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Old 03-05-2014, 12:40 PM - Thread Starter
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So has anyone managed to get their hands on the ASUS chromebox yet? It looks to be shipping. Wondering if it is going to be possible to run Windows or Linux on it with XBMC....would make for a cheap low power HTPC. Not sure what the performance of the Celeron in it would be.
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Old 03-06-2014, 01:08 AM
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I'm wondering this too, it definitely looks very promising as a decent HTPC. Seeing as the intel NUC with the Celeron 847 can run XBMC at 1080p with no issues, you'd expect the Celeron 2955U with about a 40% performance increase (even more graphically) to run it even smoother.
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Old 03-14-2014, 06:28 PM
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Found this the other day. http://liliputing.com/2014/03/asus-chromebox-review-chrome-desktop-celeron-cpu.html

I'm hoping more info comes out on having one OS and installing Linux.
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Old 03-15-2014, 02:56 AM
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Holy smokes -- this thing is ripe for openelec at what looks to be one of the best prices out there. I had hopes for bay-trail nucs, but a haswell celeron would be preferable to a haswell atom with ivy graphics. I'd love to see idle power consumption comparisons and the max bitrate they can handle
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Old 03-15-2014, 03:07 AM
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I think all of these Chrome PC's use secure boot and the OS cannot be changed.
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Old 03-16-2014, 02:13 AM
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Did you read the article? It says you can install Linux side-by-side with Chrome OS. Plus, in the comments section, it's mentioned that other Chromebooks have a literal "write-protect screw" that you can remove to do whatever you want to it. At the pricepoint of this box, I'd say people will figure out how to get other OSes on it like Windows.

But even if that never happens, you should be able to use Linux/XMBC/OpenELEC or something.
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Old 03-16-2014, 06:04 AM
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The only problem that needs overcoming now is the requirement of holding down the alternate-boot key combination every time it starts (Ctrl+D?). As little as it sounds, I don't want to have people restarting and getting stuck in the wrong OS all the time. I guess leaving it on is a possibility, as it uses so little power.
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Old 03-17-2014, 06:22 AM
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The Acer C720 Chromebook (which has near-identical specs -2955U + 2GB RAM + 16GB M2 SSD etc.) has a script that can alter some settings stored in Flash that switches the default BIOS mode and the time out settings, which removes the need for CTRL+L to get you to legacy BIOS (which is needed to boot OpenElec)
http://johnlewis.ie/how-to-make-seabios-the-default-on-your-acer-c720/

Hopefully the Chromebox will have similar functionality.

I have a C720 but haven't flashed it yet. I use Chrome OS (CTRL+D to boot), Ubuntu (as a separate partition on the SSD using CTRL+L to boot) and OpenElec (from a USB3.0 stick using CTRL+L to boot). The performance with recent OpenElec nightlies is very good indeed. Perfect HTPC to take when you're in a hotel. (I usually take a USB TV tuner and with TV Headend and an HDMI connection to the hotel TV have much better TV options than many - still analogue - hotel systems)
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Old 04-18-2014, 10:19 PM
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To update this thread, I got an asus chromebox and am running openelec on it. Runs great. 1080p, dts-hd pass thru, no problems.

Got xbmc installed on the internal ssd. Press ctrl + D to boot chrome os or ctrl + L to boot openelec.

Thanks to Matt Devo and others on the xbmc.org forums and John Lewis as above for the bios work.

http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php?title=ASUS_Chromebox
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Old 06-01-2014, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by busbeepbeep View Post

To update this thread, I got an asus chromebox and am running openelec on it. Runs great. 1080p, dts-hd pass thru, no problems.

Got xbmc installed on the internal ssd. Press ctrl + D to boot chrome os or ctrl + L to boot openelec.

Thanks to Matt Devo and others on the xbmc.org forums and John Lewis as above for the bios work.

http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php?title=ASUS_Chromebox

Do you know if the 2GB celeron version can pass through dts-hd & dolby hd or do you need the 4GB i3 version? Thanks
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Old 06-01-2014, 08:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenglish13 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by busbeepbeep View Post

To update this thread, I got an asus chromebox and am running openelec on it. Runs great. 1080p, dts-hd pass thru, no problems.

Got xbmc installed on the internal ssd. Press ctrl + D to boot chrome os or ctrl + L to boot openelec.

Thanks to Matt Devo and others on the xbmc.org forums and John Lewis as above for the bios work.

http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php?title=ASUS_Chromebox

Do you know if the 2GB celeron version can pass through dts-hd & dolby hd or do you need the 4GB i3 version? Thanks


The 2GB Celeron one can do passthru of all digital audio. There is no hw processing needed so the i3 is not needed.

 

busbeepbeep (love your user name btw), a few questions for you since I alos just bought a Chromebox -

 

- did you install Coreboot firmware or still on the default one?

- what do you use for a remote solution?

- do you keep box always on (I think idle power should be <10W), if not how do you power on remotely?

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Old 06-04-2014, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Defcon View Post


- did you install Coreboot firmware or still on the default one?
- what do you use for a remote solution?
- do you keep box always on (I think idle power should be <10W), if not how do you power on remotely?
I'm still on the default firmware. I didn't remove the write protect screw. I just installed the script for openelec, and press CTRL+L to boot. I should go back and redo it, but I leave it on all the time so the boot time or having to press CTRL+L doesn't bother me much.

I use a PS3 BluRay bluetooth remote. I also have used a Logitech K400 with it, which works fine during Openelec , but cannot pass the CTRL+L during startup. Luckily, it's pretty stable and I don't have to reboot often.
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Old 06-10-2014, 04:47 PM
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Hi,

I am thinking of buying for these as it will be perfect - I need a device that can be used with both Openelec and Netflix.

Just a couple of questions with regards to playing Netflix via Chrome OS (which I have never used):

1. Can you get 5.1 sound output from Netflix this way?
2. Can you use Hola with Netflix, in Chrome OS, to unblock other Netflix regions? I am based in the UK so would need to preserve my access to Netlix US.

Thanks very much
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Old 06-12-2014, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by elsmandino View Post
Hi,

I am thinking of buying for these as it will be perfect - I need a device that can be used with both Openelec and Netflix.

Just a couple of questions with regards to playing Netflix via Chrome OS (which I have never used):

1. Can you get 5.1 sound output from Netflix this way?
2. Can you use Hola with Netflix, in Chrome OS, to unblock other Netflix regions? I am based in the UK so would need to preserve my access to Netlix US.

Thanks very much
I don't know about 5.1 (probably) but mine is connected to a stereo only setup. Netfix / Amazon/ Vudu do not stream in HD. 480 only

See this Amazon review for more details: http://www.amazon.com/review/R2DQLBY...res_rtr_alt_13

I don't know what Hola is, but I can use the ssh client to setup a tunnel to use as a proxy and stream the BBC.

When I tried doing that with netflix it did not like that my account was not in the country I was connecting from.

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Old 07-13-2014, 02:44 PM
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So then if you really have grown to love xbmc like I have this box is pretty much plug n play (on the hardware side anyway) for $160?
Anything I lose to the nuc besides IR (which sucks by the way)?

Thanks

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Old 07-16-2014, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by mastermaybe View Post
So then if you really have grown to love xbmc like I have this box is pretty much plug n play (on the hardware side anyway) for $160?
Anything I lose to the nuc besides IR (which sucks by the way)?

Thanks

James
I bought the ASUS Chromebox over the weekend, installed standalone OPENELEC/XBMC and OMG...it is awesome!! This past year I had the Gbox MX2 and this is like 300% better. I thought that when clicking streams the lag came from the server end, but it didn't. The hardware and software really makes a difference...streams are pretty instant, and no more crappy ANDROID OS to use. If you're looking for an HTPC box, I'd definitely recommend the Chromebox running OPENELEC. I made a quick youtube on it, no cuts or edits, just me navigating around to show you speed and responsiveness...hope this helps:

http://youtu.be/7gKnTf_Akaw?list=UU-...lkBCOuRJi9n8Rw
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Old 07-16-2014, 03:05 PM
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Originally Posted by mastermaybe View Post
So then if you really have grown to love xbmc like I have this box is pretty much plug n play (on the hardware side anyway) for $160?
Anything I lose to the nuc besides IR (which sucks by the way)?
Yes, and a perfect size internal ssd. Great amount of info here http://wiki.xbmc.org/index.php?title=ASUS_Chromebox

I'd do like loki05 seems to have done and remove the write protect screw and make it openelec/standalone. I have zero reason to dual boot chromeOS, personal choice though

The only reason I'm considering a Q-1900 for my next box instead is that I have extra RAM and an extra case just sitting around

Asus really hit it out of the park for xbmc usage I think, though I think that it's gpu doesn't have enough EU for lanczos3 upscaling in XBMC if that's of importance

Quote:
Originally Posted by loki05 View Post
I thought that when clicking streams the lag came from the server end, but it didn't. The hardware and software really makes a difference...streams are pretty instant
Thanks for the video, but for reference I've tried a lot of that stuff in the past (1channel, navi-x, icefilms, mashup, etc, etc) and the experience you have is not just better hardware. I've tested a lot of them on my i5-3570k gaming htpc, and there used to be way more lag and buffering. They definitely improved their backends

Right now I'm pretty happy with individual add-ons instead like southpark, colbert, daily show, etc, but I also have the USTV VOD add-on which works ok in a pinch.
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Old 07-16-2014, 03:50 PM
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Thanks guys...

I ended up getting the celeron nuc and 4 gigs of ram for $170.

I figure if I ever need to load windows on it I can and it seems (now, anyway) people are very happy running openelec and xbmc on it.

Hopefully Ill get the latest 2830 version but I'm not holding my breath.

Either way, I know Ill be happy with xbmc and I wish I would have figured this out long ago.

James
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:53 PM
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Another thing that I like is *experimental* to say the least. On my vizio m701d-a3r HDMI-CEC is poorly supported. Back button exists and the remote uses wifi-direct, so it seems open-shut. However, cec with my sony tv is quite a bit better. The home button goes to the home screen and the arrow keys are much less tactile (which is nice for menu navigation).

Either way, if you want to try it out then libcec is built into openelec. The usb adapter from pulse eight isn't too cheap http://www.pulse-eight.com/store/pro...c-adapter.aspx. When you compare it to the cost of a remote it's not too much more and it gives you a nice all-in-one power button if your tv supports it

The sony tv supports "keep power states in sync" which means that when I press the power button on the tv remote it turns the TV off, and by consequence that activates the shutdown function in openelec. You can change the shutdown function to "suspend" in OpenELEC settings. Then when you turn the tv on, it will send a wake command to your htpc. (Though they disabled suspend on removable boot drives in OpenELEC, so you have to do a short ssh work around to re-enable it -- I can show you if you are interested)

Another nice byproduct you get if your tv supports synchronizing power states is that yatse will be able to power off (suspend) your htpc+tv and wake it with a wol packet (which will turn the tv back on)
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Old 07-23-2014, 06:53 AM
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Originally Posted by loki05 View Post
I bought the ASUS Chromebox over the weekend, installed standalone OPENELEC/XBMC and OMG...it is awesome!! This past year I had the Gbox MX2 and this is like 300% better. I thought that when clicking streams the lag came from the server end, but it didn't. The hardware and software really makes a difference...streams are pretty instant, and no more crappy ANDROID OS to use. If you're looking for an HTPC box, I'd definitely recommend the Chromebox running OPENELEC. I made a quick youtube on it, no cuts or edits, just me navigating around to show you speed and responsiveness...hope this helps:

http://youtu.be/7gKnTf_Akaw?list=UU-...lkBCOuRJi9n8Rw
Was wondering if you could either make vid or send step by step directions on how to do this the right way. Read to many things and need to know th correct way to install Openelec standalone. is there anyway you can send directions in a private message.
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Old 07-24-2014, 12:47 AM
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Was wondering if you could either make vid or send step by step directions on how to do this the right way. Read to many things and need to know th correct way to install Openelec standalone. is there anyway you can send directions in a private message.
Start with this link (read all)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark_Slayer View Post
Then follow along to this and read through the entire first post http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?tid=194362

Everything should be covered before you even get your hands dirty
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Old 09-14-2014, 10:55 AM
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Just curious if you could watch Xfinity TV Go on this using their Chrome extension, or quite possibly watching the on demand stuff through a browser off the website?

Anyone with one of these and Xfinity want to test it for me?

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Old 09-16-2014, 07:10 PM
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Just curious if you could watch Xfinity TV Go on this using their Chrome extension, or quite possibly watching the on demand stuff through a browser off the website?

Anyone with one of these and Xfinity want to test it for me?
I have a standard ASUS Chrombox (standard Chrome OS). The xfinity web page works for viewing shows. I was surprised because it doesn't work on my Linux box. The xfinity chrome extension is for viewing live TV, not shows on demand (but it works too).

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