Tag Archives: Egreat

Closer look at the Egreat Windows 8.1 lineup

[Update: Egreat I6 unboxing]

Last month we talked about Egreat and their 2015 roadmap, which includes products with various chipsets, from the Allwinner A80 used by Egreat U10 to Mstar MSO9180 used by Egreat A9.

The new “I” series looks very impressive, Egreat chose to use some very attractive cases (unlike some of the other manufacturers that announced BayTrail Mini PC’s).
They are also offering a very good variety of cases and even took some steps to ensure that the customers will be able to play as many  video formats as possible by partnering with Vidon.me .
Vidon XBMC software will work on Windows 8.1 and will allow hardware decoding and full BluRay menus.

The “I” series can use either Windows 8.1 or Android 4.4 and will be reasonably priced around $100.
If you choose Windows, though, you will have to activate it yourself, which will cost you a little more, but you will end-up with a full Windows box and you would be able to run most programs and even some games just like you would on your desktop computer, all this with less than 15 Watts power consumption.
Pair this with the fact that these Mini PCs are fanless, and you’ve got a very attractive bedroom PC.

 

Here’s a side by side comparison between the Egreat “I” series products that are soon to be available.

Egreat I2 Egreat I4 Egreat I6
Case plastic metal aluminum
Chipset Intel Z3735F ATOM x86 Intel Z3735F ATOM x86 Intel Z3735F ATOM x86
GPU Intel HD graphics Intel HD graphics Intel HD graphics
RAM 2GB 2GB 2GB
Storage 32GB 32GB 32GB
Wi-Fi Dual band, AP6330, 802.11 a/b/g/n, 2.4Ghz/5Ghz 300M  Dual band, AP6330, 802.11 a/b/g/n, 2.4Ghz/5Ghz 300M  Dual band, AP6330, 802.11 a/b/g/n, 2.4Ghz/5Ghz 300M
Wi-Fi antenna Internal, 3dB External, 3dB External, 3dB
LAN/Ethernet 10/100 10/100 10/100
Bluetooth 4.0 4.0 4.0
HDMI 1.4a, 1080P@60Hz 1.4a, 1080P@60Hz 1.4a, 1080P@60Hz
USB 2.0 ports 2 4 3
Micro-USB ports 1
SD card yes, up to 128GB yes, up to 128GB  yes, up to 128GB
VGA output no no yes
Headphones jack with Mic-in yes yes yes
Power button yes
Size (mm) 98 x 98 x 24 n/k 104 x 102 x 32

And here are some pictures with the Egreat Wintel models.

Egreat I2
 Egreat-I2-front  The Egreat I2 Mini PC use a quite good-looking plastic case
Egreat-I2-side-view It has only two USB 2.0 ports and you can expand it’s internal storage with up to 128GB by using an SD card.
Egreat I4
Egreat-I4-front The Egreat I4 Mini PC has a metal case, features an external wi-fi antenna
Egreat-I4-side-view On it’s side it has two USB 2.0 ports
Egreat-I4-back Two more USB 2.0 ports on the back, useful when you want to connect a keyboard, a mouse and some other devices altogether (HDD, USB stick, maybe airmouse USB dongle).
Egreat I6
Egreat-I6-front The Egreat I6 Mini PC uses one of Egreat’s most popular cases, full aluminum, good heat dissipation and a stylish power button
Egreat-I6-side-view On it’s side it has three USB 2.0 ports
Egreat-I6-VGA-port The VGA port on the back could easily help you revive an old monitor and transform it into a full-featured Windows 8.1 PC.

But Egreat does not stop here.
They featured at CES 2015 another Wintel Mini PC called Egreat I5 – which got some attention both because of the name and the hardware itself.
And they will launch 5 (five) other Wintel boxes by the end of 2015: Egreat i7/i8/i9/i10/i11 – these will use a larger case and they will have internal 3.5” or 2.5” tray so you can mount an HDD internally (SATA).

Meet Egreat A9, Mini PC with HDMI In recording capabilities

[Update: Egreat A9 unboxing]

Looks like Mstar MSO9180 finally gets some real-world use with the launch, at CES 2015, of the new Egreat A9 Mini PC.
This is one of the new Mini PC’s that Egreat will announce, check out the Egreat 2015 roadmap post to see the others.

As you can see in the below images, this mini PC will use a strong aluminum case with VFD which allows a 3.5” HDD to be mounted inside (same case used by the Egreat R300 media player a few years back).
As usual with the newly announced models, they claim to support 4K/Ultra-HD videos (although just at 30fps, due to HDMI 1.4 limits).
The mini PC will support H.265, BluRay ISO’s, 3D movies (and not just SBS and top/Bottom, Frame Packing 3D also).
They also mention Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MA 7.1ch RAW audio passthrough.
But what caught my eye was the Vidon.me logo – does this mean that Egreat has some sort of partnership with Vidon?
[Update] – Both Egreat and Vidon.me confirmed for MiniPCDB that they are indeed working together. This makes the Egreat A9 unit even more interesting.
This unit can also record an 1080P stream using the HDMI-In interface,  feature that could be useful for those that have a HD TV receiver, for instance.
egreat-A9-vidon

Egreat A9 specs:
– CPU: Mstar MSO9180-DB2 – quad core, Cortex A9
– GPU: Mali-450MP4
– RAM: 2GB DDR3
– 16GB eMMC
– 1 x USB 3.0 host and 3 x USB 2.0 host
– Bluetooth 4.0 BLE
– Gigabit Ethernet
– dual band wi-fi (802.11 a/b/g/n, 2.4GHz/5.0GHz 300M) with 2 antennas, 3dB each
– HDMI 1.4 ouput (max: 3840×2160 at 30 fps)
– HDMI 1.4 input (max: 3840×2160 at 30 fps)
– 3.5” HDD tray (HDD not included)

egreat-A9-back egreat-A9 egreat-A9-side

 

Egreat 2015 roadmap

[Update] – more details about the Egreat Wintel Mini PCs can be found here.

A while ago I talked about Egreat and their plans.
Nothing major happened since then, no major products launched by Egreat (not outside China anyway).

But from what I’ve learned recently things are about to get better for the Chinese manufacturer.
We managed to get a sneak peek at the products that Egreat will announce at CES 2015:

Egreat U10 Allwinner A80

Egreat U10

Allwinner A80 octa-core CPU
2GB RAM, 16GB
Gigabit ethernet+dual band wi-fi
Bluetooth 4.0
Android 4.4

Egreat I2 Wintel Mini PC

Egreat I2

Intel Bay Trail 3735F CPU
2GB RAM, 32GB
Bluetooth 4.0
Android/Windows 8

Egreat I3 Wintel Mini PC

Egreat I3

Intel Bay Trail 3735F CPU
2GB RAM, 32GB
Bluetooth 4.0
Android/Windows 8

Egreat I6 Wintel Mini PC

Egreat I6

Intel Bay Trail 3735F CPU
2GB RAM, 32GB
Bluetooth 4.0
Android/Windows 8

Egreat A2 Mini PC

Egreat A2

Realtek RTD1195 CPU
External SATA port
Android 4.4

Egreat A6 Mini PC

Egreat A6

Amlogic S812-H CPU (?)
2GB RAM, 16GB eMMC
Gigabit ethernet + dual band, 2.4GHz/5.0GHz 300M WiFi
4K/2K H.265/HEVC hardware decoding
External SATA port
Android 4.4

Egreat A9 Mini PC

Egreat A9

Mstar MSO9180 CPU
2GB RAM, 16GB eMMC
Gigabit Ethernet + dual band, 2.4GHz/5.0GHz 300M WiFi
Internal 3.5” HDD
Aluminum case with VFD
Android 4.4
Can record from HDMI-IN in 1080P

 

Basically:
– Egreat takes a shot at the hottest CPU available now (Allwinner A80)- with it’s 8-cores and 64-cores CPU is expected to provide good performance for a while
– Egreat launches 3 “Wintel” models – they seem to share the same PCB, only different casing, which is not uncommon for Egreat
– Egreat A2, A6 and A9 are claimed to have full BD ISO support (including 3D), and they also have promised an UART port for “DIY development”
– also, they plan to launch internationally two Android-based game box devices, named Egreat K1 and respectively Egreat K3

Let’s see what will come out of this, 2015 could be an (E) great year 🙂

Egreat roadmap

Until last year Egreat was one of the most important manufacturers of media players in China, their products were based on Realtek (and a few SigmaDesigns) chips.
Their major selling point was the strong hardware: very stable aluminum cases  – I know a few people that still use their Egreat-made Realtek 1073 player (~4 years old)

But in 2013 Egreat did not release any major product (only a few low quantity items, probably OEM android TV boxes).

My sources told me that they lost most of the original team (including lead engineer last November and even the sales people).
Their departure even left some unsolved firmware issues on the Realtek players, which hasn’t make buyers very happy.

Early this year they attempted to regain market share by being early adopters of the new Realtek 1195 chipset – that was unfortunate for them, as this chip isn’t ready even now (in July).

So they are moving towards the most popular platforms and they will be releasing:
– end of July: an Allwinner A31S- based android TV box called Egreat A1
– August: an Mstar-based 4K product
– late August: Amlogic S802 and RK3288 models
– early September – their Realtek RTD1195 lineup comprising of several models

They now seem to favor plastic cases and that would really have an impact on their fan-base (see above)
Also, there seems to be some sort of rebranding process going on, they seem to have dropped their “cube” logo in favor of what looks like a falcon.

My thoughts?
– The market isn’t the same, the other “media player” manufacturers quickly adapted to the “android TV” craziness and now they are ahead ( I would mention Himedia and Kaiboer here)
– I can understand that they lost much by putting all their eggs into the Realtek RTD1195 basket, but going after so many different platforms at the same time couldn’t be good for business – unless you have a very good software team (do they?)
– it would be VERY though to compete with Mele and Mede8er on that RTD1195 item line, as they joined forces and they have a full-time dev team, from which I expect great results
– “S802” belongs to Minix  🙂 – I would rather focus more on Rockchip 3288 instead

Do YOU have something to say?

Egreat H8 – new quad core android TV box

You might have heard of “Egreat” before, the chinese manufacturer is well known as a prolific realtek-based (with a few SigmaDesigns  on the side) media player provider.
As many other media players manufacturers (Himedia comes to mind) they now seem to have dropped the Realtek players altogether and jumped into the Android TV Box bandwagon.
Egreat H8 is the latest mode, a Rockchip RK3188 device clocked at 1.8Ghz, with the (new ) standard 2GB of RAM and 8GB storage.
It comes with Android 4.2 and a custom launcher, 150M 802.11 b/g/n (3dB) wi-fi and a 10/100 ethernet jack.
Other than that, it’s DLNA / AirPlay – ready, Flash 11.1, and they also claim to be “optimized” for XBMC.
It’s a rather tiny device if you compare it with regular media players and from the looks of it it could be a strong competitor to the other 3188 devices

Egreat U8
Egreat U8
Egreat U8