT Set-up | Intel D34010WYK NUC and HiMedia Q10 Pro
Kodi A/V Samples wiki
(This post was last modified: 2014-10-22 13:39 by hdmkv.)
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Skank Offline
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Post: #9
Agree
Following thread, i'm interested now.
Indeed if it plays 3d iso and xbmc gui, and if 7.1 passthrough works, we have a winner'
Who is vidon anyway?
Will there be a new version soon which adds 4k?
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hdmkv Offline
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Post: #10
Some pics...

[Image: r0Gzqw1.jpg]

Don't want to embed rest, so links:
- Image 2
- Image 3
- Image 4
- Image 5
- Image 6
- Image 7
- Image 8
- Image 9
- Image 10
- Image 11
- Image 12

[H]i-[d]eft [M]edia [K]een [V]ideosaurus
Kodi 3D MVC Hardware Options
My HT Set-up | Intel D34010WYK NUC and HiMedia Q10 Pro
Kodi A/V Samples wiki
(This post was last modified: 2014-10-22 15:06 by hdmkv.)
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jjd-uk Offline
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Post: #11
They 7.1 issue, did you try both TrueHD 7.1 and DTS-HD 7.1? as XBMC has a limitation that when decoding DTS-HD to PCM we can only decode the Core 5.1, as the decoder is also used to provide GUI information this means 5.1 is reported instead of 7.1 Note - when bitstreaming for decode on AVR the full 7.1 is sent, so in this case it's a GUI reporting issue only.

Are you sure your AVR does not have an Info button for reporting what it is receiving?
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mlknez Offline
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Post: #12
As this is sold as a media player and not a movie player. What is the music playing like? Can it do multi-channel .flac files in 192khz/24bit? Can it play DSD files such as .dsf and .dff? Can it play DVD-Audio MLP files? Is it able to play music from .iso files? Can it play using .cue files? Can I choose the next music file to play while I am currently playing one? Does it work with music playlist files? What does it display while playing music files? Does it play gapless?

What about photo files? How does it display directories of photos? Does it pre-fetch the next photo in a directory to make things quicker? What formats does it work with?
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movie78 Offline
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Post: #13
Did you try this setting in XBMC for Bluray 3D playback?

[Image: 7b3b6f68cd21ffb39ac3f19f2679445b.jpeg]

MY CURRENT MEDIA PLAYER
Intel D34010WYK NUC 2D/3D WINDOWS
HIMEDIA Q10 PRO TESTING ANDROID
SAMSUNG 55 JS9000 4K HDR
BENQ W1070 PROJECTOR YAMAHA RX-A3050 DTS X/ATMOS 7.2.4
MY HOME THEATER


(This post was last modified: 2014-10-22 15:15 by movie78.)
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hdmkv Offline
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Post: #14
jjd-uk, yes, tried both THD & DTS-MA 7.1. I'll do some more testing later today via VidOn media center and their XBMC app. Re: my Denon 1913 AVR, 'Info' button isn't showing 5.1 or 7.1; will play around to see if I can get better audio details.

mlknez, I only have 2 channel FLAC files, but I can test photos for you.

movie78, no, I'll try that setting in pic you posted.

[H]i-[d]eft [M]edia [K]een [V]ideosaurus
Kodi 3D MVC Hardware Options
My HT Set-up | Intel D34010WYK NUC and HiMedia Q10 Pro
Kodi A/V Samples wiki
(This post was last modified: 2014-10-22 15:23 by hdmkv.)
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Bassman Offline
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Post: #15
I am also testing the Vidon.me box but I have issues regarding HD-Audio Passthrough in general. Neither DTS HD MA nor Dolby True HD is recognized on my Onkyo TX-NR616.
HDMI signal is blinking when selecting the tracks with HD-Audio via bitstream. On my Mede8ter 600X3D and via Win7 Notebook and HDMI-Out no Problem.
Any idea?
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