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208 posts

Master Geek


Topic # 94032 4-Dec-2011 21:23
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Bought an FV-1 Android 'media player/Flexiview TV' from Warehouse Stationary.

Flexiview Android TV

Currently priced at $199.00

However even before I've got it (being delivered) I'm having my doubts.

My thinking behind the purchase was:
Have a Sony HD Bravia 1366x768 (Not Full HD)
TV has no USB, Ethernet, SD ...or much of anything and any old box would complete the TV.
Have Gigbit Ethernet next to the TV
Have a 4-1 HDMI switch which splits Audio to a separate Digital audio out to Audio Receiver.
Have a 3TB NAS on Ethernet LAN.

There are firmware updates for the FV-1 Android TV box, but the Android OS remains at 2.2
Now these firmware updates seem to be sprinkled around the world, with no real support or claims to fitness for use.
The latest I've found is U110781_1110081_HW, who knows what's in that one.

Seems a bit of a mission to upgrade with questionable builds of Android OS in them. Like one doesn't have the Android Market store in it.

xdadevelopers have to date, made no moves on any updates for the Android OS on this box.

The HDMI output screen resolution is 1024x600 which may prove limiting.
The FV-1 Android TV does have a custom screen resolution option.

There is a NEW 'FV-3 Android TV' out now with Android 2.3 and a better selection of output ports.
Plus the new device is mooted to sport a 1.2Ghz processor.

I'm thinking I've just bought into a whole world of pain.
Be interesting to see what version of firmware these Warehouse Stationary boxes come with.

Anybody had any experience with these boxes?.... he says, AFTER he's just bought one. Embarassed

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13 posts

Geek
Inactive user


  Reply # 553749 4-Dec-2011 22:09
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what did you need it for if it was to play videos

you could have brought a box that plays all formats of video for $35NZD like i own has hdmi usb ect

2710 posts

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  Reply # 553770 4-Dec-2011 22:30
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what costs only $35? 




HTPC: Intel i3-2100 / 12GB RAM / AMD HD7750 / 480 GB SSD / 58TB Storage / MediaPortal / MadVR / Win10
AVR: Pioneer Elite SC-LX87 220W 9.2 Ch AVR
Speakers: Wharfedale Jade 7 Fronts / Jade 2c Center / Jade 5 Rears
Subs: iNuke 3000dsp 3000W proamp with 4x 15" JBL Sealed Subs
Display: Samsung 60" UA60H6400 LCD TV
Accessories: Gefen HDMI Detective with splitter




208 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 553800 4-Dec-2011 23:56
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Needed/would like:

Gmail/email.
Internet Browser(s).
Flash and Youtube (good to have)
Maps.
Weather.
SHOUTcast (or equivalent)
Video player (720p and Hardware accelerated???...more reading required)
DLNA
USB with unify Keyboard/Mouse support (Logitech K400)
HDMI support
Bluetooth for file transfer from mobiles and etc.
Ethernet support.
SD card support
WiFi g/n (good to have if rats eat my Ethernet cable)
Android OS (potential for downloading additional applications)

So the purchase was a combination of physical hardware and the ability to use that hardware to run a range of applications.

i.e no Gmail/Internet browser on WD Live Media player and etc...

Looking at breadth of functionality with the tradeoff of things like output res and Full-HD video etc.

The fact it's running the Android OS means there is a wider community of support and maybe, just maybe future development.

There in lies the rub. Is this device an evolutionary dead end being Android OS 2.2 and all.

The CPU/GPU at 1Ghz 'should be OK' as all I'm asking of it is 720p.
Sort of like, "Old Sony 720p HD TV, meet my new little friend, FV-1 Android TV"

Guess when one understands and gains more information on the firmware version(s) and what they do and don't do and how that relates to the above list, one'll know if there's going to be speed humps along the way.

Just stability and firmware that's got me spooked and the fact I'm buying into the last of a line.

Now if only $35 got you Internet radio/video codecs(mkv,ts,mp4,vob,divx etc, etc), gmail/email, weather, picture viewer, Ethernet, Wifi, HDMI, SD card reader, USB/Keyboard/Mouse and Bluetooth all running on a stable OS, the world would be a happier place.

But we digress.

I want to know about the stability of the firmware/OS of the FV-1 Android TV.









 


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  Reply # 554158 5-Dec-2011 17:45
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I had a look at one of these, I looked at some threads on here and decided to keep looking. 

The sad thing is that it is a great premise. I love my Android Smartphone (a Motorola Defy) to death. The idea that I could turn my TV into a smartphone but without the phone seems like just what I want. 

For me it is Flash so I can watch TVNZ/ TV3 On Demand, bugger all media players support Flash and the Sony smart TVs don't either. Video streaming to smartphones also seems to be a growth industry so getting a slice of that would also be good. 

The price for these things is pretty good too.

But from what I read it looks like the thing doesn't do what it says on the tin, sad.

I'd be really interested to hear more of your experience with this thing. 

I have a link to a support forum if you want to PM me.  




Didn't anybody tell you I was a hacker?



208 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 554291 6-Dec-2011 00:48
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Thank you for your support.

I downloaded all the firmware I could find (just in case they drop out of circulation)

I've read through the tens of pages of FV-1 Android posts on Android and Oz forums.

I'll get an SD ISO UpdateKit created  so I'm good to go when the box arrives.

I'll need to review things a bit, but I believe the October firmware release is as good as it gets at the moment.

Then root it with z4root and see how things go from there.

I'll have to bench mark the original box as delivered prior to any upgrades.

Doing a bit of reading and research on the SGX540 GPU and even though we're talking 2009 it's not all bad.

I mean, what could possibility go wrong.

And how do we spell "Change Control and back-out procedure" girls and boys.



208 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 555190 7-Dec-2011 20:05
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So...

Planning on buying an FV-1 Android TV and watching a few 720p videos? Think very carefully.

I've only tested HD video streamed from a NAS over Ethernet via Moboplayer and/or Dice player.
Software encoding just doesn't cut it AND the fact that any video is going to be upscaled from 1024x600px which is the display output detracts as well.

Haven't had a play around with mp4 on the local device yet, so that could be interesting.

Streamed old Dads Army Standard Def videos, which even though encoded for output at 1024x600px on a 1366x768px display were still watchable with next to no jitter (2 channel audio). It's just like watching TV in the old days.

Videos like Avatar at 720p and 5.1 surround sound are not really viewable.

YouTube is OK with it's heavily compressed video.

Now that's out of the way, what about the FV-1 Android TV in general?

The one I was delivered had what was probably the original firmware on it circa June 2011.
That sucked. The default weather widget had question marks where weather icons should be and there was no additional controls for volume control.
That said, everything seemed to work, Ethernet, WiFi, Bluetooth, YouTube, 8GB class 10 SD card, USB thumbdrives and etc.

You're limited to what you can download as the box lacks a lot of the geo positioning functions, so the Android meerkats.com, Doh! Android market.com looks a bit like an application wasteland.

You can manually download Google maps, speedtest and etc, however they may or may not install. Google Earth fails to install for me at the moment as does Adobe reader(update). Adobe reader 10 is pre-installed.
Adobe Flash player 11 installed fine.

Beachmarks place the FV-1 Android TV close if not below my 2009 Sony Ericsson X10i v2.3.3 phone.(Bit of a worry)

AnTuTu Benchmark gives approx 2500 with 255/713 2D/3D scoring higher than my X10i Adreno 200 at 158/503 for 2D/3D giving a final score of 2324 (class 4 MicroSDHC).
Vellamo Benchmark is not so kind and scores 437 where my X10i scores 532.
This places the FV-1 Android TV below the Samsung Galaxy tab 7 (2.2)
Remembering benchmarks are just indicators at best.

The Android v2.2 OS is holding back the device where Android 2.3 OS would give it a performance boost.
This is why buying the current model with v2.2 when newer models with v2.3+ are available makes no sense.
Think Warehouse Stationary, just wants to get shot of these boxes.

I ditched the remote that came with the box and used my Logitech Anywhere MX mouse.
The three buttons work for 'click', back and menu and the cursor work very well. Sweet.

May get a Logitech K400 keyboard in the future.

Rooted the box and had a play with different screen density and improved the layout a bit.

Upgraded the firmware to the October 2011 version with no dramas. Although to get the firmware onto a formatted SD card was a drama.
Had to try 4 PCs before an olde worlde XP SP3 netbook successfully 'burnt' an upgrade SD.

Weather widget now has fluffy cloud icons and etc and the task bar has volume controls for easy access.

Other than that, again everything seems to be working as expected.

Audio streaming and Internet radio seems to work well.

So after 24hrs one has an Android device where batteries will never be an issue and an old TV gets a makeover with access to weather, email, maps, calenders, pictures, music, youtube, web browser(s) and maybe even the odd 'tailored' video to watch.

For videos and etc I'd say the new WD Live media player with Wifi at $169.00 is a much better deal.

For the few times I would stream a Full HD 1080p movie or such to the TV an Alienware notebook is well capable of doing that.


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