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Posts Tagged ‘set-top box’

UyeSee T1H 4K Android TV Box Features USB 3.0, Gigabit Ethernet, and HDMI In

August 18th, 2014 3 comments

Shenzhen UyeSee Technology, a company specializing in audio / video products, has announced UyeSee T1H Android TV box powered by Mstar MSO9810 quad core processor, with 1 to 2GB RAM, 8 to 32GB eMMC flash, and featuring high speed ports such as Gigabit Ethernet and USB 3.0, as well as HDMI In supporting PiP (Picture-in-Picture) thanks to the dual decoder found in the processor. T1H is not the first Mstar 9810 STB I mention here, as Kaiboer already has a few models with Q5, Q6, and F5, but the latter focuses on the Chinese market, whereas Uyesee plans to expand to oversea markets, and the firmware is available in English, and other languages supported by Android, too.
Uyesee_T1H
UyeSee T1H specifications:

  • SoC – Mstar MSO9180 quad core ARM Cortex A9 @ 1.5GHz with a quad-core ARM Mali-450 MP2 GPU @ 500MHz.
  • System Memory – 1GB to 2GB DDR3 @ 1866MHz?
  • Storage – 8 , 16 or 32 GB eMMC flash + microSD card slot
  • Video I/O – HDMI 1.4 out up to 4K30, HDMI in, AV (CVBS)
  • Audio I/O – HDMI in/out, optical S/PDIF, AV port
  • Video Playback
    • MPEG-1/2, MPEG-4, DivX, H.264, H.265/HVC, VC-1, H.263, Real Media, MVC…
    • Up to 4K, 60Mbps (H.264)
    • 3D H.264 MVC Decoder/H.264 Encoder (720P)
  • Audio Formats and Codecs – MPEG, WMA, WAV, APE, OGG, FLAC, ACC, MPEG1,MPEG2(Layer I/II), MP3, AC-3, E-AC-3, AAC-LC, WMA, HE-AAC
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, single or (optional) dual band Wi-Fi 802 b/g/n with external antenna
  • USB – 1x USB2.0 host ports, 1x USB 3.0 port
  • Misc – IR receiver
  • Power Supply – 12V/2A
  • Dimensions - 190 x 127 x 27 mm
  • Weight – 600 grams (package?)
T1H PCBA (Click to Enlarge)

UT1 PCBA (Click to Enlarge)

The box runs Android 4.4.2. That’s about all the information I have now, and this media player is not available for purchase online yet. You can check out Uyesee T1H product page for a few more details. Charbax interviewed the company about their Wi-Fi audio box, and Android TV boxes based on Rockchip RK3288, HiSilicon 3798m, and more.., The part specific to T1H box starts at the 7:00 mark.

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Probox2 EX Android TV Box and Remote+ Unboxing

August 15th, 2014 5 comments

W2COMP sent me their Probox2 EX Android TV Box (click link for full specs) powered by Amlogic S802-H processor with DTS and Dolby hardware decoding, 2GB RAM, 16GB eMMC, and the usual USB ports, and wired and wireless connectivity. Probox2 EX is a direct competitor to MINIX NEO X8-H with similar features, and it also comes with an air mouse called Remote+ with gaming and voice control functions. Today, I’ll post some pictures, and videos about the device and its internal, following by a full review sometimes next week.

Probox2 EX Unboxing

I’ve received not one, but two boxes in the package I received via Fedex.

Probox2_EX_Remote+_PackageThe first package contains Probox2 EX Android media player, and the smaller one Probox2 Remote+ air mouse.

Probox2 EX and Accessories (Click to Enlarge)

Probox2 EX and Accessories (Click to Enlarge)

The device comes with a few accessories including a 5V/2A power supply, HDMI and AV cables, an external Wi-Fi antenna, a micro USB to USB cable, an infrared remote control. and a user’s manual in English.

Probox2 EX (Click to Enlarge)

Probox2 EX (Click to Enlarge)

The power button can be found on the top of the plastic enclosure, which IMHO is more convenient than a power button placed in the side, but that’s just a details.  At the back of the device, we’ll find the power barrel, AV output (also used as a firmware upgrade button), an Ethernet port, HDMI output, optical S/PDIF, and on the side, we have all USB ports (2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB ITG), as well as a micro SD card slot. An Wi-Fi antenna connector can be found on the other side.

Probox2 Remote+ with RF Dongle and  User guide  (Click to Enlarge)

Probox2 Remote+ with RF Dongle and User guide (Click to Enlarge)

Now let’s open the air mouse package. It contains the air mouse, the RF dongle and a user guide (See side and back of the guide for reference). The main listed features are: 2.4GHz technology, six-axis remote control air mouse + gaming + gyroscope + mic. It can be used with Android, Linux, Mac OS and Windows just like all other air mice. There’s no internal battery, and it’s powered by 2 AAA batteries that are not included.
The video unboxing of Probox2 EX and Remote+ can be watched below.

Probox2 EX PCBA

When I tried to open the device, I was surprised not to see any screws. It can’t be a pain to open casing that are just clipped, but thsi one came off pretty easily. You just need to insert a sharp object such as a flat precision screwdriver on the bottom of the enclosure, between the two plastic parts, and it comes off pretty easily.

Bottom of Probox2 EX Board (Click to Enlarge)

Bottom of Probox2 EX Board (Click to Enlarge)

There’s a steel plate at the bottom, and some pads to protect the board, and maybe help with heat dissipation. But there’s not much to see here, so let’s remove the four screws holding the board.

Top of Probox2 EX Board (Click to Enlarge)

Top of Probox2 EX Board (Click to Enlarge)

There’s an aluminium heatsink on top of S802-H SoC, the Wi-Fi module is AP6330, and the UART pins can be found on the left of PROBOX2 sticker on the bottom right of the board. You’ll also notice the switch for firmware upgrade just behind the AV jack, a solution commonly found in Amlogic devices.

Probox2 EX can be purchased for $149.99 on W2COMP including shipping, and a Probox2 Remote+ air mouse.

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Rippl-TV Android TV Box Brings XBMC Front and Center

August 6th, 2014 5 comments

Most Android TV boxes come pre-loaded with XBMC, but Rippl-TV goes a step further by replacing the Android home screen, or other common found launchers, by XBMC which is used not only as a media center, but also to launch apps, access the settings, and so on. Everything is done within XBMC. The hardware is very similar to SZTomato / Enybox M8, and Shenzhen Tomato appears to be the company behind this project, or at least promoting it.

Rippl-TV_XBMC_Home_ScreenRippl-TV hardware specifications:

  • SoC – AMLogic S802 quad core Cortex A9r4 processor @ 2GHz with Mali‐450MP6 GPU
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3
  • Storage – 8GB NAND flash + SD card slot
  • Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet, dual band Wi‐Fi (2.4GHz/5GHz) & Bluetooth (AP6330)
  • Video Output – HDMI 1.4b, AV. HDMI supports 1080p, 4K2K 30fps
  • Audio Output – HDMI, AV, and optical S/PDIF
  • Video Codecs and Containers – MPEG1/2/4, H.264, AVC, VC‐1, RM/RMVB, Xvid, DivX3/4/5/6, RealVideo8/9/10…
  • Audio – MP3, WMA, AAC, WAV, OGG, AC3, DDP, TrueHD, DTS, DTS HD, FLAC, APE…
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports
  • Misc – Power LED (ON:blue; Standby:Red), IR receiver
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A
Rippl-TV

Rippl-TV

The box runs Android 4.4.2, and a thread on Freaktab seems to confirm it’s the same hardware as the “squared M8″. During my review of the M8 (aka EM8), I found it to be a bit unstable, but since then, I’ve had several people report they were unable to play complete movies in XBMC, as it would stop about 30 minutes or so, even with the latest firmware. It seems odd to launch a new product based on a platform with stability issues, or maybe I and others were unlucky and received bad samples…

Nevertheless the interesting part is the UI, and you can see how everything is controlled from XBMC in the video below.

It might also be possible to do the same by yourself, by installing add-ons, and automatically starting XBMC at boot time. I’m also not convinced of the usefulness of having XBMC as the main UI, but it’s probably just a matter of taste.

The box is not available for purchase by individuals just yet, and the company is now looking for distributors (MOQ: 500). You can find more information on Rippl-TV website and their Facebook page.

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Skytecx SK-R68b Android TV Box Comes with Three Wi-Fi Antennas

July 28th, 2014 3 comments

There’s now a pretty long list of Android media players powered by Rockchip RK3288, and they keep coming up. While I don’t cover most of them, Skytecx SK-R68b is a little more interesting because for some reasons, the manufacturer has decided to go with not only two, but three Wi-Fi antennas, and the product is the type that you place directly on top of your TV.

Skytecx_SK-R68bThe rest of the specifications looks pretty standard:

  • SoC – Rockchip RK3288 quad core CortexA17 @ 1.8 GHz with ARM Mali-T764 GPU
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3
  • Storage – 8 to 32GB NAND flash (8GB by default) + micro SD card slot (up to 32 GB)
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, dual band WiFi 802.11 b/g/n (2.4GHz/5GHz) and 802.11 a/c with triple Wi-Fi antennas, and Bluetooth 4.0
  • Video & Audio Output – HDMI 2.0 output (female) up to 1080p (sic), AV output (3.5mm jack)
  • Video Codecs
    • Decoding – MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4,H.263, H.264, H.265,AVS, VC-1, RV, VP6/VP8, Sorenson Spark, MVC
    • Encoding – H.264, H.265, VP8, MVC (1080p)
    • H.264, H.265 Data Rate – Up to 60Mbps
  • Audio Codecs/Formats – MP1, MP2, MP3, WMA, WAV, OGG, OGA, APE, FLAC, AAC, M4A, 3GPP
  • USB – 2x USB Host port
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A
  • Dimensions – N/A

A power adapter, an IR remote control, an HDMI cable, and user’s manual are included by default with the device, and optionally an AV cable, air mouse, and/or wireless mouse can be provided.

The box is listed on Aliexpress for about $100 including shipping. The seller, Skytecx, has zero feedback, but they might be the manufacturer of the device as they also have a page on ec21.com with the full name “Shenzhen Skytecx Electronic Co.Ltd”. Although the product is listed on Aliexpress, you should not expect the TV box to be available right now. The latest news about RK3288 products are that there are still quite a few software bugs, HDMI is not working properly right now, and HDMI 2.0 may not be supported at the beginning. Wi-Fi support may also be the part of the specs where specs could be wrong. I’ve seen boards with AP6330 or AP6635 Wi-Fi modules, but most sellers claim support for 802.11ac, which you won’t get with AP6330.

Unrelated, but useful, here’s a list of Ampak module features I found while looking up for AP6335: (Source: 1688.com)

  • AP6181: WiFi
  • AP6210: WiFi/BT4.0
  • AP6251: WiFi/GPS (GLNSS)
  • AP6330: WiFi 2.4G,5G/BT4.0/FM
  • AP6476: WiFi/BT4.0/FM/GPS (GLNSS)
  • AP6493: WiFi/BT4.0/NFC
  • AP6441: WiFi2.4G,5G/BT4.0/NFC
  • AP6234: WiFi2.4G,5G/BT4.0
  • AP6335: WiFi 11ac 2.4G,5G/BT4.0/FM

Provided this list is correct, that means only products based on AP6335 module will support 802.11ac, all others AP6xxx modules only support 802.11 b/g/n. There will probably be other 802.11ac modules from other brands though.

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

July 8th, 2014 22 comments

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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Zoomtak T8 Android TV Box Powered by Amlogic S802 Features a 2.5″ SATA Bay, an Aluminum Enclosure

June 26th, 2014 4 comments

There are now several Android TV boxes powered by Amlogic S802 such as Tronsmart Vega S89, SZTomato/Eny M8, and Minix Neo X8, and Zoomtak T8 hardware specifications are quite similar to these three devices, except it happens to feature an internal 2.5″ SATA bay placed under the board, and the body is made of aluminum.

Zoomtak_T8Zoomtak T8 specifications:

  • SoC – Amlogic S802 quad core cortex A9r4 @ 2 GHz with Mali-450MP6 GPU
  • System Memory – 1GB DDR3
  • Storage – 8GB NAND flash + SD/MMC/MS card reader + 2.5″ SATA bay
  • Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi with external antenna.
  • Video Output – HDMI 1.4a, composite output, and component output
  • Audio Output – HDMI, stereo RCA, and optical S/PDIF
  • Video Container Formats – DAT, MPEG, MPE, MPG, TS/TP, VOB, ISO, AVI, MP4, MOV, 3GP, FLV, MKV, M2TS, MTS, M4V, WMV, ASF, RM/RMVB, etc…
  • Audio Formats – MP2, MP3, WMA, WAV, OGG, OGA, FLAC, ALAC, APE, AAC etc…
  • USB – 3x USB 2.0 host ports
  • Misc – IR receiver, LED display on front panel, and power button.
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A

S802_SATA_BayThe box is strangely said to run Android 4.2, instead of Android 4.4 for all other S802 devices, and comes with an HDMI cable, a user’s manual and an IR remote control. The case is made of aluminum available in black, gold, or silver. The downsides are that there’s only 1GB RAM, and Bluetooth is only supported with an external USB Bluetooth dongle. The specs only list PAL/NTSC to 1080p60 resolutions to be supported, no 4K, which seems odd as well. Having said that, the manufacturer’s product page as different hardware specs with 2GB RAM, built-in Bluetooth 4.0, 4K output, and Android 4.4 with XBMC pre-installed. For people who care about proper power handling, power on/off can be handled both by the remote control and the power button on the box, which should be mean an MCU is controlling the power.

Zoomtak T8 can be purchased for $79 + shipping (about $20) on Zoomtak Aliexpress store. With an Aluminum casing and a SATA bay it seems pretty inexpensive, so I’d assume the specs on Zoomtak Aliexpress might be correct, rather than the ones on their own website. AFAIK, S802 SoC does not features SATA, so it is most likely implemented via a USB 2.0 to SATA chip limiting throughput to 60MB/s in theory, but in practice it should be even lower. I’m also a little concerned about power dissipation seeing where the SATA is placed in the enclosure.

[Update: חן קסל left comments on Google+ saying he has received the box, it comes with 2GB RAM, built-in Bluetooth, Android 4.4, and the hard drive he has inserted is working fine. Not bought from Aliexpress however.]

Via AndroidPC.es

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Giveaway Week – Tronsmart Prometheus Android STB

June 22nd, 2014 102 comments

The last product for this giveaway week will be Tronsmart Prometheus, and Android TV Box with hardware specifications very similar to Gbox Midnight MX2, namely an Amlogic AML8726-MX dual core processor, 1GB RAM, 4GB flash, HDMI and AV output, optical S/PDIF output, Wi-Fi and Ethernet connectivity and 3 USB ports.

Tronsmart_Promotheus_Package_ContentMy first review had Prometheus run Android 4.1 firmware, but since a firmware update meant it was one of the first Android media player that could run Android 4.2 and XBMC, I also decided to write an updated review, in which I found the firmware to be responsive and stable, XBMC to work as expected except for a few videos (RMVB, MPEG-2)  and more critically audio/video sync issues, but these have been fixed in a subsequent firmware update.

To enter the draw simply leave a comment below. I can’t find the HDMI cable, so it won’t be included in the giveaway.

Other rules are as follows:

  • Only one entry per contest. I will filter out entries with the same IP and/or email address.
  • Contests are open for 48 hours starting at 10am (Bangkok time) every day. Comments will be closed after 48 hours.
  • Winners will be selected with random.org
  • I’ll contact the winners by email or Facebook, and I’ll expect an answer within 24 hours, or I’ll pick another one.
  • Shipping
    • Free for winners with a shipping address in Thailand
    • Flat fee of $20 for the rest of the world payable via Paypal within 48 hours once the contest is complete, or I’ll pick another winner.
  • I’ll post all 8 prizes at the same time, so around the 25th of June, using Airmail (Small Packet) with tracking.
  • I’ll make sure we have 8 different winners, so if you have already won a device during this week giveaway, I’ll draw another person.

Good luck!

In case it’s not your lucky day, or hasn’t been your lucky week, you could always buy Tronsmart Prometheus for $94.99 on GeekBuying or $89.99 on DealExtreme.

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