Looking for Media player with working CEC control
#1
I've searched this forum for the type of media player I'm looking for, but searching for CEC is not possible. So here's my question:

I'm looking for a media player that has the following features:

- 4K HDR / Dolby Vision playback (x265, x264)
- lossless audio formats like DTS-HD, DTS-X, Atmos, TrueHD
- controllable with TV remote (LG C7 magic remote) through CEC

My setup will be: media player connected with HDMI to Atmos capable receiver, then that receiver is connected to my TV also with HDMI (and ARC)

So far, I've found the Minix U9-H and the Vero 4K+.

Both should support all video and audio formats, but I'm looking for some advice on whether it's possible to use my TV's remote with CEC.
Which mediaplayer will do this with my setup? Or does anyone have another suggestion?
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#2
Basically the Linux based OS's - OSMC, LibreELEC and CoreELEC will give you Kodi user configurable HDMI-CEC control.
They include a Linux community coded - Pulse8 libCEC library that gives you all sorts of user configurable CEC options.

If you want want 4K HDR look at the AMLogic S905D or S912 devices, because they have Gigabit Ethernet.

You are correct, Plug n Play = Vero4K+
DIY = MINIX U9 running LibreELEC or CoreELEC.

Both will give you what you want.

Both devices control my AVR's volume using their respective Wireless remotes via HDMI CEC.
In fact that is preferred because Kodi control is snappier that way vs using the TV remote and controlling Kodi via CEC.

The U9 can also turn OFF / ON both my Yamaha AVR and TV using HDMI CEC control.
I find the MINIX A2 lite Wireless keyboard remote real handy for long term Kodi use simply because you get to learn and use Kodi keyboard shortcuts.
That remote will plug into anything.

The newer MINIX A3 lite remote had mini wake up from (battery saving) sleep issues just after you pick it up. Most users prefer the A2 lite that had no such issues.

The Vero 4K+ has no power OFF / ON only a standby mode.

No media player on the market can playback dual layer 4K DolbyVision Bluray Rips, even the Apple TV 4K. That is all proprietary Dolby tech.

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#3
The bigger challenge is that every TV manufacturer has its own ideas on how to implement their version of CEC. They each also have their own name for CEC, which should give you some idea. Things may have improved over time, but I'm not convinced yet.
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#4
(2019-01-06, 06:59)Klojum Wrote: The bigger challenge is that every TV manufacturer has its own ideas on how to implement their version of CEC. They each also have their own name for CEC, which should give you some idea. Things may have improved over time, but I'm not convinced yet.

Exactly if it even half works with TV's consider it a bonus. HDMI-CEC control should not be relied upon for anything.

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#5
Beware AMLogic devices and CEC though - almost all of them (apart from the ODroid C2 and Vero 4/4K possibly) - have a major issue with CEC that causes them to 'jam' CEC control for all other devices connected to a TV and/or AVR, which also stops ARC working (as it uses CEC to negotiate I believe)  

Even when 'shutdown', but powered, they still stop other devices correctly using CEC, and thus stop them controlling volume, switching TVs over to 'their' HDMI input, and stop TVs sending ARC audio to AVRs.  This is a very real problem in every day usage.  The only solution is to physically remove the power connection or HDMI connection from the device.

The Minix U9H has this issue, as has every no-name AMLogic device I've used, and it's very annoying - particularly as the Minix U9H has well implemented remote control power on and off functionality (allowing you to power it up from 'shutdown' via the remote control).  Even when 'off' the Minix U9H stops other devices properly using CEC.    

In this case my Sky HD box, Apple TV 4K, nVidia Shield TV, and UHD Blu-ray player can no longer switch my TV over to their HDMI inputs, and my Sony TV won't send ARC audio from it's internal tuner, smart TV apps, or other directly connected HDMI sources (like the Sky box) to my AVR, with Minix U9H connected to a power supply/HDMI.

Apparently this is a well known AMLogic uBoot issue?  ISTR that the C2 has a different uBoot which doesn't do it. I can't remember if the Vero 4K has the same issues. (I'll test and report back)

Raspberry Pis don't do it and Pulse8 USB-connected HDMI CEC inserters don't do it.  Neither does any other CEC device I have (Apple TV 4K, nVidia Shield TV, Fire TV etc.)
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#6
(2019-01-06, 11:07)noggin Wrote: The Minix U9H has this issue, as has every no-name AMLogic device I've used, and it's very annoying - particularly as the Minix U9H has well implemented remote control power on and off functionality (allowing you to power it up from 'shutdown' via the remote control).  Even when 'off' the Minix U9H stops other devices properly using CEC.    

There has been progress fixing U-Boot on closed source Android AML devices as detailed in THIS thread (click) and HERE (click) in this CoreELEC Wiki

AML devices like the ODROID C2, Khadas VIM, Le Potato and I expect the Vero 4K have open source U-Boot code that can and has be modified.



EDIT: started doing some HDMI CEC testing with my old HiSense 4K TV and a Yamaha AVR.
Going to see what blocks HDMI-CEC...
Results:

Apple TV 4K = Good, in fact it's reasonably speedy. Shuts down and wakes up both the TV and AVR after Sleeping using the Menu button.
Vero 4K = Good, it does not Jam other devices HDMI CEC commands when in Suspend mode

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#7
(2019-01-06, 15:33)wrxtasy Wrote:
(2019-01-06, 11:07)noggin Wrote: The Minix U9H has this issue, as has every no-name AMLogic device I've used, and it's very annoying - particularly as the Minix U9H has well implemented remote control power on and off functionality (allowing you to power it up from 'shutdown' via the remote control).  Even when 'off' the Minix U9H stops other devices properly using CEC.    

There has been progress fixing U-Boot on closed source Android AML devices as detailed in THIS thread (click) and HERE (click) in this CoreELEC Wiki

AML devices like the ODROID C2, Khadas VIM, Le Potato and I expect the Vero 4K have open source U-Boot code that can and has be modified. 

Thanks for this - will do some reading.  Presumably this works with your LibreElec builds as well as CoreElec - or do you recommend CoreElec now?
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#8
(2019-01-06, 15:57)noggin Wrote: Thanks for this - will do some reading.  Presumably this works with your LibreElec builds as well as CoreElec - or do you recommend CoreElec now?

I will have too have to do some reading too.

AMLogic Android Dual boot LE / CE devices I believe have their closed source u-boot stored in internal eMMC storage.
It's why command line modding and dd writing of a new u-boot has to be carried out.

Not for the faint hearted, and you really want to make sure you know how to backup the original u-boot (bootloader) using something like TWRP recovery first.

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#9
(2019-01-06, 16:12)wrxtasy Wrote:
(2019-01-06, 15:57)noggin Wrote: Thanks for this - will do some reading.  Presumably this works with your LibreElec builds as well as CoreElec - or do you recommend CoreElec now?

I will have too have to do some reading too.

AMLogic Android Dual boot LE / CE devices I believe have their closed source u-boot stored in internal eMMC storage.
It's why command line modding and dd writing of a new u-boot has to be carried out.

Not for the faint hearted, and you really want to make sure you know how to backup the original u-boot (bootloader) using something like TWRP recovery first. 
Yes - though I didn't know TWRP worked at that low a level.

It's infuriating - as the Minix U9-H is amongst the best solution if you want remote power on, if it weren't currently (unless you do bleeding edge) an unusable pain with other CEC devices (i.e. you still have to get up and pull the HDMI or power cable).
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#10
Thanks for the answers. So if I understand it correctly, I'll be wanting the Vero 4K+. Unfortunately, it's currently out of stock on the official website. So I'll have to be patient.
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#11
(2019-01-08, 12:57)illuvattarr Wrote: Thanks for the answers. So if I understand it correctly, I'll be wanting the Vero 4K+. Unfortunately, it's currently out of stock on the official website. So I'll have to be patient.
 A new batch finished today, so we should be shipping again in a few days.
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#12
(2019-01-06, 06:59)Klojum Wrote: The bigger challenge is that every TV manufacturer has its own ideas on how to implement their version of CEC. They each also have their own name for CEC, which should give you some idea. Things may have improved over time, but I'm not convinced yet.
 Totally.

I am in the position where my the CEC on my Pioneer AVR works fine with my Chromebook, passes it to my Sharp TV just fine.  My Sharp TV will play nice with a Raspberry Pi.  But the RPI won't play nice with the AVR.  Set it all up on an LG TV and everything is just peachy.  I have largely given up on CEC.
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#13
(2019-01-09, 12:04)Sam.Nazarko Wrote:
(2019-01-08, 12:57)illuvattarr Wrote: Thanks for the answers. So if I understand it correctly, I'll be wanting the Vero 4K+. Unfortunately, it's currently out of stock on the official website. So I'll have to be patient.
 A new batch finished today, so we should be shipping again in a few days. 
This is now back in stock
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#14
(2019-01-14, 20:34)Sam.Nazarko Wrote:
(2019-01-09, 12:04)Sam.Nazarko Wrote:
(2019-01-08, 12:57)illuvattarr Wrote: Thanks for the answers. So if I understand it correctly, I'll be wanting the Vero 4K+. Unfortunately, it's currently out of stock on the official website. So I'll have to be patient.
 A new batch finished today, so we should be shipping again in a few days.  
This is now back in stock 
Great! Could you confirm to me if CEC will work with LG OLED tvs in my current setup? That is, the vero4k+ will not be connected directly to my tv, but will go through my soundsystem first.
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#15
If your sound system supports CEC, yes.
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