Home > Android, Hardware, HiSilicon > HiMedia Q5 Quad Core is an Android TV Box based on HiSilicon Hi3798C SoC with SATA, USB 3.0, 4K Support

HiMedia Q5 Quad Core is an Android TV Box based on HiSilicon Hi3798C SoC with SATA, USB 3.0, 4K Support

HiMedia has been releasing and manufacturing Android TV boxes with SATA interfaces based on Hilison processors including Q5 (single core) and Q5II (dual core) for a couple of years. The company is about to release another one with the same enclosure, based on a new Hilicon Hi3798C quad core SoC, that they’ve aptly named “Q5 Quad Core”.

HiMedia_Q5_Quad_CoreHiMedia Q5 Quad Core specifications:

  • SoC – HiSilicon Hi3798C quad core ARM Cortex A9 @ 1.5GHz + ARM Mali-450MP6 Octa core GPU.
  • System Memory – 2 GB DDR3
  • Storage – 8GB eMMC Flash, SATA connector, and MMC/SD 2-in1 card reader
  • Connectivity – 10/100/1000M Ethernet, and 802.11 b/g/n/ Wi-Fi with external antenna
  • Video Out – HDMI 1.4 up to 4K30 and composite
  • Audio Output – HDMI, L/R stereo (RCA), and optical & coaxial S/PDIF
  • Video Codecs – MPEG1/2/4 up to 4K30, H.264/AVC up to 4K30, H.265 up to 4K30, VC-1, REALVIDEO 8/9/10 up to 4K30, and more
  • Audio Format – MP3, WMA, AAC, APE, FLAC, WAV, DTS, Dolby Digital, AC3 up to 7.1.
  • Video modes – PAL, NTSC, 720p, 1080i (50/60Hz), 1080p (24/30/50/60Hz), 4K (24/30Hz)
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x USB 3.0 port
  • Misc – LED display on front panel, recovery button.
  • Power Supply – 12V/2A
  • Dimensions – 170 x 115 x 24.5 mm

Himedia_Q5-3D4K_Hard_DriveBlu-ray ISO 3D are said to be supported, and Blu-ray BDMV too, but without 3D support, and they claim support for XBMC and 240Mbps videos from the network (SAMBA/NFS) or USB. The hard drive has to be connected externally which may feel a bit awkward, and supports EXT-3, NTFS and FAT32 file systems. Q5 Quad Core (aka Q5 III or Q5 3D4K) runs Android 4.4.2, and comes with a power adapter, an IR remote control, a SATA cable, an HDMI cable, and a quick start guide in Chinese. You may find more pictures, screenshots, and detailed features on ka8.hk (Note: may not be safe for work).

The box appears to be available for sale on JD.com for 699 RMB (~$113). I can see that Linaro is doing some work regularly on Hisilicon STB SoCs (Hi37xx), so there might be a way to get a decent and recent kernel for the box, and an easier ability to run Linux, if that’s something you’d like to do.

Via AndroidPC.es and Eddy Lab on Google+

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  1. Gaby
    July 8th, 2014 at 12:52 | #1

    MiniPC DB has also an article on this new Himedia item, with several pictures, all provided by Chinese sources.
    should be a tad better than Minix X8-H

  2. July 8th, 2014 at 13:40 | #2

    I think Hi3739C has all the features we need. It’s really good. Considering making a board based on it…

  3. Marius
    July 8th, 2014 at 13:52 | #3

    @Tom Cubie
    But will Huawei sell you the SOC ? And is the SATA support native or just through USB ?

  4. Curmudgeon
    July 8th, 2014 at 14:06 | #4

    So which SoC is really in the box, Hi3798C (A15/A7 octacore) or Hi3739C (A9 quad core)? Both are cited above.

  5. Curmudgeon
    July 8th, 2014 at 14:25 | #5

    @Marius
    “Just through USB” might be quite fast given that the board has USB3.

  6. July 8th, 2014 at 14:59 | #6

    @Curmudgeon
    Sorry, there’s actually no Hi3739C, only Hi3798C. However, It seems Hi3798C is a quad core Cortex A9, I don’t know the exact model number for the big little one (Kirin 920).

  7. July 8th, 2014 at 15:11 | #7

    There may be a board based on Hi3798C made by Tom Cubie. “Radxa Silicon” ?
    https://plus.google.com/u/0/+TomCubie/posts/L4jK3zWfUwu

  8. July 8th, 2014 at 16:03 | #8

    @Marius The sata is native, it even has pci-e…

  9. July 8th, 2014 at 18:22 | #9

    @cnxsoft
    wow, native sata support, usb 3.0, awesome!
    so does it has official linux kernel support? I ‘m looking for an arm board to replace my raspberry pi, which is mainly used for bittorrent downloading and file server, but too slow sometimes. :( Do you know some board that has both high performance and up-to-date kernel support?
    Thanks. :)

  10. Jibril
    July 8th, 2014 at 18:57 | #10

    in ka8.hk link, HI3798C (1,5 Ghz) wins on all fronts respect the S802-H (2 Ghz)… or is all smoke ?

  11. July 8th, 2014 at 19:41 | #11

    @Riaqn
    You can find all boards supported by mainline in https://github.com/torvalds/linux/tree/master/arch/arm/boot/dts.
    However it does not indicate the level of support, some of only barely booting, some are headeless, and to be honest I don’t know if there are any that are fully supported. Even the R-Pi does not appear to be completely supported, and requires patches to run mainline.

  12. Jibril
    July 8th, 2014 at 19:57 | #12

    @cnxsoft
    ops, sorry…I hadn’t seen the ka8.hk link (already posted into the article)

  13. July 8th, 2014 at 21:28 | #13

    @cnxsoft
    But support of some boards are not in mainline, but from manufacturers. e.g. amlogic provides kernel for s802 in your previous posts :) . I ‘m wondering if there is any board that has better kernel support. I think 3.10 is quite up-to-date, though :)

  14. Fossxplorer
    July 8th, 2014 at 23:47 | #14

    Very interesting board feature wise. Does it support SATA multiplexer?

  15. July 9th, 2014 at 14:55 | #15

    @Fossxplorer
    There’s very little public information about this SoC, it’s not even on HiSilicon website… So I guess we need some leaks, or have the HiSilicon guys come to their sense and release documentation and SDK publicly…

  16. July 9th, 2014 at 15:02 | #16

    @Riaqn
    Yes, sorry I thought you ask about mainline. For boards with proper kernel support you could probably go with the Freescale ones, such as Wandboard, UDOO.. There’s the also HummingBoard from SolidRun but I’ve read bad stories about their firmware support, or lack thereof. Hardkernel ODROID boards should also be good for Linux support, but only 10/100M Ethernet which might be a limitation with your application.

    One board that I believe has up-to-date kernel support, meaning mainline support, is Atmel SAMA5D3 Xplained, but no video output, unless you connect an LCD display via the RGB? interface -> http://www.cnx-software.com/2014/04/16/atmel-sama5d3-xplained-board-unboxing-and-quick-start-guide/

  17. July 9th, 2014 at 19:05 | #17

    @cnxsoft
    hmm, I look through Wandboard, UDOO, and Hardkernel ODROID, all is too expensive for ARM board in my application. :( I ‘m not a developer, just looking for some lightweight board as NAS. :) With $179(which is the price of Hardkernel ODROID in your last post) there ‘re many x86 board for choice, together with memory and hard disk.
    And the Atmel with only 256M ram is not so good.
    I decide to wait for the first tvbox of s812, which should have decent kernel support from amlogic. And I would get the DTD file from its android firmware. :)

  18. July 9th, 2014 at 19:08 | #18

    @Riaqn
    You would not need to get the latest board. ODROID-U3 costs $59 + shipping (I think ~$30) – http://www.cnx-software.com/2013/12/23/hardkernel-unveils-59-odroid-u3-board-powered-by-exynos-4412-prime-quad-core-soc/

  19. July 9th, 2014 at 19:32 | #19

    @cnxsoft
    Thanks for your link. Looks that the community event is closed, and the special price is not available any more. I have to pay $65 at normal price + $25 shipping. And $90 is not competitive. :( On JD.com you can get a board integrated with celeron c1037U @ 399 RMB and 2G DDR3 memory @ 159 RMB, without shipping fee since I live in China. That is 558 RMB ~ $90. :( With x86 platform there ‘re best kernel support, not to speak of the performance gap between arm and x86.
    The only problem of x86 board is that their sizes ‘re all too HUGE. :)

  20. Grasshopper
    July 12th, 2014 at 22:40 | #20

    Bought today in shanghai. Antutu score is 21600

    Xbmc is working well! But still young product!! The game center program is crashing often…

  21. HooYao
    July 18th, 2014 at 16:12 | #21

    Played around with this product for a week, it costs me around 100 usd. It’s true this product is still young. The basic functionality such as smb, nfs, external hard drive via sata and usb are working well.
    Video playback using stock player is smooth, 4k h.264 and hevc videos are tested without a glitch.
    The hevc videos in the test are from http://www.divx.com/en/hevc-showcase, the original 6.3G h.264 Tears of Steel mkv are also tested, very smooth. it can play bluray iso directly, with simplified navigation bar, audio track & subtitle selection, dts-hd and truehd bitstream is ok.
    tested on Sony kd65x9000a and HTR-3065 AV receiver

  22. Mike
    July 25th, 2014 at 23:41 | #22

    Fresh info: this product will have a PCBA upgrade in September.
    @HooYao – there’s a new update, I will test it next week when mine arrives.

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