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FKM

FKM

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#273175 9-Aug-2020 11:41
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I am looking to set up a media centre in my living room. I am looking for the following functions:

 

Light internet browsing

 

Legal free streaming (youtube...etc)

 

Access to NAS and play as many formats as possible (I have files from 20 years ago and would be great if I can still play them)

 

Supporting 4k is not important 

 

I search around and think I have 3 options:

 

Raspberry Pi 4 - All up around $200

 

Android TV box - varies - possibly a mi box S ($130) to a Vodafone TV ($179)? Open for other options

 

mini/stick PC - varies - between $200-$300

 

I am not looking to spend more than $300 on this project.

 

Is there an obvious route I should be going? Thanks. 

 

 


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Stu

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  #2537026 9-Aug-2020 11:53
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Note that the Vodafone TV unit sold in NZ is NOT an Android TV box (which I believe they are in Australia?). You can't simply add apps from a store.




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  #2537031 9-Aug-2020 11:58
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Since we got the Mi Box S I don't think we've used the R.Pi at all. Mi Box works fine, although recently the bluetooth remote that comes with it needs to be paired every couple of days.


farcus
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  #2537096 9-Aug-2020 14:11
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if running kodi on a raspberry pi 4 it's worth remembering that there is currently no hardware video acceleration, HDR, or HD audio until Kodi 19 is released

I moved from a Pi 2B to a Mi Box S (which I'd recommend any day).

However, once Kodi 19 is released the Pi 4 should be a real contender




dt

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  #2537106 9-Aug-2020 14:46
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Android TV box all day just make sure its something from a brand thats licenced for netflix, youtube etc as there are plenty of boxes that are capable of delivering 1080/4k but aren't licenced so are limited to lower quality bit rates from all the good streaming platforms 

 

 

 

this guy has a great chart for the capabilities of the devices hes reviewed, worth checking before you buy 

 

 

 

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1WPX-WJISk6l-5P85goa4_QfkDXn9us8GI649GxKDSgI/edit#gid=0

 

 

 

personally have a nvidia shield, a mibox and mibox S and would happily recommend all of them


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  #2537107 9-Aug-2020 14:50
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I'd take a Raspberry Pi over MOST Android TV boxes.

 

I would also pay the extra and get a Shield TV every time, without fail. They're fantastic little devices.





Anything I say is the ramblings of an ill informed, opinionated so-and-so, and not representative of any of my past, present or future employers, and is also probably best disregarded.


dt

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  #2537109 9-Aug-2020 15:03
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Nvidia shield's are awesome boxes but really depends on the use case, if its just for streaming services and local videos I dont see the justifiable cost over something like the mi box.. I notice zero difference over the two platforms in my case.


rb99
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  #2537110 9-Aug-2020 15:07
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Just as a matter of interest, would a Firestick 4K be worth considering ? Obviously you'd have to get one here, but apart from that...





rb99




FKM

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  #2537112 9-Aug-2020 15:27
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Thanks for the Vodafone TV comment. I did not know that.

 

Do we know how far we are away from Kodi 19?

 

Thanks for the chart. That is very helpful. So how come the mi box S is considered 4.6/5 but all its hardware is mid or low performance? Is it safe to say other than the "big names" (Nvidia, Amazon, Xiaomi?!) all the other boxes are not licensed?

 

From the forum here I have read some bad things about the mi box S. Have all the issues resolved?

 

Finally toejam316 - would you please elaborate? I think the majority of people (70-80%) think a decent android box is better than a Pi 4. However, I would like to hear the opinion of the pi supporter.

 

I think noel leeming is selling the fire stick for $80.... Is that good?

 

 


rb99
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  #2537115 9-Aug-2020 15:49
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FKM:

 

 

 

I think noel leeming is selling the fire stick for $80.... Is that good?

 

 

 

 

I was thinking more of the Firestick 4K you have to get from the US, hence the comment about actually getting one re postage (probably via Youshop, if they'll ship it, adding gst, etc).

 

Don't think that version does 4K, which you said you weren't that bothered by (I think) but it would generally be a better, faster device. You might also possibly want the extra ethernet connector.

 

So whether it would be worth the effort...





rb99


dt

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  #2537116 9-Aug-2020 15:52
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FKM:

 

Thanks for the chart. That is very helpful. So how come the mi box S is considered 4.6/5 but all its hardware is mid or low performance?

 

 

 

 

I can only assume they've done a very good job at implementing and tuning ATV on it, it performs very well for it's price point 

 

not sure what others issues have been but I have had one with mine where an app wouldn't update but 10 mins of googling and I found a post about clearing some sorta cache on it and that sorted it for me, other than that both the mi box and mi box s I have both just work, but I am a very simple user of them.. netflix, youtube and plex. 

 

 

 

I did get a vodafone TV for my mother recently, was gutted to find it wasn't android TV after setting it up.. thankfully she only needed it for netflix, sky and freeview.. haven't tested out the casting feature on it either.. still a nice little box but you are limited to what you can do with it. 


timmmay
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  #2537119 9-Aug-2020 16:00
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Mi Box S works fine, very wife friendly, less messing about than R.pi. I only do 1080p.

PANiCnz
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  #2537172 9-Aug-2020 17:04
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I don't think the perfect "one size fits all" device exists, and for a good to great experience recommend a couple of devices.

 

The Raspberry Pi is great with Kodi for offline media playback and live tv, but sucks for streaming apps. For streaming a Firestick or Android device is good, but they've got a few problems with any interlaced content. Web browsing is tricky and outside of a full HTPC with a desktop browser I'm yet to see a good option, Android is probably passable.

 

I'd buy a Firestick for streaming, and a cheap Amlogic Android device for offline playback. But ditch the Android OS and go for CoreELEC with Kodi instead. Android on cheap Chinese tv boxes is terrible, but theyre great when CoreELEC is installed. 


PANiCnz
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  #2537174 9-Aug-2020 17:09
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This is a good thread and goes through all the pro's and con's of the different devices.


farcus
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  #2537239 9-Aug-2020 18:32
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FKM:

 

Do we know how far we are away from Kodi 19?

 

end of the year
Although - software decoding is fine in the Pi 4 for anything less than 4K
Remember that the Kodi netflix addon suffers from the same prob as most unlicensed android boxes and will only do netflix / Amazon Prime up to 720p

 

 

From the forum here I have read some bad things about the mi box S. Have all the issues resolved?

 

 

Mi Box S had some issues with Android TV 8 and also beta Android TV 9 . . . but it's pretty stable with the actual Xiaomi Android TV 9 release now.

 

There is a newer Mi Stick available which is basically the same hardware as Mi Box S - but cheaper and doesn't claim to do 4K
Not sure if it has made to NZ shores yet though.
There is a 4K Mi Stick coming later in the year


farcus
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  #2537336 9-Aug-2020 19:10
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there is also this available at a good price
https://www.pbtech.co.nz/product/TVNDTV1010/DishTV-Smart-Vu-4K-UHD-TV-Dongle---Built-in-Chrome

which I guess is similar to the Mi Box - although I have never tried one.


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