Mvix Ultio "It Plays All" HD media streamer debuts in the U.S. July 6 for $179 - Page 10 - AVS Forum
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post #271 of 1256 Old 08-25-2009, 01:22 AM
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Originally Posted by cocopugg View Post

Is there a site to download the latest firmware for the Ultio, or at least a site that discusses all the issues addressed with the new firmwares and any new features implemented? Thanks.

The new firmware isn't out yet. The one on the web site is 1.1 which is what the Ultio's ship with (well mine came with 1.0 and I upgraded it).

philip
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post #272 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 06:24 AM
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sup fellas, thanks for all the helpful insight on the ultio. i got mine 2 days ago and i have to say that i have not had any issues except for one that i think is major. i hooked up the unit to my pioneer elite A/V recevier thru HDMI and set the audio to HDMI raw (so my recevier decodes the audio, not the unit itself). i have 40 mkv files on an ext. HD and they play all at 1080P which is nice, problem is that on 75% of the mkv files i get an "audio data receive error (too slow)" error. all of my MKV files i made from my HD DVD and bluray collection. i tried to use the best possible audio for each one, whether its DTS-HD, dolby digital plus 5.1, regular dolby digital 5.1, etc. Is this error due to the unit not being able to decode these newer audio types? i thought that by setting it to HDMI raw that it doesnt matter because the A/V unit is decoding the audio..am i saying this right? Also, i did update with firmwares 1.1 and 1.2 from the website. i knwo my mkv files are legit since i created AVCHD's from the ones that give me the error and they play PERFECT in my bluray player. any help would be great, Thanks guys.
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post #273 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 10:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cocopugg View Post

Is there a site to download the latest firmware for the Ultio, or at least a site that discusses all the issues addressed with the new firmwares and any new features implemented? Thanks.

This is where you can download firmware 1.2

http://www.mvixusa.com/support/index...nloaditemid=56

I updated mine but haven't seen what improvements there are. I still can't create shortcuts to specific folders. Network hasn't improved, still stutters on files over 9MBPS.

A word of warning, after the upgrade you have to reload all your settings. I use a static IP so i had to reload that, all the shortcuts I had to my server were gone, TV settings were also gone.

There doesn't seem to be much activity on the Ultio. This forum doesn't have may posts. The Mvix forum has very few posts also. I'm beginning to wonder how well this unit is selling.

Another thing I found out today, after a power failure and the power is restored the Ultio turns on. It should return to it's last state or at least default to the off position.
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post #274 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 02:23 PM
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After upgrading to firmware 1.2 I found I had to pull the power to do a hard reset before Samba started working again. I also found out that I could no longer telnet into the Ultio using its IP address. Has anyone else found this to be that case after the upgrade? That doesn't bode well for their open source "Ultio Challange". You do at least need easy access the box if you're going to attempt anything.
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post #275 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 02:59 PM
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Burnerbum, thanks for posting that link. Does Mvix have some kind of FAQ anywhere, where they explain what issues and new features version 1.2 of the Ultio firmware actually addresses?
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post #276 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 03:01 PM
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After a couple weeks of back and forth with the RMA department, my broken Ultio is finally on its way for repair. They asked me to include the HDD which I installed, which seemed weird (I wiped it first). Let's hope it doesn't take too long to get this sorted out and get my Ultio back.
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post #277 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 03:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cocopugg View Post

Burnerbum, thanks for posting that link. Does Mvix have some kind of FAQ anywhere, where they explain what issues and new features version 1.2 of the Ultio firmware actually addresses?


Not that I could find, They just mentioned that it fixed some bugs and mentioned a couple but no details.
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post #278 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 03:26 PM
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They don't do a very good job at all when it comes to informing users what the firmware update does.

FYI, I was able to go back to firmware version 1.1 with no problem and that regained telnet access.
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post #279 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 04:25 PM
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rozz, thank you for that update. I am awaiting my Ultio to arrive in the next couple of days. I gather from the feedback so far that it would be wise to update the firmware to version 1.1 but not 1.2, is that the consensus so far?
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post #280 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 04:28 PM
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candre23, let's hope you just got a bad unit. I would be inclined to believe that was the case since others here have said how happy they have been overall with their Ultio. That being said, however, I am a bit concerned over quality control of the product, and hope when mine arrives, I am fortunate enough to get a good one. Please keep us informed as to when you get your replacement and what you think of it when it arrives.
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post #281 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cocopugg View Post

rozz, thank you for that update. I am awaiting my Ultio to arrive in the next couple of days. I gather from the feedback so far that it would be wise to update the firmware to version 1.1 but not 1.2, is that the consensus so far?

That would depend. If you want to have telnet access in order to log in as root and mess around, I'd stick with the 1.1 firmware for now. Otherwise, I'd probably go with the 1.2 firmware.
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post #282 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 06:18 PM
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after my last post asking questions about audio compatibility i came to this conclusion:my MKV files that had Dolby Digital 5.1 Plus encoded audio would NOT play. Here's the fix: demux the MKV with MKVextractGUI (for those that dont know you can d/l MKVToolnix and the GUI for it). Once finished Demuxing just REMUX the audio and video with tsMuxeR_1.10.6 (agin d/l the GUI as well) and save the file as an M2TS file. Simple as that. The file size will be a little bit bigger but hell, it will play PERFECT. I tested with my Batman Begins file that was encoded with DD5.1 Plus audio. I hope this helps anyone else who is having that crazy audio error. Basically everything i've thrown at this unit has played without any errors or skips, and no i have not tried streaming across a wireless network yet but according to people any video bitrate over 9000 will give you issues.
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post #283 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 08:41 PM
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While most of this may not be of interest to the average user, it does give some rise to concern.

The first thing I noticed is that Mvix has intentionally disabled telnet access, which essentially is an attempt to close the door on their supposedly open system. While with a bit of hacking you can re-enable it, it seems like an odd thing to do when they tout the Ultio as being open source and also suggest they are looking for people to take the Ultio challenge by attempting to enhance the system.

In this release they've also made the root filesystem read only, which closes another door. True, it can also be re-enabled after you regain telnet access, but it just seems like another attempt to lock down the system and make things difficult.

Bottom line is, the Mvix open source claim is nothing but smoke and mirrors. The only part that is open source is the Linux GNU licensed underpinnings. All the items that would need to be documented in order to truly enhance the system are missing and considered proprietary.

While the above may be of little concern to the average end user, it does make you question a company that advertises how they want users to contribute to their product on one hand, and then attempt to slam the door in their face on the other.

From a practical perspective, I have no idea on what the 1.2 firmware upgrade may or may not accomplish. That's another failing on the part of Mvix. They provide no useful release notes. If something has been enhanced or fixed, I for one would like to have some documentation. What's the plan? You blindly load new firmware and experiment with it until you find something different?

I suppose for $169 it's not a bad toy if you're willing to accept if for what it is and not really take too much stock in the hype that Mvix puts out. Like many of its competitors, it's a low end device with adequate capabilities that could potentially be a lot more.. if only one of these companies really invested the effort to develop it.
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post #284 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 09:39 PM
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rozz, I agree with you, but keeping in mind the potential the ULTIO has, because of its powerful processing chip. If Mvix ever does open the "complete" source, then the Ultio's potentials could be limited only to a developer's imagination.
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post #285 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 09:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rozz View Post

The first thing I noticed is that Mvix has intentionally disabled telnet access, which essentially is an attempt to close the door on their supposedly open system. While with a bit of hacking you can re-enable it, it seems like an odd thing to do when they tout the Ultio as being open source and also suggest they are looking for people to take the Ultio challenge by attempting to enhance the system.

Is there an obvious way to regain telnet access? I was about to use the usb connection to mount the root partition on my computer ( an NTFS and an ext3 partition showed up under 1.1). At this point one might be able to edit the appropriate files.

I don't think, at least I hope not, the telnet closing was intentional. I have a feeling the upgrade, apart from audio, dealt with remote issues and the ability to mount usb hard drives via smb. The remote currently doesn't handle the home menu for dvd's properly. That is surely a priority.

I hope you are mistaken with respect to the Ultio becoming a closed system. I'm willing to give them time to sort out the obvious issues.

philip
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post #286 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 09:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rozz View Post

From a practical perspective, I have no idea on what the 1.2 firmware upgrade may or may not accomplish. That's another failing on the part of Mvix. They provide no useful release notes. If something has been enhanced or fixed, I for one would like to have some documentation. What's the plan? You blindly load new firmware and experiment with it until you find something different?

I really agree with you on this one. I really dislike the way they are releasing firmware upgrades with no proper documentation. I can't imagine why they'd do that. This is the 2nd upgrade. The 2nd had 2 sentences while the first had none!

I really do like the Ultio as an mkv and foreign film playback unit, but I have to tell you that my Apple TV is a breath of free air compared to the Ultio. I have complete access to almost anything in it and it's from Apple! I thought Linux types were supposed to be more open

philip
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post #287 of 1256 Old 08-27-2009, 10:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Burnerbum View Post

There doesn't seem to be much activity on the Ultio. This forum doesn't have may posts. The Mvix forum has very few posts also. I'm beginning to wonder how well this unit is selling.

I've tried several times to gain access to the mvix forums. You have to respond to an activation e-mail the forum sends out but it simply doesn't send the e-mail, for me at least. Contacting the forum admins has not resulted in any reply. Hence I can't post there. Maybe there's a problem with that forum? Weren't they changing systems?

philip
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post #288 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 12:20 AM
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From what i read so far on this update i dont think im going to bother getting the new firmware..

I really need them to start working on the user interface complications and the wireless integration.. But this is a good sign that they are supporting their product after release
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post #289 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 05:44 AM
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Originally Posted by pmcd View Post

I've tried several times to gain access to the mvix forums. You have to respond to an activation e-mail the forum sends out but it simply doesn't send the e-mail, for me at least. Contacting the forum admins has not resulted in any reply. Hence I can't post there. Maybe there's a problem with that forum? Weren't they changing systems?

philip

i noticed that problem as well with the forum. i tried two different email addresses to gain access to their forum and neither got an activation email. since it is a new piece of hardware i am willing to give them a little leeway on it functionality at the moment(wireless, telnet). and i also agree with the other posters that the wireless issue is a big one
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post #290 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 06:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cocopugg View Post

rozz, I agree with you, but keeping in mind the potential the ULTIO has, because of its powerful processing chip. If Mvix ever does open the "complete" source, then the Ultio's potentials could be limited only to a developer's imagination.

I certanly agree that it's a capable piece of hardware. Best I can tell from research is that the Ultio is based on the Realtek RTD1073 mulit-media SOC (system on a chip). Amazing device. Unfortunately, Realtek is extremely closed lipped on their hardware/software, which is probably understandable, and will supply zero documentation unless you have a viable working relationship as an OEM. I doubt that the proprietary internals will ever intentionally be released for open source development.

My beef with Mvix is that they were totally off base when they attempted to market this device as being open source.
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post #291 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 07:26 AM
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Originally Posted by pmcd View Post

Is there an obvious way to regain telnet access? I was about to use the usb connection to mount the root partition on my computer ( an NTFS and an ext3 partition showed up under 1.1). At this point one might be able to edit the appropriate files.

philip

Obvious depends on your interpretation and your linux familiarity. The 1.2 firmware commented out this line in the /etc/inetd.conf file:

#telnet stream tcp nowait root /usr/sbin/telnetd telnetd

(in my eyes, quite intentional)

If you can gain access to the file and remove the "#" from the line mentioned you can re-enable telnet access. That's in the root filesystem which has also become read only in the 1.2 release. Since I installed an internal drive on my Ultio and enabled Samba, I used/modified the Samba startup script (which resides on the internal hard drive) to shutdown the inetd service and restart it using my own inetd.conf file. Trying to document the entire procedure here is probably beyond the scope of this forum.
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post #292 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmcd View Post

I really agree with you on this one. I really dislike the way they are releasing firmware upgrades with no proper documentation. I can't imagine why they'd do that. This is the 2nd upgrade. The 2nd had 2 sentences while the first had none!
philip

I recall stumbling across some forum somewhere when the 1.1 firmware was released. I found what looked like an attempt at release notes. It was a total joke. Written in the worst pigeon English that you could possibly imagine and barely intelligible. It seemed quite logical that Mvix never supplied as much as a sentence regarding what the 1.1 firmware was suppose to do, as they probably had no idea.

All these low priced media boxes all seem to be developed in what I would imagine to be the following scenario.

Realtek semiconductor (the manufacturer of the hardware) releases a reference design along with a version of Linux, which provides the core functionality. Then, any number of very small Korean/Chinese OEM's take the design, hack/cheapen it up a bit, and presto a new media box is born.

A company like Mivx comes along and goes with the lowest priced creation that they can find, figuring that hey, we can sell this thing and make a bundle and it even sorta works

While I believe the hardware to be extremely capable, I doubt that the small companies that manufacture these devices will ever evolve a truly polished product. They just don't have the time, resources, or the talent.

What you end up with is an inexpensive and interesting gadget that can perform quite remarkably in some instances and fall flat on its face in others. It does what you might expect from its low price.

I suppose I'll continue mucking with it because it's interesting. I may also go with my original gut reaction (before I saw the Ultio) and put together a really nice media center PC that would run circles around these low end devices, play anything I throw at it, not crash as often, and even playback blu-ray disks. That's what $400 as opposed to $169 would probably get me.
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post #293 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 10:25 AM
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I only wish someone would develope a huge media storage system on a stick...Let's say...an external USB stick that can hold a gig (to start with)...This would eliminate the need for the Ultio's internal fan...Hey it's still a pipe dream, but there are already TVs available today that come with a USB port capable of playing media files...It's only a matter of time before the Ultio and similar devices become obsolete in favor of built in USB ports built into TVs, limiting us to memory size, and not the ability to actually play all these files. And of course...that's when the studios will threaten lawsuits and such...and so it goes.
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post #294 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 12:48 PM
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I'm actually liking the new firmware, for one it appears to be doing digital audio mixdown properly for me now (I tested this on the TV in my office). My intial impressions of the device are it has potential. I'm going to start messing around with it in a couple weeks or so.

The criticisms of the UI, at least in my opinion, are slightly exaggerated. It's basic and of course no where near what the Apple TV looks like, but it seems sufficient for now.

the install.img is just a tar file (which is nice)
Code:
mifune:Desktop djh29$ file install.img 
install.img: POSIX tar archive
Note too much stuff on the inside of it:
Code:
mifune:Desktop djh29$ tar tf install.img 
arial.ttf
audio_firmware.install.bin
configuration.xml
flash_erase
install_a
mkfs.jffs2
nandwrite
package2/
package2/vmlinux.develop.avhdd.mars.nand.bin
package2/video_firmware.bin
package2/yaffs2_1.img
package2/yaffs2_2.img
package2/bluecore.audio
video_firmware.install.bin
Here is what I have gathered about the box (after 30 seconds of looking):
  • JFFS2 Filesystem and YAFFS2 Filesystem
  • It's MIPS Based
    Code:
    flash_erase: ELF 32-bit LSB executable, MIPS, version 1 (SYSV), statically linked, stripped
    

The addons are just debian packed files:
Code:
mifune:Mvix Ultio Widgets Pack djh29$ file samba_3.0.23c_mipsel.ipk 
samba_3.0.23c_mipsel.ipk: Debian binary package (format 2.0)
mifune:Mvix Ultio Widgets Pack djh29$ 
mifune:Mvix Ultio Widgets Pack djh29$ ar tv samba_3.0.23c_mipsel.ipk 
rw-r--r--       0/0             4 May  6 23:23 2009 debian-binary/
rw-r--r--       0/0       2289311 May  6 23:23 2009 data.tar.gz/
rw-r--r--       0/0           864 May  6 23:32 2009 control.tar.gz/
mifune:Mvix Ultio Widgets Pack djh29$
I suspect that a couple of the files are dd's of a filesystem. With a simple cross compiler you could probably start compiling stuff, adding to the one of their packages (.ipk) and have it on the box in no time, or better yet drop it on the hard drive.
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post #295 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 12:52 PM
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Also I am curious if other people are getting decent speed connecting to the device via Samba. I found it was rather slow, however, I was testing it from an OSX box, not a windows or linux box.
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post #296 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 01:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [derek] View Post

Also I am curious if other people are getting decent speed connecting to the device via Samba. I found it was rather slow, however, I was testing it from an OSX box, not a windows or linux box.

Mine seems to work fine, at a reasonable speed, from both osx and a d-link dns 323 nas (linux based). I'm using osx 10.5.6 and on the ultio I have the samba server enabled.

philip
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post #297 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 02:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rozz View Post

Obvious depends on your interpretation and your linux familiarity. The 1.2 firmware commented out this line in the /etc/inetd.conf file:

#telnet stream tcp nowait root /usr/sbin/telnetd telnetd

(in my eyes, quite intentional)

If you can gain access to the file and remove the "#" from the line mentioned you can re-enable telnet access. That's in the root filesystem which has also become read only in the 1.2 release. Since I installed an internal drive on my Ultio and enabled Samba, I used/modified the Samba startup script (which resides on the internal hard drive) to shutdown the inetd service and restart it using my own inetd.conf file. Trying to document the entire procedure here is probably beyond the scope of this forum.


Hmm...this sounds like the approach taken with the D-Link DNS 323 . The various plugins seem to act like this. I have an e-sata drive attached to the Ultio which acts as an internal drive. How different is the modified Samba startup script? That's a safer way of enabling telnet than to try to get around the read only root filesystem which might end up "bricking" the system. I don't know if there is a recovery procedure in such a case.

philip
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post #298 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 02:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cocopugg View Post

I only wish someone would develope a huge media storage system on a stick...Let's say...an external USB stick that can hold a gig (to start with)...This would eliminate the need for the Ultio's internal fan...Hey it's still a pipe dream, but there are already TVs available today that come with a USB port capable of playing media files...It's only a matter of time before the Ultio and similar devices become obsolete in favor of built in USB ports built into TVs, limiting us to memory size, and not the ability to actually play all these files. And of course...that's when the studios will threaten lawsuits and such...and so it goes.

Hook up a fanless e-sata drive to the internal sata port. You can then disable the fan. The system runs cool and you get the advantage of a quiet "internal" drive. It's been working great for me at least.

philip
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post #299 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 02:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rozz View Post

I suppose I'll continue mucking with it because it's interesting. I may also go with my original gut reaction (before I saw the Ultio) and put together a really nice media center PC that would run circles around these low end devices, play anything I throw at it, not crash as often, and even playback blu-ray disks. That's what $400 as opposed to $169 would probably get me.

I also have an 09 Mac Mini which hooked up to my HDTV. It does run circles around any of my other devices, but I still know it's a computer which bothers me. I prefer both my Apple Tv and Ultio despite the obvious limitations in both cases.

Assembling your own media centre PC would be interesting. Seems to me it would be neat to try and get a silent, nice looking, remote controlled system. I wonder if it can be done for $400...

philip
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post #300 of 1256 Old 08-28-2009, 02:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [derek] View Post

Also I am curious if other people are getting decent speed connecting to the device via Samba. I found it was rather slow, however, I was testing it from an OSX box, not a windows or linux box.

I'm getting rather slow performance using Samba, regardless of the OS. Ultio plods along around 25 to 40% of a 100 mbit connection. Everything else on my LAN can hit a 95% utilization with Samba (mix of Linux and Windoz).

Sounds like you're pretty sharp with Linux and the type of guy that should look into the anemic network performance. Based on what you were able to glean in 30 seconds, I'm expecting you'll solve the network issue by the time I send this reply Seriously, would be great having someone with a strong Linux backround looking into the Ultio. Mivx does supply the complete cross compiler toolchain for RTD1073 MIPS based Ultio and it does work. I've compiled a modified version of BusyBox and it did run without issue.
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