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Official Popcorn Hour A-110 Owners Thread

post #1 of 2788
Thread Starter 
Mine is being delivered as we speak. I will post 1st impressions after it gets here. My Kuro is excited
post #2 of 2788
Sucks being in Canada, I'm hoping the reseller gets them in this week and gets my preorder out ASAP.
post #3 of 2788
Mine also is on its way, being delivered by UPS any other day and he would have been here already.

It show up about 6:15 Pm, well package, looks good Silver color. came with cables you need, (HDMI just need a hard drive, now or later. Might need possible sound cable for Optical or stereo. Ethernet cable. other type of Video cable beside HDMI, Component, Svideo and Coaxial. Looking to hook up after Dinner and try it out. Later
post #4 of 2788
Thread Starter 
Still waiting...
post #5 of 2788
I got mine in about 3:30 but other work related functions are keeping me busy. Going to hook it up now.
post #6 of 2788
Thread Starter 
Thus far, this tank is playing all of my 720p files flawlessly (with 5.1 DTS sound!). My only complaint is the clunky interface. I hope someone comes up with a good skin soon.

I have yet to throw any 1080p files at it, but things look promising. I will post more opinions later.
post #7 of 2788
I finally run my A110 through a few hoops. I put some of my best torture tests of 1080p in H.264, VC-1 and mpg2. It worked quite smoothly on some of the most demanding. I ran them all via the net using NFS. A couple of my tests were +40mb/s and no macro blocking on my 720p plasma. I will really give it a work out tomorrow on my RS1 once I get a HDD in it and get my friends uber h.264 torture tests and see if it passes them as well. I too used some DTS audio files and they all played perfectly. Outside of the kludgy remote setup - all seemed to work. My firmware was 01-17-08-06-13 (from memory).
post #8 of 2788
GOt mine today and I got a HDD for it.. WIll hook it up tomorrow.
post #9 of 2788
Quote:
Originally Posted by TN Doc View Post

My only complaint is the clunky interface. I hope someone comes up with a good skin soon.

There has been alot of work on new skins for movie jukeboxes for the a-100. The assumption is that they should the same for the a-110. You can see the forum here for more details:

http://www.networkedmediatank.com/fo...lay.php?fid=34

I have been using Yet Another Movie Jukebox (YAMJ) over the last few days on the a-100 and I have been very pleased.
post #10 of 2788
I'm on a Mac and have a AVCHD camcorder. There is no native AVCHD playback yet fo Macs. I can however transfer the data files, etc. (or transcode to a BIG .MOV file). Can you transfer the .mts "clips" or the SD card structure directly to PCH and if so, will they play back as a series of events or just one clip a time (an hour long video can be made up of over 100 clips)?
post #11 of 2788
Thread Starter 
Not sure corp. I'm not too familiar with AVCHD camcorders. Thanks for the skin links scyber. I have t check that out.

Another issue I have run into with the PCH is that .mkv files crash fairly frequently with fast-forward and rewind. Anyone else have that problem?
post #12 of 2788
I have both a Popcorn Hour A100 and I just received my A110 yesterday. I opened it up and hooked it up right away. The Firmware on the popcorn and the one on your website is the same so no need to update as that was the first thing I checked.

The first thing I did to test out my popcorn hour A110 was plug in a few USB 2.0 external HDD's I have. I have 4 of them. 3 WD and 1 Toshiba. They all work on my A100 with no problems, I plug them in and they come up as USB drive A, and USB Drive B if I plug 2 in at the same time.

I plugged each one of these drives into my A110 (both from and or Back USB ports) and they do not come up at all. I plugged in a 256MB USB key and that popped up with no problems. On my A100 they all come up each time no issues.

I did a hard reset on the BOX from the Front reset Button and Tried again, nothing come up. I did a factory Reset of the settings from the setup/maintaince menu and that did not work. I downloaded the FW on the website for the A110 updated the firmware (well it was the same firmware, so it just flashed the same one) and tried again, nothing. Lastly I tried unplugging the box while holding the reset button, letting it sit for 5 minutes and plugging it back in. The A110 booted and I proceeded to plug in my External HDD's and NOTHING happened.

Does the Popcorn Hour A110 not support USB Drives anymore? I get the same results with both front and back ports, nothing comes up on the screen. My drives get power, I can see the Lights on the External drive come on, but I never get USB DRIVE A or B in the Sources section. I even left one plugged in for 10 minutes, just incase there might have been a delay. They pop up on my A100 within 3 - 5 seconds every time no issues.

I’m under the impression there is an issue with my A110 it does not register any USB drive I plug in.
post #13 of 2788
Ok, more time to play with the A110. I finally figured out how to use MyiHome for linking all my HDDs together and test all of my library - well a very small % of it
The good, H.264 play very well on my RS1 PJ and it held up well against all the nasty torture tests I threw at it. Mpgs and VC-1 encodes all played well. The interface is not WAF friendly yet, I guess I need to work on it a bit more.
As far as video quality - I am comparing the A110 against my two different ubuntu mythtv / mplayers setups (seemlessly integrated w/CoreAVC). First off, my myth interface literally kicks the crap out of the A110 at least with the Myihome setup - not even close or even in the same universe. Ok, so what about image and sound quality?
Bottom line, the sound is pass-thru so basically the same. Image? The H.264 stuff playing thru my linux mplayer h.264 (coreavc) setup is slightly better, albeit slight but more 3D or something intangible - not sure what it is but both are close. The VC-1 encoded material seemed pretty close. Mpeg2 seemed less grainy playing thru mplayer and just a LOT clearer, esp on older films. This is not to say that grain is not present but it seems more film-like thru the mplayer setup. The A110 seems to enhance the grain and film noise, which seems to take away from the image.
I really like the PCH-A110 and I want to like it lot, it would make my setup easier to maintain but right now I am not sure which way I am leaning. I was wanting to replace my media computers with simple little boxes and I think they may work for small screen i.e.., less that 50" but on a 110" screen I am having a serious debate with myself on the easy of setup vs. quality.
Anyone see what I am seeing? If the interface was a little more polished I know I could live with some of the obvious shortcomings of the A110 concerning video quality (mostly mpeg2) playback but I am not sure exactly how to polish the interface at this point.
I am in no way dogging the PCH but I was expecting it to kick my current setups a$$ and it really just didn't, although it helds it own on most of the material.
I had a friend bring by his Blu-ray player and his rips of some of the torture tests movies and the results are the same as the PCH, I guess it is the chipset??
Damn, I feel picky tonight
post #14 of 2788
Thread Starter 
@ Comp1demon

I have used my USB (MyBook) drive plugged into the front and the back of the A-110 with no problems. I''m not sure what's going on with your unit, but I can verify that the PCH works fine with USB drives.
post #15 of 2788
TN DOC - I have an A100 and they all work fine on that... MY A110 don't recognise any of them at all, 4 external drives I have tried on both ports and NOTHING comes up. - I got back to my A100 and they all work FINE.

I contacted PH already about this issue. Perhaps I just got bad hardware or something...
post #16 of 2788
Here is the volly back and forth between me and popcorn hour so far concerning my problem... Im starting to get MAD!!!!





How can a Poratable Western Digial USB 2.0 Hard drive that powers off the USB port - that works fine on the A100 not work at all on the A110? - How would the A110 not give it enought power? I tried some EXTERNAL POWERED USB 2.0 drives and NO hard drive comes up on my A110 at all. The only thing that comes up is a USB stick. Defently, in my opinion, defective hardware.....
by: CD on 9/3/2008 5:23:32 PM


Did you connect connect your USB HDD to both of the USB port together? This look to me like the USB HDD didn't get enough Power supply from the USB port.
by: Popcorn Hour Support on 9/3/2008 3:04:44 AM


None of the HDD that I am using have external Power supplys. They are all USB 2.0 and power off the USB port. AS I POINTED OUT - I have an A100 and a A110 - they all work FINE on my A100... THEY DO NOT WORK AT ALL ON MY A110 - I think the USB ports or the System hardware is faulty..
by: CD on 9/2/2008 5:33:11 AM


A-110 should support USD HDD as well. Did your USB HDD connect to external Power Supply?
by: Popcorn Hour Support on 9/2/2008 4:20:54 AM


I have both a Popcorn Hour A100 and I just received my A110 yesterday. I opened it up and hooked it up right away. The Firmware on the popcorn and the one on your website is the same so no need to update as that was the first thing I checked. The first thing I did to test out my popcorn hour A110 was plug in a few USB 2.0 external HDD's I have. I have 4 of them. 3 WD and 1 Toshiba. They all work on my A100 with no problems, I plug them in and they come up as USB drive A, and USB Drive B if I plug 2 in at the same time. I plugged each one of these drives into my A110 (both from and or Back USB ports) and they do not come up at all. I plugged in a 256MB USB key and that popped up with no problems. On my A100 they all come up each time no issues. I did a hard reset on the BOX from the Front reset Button and Tried again, nothing come up. I did a factory Reset of the settings from the setup/maintaince menu and that did not work. I downloaded the FW on the website for the A110 updated the firmware (well it was the same firmware, so it just flashed the same one) and tried again, nothing. Lastly I tried unplugging the box while holding the reset button, letting it sit for 5 minutes and plugging it back in. The A110 booted and I proceeded to plug in my External HDD's and NOTHING happened. Does the Popcorn Hour A110 not support USB Drives anymore? I get the same results with both front and back ports, nothing comes up on the screen. My drives get power, I can see the Lights on the External drive come on, but I never get USB DRIVE A or B in the Sources section. I even left one plugged in for 10 minutes, just incase there might have been a delay. They pop up on my A100 within 3 - 5 seconds every time no issues. I’m under the impression there is an issue with my A110 it does not register any USB drive I plug in. Do I need a replacement? Is there something I didn't try? CD
by: CD on 8/30/2008 11:03:09 AM
post #17 of 2788
Well, many drives that run of of USB ports have USB cables that connect to TWO (2) USP ports on the host at the same time, to be able to draw additional power from the 2nd USB port. I know my external USB drive I use most is that way. I think they were asking, are you running your external USB drive with a cable that connects to just one USB port on the box, or a cable that splits to two USB ports (one for data and one for additionall power).

It could well be that the USB hardware changed and a single port no longer supplies enough juice to drive your drives.
post #18 of 2788
So where do us USA living people order the device from? Direct from the maker? No resellers in the US?
post #19 of 2788
I have the same question regarding where you guys are getting these?

I went o popcorn hour site, and they show up as pre-order. Is their definition of 'pre-order' different than normal?

Please share your sources. I would like to get one and try it out as soon as possible.

Thank you.
post #20 of 2788
Thread Starter 
Their website says preorder, but they have already manufactured and sent out one or two batches of the a-110. I ordered mine on August 4th (maybe it was the day they announced it) and received it just last week.

I think that's standard procedure for them. They take orders and send out batches as they are made. Their forums have threads that announce what batch your order is in and when they are expecting to ship out the units.
post #21 of 2788
Finally got a chance to play with the A110 some more - been upgrading my Myth system. I found out that it sees my Mythtv backend and showed all the recordings! I was able to play any of those recorded - way cool! I found that subtitles don't work with either the .srt file sitting in the same folder or even if muxed in a .mkv file. Actually, my mastroka muxed files don't play at all. Not sure what the problem is yet. With the Mythtv connection I am a lot happier camper
post #22 of 2788
In setup to have subtitle support, set the lanuage to any language but not "none". This
is usually the cause why SRT files are not loaded as it says "none" for using subtitles up
there...

Subtitles muxed in MKV should work also...
post #23 of 2788
My sub rips were unicode and the PCH did not seem to like them. I converted them to utf8 and all was good. My mplayer setup even played them
post #24 of 2788
Does anyone know if there is support for playing DVD images (e.g. .iso, .img, etc.)? Something like Daemon Tools?

Also, are there any hard-drive size limitations for the A-110?
post #25 of 2788
the popcorn hour can play .iso and .img images of DVDs. As for hard drive limitations, as long as its plug and play its fine. I have a 1tb USB drive connected to it formatted in NTFS and it works perfectly. Internal drives should support up to 1tb without a problem too.
post #26 of 2788
One thing I'm curious about - and haven't seen much discussion of - is the quality of SD-DVD playback through the A110. From a PQ perspective, is it similar to a decent upconverting player? A good upconverter like the recent crop of Oppo's/the PS3/Toshiba XA3 ? Does it handle BTB/WTW signal levels well? It seems like much of the discussion I've seen - here and on the NMT boards - is more oriented around setup and general performance, not PQ, which makes me wonder.

I'm toying with the idea of retiring my older/occasionally-finicky HTPC (runs TheaterTek without any extras like ffdshow) and replacing it with a NAS/media extender setup like this. Any insight in the PQ department would be appreciated. Thanks!
post #27 of 2788
Quote:
Originally Posted by Poochie View Post

One thing I'm curious about - and haven't seen much discussion of - is the quality of SD-DVD playback through the A110. From a PQ perspective, is it similar to a decent upconverting player? A good upconverter like the recent crop of Oppo's/the PS3/Toshiba XA3 ? Does it handle BTB/WTW signal levels well? It seems like much of the discussion I've seen - here and on the NMT boards - is more oriented around setup and general performance, not PQ, which makes me wonder.

I'm toying with the idea of retiring my older/occasionally-finicky HTPC (runs TheaterTek without any extras like ffdshow) and replacing it with a NAS/media extender setup like this. Any insight in the PQ department would be appreciated. Thanks!

The SD-DVD upconversion is not going to equal that of an OPPO or XA2 but I think it is in the ballpark with the PS3 - at least the one I saw upscaling.
I remember setting my A110 up with with RS1 and it seemed like it was doing both WTW/BTB but I had calibrated the HDMI input for another device so it was pretty much spot on and I really saw no need to dink with it. It does a great job at HD material and that is what I primarily use mine for, I use my XA2 for HD-DVDs and SD-DVDs.
post #28 of 2788
Why does this machine cost $20 to ship. It shoundn't cost more then $8 to ship this machine!

post #29 of 2788
Mines out for deliver with no one to sign for it. Doh! I guess I'll be picking it up tomorrow after work.
post #30 of 2788
I have a 1080i camcorder and can export MPEG-4 using H.264 with various compression settings. It creates .MOV format. Will that playback well with Popcorn Hour? Any issues? Does the quality look as it would straight through the computer output to a HDTV?

FWIW, I have a 720p projector and 96" screen.
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