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Official Ceton Echo Extender Info Thread - Page 126  

post #3751 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Single boot.. But maybe this can be done w/in android with a fork of XBMC too?

It probably can, and is probably how they intend to do it. But Android is too clunky on a TV. It's not designed to be navigated on a TV with direction arrows to move around. I have a Vizio Co-Star Google TV and thing it's horribly designed and laggy. Android might be fun to play around with, but after that I don't see it being practical or user friendly unless they put a ton of work into a custom UI for it. XBMC works great for the things it's supposed to do, which is to play movies, music, ect. And it's pure linux, not linux with sandboxed VM's like android is, so it can probably be more efficient.
post #3752 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post

I doubt MS will allow that to happen. Remember any MCX stuff needs to be certified by MS.

If that's true then does that mean the only option for them is dual-booting? cause that really isn't practical either. It will just be something to play around with, but won't be of much use probably.
post #3753 of 7721
Or they can move beyond MS and develop their own stuff for Protected Content..
post #3754 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Diverge View Post

If that's true then does that mean the only option for them is dual-booting? cause that really isn't practical either. It will just be something to play around with, but won't be of much use probably.

I can't find anywhere that lists how much ram the Echo has; but I couldn't see the Echo running both the MCX OS and Android without running out of memory. It would need to dual boot I would think.
Edited by staknhalo - 11/30/12 at 3:32pm
post #3755 of 7721
It has 1gb. It was listed several pages back. It should be enough since there are plenty of Android devices running on 512mb.
post #3756 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeonunh View Post

It has 1gb. It was listed several pages back. It should be enough since there are plenty of Android devices running on 512mb.

1 GB wouldn't cut it then I would think. Just because Android can run on 512mb devices doesn't mean it's a good user experience. I have an Android device with 512mb of memory (HTC One V) running ICS. It can slow to a crawl at times due to low memory. Granted the HTC sense UI is a memory killer on this thing; but that's just a simple UI and we're talking about running an entire other OS inline with Android. Even 1GB would be too low I assume. Besides, for DRM TV the MCX OS wouldn't be able to release the hardware to Android I would think.
post #3757 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Diverge View Post

Any chance we can get XBMC natively running on the Echo, with the extender built into XBMC for live tv, rather than Android? smile.gif
Then we'd be able to watch any media and do away with codecs on the host WMC HTPC. It can be compiled for Cortex-A9.

You forgot about copy-protected Live/Recorded TV which is the whole point of an extender in WMC to begin with.

Correction. I see what you are saying. If this is doable that would be fantastic. An XBMC streamer so to speak with a plug-in within IT to get to the CopyProtected stuff.

do we think MS would allow this eek.gif? This would be a direct violation of the WMX DRM scheme, No? I am hoping not but prepping myself in case I need to be disappointed.
post #3758 of 7721
mine came in yesterday and i spent the last 4-5 hours playing with it... impressions so far...

not sure if the proper word is jerky or laggy, but getting around the menus is just "not smooth" to say the least... not overly laggy where it's unusable, but very noticeable and somewhat annoying...

it froze at least 3-4 times when trying to watch HBO in hd... still haven't been able to get through an entire movie on any of the premium movie channels... video on the premium block is jerky, but not majorly... not by any means unwatchable, but definitely noticeable...

there is no volume normalization, and some channels come in waaaaay louder then others... the cable company issued stb suffers from the same thing, but nowhere near this extent... changing from espn to comedy central just startled the daylights out of me...

i have "mars need moms" on right now and the animation looks jerky... not a whole lot, but noticeable without being picky... tune in to the same channel with tivo, or stb, or the htpc and the problem goes away... same for xbox...

i'm testing live tv on a small 22 inch tv in my home office... i have my htpc, xbox360, tivo and the cable company stb hooked up to it and the echo's image quality and color reproduction is the worst of all of them, even beating out the stb... even on a small screen like this (and only in 720p) i can see the dropoff in image quality instantly... i would only guess that when moved to the big 1080p tv in the living room that difference will only become more apparent... i didn't expect the echo's image to be sharper or more vibrant then my color corrected htpc, but at the very least i figured it would be as good as tivo, or xbox - it's not...

as a pleasant surprise, mediabrowser works relatively well, and same goes for recordedtvhd... much like the rest of the menus, getting around is "not smooth" by any stretch of imagination, but they work and they work relatively fast... mediabrowser was always a pain on the xbox, so i'm glad to see it working here...

mkv's play, using the same shark007 config as i had for xbox... some are jerky in the beginning, but then seem to smooth out and settle in, while others (including a whole lot of the 1080p variety) are only "somewhat watchable" at best, and have mostly caused the unit to freeze up... much like with the live tv, the image quality seems to be worse then my wdlive or streaming to xbox...

the remote that comes with the thing is just "not serious"... it's just way too tiny to be usable, and the choice of batteries pretty much ensures that it will be forever relegated to the junk bucket and replaced by a harmony or something that actually looks and feels like a real remote... however, finding an hdmi and network cables in the box was a pleasant surprise... i happened to be out of spares for both at the time, so these came in handy smile.gif

overall it works... and overall it's "not terrible", but that's all it is - "not terrible"... as a pure extender for live tv, the xbox seems to work smoother and show better quality image... mediabrowser works much better here, but doesn't stream the actual mkv's as smooth as the xbox, and nowhere near wdlive... even with all the suggested tweaks, mediabrtowser's interface was always super slow for me on the xbox, it's fast and usable here... getting to your media is lightyears away faster here then on the xbox, but what's the point if it will play terribly, or just cause the unit to crash...

overall i have a very mixed reaction to this little extender so far... it does work, and it does do things it's supposed to do... but it feels "unpolished", and while it does do all these things, it doesn't seem to do any of them particularly well...

i plan to play with it a little more over the weekend, but so far the overall reaction is "bleh"...



ps.. as i was finishing up typing this, it froze on me again while watching live tv...
post #3759 of 7721
^^^ welcome to the beta program. I have high hopes for this device.
post #3760 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by caeguy View Post

^^^ welcome to the beta program. I have high hopes for this device.

+1 on the beta program.

I also have high hopes for the device. If Ceton can't get HBR h.264 mp4's working in extender mode, I'll even accept that. I would expect it to work in the upcoming Android option because most current tables / mobiles can playback h.264 1080p mp4s with similar specs to the Echo. I just want reliable live TV with no stuttering. Almost a year ago Ceton said they had something up their sleeve to address the 29/59 frame rate issue. I assume the Echo was it. However, it seems to stutter on interlaced content which is far more common than the 29/59 frame rate problem. Setting the Echo to 1080p seems to worsen the problem making 720p stutter as well.
post #3761 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Or they can move beyond MS and develop their own stuff for Protected Content..

Then they need start working on their Q with their onw stuff first. Echo is just a terminal, not the main content server. It is possible, with a company like TiVo. Not sure if Ceton has the financial means to get into TiVo business. Remember, you can't use any MS stuff now if you are going to do it yourself.
post #3762 of 7721
Got my Echo today and ran cat6 from my living room, through the basement, up the outside of the furnace chimney, through the attic and into my bedroom. Plugged in the Ceton and nothing... no hdmi signal detected. I tried on 2 tv's and tried with 2 hdmi cables. The front of the Echo lights up and I can control the power with the remote, but no picture at all, not even for a second.

Any ideas? Please don't say that I did all that work for nothing.

Thanks
Eric
Edited by eric859 - 11/30/12 at 7:23pm
post #3763 of 7721
after playing with it for a couple of more hours, it looks like my echo will be echoing its way back to newegg...

the "straw that broke the camel's back" was about half hour ago... CSINY was on, and that show is shot to be darker and noisier in some parts to give it that "gritty" look... to compare, i had the same show tuned in on the xbox, the tivo, the htpc and the echo... while the show was gritty on all of the devices, it was super duper extra gritty on the echo... it also had the worst image quality on the echo... the video looked washed out (not sharp) and it looks like there is some kind of a weird luminance issue that's causing skin tones to glow and give people that "alien face effect"... i suspect that it's the same luminance issue that's causing a very high noise/grain level... still, while worst in quality then my other devices the show was "watchable"... nowhere near great, but watchable...

what REALLY made up my mind was when i switched over to the Knicks game... dark, grainy with skin tones glowing, it looked like a bunch of jittery over caffienated aliens chop-chop-chopping their way to the basket... i could best describe it as somewhere between "simply awful" and "completely unwatchable"...

newegg's return policy on this is a standard 30 day, so i'm in no rush and will give it a couple of weeks to see if ceton can push an update to fix some of these issues, but as it sits now - this thing is going back...
post #3764 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by eric859 View Post

Got my Echo today and ran cat6 from my living room, through the basement, up the outside of the furnace chimney, through the attic and into my bedroom. Plugged in the Ceton and nothing... no hdmi signal detected. I tried on 2 tv's and tried with 2 hdmi cables. The front of the Echo lights up and I can control the power with the remote, but no picture at all, not even for a second.

Any ideas? Please don't say that I did all that work for nothing.

Thanks
Eric

Did you test your new cat5 run? The echo has been known to require a live Network connection to function. Also, make sure your TV can accept a 720p signal. If you have another location where you can try it out that would be good. Also, check out the echo FAQ section on http://cetoncorp.com/product-support/
post #3765 of 7721
Wow, how many returns of these things are they going to have since they apparently didn't even get basic playback working well before shipping them? I hope it doesn't ruin the future of this product...
post #3766 of 7721
Yes, I tested the network cable. It works fine. After it wouldn't work on my tv, I brought it down to my workstation docking station where I have a separate network and hdmi connection to a separate monitor and still... nothing. This is the 2nd time this particular issue has come up in this thread.
post #3767 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by crbaldwin View Post

Wow, how many returns of these things are they going to have since they apparently didn't even get basic playback working well before shipping them? I hope it doesn't ruin the future of this product...

Yeah. I guess the what bothers me the most would be the simple fact that if a friend or family member asked me if I would recommend the Echo under any circumstance, my answer would be a resounding "NO". Maybe in the future, but not now.
post #3768 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Or they can move beyond MS and develop their own stuff for Protected Content..

Now that would be cool.
post #3769 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by hogues View Post

Now that would be cool.

What makes you think they could do much to get this device cool. They seem to not be particularly adept at softwre based on the condition they are shipping the launch Echoes in. The colorspace story is sad, the inability to correctly detect cadence and deinterlace is beyond belief. Right now I would have to say when it comes to software these guys are complete hacks. Media Center extenders are not newly traveled ground. In fact the stuff they are struggling with tells me this project was mismanaged from the get go. 1080l, Deinterlacing and 3:2 pull down are the first things you would assure in any kind of modern CE device. Either the chipset vendor sold Ceton a bill of goods or Ceton is hopelessly incompetent are the only two answers.

I don't think I have read so many dreary stories at new product launch in a long time. Clearly this launch was driven by financial commitments and not product readyness. Ceton need to come out with a major, major, mea culpa ASAP. Their reputation is in the toilet here. The DOAs alone are astonishing.
post #3770 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by gtgray View Post

What makes you think they could do much to get this device cool. They seem to not be particularly adept at softwre based on the condition they are shipping the launch Echoes in. The colorspace story is sad, the inability to correctly detect cadence and deinterlace is beyond belief. Right now I would have to say when it comes to software these guys are complete hacks. Media Center extenders are not newly traveled ground. In fact the stuff they are struggling with tells me this project was mismanaged from the get go. 1080l, Deinterlacing and 3:2 pull down are the first things you would assure in any kind of modern CE device. Either the chipset vendor sold Ceton a bill of goods or Ceton is hopelessly incompetent are the only two answers.
I don't think I have read so many dreary stories at new product launch in a long time. Clearly this launch was driven by financial commitments and not product readyness. Ceton need to come out with a major, major, mea culpa ASAP. Their reputation is in the toilet here. The DOAs alone are astonishing.

Also, the images of the motherboard confirm that it doesn't use an external HDMI transmitter. The one built into the Freescale i.mx6 does not support 59.940 or 23.976 fps timing. Nothing they do in firmware will fix duplicate frames every 16 or 42 seconds on such content. Not everyone is sensitive to this issue but it's definitely not acceptable for videophiles - especially at this price point.
post #3771 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by crbaldwin View Post

Wow, how many returns of these things are they going to have since they apparently didn't even get basic playback working well before shipping them? I hope it doesn't ruin the future of this product...

I think we all have 30 days since purchase to return the product. For me, Ceton's got those 30 days to fix things up for basic TV playback. The clock is ticking.

BTW - I've begun researching SFF Silent HTPC just in case. mad.gif
post #3772 of 7721
All the complaints i'm reading here are strictly to live/recorded tv? Is anyone here actually "happy" with the Echo performance and stability with live/recorded TV? forgetting other video format for now.
post #3773 of 7721
^^ There's a sliver of happiness when I set the output to 720p and watch 720p content only. Besides that, no.
post #3774 of 7721
I was supposed to get one yesterday. UPS delivered it and it was stolen from my front porch before I got home... frown.gif

The people at Amazon were wonderful helping me secure a replacement that will be shipped to my office on Monday. So, I have to wait.

Earlier in this thread, I had asked for recommendations on an SSD boot drive for my Media Center PC. I ended up with a 120 GB Intel from NewEgg on Black Friday. Got that installed last night and it rocks - very fast and easy to set up.

So now, I wait....

Ray
post #3775 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by gabrielcab View Post

All the complaints i'm reading here are strictly to live/recorded tv? Is anyone here actually "happy" with the Echo performance and stability with live/recorded TV? forgetting other video format for now.

I'm happy with mine so far. Is it perfect? No, but I have it set to output 720p which is upscaled to 1080p by my Onkyo AVR which does a pretty good job.
I use it every day and have been pretty satisfied with Live and recorded TV.
In the beginning I had a lot of freezing and stuttering. I opened up the resource monitor on my HTPC and noticed high cpu usage that coincided with
the stuttering and freezing. Turns out that ehshell.exe was pushing cpu usage to 98-100%, but I couldn't find any fix or cause online so I bit the bullet and reinstalled Win 7 and have had a good experience ever since. Hope this helps someone.

hub1
post #3776 of 7721
I am very surprised that Ceton released the Echo considering the current firmware. I have to believe the date of release was already in motion and couldn't be stopped by the time they realized that 1080i wasn't going to work in time for the announced launch date. That being said, I'm optimistic that it'll be fixed sooner, than later. But as it stands right now, it isn't suitable for anything but watching 720p, and 1080i content is much more prevalent in the world of broadcast TV.

What is happening right now is that when you watch 1080i, it is somehow converted to 720p. You can easily confirm this by hitting 411-info and going right about six times until you see physicalsize=720. If you watch a 1080i show on your HTPC or 360, you'll notice the physical size is 1080x1920.

I'll be shocked if a firmware update isn't released with the next two weeks that fixes this.
post #3777 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by eric859 View Post

Yes, I tested the network cable. It works fine. After it wouldn't work on my tv, I brought it down to my workstation docking station where I have a separate network and hdmi connection to a separate monitor and still... nothing. This is the 2nd time this particular issue has come up in this thread.

I had the same problem.

Your unit is likely DOA like mine was.

I had to RMA it to newegg.
post #3778 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Or they can move beyond MS and develop their own stuff for Protected Content..

In order to move beyond MS, Ceton would have to develop their own DRM and get it approved by CableLabs. In the early days of CableCARD, Real's Helix DRM was also approved by CableLabs, but it has since been removed because no one implemented it.

That being said, Ceton could develop it's own platform based on something like MythTV and implement MS's PlayReady DRM. But given the unknown future of CableCARD by the FCC -- a replacement was supposed to be implemented this month -- it is not a good time for any company to invest in the platform.
post #3779 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by skybolt View Post

DTS already anounced that the Echo would support DTS, this is the Engadet post.
So what happend there?
"DTS and Ceton Announce Alliance to Expand into the Connected Home Environment
High-Definition Audio Technology Enhances the In-Home Digital Media Entertainment Experience
2012 NAB Show
Booth #SU7619"
http://www.engadget.com/2012/04/16/cetons-echo-extender-for-media-center-will-be-the-first-to-supp/

Ceton change the platform since that was announced, so DTS support is up in the air right now.
post #3780 of 7721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxbat121 View Post

I doubt MS will allow that to happen. Remember any MCX stuff needs to be certified by MS.

I don't MS really cares at this point. They have moved so far away from Media Center, frankly, I'm shocked Ceton was even able to release an official Extender.
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