A few details about Mstar MSO9180

[Update] – list of Mstar MSO9180 Mini PC’s as of January 2015

As said before, May is an interesting month.
Here’s what I’ve learned today:
3 manufacturers are now preparing android TV boxes based on not-so-known Mstar MSO9180 chipset.
Features:

– Quad core, Arm Cortex A9, 1.5Ghz
– Mali 450MP4
– up to 4 GB of RAM
– 4K/2K (up to 4096×2160@30fps)
– NAND or eMMC
– Gigabit ethernet
– USB 2.0 and 3.0

There’s also a Mstar MSO9180-DB2 version, used by Egreat A9, which can support 7.1 RAW audio passthrough.

 

Minix Neo X8 and X8-H

[Update: Androidpc.es found the prices in USD to be a little lower – $149 and $129 – prices in EUR are still the ones mentioned below.]
Neo X8-H will be available on June 4th and Minix Neo X8 will be available one week later.

Minix just put an end to all rumors and announced that their new Amlogic S802 models will start shipping in early June.
And now we also have the retail prices: 125 € (~ 171 USD) for the top model Neo X8-H and 110 € (~150 USD) for the Neo X8.

You can find below a short side by side comparison between the two Minix X8 models.

Minix Neo X8 Minix Neo X8-H
Chipset Amlogic S802 Amlogic S802-H
Processor Quad core, Cortex A9 Quad core, Cortex A9
GPU Octo core, Mali 450 Octo core, Mali 450
Memory 2GB DDR3 2GB DDR3
Storage 8GB – eMMC 16GB – eMMC
Wireless Dual Band (2.4/5.8GHz) + Bluetooth 4.0 Dual Band (2.4/5.8GHz) + Bluetooth 4.0
OS Android 4.4 KitKat Android 4.4 KitKat
Remote control Standard IR Remote Minix M1 airmouse

Mele RTD1195 products

A few days ago I mentioned Realtek RTD1195 which seems to be used on new Egreat and Mele products.
And here are some exclusive (from I can tell) info about the Mele Realtek 1195 products:

– 3 products will be launched in June (see below).
– we now know for sure that the GPU is Mali 400MP2
– support for H.256 (3840×2160p / 30fps) and 1080p / 60fps
– Android 4.4
– might feature an HDMI 1.4 input next to the HDMI 1.4a output
– DLNA, Miracast Airplay
– Dolby Digital, Digital Plus, TrueHD passthrough
– DTS 2.0/5.1/7.1 MasterAudio
– XBMC – hardware decoding will be possible via a future update (Q3)
– DRM support: Widevine & PlayReady
– Remote via smartphone

here are the specs for each model

Mele ? Mele G09 (G39/G29) Mele M11 (M23)
Chipset Realtek RTD1195 Realtek RTD1195 Realtek RTD1195
Extra function Small form-factor Extrenal SATA/Internal 2.5” bay Internal 3.5” bay
RAM 1GB DDR3 (4x256MB) 1GB DDR3 (4x256MB) 1GB DDR3 (4x256MB)
Internal – eMMC 4GB 4GB 4GB
Wireless Bluetooth 4.0, 2.4Ghz/802.11 ac Bluetooth 4.0, 2.4Ghz/802.11 ac Bluetooth 4.0, 2.4Ghz/802.11 ac
External antenna No Yes Yes
USB 2.0 Host x2 x2 x2
USB 3.0 Host x1 x1 x1 (+1 slave)
Gigabit LAN Yes Yes Yes
DVB-T/DVB-T2 option No Available in Q3 Available in Q3
DVB-T/DVB-T2 option No Available in Q3 Available in Q3

Everything about Realtek RTD1195

News surfaced this week about at least two Chinese manufacturers that will release in a matter of weeks android TV boxes based on some little known Realtek processor: Realtek RTD1195

So I’ve asked my contacts for the Realtek RTD1195 specs and here they are:

– dual core ARM Cortex-A7 CPU
– dual core GPU (perhaps Mali-400)

– built-in Streaming Engine for OSD/2D user interface
– Video DSP (with hardware acceleration) – dedicated to encoding/decoding of various formats, including H.265 (“4K2K”), 1080P Mpeg1/2/4, H.264, H.264 MVC, AVC/VC-1, AVS, AVS Plus, HD Jpeg (max 32k x 32k).
(video encoding and decoding can run simultaneously)
– Audio DSP (with hardware acceleration) – with DTTS HD, Dolby Digital Plus, TrueHD. Supports 7.1 channels downmix.
Formats: AAC, WAV, FLAC, OGG Vorbis – LPCM

– HDMI 1.4 receiver and transmitter (with PHY), HDCP, CEC, supporting 3D over HDMI
– MHL (Mobile High-Definition Link) with PHY
– USB 2.0 OTG
– USB 3.0 host+slave
– NAND, eMMC (4.5), NOR controller
– SD/MMC card reader
– Gigabit ethernet
– bluetooth
– IrDA receiver and transmitter
– dual transport stream interfaces
– support for DRM /link protection (PlayReady, Widevine)

Conclusions:
– this CPU is not nealy as fast as the ones mentioned in the news (RK3288 or Amlogic S802).
– based on Realtek past history, android TV boxes using this chipset are likely to have a better image quality than the other chipsets behind the current android TV boxes.
– it will be slightly cheaper than the RK3288 or Amlogic 802 boxes

 

 

First Rockchip 3288 device coming soon – Rikomagic MK902-II

May is an interesting month, many new products are (finally) announced and will surface soon.

One of them is the Rikomagic MK902-II – first device announced by a reputable Chinese android TV box manufacturer.
This is an interesting move done by Rikomagic (now known as RKM) since their brand is almost synonymous with HDMI dongles and , for the first time, they announced an full-sized TV box with this new chip.

What to expect:
– CPU: Rockchip 3288 Quad Core (1.8 Ghz)
– GPU: Mali-T764 3D GPU
– RAM: 2GB
– 8/16GB space
– built-in camera (5 Mpx)
– 3G USB dongle support
– Gigabit LAN

 

New Android Mini PC from Samsung – Samsung HomeSync

This will be an interesting year, the Chinese manufacturers like RKM or Himedia will meet very strong competitors.

Samsung Homesynch

Say hello to “Samsung HomeSync” – while this is featured as a “cellphone accessory” by Samsung, it could be an interesting device.
Runs Android 4.2 (with Miracast), has 2GB RAM and 8GB internal flash, and, wait for it… : 1TB hard drive space!

While probably the best use will be as a companion to your Galaxy SIII, Galaxy S4 or Galaxy Note II, Samsung Homesync promises to be a very good android TV box, and a personal cloud device.

Rockchip 3288 2014 lineup

Around May we’ll see the next generation of Android Mini PC’s, powered by the quad-core A12 Rockchip 3288 processor.
Few things about this new platform:

– 24nm, 1.8 Ghz, quad core
– can decode 4K movies (multi format)
– uses Mali T624
– resolutions up 3840×2160
– dedicated 2D processor (high performance)
– 1080P video encoding for H.264 and VP8
– hardware image enhancement

This post will be updated with devices that are rumored to use Rockchip 3288

Rikomagic MK902-II

 

 

Himedia Q5-II upgraded : now with eMMC and a new chipset

If you’re interested in pretty much the only Android TV Box that can render 3D BlurayISO you might want to wait a few weeks until your local retailer will have the new version in stock.

The improved version, which will be shipped starting with this week, has these differences: – chipset has been upgraded, from the HiSilicon Hi3716 CV200ES to Hisilicon Hi3718 (link to Hi3719C V100 Data Sheet)
– nand has been upgraded to eMMC, this move only is reported to cut boot time in half and to make things snappier – well done, Himedia.
– GPU has been upgraded from a dual core @1.2Ghz to the quad core version at 1.2Ghz

Other info: they are working on an update to their dedicated video player that will add native support for DVD-ISO, making this unit the first android TV box with full ISO support.
Also, XBMC should now working flawlessly.
Will report back if I get my hands on a sample

 

 

 

PNI Notebook P5 – new dual core mini PC with a qwerty remote

A new android mini PC based on RK3066 will hit the stores near you (if you live in Europe).
While the chipset might be considered outdated compared to current quad-core standard, this PNI Notebook P5 device, along with the iPazzPort Pearl have interesting remotes to show off, and (maybe) a decent software, as the RK3066 devices had enough time to fix all known issues.
I’ll be back with a review if/when I’ll get a sample.