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START HERE - Pick the Right Kodi Box (updated March 2020)
(2018-03-25, 17:26)wrxtasy Wrote:
(2018-03-25, 14:57)robertoafarias Wrote: @wrxtasy (or anyone else) i already own a U9.
Do you know if Apple TV 4k would provide me better picture quality (HDR and SDR playback)? Or should it be the same?
Using which specific Apps exactly ?
Apple TV 4K = mainly the highly modded Kodi Jarvis - MrMC or Infuse Apps ?

U9 = LibreELEC Kodi Krypton or Android Kodi Krypton ?

Better quality 1080p > 4K picture upscaling on the ATV 4K, but it needs to do that because there is No Auto resolution switching. If you want 4K content output as 4K you have to permanently run a tvOS 4K resolution or manually resolution switch.

LibreELEC Kodi Krypton on the U9 has auto resolution switching based on video content watched. So 1080p content can have superior picture upscaling hardware found in a modern 4K TV upscale all 1080p content to 4K, and then auto resolution switch to 4K when actually watching 4K content.

If you are talking Netflix and iTunes DolbyVision 4K - only the ATV 4K supports that sort of video streaming.

Please read THIS LE U9 post.

LibreELEC Kodi Krypton HDR10 playback test results are found over HERE all S905X and S912 LE AML distros use the same AMLogic Linux Kernel and produce virtually the same results.

It's really hard to split the two devices for picture quality, auto resolution switching narrowly put's S912 - U9 - LE Kodi Krypton playing back mixed 1080p SDR and 4K HDR video content in front due to being able to easily use a 4K TV's superior 1080p > 4K picture upscaling.

I use the Apple TV 4K for excellent easy to use Apps, like 24p Netflix and 24p Amazon Video and a bit of MrMC. And LibreELEC Kodi Krypton for a full blown version of Kodi with all the self install Skins and Addons bells and whistles. Kodi Atmos and DTS:X passthrough audio - needed. LE on AML S9xx devices wins.

@wrxtasy thanks for the reply/info.

Giving more details, was talking about using infuse/mrmc on ATV4K vs Kodi Android/LE on U9 (youtube/netflix/amazon streaming apps are no problem at all, i use my tv builtin apps).

Im aware of some negative points: no atmos/dtsx and auto res on ATV4K and no auto res on U9/android.

Despite that, for example, playing a 4k HDR remux on ATV4K (infuse or mrmc) would provide me better picture quality than playing throught U9/LE for example? Or would it be the same.
Reply
(2018-03-25, 18:09)robertoafarias Wrote: Despite that, for example, playing a 4k HDR remux on ATV4K (infuse or mrmc) would provide me better picture quality than playing throught U9/LE for example? Or would it be the same.
The same if you also set Chroma 4:4:4,10bit output with AMLogic devices or select a 4K Resolution on the ATV 4K.
There is one thing I'm noticing and that is the ATV 4K downmixes 7.1 True-HD and DTS-HD MA with slightly better dynamic range and audio quality if you have an old 2.1 audio system vs anything AMLogic.

HDR > SDR conversion also looks slightly better color wise on the ATV 4K.

Subtitles have no issues with MrMC on the ATV 4K. Please read the previous U9 link again for LE Kodi Subtitles usage on the U9. Android Kodi Krypton on the U9 has no issues with Subtitles either.
The ATV 4K, ultimately will have better Kernel support long term vs anything from AMLogic. Apple are releasing almost bi-monthly bug busting Firmware updates, especially for 4K HDR and DolbyVision usage.

Reply
(2018-03-23, 00:59)4News Wrote: New Intel NUC's
What do You think about them? i guess will be a good HTPC, and the price is ok.
 The problem with those Nucs that there is no support for HDR in Linux (libreelec) -... so i ll pass atm.. Smile
Reply
I agree about the Apple TK 4k... one of the best media players ever made ... 

Great Apps, Firmware updates for ever ... ( my ipad 2 from 2011 about a month ago it got 9.3.5 update)..


(i bought a NVIDIA Shield and i sold it after 2 weeks due to crappy 4k HDR Colors)

I was sceptical before i buy the Apple 4K but now i am more than satisfied Smile (i just hope Mrmc will support more skins)
Reply
(2018-03-25, 19:07)wrxtasy Wrote:
(2018-03-25, 18:09)robertoafarias Wrote: Despite that, for example, playing a 4k HDR remux on ATV4K (infuse or mrmc) would provide me better picture quality than playing throught U9/LE for example? Or would it be the same.
The same if you also set Chroma 4:4:4,10bit output with AMLogic devices or select a 4K Resolution on the ATV 4K.
There is one thing I'm noticing and that is the ATV 4K downmixes 7.1 True-HD and DTS-HD MA with slightly better dynamic range and audio quality if you have an old 2.1 audio system vs anything AMLogic.

HDR > SDR conversion also looks slightly better color wise on the ATV 4K.

Subtitles have no issues with MrMC on the ATV 4K. Please read the previous U9 link again for LE Kodi Subtitles usage on the U9. Android Kodi Krypton on the U9 has no issues with Subtitles either.
The ATV 4K, ultimately will have better Kernel support long term vs anything from AMLogic. Apple are releasing almost bi-monthly bug busting Firmware updates, especially for 4K HDR and DolbyVision usage.
Thanks, i guess ill buy the atv4k too (already own U9). I think Apple streaming + quality playback is going to be a nice combo.
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(2018-03-25, 22:28)solamnic Wrote: I agree about the Apple TK 4k... one of the best media players ever made ... 

Great Apps, Firmware updates for ever ... ( my ipad 2 from 2011 about a month ago it got 9.3.5 update)..


(i bought a NVIDIA Shield and i sold it after 2 weeks due to crappy 4k HDR Colors)

I was sceptical before i buy the Apple 4K but now i am more than satisfied Smile (i just hope Mrmc will support more skins)
Nice feedback!
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Maybe the guide should include music visualisation options.

I bought the VEROK 4K following this guide only to find out you can't put a music visualizer on it. It's shadertoy alternative is crappy.

Any tips on getting milkdrop on a TV Box ? should i go the win10 route ?

best
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@wrxtasy

I apologize for yet another question but I really want someone's advice who is keen on keeping up with these boxes.

1. Android TV OS (even if by 3rd party so long it actually works)
2. PIA VPN + per app control with official app (I can't do whole house VPN on the router).
3. USB ports (any type would do)
4. Works with other wireless mice (currently on the F10 Deluxe and I like it but might replace it with A2 lite)
5. A snappy box is a plus (optional, but would love the S912)
6. Android TV Netflix app 1080p+
7. Android TV YouTube app 1080p+
8. Kodi and or Plex app support
9. PQ better than the SHIELD TV (the only real reason I want to leave the shield)
10. Ethernet port
11. HDMI-CEC (this works great on the shield)(optional)
12. And if possible 1:1 overscan settings (shield has this). (optional)

I want a S912 box with 4K support just in case I get a new 4K TV any day, but I guess this is also optional. Thanks for any thoughts please.

EDIT: I came back to shorten and edit my original post because I felt bad that is was so disorganized and long. I'm not looking for an everything box because I don't care what sound and video codecs it can play, or if it can do HDR etc. So really my needs are smart TV basics. I'm coming from the SHIELD TV 2015 that has very disappointing PQ (but it even streams 2160p youtube to my 1080p TV, which surprised me).
Reply
Have a read of the following:

Apple TV 4K vs LibreELEC Kodi Krypton on a MINIX U9-H (click)

You are not going to get Android TV Oreo unless you stick with the Shield or the Mi Box - it's definitely coming this year.
And if you want ATV Oreo in a fast box, the Shield is the only answer.

Trying to do everything all in the one device will lead to compromises and that is where the troubles start.
I'm pretty happy now using both devices. Apps on the ATV 4K and LE Kodi Krypton on various AMLogic S9xx LibreELEC boxes. Smile

Reply
(2018-04-02, 01:49)wrxtasy Wrote: Have a read of the following:

Apple TV 4K vs LibreELEC Kodi Krypton on a MINIX U9-H (click)

You are not going to get Android TV Oreo unless you stick with the Shield or the Mi Box - it's definitely coming this year.
And if you want ATV Oreo in a fast box, the Shield is the only answer.

Trying to do everything all in the one device will lead to compromises and that is where the troubles start.
I'm pretty happy now using both devices. Apps on the ATV 4K and LE Kodi Krypton on various AMLogic S9xx LibreELEC boxes. Smile
 I updated my earlier post because I felt bad for it being insanely long. Yeah not looking for an everything box, just a really good Youtube, Netflix and Kodi or Plex box with a few basic features like overscan adjustment or CEC etc. After reading everything to the point of damaging my eyes, lol I am guessing either the M8S or the MINIX with 3rd part TV OS would be best. I especially like that you can't see a difference between ATV4K & MINIX U9 PQ. That was surprising to me. If I get a good feel for JJ-Qwiks TV OS rom I might just pull the trigger on the U9. Thanks.

One last question, is the M8S Pro a bad device for some reason I can't seem to discover? DDR4, Widevine Level 1, ATV etc, almost seems to good to be true.

EDIT: OK, I will get the U9-H and hope the Android TV OS works out for me. Thanks wrxtasy, I am surprised you are still at this as long as I have seen you around.
Reply
(2018-04-02, 01:49)wrxtasy Wrote: Have a read of the following:

Apple TV 4K vs LibreELEC Kodi Krypton on a MINIX U9-H (click)

You are not going to get Android TV Oreo unless you stick with the Shield or the Mi Box - it's definitely coming this year.
And if you want ATV Oreo in a fast box, the Shield is the only answer.

Trying to do everything all in the one device will lead to compromises and that is where the troubles start.
I'm pretty happy now using both devices. Apps on the ATV 4K and LE Kodi Krypton on various AMLogic S9xx LibreELEC boxes. Smile
Thank you wrxtasy for all your help and information, you are very informed about the media players world.

I followed your recommendation and bought a vero 4k but it doesn't have music visualisation like milkdrop. ProjectM doesn't work on it and the shadertoy alternative is buggy and doesnt display anything but a spectrum.

I am using a ambilight TV and the music visualization adds a really nice atmosphere to the room. Maybe you can update your post and add proper Milkdrop/ProjectM support to those who have that.

Thank you again for your time, I read your post entirely !!! very informative. I would also like a more technical post as I like to understand the innerworkings of it all
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(2018-04-02, 06:51)SkOrPn Wrote: One last question, is the M8S Pro a bad device for some reason I can't seem to discover? DDR4, Widevine Level 1, ATV etc, almost seems to good to be true.
Not that I'm aware of. Seems a decent device these days.
Just be aware there is No 4K Netflix on boxes with unofficial Android TV devices - you do get 4K YouTube if you manually resolution switch in Android settings before hand.

The only S912 box I know of with L1 DRM and HDCP 1.x plus a Gigabit ethernet port is the MINIX U9. Gigabit is needed for skipping around high bitrate 4K video.

I think nearly all the very recent MECOOL S905X / S905D / S912 devices are running an unofficial manufacturer supplied Nougat - Android TV out of the box these days, if not there are plenty of decent AMLogic ATV ROM's on the Freaktab website you can easily flash with the simple inbuilt Update App.

Freaktab is the Website to go to keep up to date on those sort of AML Android (TV) devices.

@Verdana, I'm not really up with Kodi Addons on various devices. It's simply too hard to keep abreast of these things.
I do believe Milkdrop might be a Windows only Visualisation.

Users really have to ask in hardware threads before purchase to be 100% sure.

Reply
(2018-04-02, 11:12)wrxtasy Wrote:
(2018-04-02, 06:51)SkOrPn Wrote: One last question, is the M8S Pro a bad device for some reason I can't seem to discover? DDR4, Widevine Level 1, ATV etc, almost seems to good to be true.
Not that I'm aware of. Seems a decent device these days.
Just be aware there is No 4K Netflix on boxes with unofficial Android TV devices - you do get 4K YouTube if you manually resolution switch in Android settings before hand.

The only S912 box I know of with L1 DRM and HDCP 1.x plus a Gigabit ethernet port is the MINIX U9. Gigabit is needed for skipping around high bitrate 4K video.

I think nearly all the very recent MECOOL S905X / S905D / S912 devices are running an unofficial manufacturer supplied Nougat - Android TV out of the box these days, if not there are plenty of decent AMLogic ATV ROM's on the Freaktab website you can easily flash with the simple inbuilt Update App.

Freaktab is the Website to go to keep up to date on those sort of AML Android (TV) devices.

@Verdana, I'm not really up with Kodi Addons on various devices. It's simply too hard to keep abreast of these things.
I do believe Milkdrop might be a Windows only Visualisation.

Users really have to ask in hardware threads before purchase to be 100% sure.    
Agreed about the asking in hardware threads. I asked questions in the minix threads just yesterday myself, and in the videomapit forums (for my shield tv) to see if that 3rd party rom had better pq than the stock rom, but I now realize I won't be getting proper leanback apks working with that rom. I wish a really good developer would take the shield tv and LineageOS TV 15.1 (oreo) and really make that combo work with better PQ, but maybe that device is lacking driver support?

I tried very hard to see if someone had a hacked Netflix apk for the Freaktab roms for the M8S (it's only benefit is the cheaper price tho), but I think my best bet is going with the U9-H because the support from both MINIX and the dev community feels a lot more solid, kinda like Wetek's, and I like what I am reading in jj-qwiks thread so far. Your paying twice the price for a more premium overall experience. If I didn't have to have per app VPN control (and great PQ) on Android and the leanback apps, all my decision making would be much easier. Netflix works better for me if I NOT have a VPN connected, but for some reason Youtube is utter crap without PIA vpn connected to the California servers. My streams almost max out the connection when I connect to California (mainly the silicon valley servers), but if I connect to ANY other server including my ISP directly and in the late mornings and afternoons my Youtube is 360p hour after hour after hour until around 7pm, which then it is just spotty in and out of HD. Re-connect back to that California PIA server and I get instantaneous 4K streams 24/7 solidly. I spent hundreds or more hours (actually many years now) troubleshooting the issue and testing 3 different vpn products/services only to realize my ISP must either throttle youtube during the day or their routing to those servers suck. Either way I have to go with what works whether it makes sense or not. lol I am addicted to hundreds of youtube channels and all of them are big channels with 4K cameras.

Thanks for all the information, it helps us make informative decisions...
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i am thinking of getting an Apple TV 4K and was wondering how MrMC compares to LibreELEC (on a Wetek Play2) for playing video files from a NAS box regaring picture quality and HD Audio.

I have Marantz 7010 receiver which plays any HD Audio.
LG OLED C7, Marantz SR7010, Panasonic BD35, Logitech Elite, Virgin V6, Mission 752, Mission 75C, Wharfedall 9.0, BK XLS200 Mk 2, iPhone 6S, Synology 214Play, Wetek Play2 with LibreELEC 8.2.3, Mede8er MED600X3D, Amazon Fire Stick, Apple TV 4K, NowTV, Airport Extremes
Reply
(2018-04-02, 11:12)wrxtasy Wrote:
(2018-04-02, 06:51)SkOrPn Wrote: One last question, is the M8S Pro a bad device for some reason I can't seem to discover? DDR4, Widevine Level 1, ATV etc, almost seems to good to be true.
Not that I'm aware of. Seems a decent device these days.
Just be aware there is No 4K Netflix on boxes with unofficial Android TV devices - you do get 4K YouTube if you manually resolution switch in Android settings before hand.

The only S912 box I know of with L1 DRM and HDCP 1.x plus a Gigabit ethernet port is the MINIX U9. Gigabit is needed for skipping around high bitrate 4K video.

I think nearly all the very recent MECOOL S905X / S905D / S912 devices are running an unofficial manufacturer supplied Nougat - Android TV out of the box these days, if not there are plenty of decent AMLogic ATV ROM's on the Freaktab website you can easily flash with the simple inbuilt Update App.

Freaktab is the Website to go to keep up to date on those sort of AML Android (TV) devices.

@Verdana, I'm not really up with Kodi Addons on various devices. It's simply too hard to keep abreast of these things.
I do believe Milkdrop might be a Windows only Visualisation.

Users really have to ask in hardware threads before purchase to be 100% sure. 
The VERO 4K Team are great support and help, but i really needed visualisation, so i returned it.

I will be getting a nvidia 1030 and intel processor and win 10 so I am able to do everything with my box and have no limitation whatsoever.

I wanted to give back to the community, I tried a new remote last week, the DoCooler H1 Fly Air Remote. Here is the aliexpress link : https://goo.gl/r4a1s8

It's great, keyboard that becomes a touchpad, air mouse that you can disable, very accurate, nice touch press, Really recommend it over the minix. Also, it has IR Learning, so I can ditch CEC and use one remote instead.

best
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