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Posts Tagged ‘mini-pc’

Giada F110D and Asus E210 Fanless mini PCs Feature Intel Bay Trail Celeron N2807 Processor

December 19th, 2014 3 comments

We’ve seen many small computer based on Intel Atom Bay Trail-T (Tablet) Z3735F/G processor lately including MINIX NEO Z64 and MeegoPad T01, which should ship by the end of the month (it keeps getting postponed). But Intel also makes Bay Trail-M (Mobile) processor for laptops, including Celeron N2807 dual core processor found in ECS Liva. Two new products based on N2807 processor has recently surfaced: Giada F110D and Asus E210. According to CPU Boss (see Google cache if link has problem), Z3735F has slightly greater multi-core performance than N2807, but the latter has better single thread performance based on Passmark. One key advantage of the Celeron processors over the Atom ones is that they support up to 4GB RAM instead of 1 or 2 GB for the Bay Trail-T processor. Giada F110D also has one version with a more powerful Intel Bay Trail-D (Desktop) Celeron J1900 quad core processor.

Giada F110D

Giada_F110D

Specifications:

  • SoC – Intel Celeron N2807 (Bay Trail M) dual core processor @ 1.58 GHz (Burst: 2.16 GHz – 4.5W TDP) or Intel Celeron J1900 (Bay Trail D)  quad core processor @ 2.0 GHz (Burst: 2.14 GHz – TDP 10W), both with Intel HD graphics.
  • System Memory – Not included. Supports up to 4GB RAM
  • Storage – Not included. Support 2.5″ SATA drive, or mSATA SSD, and comes with 4-in-1 (SD/MMC/MS/MS PRO) card reader.
  • Video Output – 1x HDMI, 1x VGA
  • Audio – HDMI, and Audio In and Out jacks
  • Connectivity – 2x Gigabit Ethernet. Optional 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth 4.0 module.
  • USB – 1x USB 3.0 port, 4x USB 2.0 ports
  • Misc – 2x COM ports, IR receiver
  • Power – N/A
  • Dimensions – 190 x 149 x 26 mm
It will run Windows 7/8.1, and Linux operating systems, pricing and availability have not been announced.

Asus E210

Asus_E210

Specifications:

  • SoC – Intel Celeron N2807 (Bay Trail M) dual core processor @ 1.58 GHz (Burst: 2.16 GHz) – 4.5W TDP
  • System Memory – 2GB to 4GB RAM via 1x SO-DIMM
  • Storage – Up to 128GB SSD, 4-in-1 card reader
  • Video Output – 1x HDMI, 1x VGA
  • Audio – HDMI, and headphone and microphone jacks
  • Connectivity – 1x Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi with external antenna
  • USB – 1x USB 3.0 port, 3x USB 2.0 ports
  • Misc – 1x COM ports, 1x Kesington Lock
  • Power Consumption – 6.36W (idle)
  • Dimensions – 219 x 172.5 x 29 mm
  • Weight – 690 grams

Asus mini PC is sold with a keyboard, mouse, an AC adapter with a power cord, a warranty card, a quick manual, and a VESA mount kit. It will ship with Windows Embedded 8 Standard, Windows Embedded Standard 7, or DOS (FreeDOS?). The latter is probably to let you install your preferred operating systems by yourself. Price and availability are unknown at this tage.More details can be found on Asus E210 product page.

Based on the specs both Giada and Asus models are probably targetting business users first, but there’s no reason why you would not able to use these for private use. Ubuntu is running on ECS Liva, albeit with some caveats, so it should also run on these two models. but possibly without Wi-Fi support. Having said that, Giada claims Linux support so they must have the right drivers…

Via NoteBook Italia, Liliputing, and Fanless Tech

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Jesurun Maxone Allwinner A80 mini PC with 4GB RAM Sells for $184 (Promo)

December 18th, 2014 10 comments

Yesterday, I discovered DealExtreme listed four versions of new Allwinner A80 mini PC called Jesurun Maxone, with a combination of 2GB RAM/16GB Flash, or 4GB RAM/32GB flash, and US or EU power adapters, for respectively $167.40 and $207. But after a closer look, I found out those boxes are probably based on the same hardware used for Tronsmart Draco AW80 Meta and Telos, minus the external Wi-Fi antenna, and the price was a little higher so I did not feature this device in a new article. But today, GearBest provided a coupon code (JM4GCN) allowing to get Maxone 4GB RAM for $183.99, or about $15 discount compared to Draco AW80 Telos. They’ve also provided JM2GCN coupon for the 2GB RAM version, but the price ($149.99) is almost exactly the same as Draw AW80 Meta. Remember that when shopping online from oversea websites, you may be hit by custom duties back home, so try to estimate the duty (if any) in advance, as a $150 device may end up costing $300 in some countries once you include all potential fees (VAT, import duty, courier customs service charge, etc..)

Jesurun_MaxoneJesurun Maxone specifications are indeed exactly the same as the Tronsmart Draco AW80 boxes:

  • SoC – AllWinner Ultra Core A80 4x Cortex 15 @ 1.8 GHz, 4x Cortex A7 @ 1.3 GHz big.LITTLE processor with Imagination Technologies PowerVR GC6230 GPU with support for OpenGL ES 1.1/2.0/3.0, Directx 9.3
  • System Memory – 2GB or 4GB DDR3 depending on model
  • Storage – 16 GB or 32GB eMMC  (depending on model), SD card slot up to 32GB, and SATA port (via a USB 2.0/3.0 bridge)
  • Video  Output – HDMI 1.4b + AV port
  • Audio – HDMI, AV, and optical S/PDIF
  • (Main) Video Codecs – H.265/VP9 up to 1080p @ 30 fps (software decode?), H.264/VP8 up to 4K2K @ 30fps, 1080p120, or 720p240
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac with external antenna, Bluetooth 4.0
  • USB – 1x USB 3.0 OTG port (full size), 2x USB 2.0 host ports
  • Misc – IR receiver
  • Power Supply – 12V/2A
  • Dimensions – 14.8 x 14.8.4 x 2.3 cm
  • Weight – 301 grams

The only difference is that it’s apparently lighter (301 grams vs 442 grams), and the dimensions are also different with Jesurun Maxone being a smaller product (14.8 cm vs 16.4 cm). This is possible even if Maxone and Draco AW80 are based on the same hardware, because as you can check in my unboxing post, the PCBA is smaller than the enclosure for Draco AW80.

Including accessories are also almost the same with a 12V/2A power adapter, a SATA cable, an HDMI cable, the same IR remote control, and a quick start guide in English. The only thing “missing” is a USB to USB cable which can be useful if you want to upgrade the firmware with LiveSuite or PhoenixCard tools, or use the ADB connection.
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Giayee Atom PC is a Rockchip RK3288 Mini PC with a VGA Port, Multiple Placement Options (Crowdfunding)

December 17th, 2014 6 comments

You may know that Rockchip and Intel have a partnership to design Atom Sofia processors, but Giayee Atom PC has nothing to do with this initiative at all, and it’s just a pretty standard Rocchip RK3288 based mini PC, except it includes a VGA port, and various “placement” options namely horizontal position, vertical position, and TV/monitor mount.

Giayee_Atom_PCAtom PC specifications:

  • SoC – Rockchip RK3288 Quad Core Cortex A17 up to 1.8GHz with ARM Mali-T764 GPU supporting OpenGL ES1.1/2.0/3.0, Open VG1.1, OpenCL, DirectX11
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3
  • Storage – 8 GB NAND flash (16 to 32 GB optional)
  • Video Output- HDMI up to 1080p (no 4K?), and VGA up to 1920×1080 @  60 Hz
  • Audio Output / Input – HDMI, 3.5 mm jacks for Audio In and Out
  • Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi. Options: Dual band Wi-Fi, GPS, NFC, and Bluetooth
  • USB – 4x USB Host ports, 1x micro USB host port
  • Other Optional Functions – Camera, LCD, 3G, UART, LVDS, MIPI…
  • Misc – Power button
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A
  • Power Consumption – > 7 Watts

Atom_PC_BoardThe specifications are rather underwhelming, and it’s probably only interesting if you need VGA output, and/or microphone input, and TV / monitor mount (is that VESA mount?, not sure…) combined with the power for RK3288 processors. Optional features such as GPS, NFC, MIPI could make it interesting, and it looks like an RTC battery slot might even be available, but none of these are available in perks listed in the crowdfunding campaign. Some of the specifications are probably wrong, as I hope they us an eMMC flash, instead of a slower NAND flash in their system, and HDMI should support up to 4K30. Android 4.2.2 and Ubuntu 12.04.5 operating are said to be supported. I can’t even remember ever seeing Android 4.2 running in any RK3288 device, so most probably they’ll provide Android 4.4 (and maybe Android 5.0) together with Ubuntu 14.04 or greater.

Atom_PC_Mounting_OptionsThe company has launched the project on Indiegogo, and expects to raised a lowly $10,000, but if they’ve spent as many efforts and attention to detail on product development as they’ve spent on their campaign page, it does not inspire confidence. Pricing is not exactly aggressive either, as the early bird pledge starts at $119 with a 5V/3A power adapter, a base for vertical orientation, and including shipping by DHL to anywhere in the world, with delivery scheduled for March 2015.

You can check the Android and Ubuntu demo below.

Thanks to Nanik for the tip.

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Andromium Transforms Your Smartphone into a mini Desktop PC (Crowdfunding)

December 17th, 2014 3 comments

Mobile desktop convergence has been a buzz word for several years now, and people have tried to use their smarphone as a desktop PC for a while thanks to technologies like MHL, which allows an easy connection between a phone and TV. However, mobile operating systems such as Android are not really suited for desktop use, and it can be a frustrating experience, so there needs to be different user interface in desktop and mobile modes for an optimal user experience. Canonical is working on this, and Ubuntu Edge, an ambitious, but ultimately failed crowdfunding campaign, was part of the strategy for convergence. But a team of developers lead by an ex-Google employee has been designed a solution with a desktop OS (Andromium OS) and a docking station that let you use your smartphone as a phone on the go, and as a desktop computer while docked, with Andromium user interface taking over, and allowing multiple windows for Andromium apps, although Android apps would still run in full screen.

Andromium_OS

Andromium Browser (MS Outlook Website) and Taskbar

Andromium user interface is heavily inspired from Windows 7 or OSX desktop, with famous taskbar and start menu, as you can see in the picture above. While the phone is docked (in desktop mode), you’ll still receive calls, text messages and push notifications. It’s not clear how many Andromium apps are currently available, but there’s a least a File Manager, and a full feature browser which you use in windowed mode. The Andromium docking station includes an HDMI output, 3 USB ports, and a power connector to power and charge your phone.

The best way to get a better idea of the system capabilities and features is to watch the demo video below.

The company has now launched a Kickstarter campaign for the project aiming to raise $100,000. You won’t have to break the bank to support this project, as if you already have a dock for your smartphone, you can pledge $10 for Andromium OS that will be downloadable via Google Play Store, although there’s no guarantee about compatibility. So they also provide docks for Samsung Galaxy Note, S, S3 (2GB RAM), S4, Note 2/3/4. Galaxy S5 is not yet supported. Following popular request, they’ll also support HTC One (M7/M8), LG N4/N5, Motorola Nexus 6, as well some large screen tablets. You can pledge between $29 to $35 to get a docking station and access to Andromium OS. Shipping to the US is included, but you’ll have to add $10 to the rest of the world. People residing in the US can expect their dock as early as February 2015, while others will have to wait at least until June 2015.

The official website Andromiumos.com does not have much more information for now.

Via Liliputing

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PiPo X7 is an Intel Atom Bay Trail Powered “TV Box” Running Windows 8.1 with Bing

December 12th, 2014 No comments

PiPo, a Chinese manufacturer better known for its tablets, has just listed PiPo X7 “Intel TV Box” on their website. This mini PC is powered by an Intel Atom Bay Trail-T processor with 2GB RAM, an unspecified amount of internal store, and running Windows 8.1 with Bing.

Pipo_X7
PiPo X7 specifications:

  •  SoC – Intel Atom Bay Trail Z3735F up to 1.83 GHz or Z3736F up to 2.16 GHz with Intel HD graphics up to 646 MHz
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3L
  • Storage – Internal Storage (Capacity unknown) + micro SD slot
  • Video & Audio Output – HDMI
  • Audio Output – HDMI and audio jack
  • Connectivity – Ethernet, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth
  • USB – 4x USB 2.0 host ports
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A
  • Dimensions – 188 x 129 x 25.6 mm
  • Weight 440g

PiPo’s computer only comes with a power adapter. I always thought Windows 8.1 with Bing was a free (as in beer) version of Windows for low cost devices, but I’ve been told the MeegoPad T01 that boots Android and Windows, requires an extra $25 to pay for the license to activate Windows 8.1 with Bing. Although there are currently issues with running Linux desktop distributions on Intel Bay Trail system, at least one person is motivated to fix bugs, and run Ubuntu on MeegoPad T01, and other Z3735X platforms.

The price for PiPo X7 is not available yet, but if you need a low cost Intel Bay Trail system, you could get MeegoPad T01 for $100, or if you live in the US, ECS LIVA (N2807 / 2GB RAM / 32GB eMMC) now sells for $109.99 on Newegg, not including an operating system.

Via AndroidPC.es and Liliputing

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How To Upgrade Firmware on Ugoos UM3 mini PC

December 9th, 2014 1 comment

Ugoos released two new dual boot Android / Ubuntu images for Ugoos UT3 and UM3, which reduces the size of the system by 300MB, includes LibreOffice, replaces Firefox by Chromium + PepperFlash plugin, and fixes various bugs:

The firmware update procedure for Rockchip RK3288 is well-known, and Ugoos even includes a word file with flashing instructions in Microsoft Windows with the firmware images. However, it still took me about one hour to find out how to do with Ugoos UM3, so I thought I’d write a post in case others encounter the same issue.

I flash the firmware in Ubuntu, so instead of using Android Tool, I flashed it with upgrade_tool command line utility I got from Orion R28 SDK, but you can also download Linux_Upgrade_Tool_v1.2.tar.gz directly.

First let’s enter recovery mode. The procedure is the same as for any device, and you have to press the recovery button (“reset” pinhole in UM3), insert a USB cable between your PC and the OTG port of your device, wait a couple of seconds and release the recovery button.

Ugoos_UM3_USB_OTG

The thing that wasted so much time was the marking on the device. First I naively used the “OTG/DC” micro USB port, but I did not get anything in the kernel log (dmesg), and after several tries, and switching between my Linux PC, and a netbook running Windows XP, I decided to investigate further, and found out the actual USB port was the left USB port on the side of the device.

Once I found this little detail out, it worked fine, and I followed the same flashing instructions I used with Tronsmart Orion R28.

If you get the message “Creating Comm Object failed!”  while using upgrade_tool, change the udev rules in Ubuntu as follows:

sudo sh -c 'echo SUBSYSTEM==\"usb\", ATTR{idVendor}==\"2207\", MODE=\"0666\", GROUP=\"plugdev\" > /etc/udev/rules.d/51-android.rules'
sudo udevadm control --reload-rules
sudo udevadm trigger

And now you should be able to complete the firmware upgrade:

./upgrade_tool uf UM3_dualboot_v0.2.img

After a successful firmware update, which should take about 10 minutes, upgrade_tool output should look like:

Loading firmware...
Support Type:RK32    FW Ver:4.4.02    FW Time:2014-12-08 17:34:53
Loader ver:2.17    Loader Time:2014-11-10 03:42:00
Upgrade firmware ok.

That’s all for today, now I’ve got some testing to do…

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Mini Review of Jesurun T034 Android TV Stick Featuring a Gigabit Ethernet Port

December 5th, 2014 1 comment

The vast majority of Android TV sticks only provide Wi-Fi to connect to the Internet, but Jesurun T034 is one of the rare TV stick that also features an Ethernet interface, and a Gigabit one at that. I’ve already listed specifications and uploaded pictures of the device, so today it’s time for a review. I’ve reviewed so many Rockchip RK3288 devices in the past, so I won’t write my usual full review, but I will focus on network connectivity, internal storage performance, stability / temperature measurements, as I’ve found high temperature to be problematic in another RK3288 TV stick, and I’ll quickly show the launcher, test the remote with the extension cable, and run Antutu 5.3 benchmark.

Jesurun T034 User Interface and Remote Control

I’ve connected the IR extension cable, an Ethernet cable, the RF dongle for Mele F10 Deluxe to the USB  port, and the RF dongle for Tronsmart Mars G01 wireless gamepad to the micro USB port of the device via a USB OTG adapter (not included with T034), as well as the power adapter. This is what it looks like on my messy desk.

Jesurun_T034_Ethernet_HDMI_TV_StickThe IR extension cable is on the right of the picture, and you can stick it something thanks to the 3M tape on the back of the IR receiver. I’ve inserted two AAA batteries in the remote, walked about 5 meters away, and it works as expected.

Boot time is ultra fast, and T034 boot is about 20 seconds, matching the quickest booting Android TV boxes on the market. The user interface is imply the stock Android home screen, with a 1920×1080 resolution.

Android Home Screen on T034 (Click for Original Size)

Android Home Screen on T034 (Click for Original Size)

The system feels fast, just like other RK3288 devices, and I had no problem installing few app I needed from Google Play.

Temperature Measurement and Stability

Based on my previous reviews, I’ve seen devices getting really hot, and sometimes choking when playing Riptide GP2, and some devices also failed to play an entire movie in XBMC. So I’ve tried both, and also added temperature measurements while idles and right after Antutu benchmark completes. I measure the maximum temperature with an IR thermometer scanning both the both and bottom of the case.

Temperature
Top Bottom
Idle (7-hour) 45 °C 50 °C
Antutu 5.3 64 °C 72 °C
Riptide GP2 (15 minutes) 75 °C 80 °C
Full movie (after 1 hour) 60 °C 60 °C

So it gets hot, but not that much more than full-sized TV boxes, and it never got hot enough to actually reboot itself, so I found Jesurun T034 to be pretty stable, despite its small form factor.

XBMC 13.0-ALPHA12 (Compiled: August 22 2014) is pre-installed with this firmware, so that’s the one I used, but for Rockchip RK3288, it’s probably better to use the SPMC apk I tried in my Open Hour Chameleon review. At first, I planned to watch a new movie (AVI/Xvid/AC3) but the frame rate was only 15 fps instead of 24 fps, so I skipped, and later I played my usual test movie (H.264) which played find for almost one hour, until it suddenly stopped. However, I could click again to resume the movie where it stopped.

Networking and Storage Performance

I had to test Ethernet since it’s the key selling point of this device compared to its competitors, and I also tested Wi-Fi, in case some people want to use it as an access point or server using the “Portable Hotspot” function in Android, and with Linux.

Throughput in Mbps (Click to Enlarge)

Throughput in Mbps (Click to Enlarge)

I’ve measured the raw Ethernet performance with iPerf, and the result is about the same as Open Hour Chameleon, and with 510 Mbps and 768 Mbps in either directions, Gigabit is working fnie, although it’s not optimal, but it’s good enough for USB 2.0 storage devices that you may attach to the stick.

iperf log:

------------------------------------------------------------
Server listening on TCP port 5001
TCP window size: 85.3 KByte (default)
------------------------------------------------------------
[  4] local 192.168.0.104 port 5001 connected with 192.168.0.107 port 54166
------------------------------------------------------------
Client connecting to 192.168.0.107, TCP port 5001
TCP window size:  153 KByte (default)
------------------------------------------------------------
[  6] local 192.168.0.104 port 35021 connected with 192.168.0.107 port 5001
[ ID] Interval       Transfer     Bandwidth
[  6]  0.0-60.0 sec  3.57 GBytes   510 Mbits/sec
[  4]  0.0-60.0 sec  5.37 GBytes   768 Mbits/sec

Unfortunately, Wi-Fi performance is not that good, although still usable to browse the web, and play 1080p YouTube videos for example, as least in my environment.

Throughput in MB/s

Throughput in MB/s

The test used ES File Explorer to transfer a file between the internal flash and a SAMBA share.

A speedy internal flash is important for fast boot and app loading times which are affected by read speed, and a poor write speed may affect overall system performance, for example while installing apps.

Read and Write Speed in MB/s

Read and Write Speed in MB/s (Click to Enlarge)

As expected from the boot time I got previously, the eMMC read speed is avery good (40 MB/s), and the write speed is not too bad at 10.50 MB/s, which strangely is higher than on Samsung eMMC specs (6MB/s). Tested with A1 SD benchmark app.

Jesurun T034 Antutu Benchmark

Finally, I’ve run Antutu 5.3 to check out if the CPU frequency and system performance was lowered in order to improve the stability of the stick..

Jesurun_T034_Antutu_5.3The score is 34,180 points which is only slightly lower than the usual 35,000 to 38,000 points I got with full-sized RK3288 media players.

The conclusion of this mini review is that T034 gets a little hot, but it does not seem to affect stability, Gigabit Ethernet works well, but Wi-Fi is the weakest for my recent reviews, and Rockchip RK3288 is still clocked @ 1.8 GHz providing a good Antutu score, despite the smaller form factor.

Jesurun T034 was provided to me by GearBest, which sells it for $79.98 with JT034CN coupon code (Valid until Dec 31, 2014). It can also be purchased on DealExtreme, or  GeekBuying. Few sellers use the name “Jesurun T034″, but if you look for MK802 V instead, or just T034, which should be exactly the same hardware, you’ll find it on Aliexpress, and Tinydeals.

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CX-S806 Android Media Player with 4K UHD, H.265 Codec Support Goes for $63 and Up

December 4th, 2014 4 comments

CX-S806 is one of the first Android TV boxes powered by Amlogic S812, providing both 4K UHD video output, and H.265 codec support. It started selling for about $80 with 2GB RAM at the end of October, but now you can get the 1GB RAM version for $62.90, and the 2GB version for $73.10, both prices including shipping from an Aliexpress seller with excellent feedback, albeit from only 22 sales.

CX-S806_Amlogic_S802_mini_PCAs a reminder, I’ll list the full specs again:

  • SoC – Amlogic S812 quad core cortex A9r4 @ 2.0 GHz with octa-core Mali-450MP6 GPU up to 600+ MHz
  • System Memory – 1 to 2 GB DDR3
  • Storage – 8GB flash. No SD card slot
  • Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet, dual band 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 (AP6330 wireless module)
  • Video Output – HDMI 1.4b up to 2160p @ 30 Hz (Summary says HDMI 2.0, specs 1.4b), 3.5mm AV jack (composite + stereo audio)
  • Audio Output – HDMI, AV, optical S/PDIF
  • Video Codecs – H.265 / HEVC [email protected] up to 4k2k@30fps, H.264 AVC [email protected] up to 4k2k@30fps, MPEG1/2/4 up to 1080p60, AVS up to 1080p60, WMV/VC-1 up to 1080p60, WebM up to VGA resolution, RealVideo 8/9/10 up to 1080p,
  • Audio Formats/Codecs – MP3, WMA, OGG, FLAC, AAC, Dolby, DTS, SRS, AC-3
  • USB – 3x USB 2.0 host ports, including one OTG port.
  • Misc – Reset button, recovery button.
  • Power Supply – 5V/3A
  • Dimensions – 160 x 96 x 31 mm
  • Weight – 151 grams

The box runs Android 4.4.2 Kitkat with MediaBox launcher, and comes with an IR remote control, an HDMI cable, a power adapter, and a user’s manual.

I can’t find any reviews for CX-806 yet, but if you buy one make sure it comes with S812, as earlier models featured Amlogic S802 instead. I haven’t review any Amlogic S812 devices yet, although I do have an M8S media player sitting on my sofa, but it has been collecting dust, since the firmware is not quite ready for testing, so I’m just patiently waiting. Next week, I’ll receive a MINIX NEO X8-H Plus, so I should finally able to try out Amlogic S812 4K/H.265 capabilities.

Thanks to Gabe for the tip.

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