U4 Quad Hybrid Android TV Box Unboxing and Teardown with DVB-T2, DVB-S2 and ATSC Tuners

Yesterday, I wrote about U4 Quad Hybrid Android Digital TV receiver based on HiSilicon Hi3796M processor, and supporting for DVB-T2/T/C, DVB-S2, and ATSC standards. Today, I’ve received the device, taken a few pictures, and torn it down to find out more about the hardware. The full review will come out in a few weeks.

U4 Quad Hybrid Unboxing

DHL did their job quickly as I received the set-top box in about two days in the following package.

U4_Quad_Hybrid_PackageThe box comes with a 12V/1.5Am AV and HDMI cables, a WiFi antenna, an IR remote control requiring two AAA batteries (not included), a user’s manual in Korean language only and… a separate tuner…

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Click to Enlarge

So let’s check that tuner more in details…

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Click to Enlarge

The demodulator chip is LG3390A, so an ATSC tuner is included in the package. Not very useful in Thailand, but it’s good to know it’s included. I also open the cover of the bottom connector.

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Click to Enlarge

And if I’m correct, what we have here is Aihora AV2012 DVB-S2 tuner chip, so that little expansion board should support both ATSC and DVB-S2.

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Click to Enlarge

The box itself look fairly nice. We’ve got a USB 2.0 host port and a a USB 3.0 host port on the side (both limited to 500 mA), as well as a micro SD slot, the AV port, and a mini USB port for an IR/LED extension cable (not included). The rear panel features ANT IN and LNB IN antenna connectors, coaxial S/PDIF, the WiFi connector, HDMI output, 10/100M Ethernet, and a power jack for the 12V input.  If the antenna ports do not mean much to you, a look to the Korean user’s manual may help, as ANT IN is referred to “Ter In” and LNB IN to “Sat In”, which should be the left connector if for DVB-T2/T/C and the right connector for DVB-S2/T2, and if you want ATSC + DVB-S2, you simply need to insert the ATSC tuner. The sad part is that doing so would void your warranty according to the sticker on the rear panel… So I don’t really get it.

You could also watch the unboxing video for something more visual.

U4 Quad Hybrid Teardown

You’ll need to remove three screws to open the device. The one on the rear panel above the HDMI port, and two on the bottom of the case.

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Click to Enlarge

There’s a sticker in Korean on the bottom about Shenzhen Sosci Technology, which specializes in, you guessed it.. LED aquarium lights! I’m not sure if there are other companies with the same name, and I picked the wrong one, or they simply chose to diversify. The MAC address suffix 00:11:AD points to Shanghai Ruijie Digital Technology, an Internet service provider, and the company that actually sent me the product is called Shenzhen Vivant Technology, so lots of parties involved here!

U4 Quad Hybrid Board (Click to Enlarge)
U4 Quad Hybrid Board (Click to Enlarge)

The board called W96M_MAIN VO.4 feature the HiSilicon processor with a heatsink, an 8GB FORESEE NFEFEH68-08G eMMC flash, two SKhynix H5TQ4G63AFR DDR3 chips (2x 512MB), and Realtek RTL8188ETV Wifi module.

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Click to Enlarge

If we zoom in on the tuner area, we can see AVL6762TA DVB-T2/T/C demodulator, and on the main board itself and located on the bottom right of the picture above, Hisilicon Hi3136 is the DVB-S2/S demodulator.

U4_Quad_Hybrid_LCD_Display

There’s also two LEDs, an IR receiver, and a 4-digit LED panel on the front of the board.

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Click to Enlarge

There’s basically nothing on the bottom of the board, except S1 switch which should be the firmware recovery button.

I’d like to thanks Shenzhen Vivant Technology for sending a review sample, and you contact them if you wish to purchase in quantities. They also sell U4 Quad Hybrid for $119.99 shipped by DHL on Aliexpress, but a cheaper option is to go with China Post for $106.69 instead.

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natsu
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natsu

the build quality seems very nice, but the price put it in direct competition with wetek and eventually wetek play+

Steve
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Steve

Actually – I think Korea is looking at switching from ATSC to DVB-T2 as they move from a first gen to second gen digital TV system. It doesn’t look as if they are going to go ATSC 3.0 (as the US may)

I think ATSC is effectively dead-in-the-water outside North America. DVB and ISDB are the two major players now (outside China).

Steve
Guest
Steve

Sorry – tried to edit the above post. It looks like Korea has tested DVB-T2 for UHD, and may deploy it IF ATSC 3.0 isn’t ready. My previous post may be a little inaccurate as it was based on out of date information.

potter
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potter

ATSC3.0 still has a long way to go without a definite spec. T2 might prevail except north america

EddyLab
Guest

natsu :
the build quality seems very nice, but the price put it in direct competition with wetek and eventually wetek play+

1. U4PVR Settop is not normal OTT box.
It is system broadcast settop.
Because, It is support of CAS System.
But AMLogic Chipset can not support of CAS.

2. World wide Top of set-top company’s are korea company – Humax, GAON, Topfield etc.
The korea Design company has experience so many kind of settop’s development. for 15years.

3. The system broadcast settop not cheap one.
Because Many high level engineers has development of that.

4. In korea, there is not include of WiFi module version,
but sales price is $126. (ATSC / DVB-T2)

EddyLab
Guest

@potter

Live ATSC 3.0 broadcast at CES2016 delivers 4K UHD HDR to LG OLED 4K TVs
http://www.digitaltvnews.net/?p=26861

Korea UHDTV broadcast will start end of 2016.
We did not know which one selected type. ^^

But ATSC 3.0 is new technology right now.
Also support of LG with SAMSUNG UHDTV makers.

We already test of Korea Terrestrial UHD Broadcasting experiments with U4PVR (DVB-T2 version)
It is playback 10sec, but it became finished.
because it is not support of [email protected] [email protected]

I think that will be support of DVB-T2 Terrestrial UHD Broadcasting with hisilicon-hi3798c-v200.

I really looking forwarder it ^^

EddyLab
Guest

@cnxsoft

160122 Full version FW :
(Sorry, It is korea version. You have to change of language.)
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B-FkgOrLKTAkQzFlY2F2dHR0cEE

A. IPTV broadcasting support (Not support of recording)
B. You can insert of IPTV broadcasting IP address in TVHeadend index list.
C. Also, It is support of CCTV IP webcam. (Not support of recording)
D. Support to PVR recording to NAS (beta test) – Synology NAS

* learn remotcon key has some problem.
learn key ==> no mark small key

* I already send a message : they mistake to send a Tuner module. ^^

taki
Guest
taki

Where is cas on board? or smartcard reader

mdel
Guest
mdel

i’m looking for an “android” dvb s2 box, mostly for their powerful am cpus with h265 capabilities.
i’m familiar with tvheadend with kodi frontend on openelec or other linux disros but i can’t find out which “app” is used to play live tv on android ?
It’ll probably be covered in cnx review but in the meantime if someone could point me to those apps names, i don’t expect it to be as ful featured as tvheadend but i’d like to test it anyways..
thx

EddyLab
Guest

@taki

CAS(Conditional Access System) is support from SOC.
System carrier did not want SW CAS.

Techy
Guest
Techy

EddyLab,

Amlogic support all CAS by HW CSA and SW CSA engine while HiSilicon support all illegaly over SoftCam emulation.

This device looks overpriced and comes with very old android

By the way HiSilicon not supporting Google Widevine and Microsoft Playready so there is no OTT apps to be working on this device which is big shame and practically this is reason why Huawei for Nexus 6P used Qualcomm SoC.

adem
Guest
adem

does this box have signal amplifier like most tv’s have.

Sentiro
Guest
Sentiro

Hello EddyLab/Techy.

As I know, Amlogic chipset was not supported HW CSA algorithm exactly. and also smart cards well with Dual core chipset .

With Amlogic chipset, some of company tried to implement CAS , but it was not successful on performance due to SW specific CSA block. So when they use real CAS channels in EU, there are some broken picture issue.
I am not sure that issue was fixed or not.

From this link, I knew Amlogic are supporting exactly CI+ and smartcard.
http://www.cnx-software.com/tag/amlogic/

I hope that this CPU can support well both side for DVB part.

Due to this CSA block issue and bad support for smart card, one of reason why DVB manufacturer didn’t develope AMlogic CPU for DVB boxes.

As I know, Hisilicon CPU can support Widevine. Microsoft Playready not sure..
About with DVB part with Android, It was sure that most of AMlogic box was too poor till now.

of course, Hisilicon box was same
But I know this U4 Quad is best box with DVB/ATSC box that I saw before.^ ^
If you have any other opinion, I can explain more details.

EddyLab
Guest

@Techy, Sentiro

Thx, Sentiro.

This U4PVR that is optimized for HD video playback and recording.
Of course, exceptions for things like games that require high-performance specifications.

The CPU of this product is not a product of the latest specification consent.

However, this product is not only a general product optimization and porting Google’s Android FW system,
additional a lot of PVR functions.

PVR products are typically due to long development period,
it is difficult to adopt the latest specifications of the CPU.

Value of the product, rather than simply determined with a CPU, a product cost.
I think we should judge has the capability and reliability of the product.

EddyLab
Guest
pet
Guest
pet

cccam on box how can be installed?

Sentiro
Guest
Sentiro

@pet yes.

Wing
Guest
Wing

pet :
cccam on box how can be installed?

Sentiro :
@pet yes.

How do you install it?

rovay
Guest
rovay

Were I can buy a Dvb-c tuner for my ATSC U4 Quad?

rovay
Guest
rovay

I have a U4 Hybrid box with SAT and ATSC hybrid tuner. I’m looking to change it with SAT and DVB-c/t/t2 for Europe. My question is can I buy such a tuner from somwere?