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diablotinbouky
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Msg n°1 MessageSujet: Message de la part de Minix. Ven 11 Oct 2013, 15:48

Dear all current users/ potential buyers,

This article should be published on somewhere like a blog, however, as I don't have a blog,
I've decided to put it here as sticky, and you're free to discuss and comment to it.
I can't finish the whole article in one night, and I will keep updating this article,
hoping that eventually it becomes a guide for anyone that is using/ going to use Android box in their living room.
This is also a summary of my work and observation since we have developed NEO X5.
The recent fierce discussions over NEO X7 has driven me to write this article, to be honest.
As I believe that is happening because of the differences between users'/buyers' expectation and the capability/primary usage that the product was designed.

1.) Using Android OS on a TV, some known issues
a. Apps:
Android OS is getting more and more popular because it's open source and basically free.
Lots of apps. have been made available for easy download and installation.
Initially Android is designed for smartphones and tablets, and yes, it is NOT designed for use in front of a TV, not . This is a fundamental issue of all Android boxes. Nearly all apps. on the Google Play Store are designed for smartphones and tablets, however, in region such as China many software companies have released their own version for using in front of TV, such as Youku TV, Tencent TV. However, in overseas market we don't really see many apps. specially designed for Android + TV usage, due to licensing, copyrights or content protection consideration, I believe.
For example, YouTube, Netflix haven't release a customized version for Android + TV (except those customized for certain approved products).

YouTube:
If you download the version directly from Google Play Store, you may find it not playing with high enough resolution, because it's designed for smartphones and tablets. Developers, e.g. theos0o, has modded it to support high resolution so that you will be happy to use in front of a TV.
http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1529715 [please donate if you feel good]
Advanced setting will enable the true HD option.

Netflix:
http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/get-hd-netflix-video-on-android-with-two-apps-from-xda-developers/
This is another popular app. that many users are having problem because the playing quality is not high enough. "XDA user Keychar modified a Netflix APK to permit higher quality video playback on portable devices. This is particularly helpful for when you’re outputting the video to a high definition television or when you have an HD-capable device like the Samsung Galaxy S4, as the default Android app caps video quality at a fairly low bitrate."
http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=2305091 [Netflix 2.4.0 (build 939), netflix.signed.apk, 12.8MB]

Hulu/Hulu+:
This app. has caused lots of enquiries because it's unable to playback, and we found the official reply:
http://www.hulu.com/support/article/23213041
Why Can't I Play Video via HDMI on My Android Device?
Unfortunately, due to technical and content security reasons, we are unable at this time to offer HDMI or wireless display support on some Android devices. We're sorry for the inconvenience this causes you.For a list of devices (Internet-connected TVs, gaming consoles, set-top boxes) that offer a better Hulu Plus living-room television experience, please visit our Supported Devices page.
Vgeezy has modded the app., but I'm unable to test:
http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1449110

XBMC:
http://xbmc.org/xbmc-13-gotham-august-cycle/
There are many versions of XBMC for Android, personally I've tried over 20 of them.
Here comes the question: "which version works fine/best with my device??"
To be honest, I don't know the answer. So far I've seen some versions working good, but still not perfect. My comment would be: If you are looking seriously for a 100% PERFECT XBMC experience in front of your TV, don't get an Android box now, it's not yet ready to meet your expectation. I am very sincere to give this advice.
Quoting from the latest blog written by Nathan Betzen:
"Android Hardware Decoding
It’s been a long time coming, but we are excited to announce that hardware decoding of video has finally made its way to the XBMC for Android platform. The most important caveat is that the implemented hardware decoding does not support AmLogic or Allwinner chipsets, and it does require Android 4.0 (“Ice Cream Sandwich”) or higher to run. With that said, the more popular tablets sold in the past year, such as the Nexus 7 and 10, should work quite well with this alpha, and users are welcome to discuss their experiences in the comments below. Kudos to Koying for his work on this project."
As said, hardware decoding does not support AmLogic or Allwinner chipsets, and I believe it's also not supported on the Rockchip processor, which we have been using since last year. (XBMC confirmed HW decoder should work on RK's processor but they've disabled the decoder for now until RK fixed the libstagefright.so bug, we will keep you posted for what's coming). HW decoding is enabled only on a few selected devices that they have been working on.
Extended reading about XBMC:
http://www.freaktab.com/showthread....elerated-Decoding-What-works-and-what-doesn-t
XBMC FOR ANDROID WITH HW ACCEL DECODING
Without tweaks XBMC will only use the HW accel decoder on videos where the resolution is dividable by 16. For instance 1280x720 (720/16=45). But for a very common movie resolution like 1280x532 (532/16=33,25) the HW accel decoder wont be used and while it is a lower resolution video as the 1280x720 one it will play much much worse. This also means that, without tweaks, the HW accel decoder will also not be used for full 1080p/1920x1080 (1080/16=67,5) videos. So here is the tweak to fix it...
ADVANCEDSETTINGS.XML
Lewy20041 pointed out that you can tweak XBMC by using the advancedsettings.xml file. By adding the following code to that file you will force XBMC to always use the HW accel decoder even if the video is not dividable by 16. It will also force it to use the HW accel decoder for different codecs. The advancedsettings.xml file must be placed in Internal Flash/Android/data/org.xbmc.xbmc/files/.xbmc/userdata <--- these are hidden, you need app. such as ES File Explorer (free) to gain access.
ES File Explorer: Settings -> Display settings -> Show hidden files


b. Control methods:
i. Using IR remote
ii. Using wireless keyboard and mouse combo
iii. Using Airmouse
iv. Using remote controller app.

2.) Video playback (720p HD, 1080p full HD)
coming soon.
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http://www.belchine.net
 
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