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Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265

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Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby chuckguy17 » Tue May 03, 2016 9:04 pm

I'm a long time user of 1.05.04_V_WDLXTV_LIVE-0.5.1.1.
Later upgraded to 1.05.04_V_WDLXTV_LIVE-0.5.2.0.

I actually have it installed on 3 WDTV Lives. One for myself, for my parents, and for my girlfriend's parents.
Each attached to an almost full 5TB external Seagate with my amassed media collection of documentaries, movies, tv shows, etc.
I love these things with WDLXTV installed.

It's played everything I've thrown at it over the past 5 years.
But now with the advent of the new HVEC codec (x265) with same quality as x264 in 1/3rd the size, I'm seeing that x264 will soon be obsolete and hard to come by.
I don't want to have to go through encoding all my future downloads into x264.

What is there out there that is most similar to the WDLXTV experience that also supports x265?

Thanks!
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Re: Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby mad_ady » Wed May 04, 2016 1:25 am

I've moved on and migrated to an Odroid C2. It's not a media player, but a general purpose ARM computer, but it runs Kodi and serves as a great media player. It can do H265 at 4k, so it should be future-proof. The problem is it's being sold as a development board, so it's not exactly plug and play (actually, some assembly is required). But if you are not scared by the occasional command line, it might be worth it for you.
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Re: Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby ebo » Wed May 04, 2016 1:29 pm

I tried the 4 Austrian Alps Time-lapse files at h265 Files on a Raspberry Pi 3 running Kodi 15.2 on OpenElec 6.0.3 in Turbo mode. As expected, the MPEG-2 and h264/AVC files played flawlessly. The h265/HEVC file played jerkily and video lagged far behind audio. The VP8/WEBM file locked up the Pi, requiring a power cycle to recover. So that's not an option--yet. The Pi 3 can't decode h265 in hardware but this search suggested that software test builds might be fast enough. However, one response recommended the MXQ PRO S905. It looks interesting and not very expensive. I might have to try one myself. It comes with Kodi preinstalled. Kodi has many more add-ons available than WDLXTV (especially if you're willing to risk using the unofficial repositories :roll: ).
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Re: Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby mad_ady » Wed May 04, 2016 10:10 pm

S905 is the same chipset (built by Amlogic) that is used in the Odroid C2. It can do H265 hardware decoding in Kodi. You could consider a media player built around it. But Amazon says it's Octacore - it's actually QuadCore @2GHz.
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Re: Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby chuckguy17 » Sat May 07, 2016 8:59 pm

Thanks for the information!
I bought an MXQ S805 Quad Core Android 4.4 box to play around with 6 months ago ... I wasn't very impressed. It lagged horribly.
I even had trouble with video the WDLXTV could handle.
Maybe the S905 Android 5.1 boxes will fare better. At least it's nice they are really cheap.
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Re: Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby mad_ady » Sun May 08, 2016 10:03 pm

S805 chipset is used also by Hardkernel's Odroid C1+. I have tested video playback on it (under linux with Kodi) and it was ok. It has only 1GB of RAM, which might be problematic, but you should look for an accelerated Kodi version for it (for Android, I'm not sure if Kodi from the Play Store has AMLogic acceleration or not). You should be able to view this by pressing "o" during playback to see if it's using amlibs for decoding.

I recommend going for the Odroid boards if you enjoy tinkering and being part of a community. They are more "dev-oriented" than the other vendor's boards. If you want something that works out of the box try the other ones.
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Re: Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby RevDrew » Mon May 09, 2016 7:01 am

mad_ady, is the Odroid XU4 worth the extra over the C2?
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2 X WDTV Live Plus with: 1.05.04_B_WDLXTV.COM_WDLXTV_PLUS-0.5.1.1: 1 wired, 1 *wireless* DWA-140

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Re: Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby mad_ady » Tue May 10, 2016 12:09 am

It depends what you want to use it for. It benefits from USB3 ports, so you can use it as a NAS (they even sell an enclosure to fit one HDD - Cloudshell), it has more powerful cores (8 cores, 4 @1.4GHz, 4@2GHz), but at the same time it is actively cooled and has a rather noisy fan. Users have replaced the fan with a noctua fan that is more silent, but you'd need to cut through the case to fit it inside. Others have made full metallic cases, but they're expensive. Others have replaced the stock cooler, but it's risky because the board is thin. Also, if you want to tinker and connect leds and other circuits to its GPIO pins, you'd have to use level shifters from 1.8V to 3.3V. The C2 is 3.3V internally.

If you want it as a general purpose computer, it's faster than the C2. I think kodi does mostly software decoding of video, but it's smooth enough that you don't see the difference. You can also run a lot of legacy games and emulators on it. But if you want a specific "media player" computer that can download torrents as well, the C2 is more than enough.
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Re: Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby RevDrew » Tue May 10, 2016 1:23 pm

Thanks very much, that was exactly the info I was looking for.

A C2 is great for me and my kodi needs.
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WDTV with: 1.03.01_B-RAD.CC_WDLXTV-0.5.8.1 *wireless* DWA-140
WDTV Live: new, still in the box & unopened
2 X WDTV Live Plus with: 1.05.04_B_WDLXTV.COM_WDLXTV_PLUS-0.5.1.1: 1 wired, 1 *wireless* DWA-140

http://www.supernews.com/super-special/?i=ZxJfObJynPQ=
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Re: Recommendation for New Media Player? For H.265   

Postby mad_ady » Tue May 10, 2016 10:30 pm

I've just read that the X11 accelerated MALI drivers are begining to work on the C2 and will be released in a matter of weeks. This means that kodi will be able to run directly on the X11 desktop and you'll be able to use accelerated chromium for your browsing needs.
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