WeTek Play Giveaway with DVB-S2 or DVB-C/T/T2 Tuner

WeTek Play is dual core set-top box officially supporting Android 4.4 and OpenELEC 5.0, and with support for several other Android or Linux distributions. I’ve recently written an updated review of WeTek Play with the latest Android 4.4 firmware, and it’s a pretty good device to watch Live TV either from the Internet via WeCloud Antenna app with over 180 free-to-air channels, or from satellite, cable or terrestrial TV thanks to the DVB-S2 or DVB-C/T/T2 tuner included in the box. EPG, PVR and timeshifting functions are all working very well, except some display issues with Asian languages. The company proposed to give away two WeTek Play STB to CNX Software readers. My model comes with a DVB-S2 tuner, but winners will be able to chose either DVB-S2 or DVB-C/T/T2 tuner as per their preference. Here’s what you have to do to enter the contest, and some terms and conditions: To […]

OpenELEC 5.0 Linux Distribution Released with Kodi 14

OpenELEC (Open Embedded Linux Entertainment Center) is a lightweight Linux distribution aiming at turning your computer or device into a Kodi media center. So instead of installing Kodi as a program or app on a desktop OS or Android, you could have a dedicated machine, which boots faster, has lower requirements (90-125 MB required for a full installation), and supported external tuners to watch live TV, as well as PVR & timeshifting functions out of the box. The developers have now announced OpenELEC 5.0 release, the successor of OpenELEC 4.2. Key changes for OpenELEC 5.0 include: Update from XBMC 13 (Gotham) to Kodi 14 (Helix) Update from Linux 3.16 to Linux 3.17 Switch from OpenSSL to LibreSSL Freescale i.IMX6 support for SolidRun CuBox-i, CuboxTV, and Hummingboard AppleTV support has been discontinued Beside build for the CuBox devices, OpenELEC 5.0 can be downloaded for x86 (32- and 64-bit builds), and the […]

WeTek Play Review with Android 4.2.2 Firmware v1.1.1

I had already reviewed WeTek Play Android DVB-S2 STB this summer, but at the time it was still an early sample, so the company asked me to review it again with the latest firmware that includes bug fixes and new features such as WeCloud Antenna IPTV service with over 180 Live TV channels, now that they’ve officially launched WeTek Play with either a DVB-S2 tuner as in my sample, a DVB-T/T2/C tuner, or no tuner at all. You can find pictures of WeTek Play in my unboxing post. As usual the review will include my first impressions, video testing, and various benchmark, but I’ll also have sections for WeCloud Antenna Live TV over IP service, and WeTek Theater for live TV from my satellite dish. OTA Firmware Update But first of all, I’ll test OTA firmware update, as many companies claim to support OTA updates, but you often end up […]

Kodi 14.0 Helix Release

XBMC (name) is definitely dead, as developers of the popular open source “entertainment center” project have announced the first stable Kodi release – the new name of XBMC – with XBMC 14.0 Helix. Key changes and new features include: Update to FFmpeg 2.4.4 – Adds H.265 / HEVC and VP9 video codecs support. Software decode only. Library Improvements – Scanning speed greatly improved, better UPnP support including with PlanOn and MediaBrowser servers. New Configuration features – Add-on update controls, choice of virtual keyboard layouts for tablets and remote control users in order to support multiple languages. Android, iOS and Embedded – 4K support for Amlogic S802, more ARM SoCs are now supported in Android, fast forward/rewind improvements. Airplay support fixed, except for Android. Freescale i.MX6 support for Kodi Linux. Windows, OSX, and Linux – Audio playback improvements. DXVA video playback has been improved for Windows too. A critical Kodi Linux […]

OpenELEC For Amlogic Media Players – MXIII, Tronsmart Vega S89, TV110 and CX-S806 (S812)

XBMC / Kodi is now working pretty well on Android devices, and even automatic frame rate switching is available on some Android platforms such as MINIX NEO X6. But if you want a pure XBMC experience, you may consider XBMC/Kodi Linux distributions such as OpenELEC also providing support for some USB DVB tuner dongles and PVR function, both of which are currently unavailable in Kodi for Android. We’ve also seen OpenELEC released for M8 TV Box, but  Kerber, a Russian developer (or at least a Russian speaking developer) has also released OpenELEC 4.97.x for MXIII (Amlogic S802), Tronsmart Vega S89 (Amlogic S802), TV110 (Amlogic S805) , and CX-S806 (Amlogic S812) media players. The forum post is dated on August 2014, but it has been updated on December 12 with more up-to-date images: OpenELEC-Amlogic.MX3.arm-4.97.2.zip for MXIII (1GB) OpenELEC-Amlogic.S82.arm-4.97.2.zip for Tronsmart Vega S89 (2GB) OpenELEC-Amlogic.TV110.arm-4.97.2.zip for TV110 OpenELEC-Amlogic.S806.arm-4.97.2.zip for CX-S806 (Amlogic S812 […]

WeTek Play Android & Linux DVB-S2 / DVB-C/T/T2 Receivers are Now Available for 109 Euros

I reviewed Wetek Play Android media player with a DVB-S2 tuner this summer, and although I found it pretty good for a dual core media player, and liked its PVR functions, more work was needed to fix several bugs, and improve “WeTek Theater Live TV” app. Several months later, they must consider their devices ready, as they’ve now launched their online store selling the DVB-S2 and DVB-C/T/T2 versions for 109 Euros, and a version without DVB tuner for 99 Euros, all including free shipping worldwide. Let’s remind us of the specifications: SoC – Amlogic AML8726-MX dual core Cortex A9 @ 1.5GHz with a dual core Mali-400MP GPU System Memory – 1GB DDR3 Storage – 4 GB NAND flash + 1x micro SD slot Video Output – HDMI, AV (CVBS + R/L audio) Audio Output – HDMI, AV, and optical S/PDIF Tuners – DVB-S2, or DVB-C/DVB-T/DVB-T2 depending on model with two […]

Zidoo X9 Android Media Player Features an HDMI Input Port with PVR & Time Shifting Functions

I’ve recently tested two Android TV boxes with an HDMI input, namely HPH NT-V6 and M-195, and with the firmware they had at the time of review, the HDMI input just acts as a dumb HDMI input port, and there was nothing much I could do with it. Now comes Zidoo X9, another Android TV box powered nby Mstar MSO9810 that also comes with an HDMI input port, but this time, they’ve implemented a PVR function, so if you have a low end satellite, cable, or terrestrial receiver, you can connect it to Zidoo X9 and record programs, which makes it much more useful. Zidoo X9 specifications: SoC – Mstar MSO9180D1R quad core Cortex A9 processor up to 1.5GHz with octa-core ARM Mali-450MP6 GPU Mali-450MP (2 or 4) GPU System Memory – 2GB DDR3 Storage – 8GB eMMC flash + micro SD slot Video Output / Input –  HDMI output […]

Raspberry Pi Based Slice, and EzeeCube Quad Media Players Support Internal Hard Drives (Crowdfunding)

Slice is a media player based on Raspberry Pi Compute Module, and EzeeCube Quad is media hub powered by Freescale i.MX6 Quad, and an upgrade to EzeeCube based on i.MX6 dual, which was successfully funded. The underlying hardware between Slice and EzeeCube is much different, but both devices have a lot in common. They are both media players currently being crowd-funded respectively in Kickstarter and Indiegogo, both comes with an internal hard drive, run XBMC, targets typical end-users (rather than tinkerers) and are somewhat pricey. Slice Media Player When I first saw Slice, all I could see was an Raspberry Pi module, put in a case with an internal hard drive bay, and lots of pretty RGB LEDs, and with an air mouse sold for an inflated price of 114 GBP ($190 US) without hard drive or 179 GBP ($300 US) with a 1TB drive, with admittedly some cheaper early […]