Posts by Mr.Brown

    And I discuss conspiracy theories every night when I walk on the dark beach with the Smoking Man...


    If the perfectly legal MrMC were pulled, then the award winning Infuse App would also need to go plus VLC would have to be yanked and that is never going to happen.


    The one thing I will agree upon is every device had limitations. Just chose one where those limitations will not affect or annoy you too much.

    It was probably a bad example with MrMC. The thing is- you kind of depend on 1 app, due to lack of alternatives, which allways sucks. You also depend on the Apple Jail System. Things cant easily be fixed/worked around by developers of Media Player apps, since ios is a closed system. If some ios update on 4K TV messes up something (like it happened quite a few times already), you can only hope that Apple bothers to fix that. If they dont- youre screwed.


    With Linux or even windows, devs have a few more options to work around issues.


    What I really meant was- with 4K TV and MrMC you sort of depend too much on both Apple and MrMC devs. There are no alternative media player apps that are any good. Thats never a good thing. And while its unlikely that apple removes mrmc from app store, knowing how r*tarded they somehow behave with removing apps for no logical reasons other than placing their own trash apps in better position by removing any competition, I wouldnt be willing to take the risk with 4K TV. Plus as mentioned before- it has no usb slot, no Twitch.tv app and no 4K Youtube support=trash.


    Well Apple TV 4K has no USB ports, and I often play files from external USB drive. I dont want to miss that option.


    Other than that- the only software that sort of plays everything correctly on Apple TV 4K is MrMC afaik. If apple decides for whatever reason to remove that software from the store, the device becomes a door stopper as far as Im concerned, or a pure streaming device for stuff like Netflix and Amazon Video. Apple TV doesnt even support 4K videos on Yt, cause it doesnt support VP9 codec= trash.


    The Sony Bluray player- I would actually buy it if it played all formats and audio formats etc.


    It looks like it doesnt support some HD audio formats in MKV containers, which is a bummer.


    There is no out of the box device that plays everything without issues, thats the thing. Id pay the high price if one existed.


    Thus the only hope remains that x64 devices get proper HDR support with Kodi. Without HDR, x64 Kodi hardware is already the best as far as almost everything working correctly + good upscaling with Lanczos3. The only thing that is missing is 4K HDR support and 4k DV support.


    I also have the NV Shield TV, but it has a couple of its own problems as well.

    Ehh.. I though I will give latest CE a try... I dont quite get it- first it didnt switch resolution to 4K when Kodi is set to 1080p (switching between 1080p<->4k output). Second it had asyncrhonous HD-passthrough and then Ive noticed a couple of other small issues, some sort of stuttering with 4k HDR playback / minor UI stuttering and so on.


    Switched back to this release and most of the issues are gone if not all issues I had with CE specifically. Both cases were clean new installs on fresh SD card, no upgrades or anything like that.


    I know both CE / LE devs do it for free and in their free time etc. but IMO it just makes more sense to focus on some few devices and have them work more or less flawlessly rather than support a variety of devices that neither of them work well.


    But if you ask me, all those android/arm-based devices are just absolute garbage. Its either- Kodi devs dont have the required drivers for the socs or the socs themselves are absolute Efin dog sheet with all sorts of limitations, very slow and so on. I mean they are dirt cheap, but thats because they are dirt and work like garbage.


    I mean proper support for 4K HDR on x86/64 devices cant come soon enough. Cause those are the only devices that are any good and where Kodi devs get some sort of decent driver support from hardware manufacturers like Intel.


    Again, only sad part is that Linux is not there yet with proper 4K HDR support on x64 hardware, but thats not exactly hardwares fault, cause in some cases it does support 4K HDR natively. Thats the only reason ppl have to use all those dog sheet ARM based garbage players for now.


    Not to mention the upscaling/downscaling quality of 99,9% arm players is absolute trash and most of them cant even do lanczos3/spline36 because in 99,9% of the dirt cheap ARM media players the CPU is absolutely slow piece of sheet.


    I mean pardon my French, but its a bit frustrating to not be able to buy a media player where you dont have to tinker around with Kodi builds, let alone expect them to work flawlessly with their sheety arse android based software out of the box.


    Nevertheless im thankful that we have guys like Wrxtasy who spend time on optimizing software for particular devices. Without them all those garbage Android based media players with abominable manufacturer software support (like Minix etc.) would be close to useless.


    It is sad and unacceptable really that the community has to do the job of those companies that sell all these media players. Even more sad that without software like Kodi and forks like LE etc., many of these players would be absolutely useless.

    4K HDR Sony owners have been complaining about 444,10bit and having to put their TV's into a 'PC' mode to use such settings and then losing a bunch of video processing modes in the process.


    We do not need to use the PC or Gaming - subsampling mode of 444 for Kodi video playback usage.

    4K HDR Blurays are encoded with 420,10bit subsampling and bit

    so it doesnt make any real difference if we enable 444 10Bit option under "Amlogic Settings"?


    If so, then it rly makes little sense to enable it.


    I also wouldnt recommend enabling GPU overclocking. My Minix U9 with an external 2.5" HDD sitting on top of it, gets quite warm, not far away from "hot" esp. with summer temperatures. And Minix U9 is a media player with better cooling than most other AmlogiC media players, which most likely get hotter.


    Im still a bit confused about this soc. Nvidia Shield has like 5x better GPU and like 3x better cpu and it still barely gets warm wHhen watching movies. Now I know it has a larger heatsiNk and a fan, but still, I think NV Tech is way more efficient than amlogics.


    I hope NV releases next Shield tv version next year at 7nm process. Will be a top notch media player, provided that Android OS gets rid of some limitations until then.

    @wrxtasy- now with the new build the audio stream switching problems are gone, thanks! No more audio switching issues.


    I wonder if your tweaks will be implemented in the official Core Elec builds for 912?


    I find it a bit strange that there are so many versions of LE/CE with different tweaks etc. It can get a bit confusing tbh.


    The Amlogic option to enable 444 @ 4K seems to work fine, I wonder if there is a way to check if it properly outputs @ 4:4:4, since my TV doesnt show this kind of stuff. Is there some button or button combo to see all the output information of the signal inside LE? I mean like pressing "O" but with more informations than that?


    THanks again for the build, I was about to sell the Minix U9 and get something else for it, because I find Android OS based software media players usually garbage. They usually have plently of issues and some stuff doesnt work like support for all HD audio streams, correct color space etc.


    I also bought the lePotato Board hoping that LE for it is more stable. It turned out that my 4 TB external 2.5" Western Digital drive doesnt spin up with this lePotato board. It lacks power for it, even using a high quality power supply. While its a USB 3.0 external HDD, it still works fine with most media players through USB 2.0 (or actually every media player Ive connected it to so far, except lePotato board), I think it even worked with the Rpi 3. However lePotato seems to have some stricter power management and doesnt allow for initial higher draw of power when the HDD spins up.


    Thats why I had switch back to MInix U9 and with your build its now quite usable. Before that it had too many issues with LE builds.

    It could very well be your HW700. Have you tried a direct connection to the HW700? I see that it has a HDMI out.

    Sony HW700 doesnt support HDR passthrough and only supports HDMI 1.4 afaik, so max 4K @ 30 Hz, thats why no direct connection to it.


    I dont think its Sonys fault though, previously with 1080p media players I connected them directly through Sony and never had issues with switching HD Audio Streams.


    Refresh/Resolution switchting is enabled on my U9-H as well, I think its the default setting of this LE version and I didnt change it.

    Is your AVR a Denon or Onkyo?

    Neither of those. I use a Signal Splitter- HDfury AVR Key, after that the signal goes into my Oled B7 TV and another goes into Sony MDR-HW700 which is a pretty good headspeaker for movies.


    Where I live, I cant really use my AVR and Room Speakers for movies at the volume I would like to. Its an old house with several appartments. When my older neighbour speaks on the phone, and you know old ppl are usually louder than average cause they dont hear that well, I can basically hear everything as if I was in the same room.


    Perhaps its an issue with the AVR Key, but as described previously, if I switch audio streams a couple of times, I usually get to the one I want. Seems to work out with files that have multiple audio streams. It would prolly suck for files that have only 1 audio stream. Maybe stopping and restarting it might work for such files, Id yet have to try on files with single audio stream.

    Also wanted to say thx to @ wrxtasy for the release.


    Im using it on Minix U9-H. I still have the first version with "subtitle fix" in the name.


    THe only issue Im having so far is that sometimes the HD audio formats dont play, after switching to a different audio stream and then back to previous, it starts to play. Sometimes I need to repeat this a few times until the audio stream of choice starts to play.


    It would be great if it could be fixed somehow. Also is there a version of this LE build that I can flash to a the SD card, rather than apply as an update? Im asking, cause Im having trouble getting a SMB connection to the Minix U9 to put the update file into the update folder and so I need to use workarounds through USB and file manager, which is more complicated than just flashing to a SD card.


    One more thing though, there are a couple of Dolby Vision demo files in .TS and .mp4 format that I have. Looks like they dont play properly with the Minix and LE. I assume that Amlogic soc doesnt play Dolby Vision stuff, does it?


    Oh and by the way, in this Reddit thread you can find a couple of Test files with Dolby Vision: Is Dolby Vision Remux possible? : Piracy


    Link to the Google Drive with some test files: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1h1wnuwoeepfgzkl2es2s4uacoohuhs9v?usp=sharing


    Apparently some of them work with LG Oled TVs if you play them directly through the TV via USB Stick or USB HDD. Looks like Dolby Vision files can be muxed into .M2TS/.TS/.mp4 containers. However not MKV though. Ive tested some of the .TS and .MP4 demo files with the Minix U9 + LE, none worked properly (wrong colors etc.).

    How does switching from BT.2020 to BT.709 matter when the discussion is about HDR->SDR dynamic range conversion? Why do some ppl have an urge to post something, when they dont even understand wtf is going on in the first place?


    Its like "oh I bought this device and someone is pointing out its many flaws, I better post something good about it..."

    Thats fine by me.


    That would still not be a great solution, as long as the Minix is using Android Tablet OS instead of Android TV OS. Besides that, AML devices are already ruled out for several reasons.


    I will wait until team Kodi figures out a way to implement HDR with X86 devices and use a NUC as a media player or maybe upcoming AMD APUs with Ryzen and Vega, which will have 15 Watts APUs as well, similar to Intel NUC.


    Other than that, ATV 4K might be worth checking out in the meantime. I will probably give it a try.

    OK :cool: You´re the man.

    When I play 4k hevc hdr(BT20.20) on my S912 box connected to my TV supporting 4k hdr - everything is fine

    Why don´t You use a supported TV ?


    Sorry, I don´t understand why You are whining :/


    Why would you even comment if its pure nonsensical garbage? You realize ppl have old TVs, they still want to use "properly", like some early 4K TVs, that dont have HDR support. Or TVs with rather badly implemented HDR, where its probably just better to have them run at 8/10 bit without HDR at all. Or some older 1080p TVs, they want to continue using.


    I mean, just stay the F out of the converstation, since you dont have anything constructive to contribute. Same thing applies to this Pelican clown.


    Now:

    I don't know where you are getting your facts from? Koying is the developer of SPMC and the main release is still Jarvis so that would probably explain half your problems if that is what your using... as for him being the only developer working on the Shield that could not be more further from the truth.

    First of all, Ive tried both SPMC and normal Kodi 17.6. Both have a solid ammount of issues, with fewer issues beeing on SPMC. Like passthrough problems with certain audio streams and so on. I mean what are you trying to prove here? Its enough to take a look at the Shield TV section in the NV forum to get a clue how much stuff doesnt work right and how many problems it has.


    I use NV Shield almost every day for over a year or so, since there was no other alternatives with native 4K Support in Apps like Netflix, Youtube, Amazon etc. I know the device very well and Ive tried a ton of stuff


    I own both the Shield and the U9-H and even though it is 3 years old it still beats any other ARM SoC device hands down and I would choose it over the U9-H any day of the week, it can't be that bad as well otherwise Nintendo would not have chosen to put the very same SoC inside of the Switch, to say it is full of bugs and problems is absolutely ridiculous it's had more updates than most Android devices that are on the market. As for comparing to an Apple device, lol... good luck with getting Kodi on that.


    Where did I claim, that Nvidia doesnt beat the rest of the Android SoCs in terms of performance? It is still the fastest Android device out there, I never claimed anything different. However A10X is also ARM architecture and it wipes the floor with the Shield SoC. So I dont get what your point here exactly is.. I even wrote that it was a beast of a SoC during the last like 2.5 years, so again- what exactly is your point here, what are you trying to prove? I dont get it.


    Sure did Shield TV have plenty of updates, they did fix many things. And they have also managed to mess up many things with new updates, which then required patches of the messed up patches. Again- just take a fast look in the Shield TV section and you will see than even after dozens of updates, alot of stuff still doesnt work right. Well Apple has MrMC which is essentially a Kodi App without Add-on functionality, but it still plays the same video files as Kodi does, which is the main purpose of Kodi, so I kind of miss your point here as well.



    The issue with HDR on AML has been covered so many times, it's not a 'LE bug' nor is it a 'bug' of any kind, it's is purely down to the way the Amlogic SoC handles HDR, it's not something that will be resolved.

    And that is exactly why I called these cheap AML android media players garbage. I did a few more tests with the Minix U9-H with HDR->SDR conversion on a 4K TV that has no HDR support. In Android Tablet OS, when using the "Movie Player" the image is less dark than with LE, so it has less black crush and less messed up contrast. However the color saturation is still incorrect, it appears washed out. When using stand alone LE, its alot worse with both black crush and contrast.


    The HDR->SDR conversion with AML SoC can be considered broken in my book. If someone who has an early 4K TV without HDR support wants a player that converts HDR->SDR correctly, you better not bother with these trash AML players.



    But heres something different though- I have a Kaby Lake i3 NUC right now running Windows 10. I have a 4K monitor connected to it, ofcourse without HDR support, its an 8-bit 4K SDR monitor. And when I play the same files on this NUC with proper software like MPV player etc.- the picture looks perfect. The NUC does the HDR->SDR conversion in Windows properly, it looks absolutely great. But I wanted a dedicated Kodi player for my 4K SDR TV and an older 1080p TV. If I knew how bad the HDR->SDR conversion looks with AML players and that it cant even do Lanczos 3 upscaling with SDR or 720p content, I certainly wouldnt have bothered buying the Minix U9..


    I think wrxtasy should consider putting a warning in his thread here Auto frame rate switching & dynamic range matching - 4K (HDR10) capable Hardware that the image wont look right with AML players when converting HDR-> SDR, because I assumed the listed Media Players in the first post do the right job converting HDR->SDR properly. Which unfortunately is nowhere even close the case with the AML SoCs.


    But I dont blame wrxtasy, he cant test every single device and figure out if the image looks right or not. I mean the Minix U9 does convert it after all, the question is "how good?" though. The answer is not good at all.


    Unfotunately it doesnt work with NV Shield as well.. so much to "greatest Android player".. It seems like Ill have to check out the ATV 4K or wait until Kodi team implements it with NUC hardware.

    The Dune HD only supports 4K @ 30 due to hardware limitation, not [email protected] or [email protected] which means its not future proof at all.


    Now, why is that important? Well sooner or later the TV channels will switch to 4K50/60, even if it will be interlaced(4K 25i/30i), there will be effectively 50 or 60 fps. For ppl who watch TV content like Sports etc. it will be important to have native 4K50/60 support, which the current Dune HD players dont have.


    In terms of Upscaling, Dune players have prolly the best quality out of any media player, since Sigma did buy some company that had top notch upscaling tech, which Sigma then implemented into their own soc. However it looks like Sigma left the market of Multimedia Chips. The next Dune player apparently will have a Realtek Chip, which is probably comparable to the AML 912. Id rather use a Nuc, where you can do alot with Software, if the Hardware accelerated quality isnt good enough, than buy a device with a Realtek chip, which are also known to have some issues.

    Well the A10X in the Apple 4K TV has around 2.5x single core performance and above 2x Multi Core performance compared to the Tegra X1 in the Shield TV (going by geekbench scores).


    The Tegra X1 will be 3 years old soon. I mean it was a beast of a soc in the last 2.5 years, but its not the top dog any more compared to ATV 4K.


    Only reason I got the Shield TV was the native 4K support for some Aps like Netflix, Youtube, Amazon etc.


    Its not a great device for Kodi use, there are too many bugs, issues and limitations. It clearly wasnt meant to be a Video device but rather a Streaming console/casual android console. Its Video capabilities that are built into the SoC are very basic and nothing for Video enthusiasts. In particular the upscaling quality sucks and the deinterlacing quality is average at best.


    The moment I buy a new 4K HDR TV, probably a higher end Sony, that has all these Apps onboard, I will have no need/use for the Shield any more.


    Right now the best combo to cover almost all scenarios and needs would probably be ATV 4K and a Kaby Lake NUC.


    To get back on topic though- Im using the Minix U9H with LE build from this thread on one of the older 1080p TVs. I thought it can convert HDR to SDR correctly, according to your thread in Kodi forum wrxtasy.


    When I play a 4K Hevc HDR file on the U9-H connected to the 1080p TV, the colors appear to be correct (not washed out), however the image is too dark. The gamma level/contrast level is wrong. It results in black crush, the image is darkened too much.


    Now I read in a change log from Minix that they fixed this issue with a Firmware update a while ago. I have the latest FW on the U9-H and still have this problem when using on an old 1080p tv.


    I wonder if its a LE bug or a Bug in Minix FW still..

    Price difference is too big for comparison. Nvidia Shield is a nice alternative. I am considering to try it myself.

    I have the shield TV here and NUC. Dont expect too much from Shield. It has a ton of its own problems. It has trash upscaling quality as well in the SoC itself, even worse than Minix U9h. The good thing though is that the CPU is strong enough, so you can enable software Upscaling (Lanczos3) up to like 720p resolution. The bad thing is- right now its only possible if you disable hardware acceleration completely. Like there is no setting as of yet to use software acceleration for content below 1080p, maybe Kodi team will add it in the future.


    Shield TV also doesnt have very good deinterlacing quality for 1080i content (TV content like sports etc.). It cant do Yadif x2 with 1080i. Well the option is there, but the CPU is too weak for that task. It stutters when you enable Yadif x2 with 1080i content.


    It has a bunch of other issues like not beeing able to convert HDR-> SDR. Not supporting some HD passthrough audio like TrueHD/DTS HD/Atmos... Ie had many issues with it.


    Theres just one guy kinda "optimizing" Kodi for that Android TV plattform, which is Koying I think is his nick. Needless to say he cant cover all Android TV devices and optimize them properly. Especially since every SoC manufacturer uses their own proprietary sheet and most of the time doesnt provide the required drivers and so on.


    Shield TV also doesnt support auto framerate switching for Apps like Netfilx, Amazon etc. The only ARM device that does it atm is Apple 4K TV I think.


    One thing that is good about Minix U9H I will say is- it did passthrough every HD audio properly as far as I can tell. The upscaling quality is slightly better than Shield TV, but its still nowhere near Lanczos3 quality. Its not as fluid and fast as Shield when navigating both in Kodi and Android OS compared to Shield.


    Optimally, when Kodi team adds HDR support for NUC devices, the best device combo would be Apple 4K TV + Intel Kaby Lake NUC (or newer). Apple 4K for native 4K Netflix, Amazon + Youtube support with auto framerate switching and auto HDR-> SDR conversion and NUC for everything else (Kodi with addons etc.).

    Unfortunately Minix u9-h has a broken HDR-SDR conversion. The image of HEVC HDR content appears too dark, when its beeing converted to SDR, for example on some 4K TVs that dont support HDR (only SDR).


    Thats the main issue Im having with this player, aside the fact that its SoC is too weak to use software Upscaling like Lanczos 3 for SD content. (i. e. DVDs and so on.). Also it cant do software deinterlacing like Yadif x2 for neither HD content nor SD content. Looks like the SoC is too weak for those tasks. Which makes this player a rather mediocre media player.


    Once Kodi devs figure out how to implement HDR on x86 hardware (Intel NUC etc.) and also figure out proper HDR->SDR converion, there will be no need for any of those trash Android media players.


    Right now its the only thing, that devices like Intel NUC cant do compared to Android based media players. Once Intel NUC hardware and other x86 based hardware gets support for it, you can throw any Android devices into garbage where they belong.

    Its called "HD and up", not "HD only". Unfortunately "HD and up" means "720p and higher resolution".


    The thing is, when hardware acceleration is used for 720p content, its using the upscaling built into the ARM SoC. That means its a shitty upscaling quality.


    The optimal setting would be "1080p and up", so that everything below 1080p would be decoded and upscaled by the CPU! Some ARM SoCs have strong CPUs and ideally all content that is not native 1080p, should be decoded by software and also upscaled by software, like Lancszos 3.


    1080p doesnt need to be upscaled (on a 1080p TV), thats why the optimal setting here would be to use hardware acceleration starting with 1080p.


    What Im saying is, there should be more options to "HD and up". Like "Full HD and up" and also "4K and up".



    Let me use the Nvidia Shield as an example with SPMC. It has a powerful CPU, that can decode 1080p content easily by software. Or decode 720p with software and upscale with Software it, f. e. as Lanczos 3.


    What would be ideal here is to have "Full HD and up" hardware acceleration, which would mean that all 1080p content would be decoded by the hardware. And all resolutions below, would then be decoded by software plus upscaled by software.


    that "HD and up" is very unoptimal, because it uses hardware acceleration for 720p content with shitty upscaling quality. It needs more settings, f. e.:


    Always

    Never

    "HD and up"

    "Full HD and up"

    "4K and up"


    Right now with Shield and SPMC- If I want to decode 720p material by software and upscale it by software (lanczos 3), I have to DISABLE the hardware acceleration COMPLETELY. Why? Because the setting "HD and up" begins using hardware acceleration with 720p resolution, which is dumb.


    I DONT want to disable hardware acceleration comepletely. I only want to use hardware acceleration with 1080p content or higher resolution than 1080p. And everything below 1080p to use software decoding + upscaling.


    I dont know, if you still dont get it after this post, just forget it alltogether.. It seems like understanding basic things is sometimes hard.

    Amlogic SoC has not enough power :(


    Are you sure? It has something like 2400 geek bench score in multi core. Shouldnt that be enough for software decoding + software upscaling at the same time of 720p content?


    Wow that would really suck.. KODI team really needs to figure out to implement 4K HDR with Intel NUC Boxes, cause apparently all other ARM socs are garbage except maybe Apple soc and Nvidia Shield soc..