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Budget 4K player with bitstream capabilities

Wharfedale EVO 4.1 4.2 Speakers

Vinay2013

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Dear FMs

I need your suggestion on a 4K player, which can play 4K content from Hard Disk, bitstream audio to my receiver so that True HD, Atmos tracks can be enjoyed. If this player can also play 4K content from Netflix and Amazon, that would be great. I understand best in the category is NVidea Shield but it is too expensive and I do not need gaming capabilities.

Do we have any cheap options which can fulfill my requirement?

Looking forward to suggestions.

Thanks,
Vinay
 

elangoas

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I understand best in the category is NVidea Shield but it is too expensive and I do not need gaming capabilities.

Do we have any cheap options which can fulfill my requirement?

To play BR Rips from HD (1 TB), then an Android TV box should do.. They can also bitstream Atmos / Dts X to AVR.. However am not sure of 4K streaming..

Price ranges from 3K till Nvidia Shield price, with different hardware capability..

For Ex : Xiaomi Android TV Box - https://www.ebay.in/itm/Xiaomi-Mi-A...221001?hash=item3d6e1a4749:g:BPsAAOSw3wVaYL4b

Given that we would use one application at a time on these devices, it is fine to choose one with 2GB RAM..

I have Z69 Android TV Box, 3GB RAM & 32 GB ROM, got it for approx 5K on flipkart.. It does FHD, but never checked 4K as i don't have 4K capable display..

Suggest you to run through reviews on you-tube, before you freeze on any model..
 
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elangoas

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Thanks Elangoas - Can this device bitstream HD audio formats?

Yes.. It does.. i tried copying an Atmos / Dts X file on to a 64 GB USB 3.0 pen-drive (NTFS) and it played without a glitch..

I tried playing the same files from a 1.5 TB external HD, it passed thru audio but stutterd, which i think is due to external HD size.. So i guess it supports a maximum of 1TB external HD only..
 
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Vinay2013

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You can from a NAS with either Kodi or Plex.

Or a simple file explorer.
I am not a techie so try to keep things simple. I tried to play a 20Gb 4K true HD file from my Laptop 3i using VLC player but it was not able to play it properly. Pictures freezing and stopped in middle.
 
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elangoas

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I am not a techie so try to keep things simple. I tried to play a 20Gb 4K true HD file from my Laptop 3i using VLC player but it was not able to play it properly. Pictures freezing and stopped in middle.

If it is a 20GB only for 4K file, then it most likely would be x265 video compression codec.. x265 needs a fair amount of good hardware..With a 1080p file and x265 codec, my PC struggles sometimes.. So i avoid x 265..

Try the same 4K file with x264, size would become double..

Try using Kodi player on your laptop..
 
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Vinay2013

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If it is a 20GB only for 4K file, then it most likely would be x265 video compression codec.. x265 needs a fair amount of good hardware..With a 1080p file and x265 codec, my PC struggles sometimes.. So i avoid x 265..

Try the same 4K file with x264, size would become double..

Try using Kodi player on your laptop..
Yes it was a x265 compression. Thanks. I always thought more GBs means more pressure on the hardware. I will try Kodi player.

Additionally, I saw that Z69 that you owned is 4K enabled player so it should work. Just wanted to confirm can this play Amazon prime as most of these player do not play. Netflix I am sure it plays.
 
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elangoas

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Yes it was a x265 compression. Thanks. I always thought more GBs means more pressure on the hardware. I will try Kodi player.

More GB file implies higher (video) quality.. Don't recollect facing playback issues with higher file size.. But x265 was for my not so powerful dual core HTPC processor..

Additionally, I saw that Z69 that you owned is 4K enabled player so it should work.

It should..

Just wanted to confirm can this play Amazon prime as most of these player do not play. Netflix I am sure it plays.

I don't have amazon prime membership video subscription.. But let me check installing that app and update you what works..
 
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elangoas

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Just wanted to confirm can this play Amazon prime as most of these player do not play.

I downloaded this Amazon prime app from playstore, played a trailer and it works fine.. I did check the audio settings in the app, but there isn't any sub-setting for audio.. Does amazon prime support 5.1 movies streams over android tv box or only 2 channel audio?..
 
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dr_rocket

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I am not a techie so try to keep things simple. I tried to play a 20Gb 4K true HD file from my Laptop 3i using VLC player but it was not able to play it properly. Pictures freezing and stopped in middle.
Use MPC-HC instead of VLC. It should do the job. I am able to play upto 50 Gb files without glitch in corei3 based pc with 8gb RAM. And it can bitstream trueHD or DTS HD-MA audio.
 
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sound_cycle

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I need your suggestion on a 4K player, which can play 4K content from Hard Disk, bitstream audio to my receiver so that True HD, Atmos tracks can be enjoyed. If this player can also play 4K content from Netflix and Amazon, that would be great. I understand best in the category is NVidea Shield but it is too expensive and I do not need gaming capabilities.

I set out to do this a couple of months ago.

A kaby lake processor and iris pro 640 will cut it. I got a NUC7i5BNH. It has HDMI and if you get a HDMI with ethernet cable you are good to for 4K assuming that your TV has HDMI 2.

That however would not get me Netflix at 4K. Netflix wants everything to be 4K @ 60 Hz capable., I got that by using a USB-C port in DP alt mode. There is no setting or hack, the equipment "talks" to each other and it works. It took me several tries on AZ to get a cable that worked (there were several which claimed to support 60hz but could not actually support the bandwidth.

if you are trying Netflix 4k with win 10 remember you need the HEVC app. with the i5 I get 4K 60hz but at 24 bit color depth. This for some reason will not work with Edge but works fine with the Netflix app.

If I want to view ripped BD content (and I have none) I'd need to get a suitable player app. I have no need for Atmos or Dolby and have not tried out if I can do that.

ciao
gr
 
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Vinay2013

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I downloaded this Amazon prime app from playstore, played a trailer and it works fine.. I did check the audio settings in the app, but there isn't any sub-setting for audio.. Does amazon prime support 5.1 movies streams over android tv box or only 2 channel audio?..

Amazon Fire TV Stick is playing by default 5.1DD and same with the Netflix. It is a pity that they did not enable 4K in Fire TV Stick. The new "Fire TV" has 4K as well as True HD/ Atmos but it is not available in India. I did not try it with App in my PC. I know that Prime and Netflix both support Multichannel audio in NVidea Shield/ Xbox. If your Andriod box supports 5.1 in Netflix, it should support in Amazon Prime as well.
 
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manav24

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Amazon Fire TV Stick is playing by default 5.1DD and same with the Netflix. It is a pity that they did not enable 4K in Fire TV Stick. The new "Fire TV" has 4K as well as True HD/ Atmos but it is not available in India. I did not try it with App in my PC. I know that Prime and Netflix both support Multichannel audio in NVidea Shield/ Xbox. If your Andriod box supports 5.1 in Netflix, it should support in Amazon Prime as well.

No, AFAIK Amazon has restricted (licensed) its native prime video app in very few andriod devices and only those are able to play 4k as well as 5.1, similar was the case with Netflix which restricted its 4k feed to licensed devices only earlier (not sure now).

Check here: https://www.primevideo.com/region/eu/help?nodeId=202064920
 
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elangoas

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I know that Prime and Netflix both support Multichannel audio in NVidea Shield/ Xbox. If your Andriod box supports 5.1 in Netflix, it should support in Amazon Prime as well.

Ok.. Will try Netflix (Android TV app) too and check if there is a possibility if multi-channel out..

No, AFAIK Amazon has restricted (licensed) its native prime video app in very few andriod devices and only those are able to play 4k as well as 5.1

Thanks for that info.. Wasn't aware that amazon has restricted it and was checking for audio settings on my android tv box..
 
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manav24

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Ok.. Will try Netflix (Android TV app) too and check if there is a possibility if multi-channel out..



Thanks for that info.. Wasn't aware that amazon has restricted it and was checking for audio settings on my android tv box..

almost all cheap android box runs phone version of android instead of android tv version which is very different so consider your android box as a android phone only for checking compatibility with apps.
 
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