New Zidoo Z9S and Z10 (RTD1296 SoC) - Page 3 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #61 of 1122 Old 11-20-2018, 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Sledgehamma View Post
... Maybe we are just not as perceptible to doubled frames as we are to skipped ones.

It would be the other way around - higher frame rate produces doubled frames, but yes, I thought that maybe we were less aware of skipped frames. However I've seen dropped frames in Kodi and they are just as perceptible as doubled frames.


My current theory is that in the case of higher frame-rate the audio would need to be truncated unless frames are added, so maybe the opposite happens with a slower frame rate and the audio is padded, which we don't notice.
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post #62 of 1122 Old 11-20-2018, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
The worst as far as frame rate goes is the Zidoo X9S at 23.978 across the board.
Believe 3D ISO's and MVC MKV's are not exhibiting microstutters. I haven't noticed them, and @3DBuff confirmed here.

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post #63 of 1122 Old 11-20-2018, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Brajesh View Post
Believe 3D ISO's and MVC MKV's are not exhibiting microstutters. I haven't noticed them, and @3DBuff confirmed here.

I also think that some people are more sensitive to them than others and it also depends what's going on on screen - if the scene is fairly static, you probably won't notice but if it's a pan, you definitely will which is why they are hard to tie down and why they seem more random than they actually are.


I also suspect some people have some sort of motion compensation going on in their displays which again muddies the water somewhat.


If you use a judder test video they're very easy to see - I created a 5 minute one with a DTS soundtrack because the one with the Masciola suite is only a minute, so no good for testing stutter caused by frame rate increases.


I've not seen a 3D one though - it'd be interesting but it'd give you a hell of a headache!!
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post #64 of 1122 Old 11-20-2018, 12:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
It would be the other way around - higher frame rate produces doubled frames, but yes, I thought that maybe we were less aware of skipped frames. However I've seen dropped frames in Kodi and they are just as perceptible as doubled frames.


My current theory is that in the case of higher frame-rate the audio would need to be truncated unless frames are added, so maybe the opposite happens with a slower frame rate and the audio is padded, which we don't notice.
You are right, I corrected my post. My bad.
Still weird, though.
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post #65 of 1122 Old 11-20-2018, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Sledgehamma View Post
You are right, I corrected my post. My bad.
Still weird, though.

Very weird, but kind of anecdotally verified elsewhere - I've seen reports on other forums of the Panasonic 820 and Oppo 203 both outputting 23.973fps when tested with a Vertex and they are both apparently rock solid UHD bluray players - frame skips never enter the conversation, so hey, my theory may hold water
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post #66 of 1122 Old 11-20-2018, 03:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
Very weird, but kind of anecdotally verified elsewhere - I've seen reports on other forums of the Panasonic 820 and Oppo 203 both outputting 23.973fps when tested with a Vertex and they are both apparently rock solid UHD bluray players - frame skips never enter the conversation, so hey, my theory may hold water
So if one were to extrapolate, it would be really great if DuneHD, Zidoo, or some other company would build a media player with a MediaTek chipset.
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post #67 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 12:16 AM
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So if one were to extrapolate, it would be really great if DuneHD, Zidoo, or some other company would build a media player with a MediaTek chipset.

Absolutely. I have no experience of the MediaTek SOC other than what I've read, but yes, Dune, Zappiti, Zidoo et al do seem to have backed a lame horse in the 1295. Hopefully the Z9S has picked up the pace somewhat.


My opinion is if Dune or Zidoo chose HiSilicon and applied their interfaces (the Dune in particular because it can be skinned so easily and effectively), we'd have a great player on our hands - the HiMedia box plays 4K at the same rock solid 23.974fps as the Z9S and does not exhibit chroma banding even at 8-bit so it must have an effective dithering algorithm.


But the interface is vanilla Android c**p and the only effective player is a Kodi wrapper which is inelegant in operation to say the least and might be great for the kids but it's too much of a pita for a serious installation imho.
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post #68 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 12:21 AM
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No it wouldn’t at all. From my testing the Oppo’s MediaTek has subpar picture quality and afaik Panasonic uses their own SoC (even if they were to use MediaTek, they would use their own decoders on that chip). Stock MediaTek decoders are crap. Only if a company uses their proprietary decoders on a MediaTek SoC (like Sony), you are able to achieve great PQ. Since those Mediaplayer companies have neither, the know how or the money to built a decent decoder, I wouldn’t expect a step up in terms of PQ from Realtek.
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post #69 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 12:40 AM
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Out of interest (and because this hobby seems to be taking over my life!!), here are frame rates I've found so far with the Vertex...


(where there's a dash, it means that mode isn't available on that player)


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post #70 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 06:13 AM
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Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
Out of interest (and because this hobby seems to be taking over my life!!), here are frame rates I've found so far with the Vertex...


(where there's a dash, it means that mode isn't available on that player)


Great summary!



Could you maybe add a column with the firmware version as well?

I'm asking because anecdotally there has been some discussion on the Zidoo forum that 4K stuttering was not present in some of the earlier firmware. It might be interesting to check the X9S with with an earlier firmware. I don't have a Vertex or a way to do this or I would give it a go. And I expect your chart will become an internet baseline for comparisons.

The other interesting point is that it's no secret that Zidoo is the OEM/ODM for the Dune HD Pro 4K which is more or less the same hardware unit as the Zidoo X9S. From a firmware stand point, the two units separated by brand name but coming from the same mother offer very different frame rate's using the same SoC and what appears to be hardware. Also, the Zidoo X9S's overall feature set is substantially more advanced than the Dune HD Pro 4k's, so there seems to be substantial differences based on the capabilities of the code writers.

The $64,000.00 question is, is the frame rate timing problem a SoC or code writing problem? Or maybe a combination of the two?

The RTD1295 SoC has been around for over two years now. Displaying the correct frame rate would seem like a relatively easy thing to get right or at least a top priority item if one were building a media playback device.

RealteK has documented the RTD1296 as being the same SoC as the RTD1295 with additional I/O capabilities yet a different frame rate coming from Zidoo.
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post #71 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 07:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b curry View Post
Great summary!



Could you maybe add a column with the firmware version as well?

I'm asking because anecdotally there has been some discussion on the Zidoo forum that 4K stuttering was not present in some of the earlier firmware. It might be interesting to check the X9S with with an earlier firmware. I don't have a Vertex or a way to do this or I would give it a go. And I expect your chart will become an internet baseline for comparisons.

The other interesting point is that it's no secret that Zidoo is the OEM/ODM for the Dune HD Pro 4K which is more or less the same hardware unit as the Zidoo X9S. From a firmware stand point, the two units separated by brand name but coming from the same mother offer very different frame rate's using the same SoC and what appears to be hardware. Also, the Zidoo X9S's overall feature set is substantially more advanced than the Dune HD Pro 4k's, so there seems to be substantial differences based on the capabilities of the code writers.

The $64,000.00 question is, is the frame rate timing problem a SoC or code writing problem? Or maybe a combination of the two?

The RTD1295 SoC has been around for over two years now. Displaying the correct frame rate would seem like a relatively easy thing to get right or at least a top priority item if one were building a media playback device.

RealteK has documented the RTD1296 as being the same SoC as the RTD1295 with additional I/O capabilities yet a different frame rate coming from Zidoo.

Good idea - They're all latest as far as I know, but I'll add the firmware version and made it a bit prettier..


I have tested the X9S on the previous firmware, and the frame rate was exactly the same, not sure about anything prior to that, but if there's a particular one you want me to try, I'll give it a go..


I'm not sure whether Zidoo are the original manufacturer or not - they all obviously come from the same stable, but I'm not convinced Zidoo is the actual manufacturer, I suspect they buy from an OEM like the rest, but I don't know for sure.


I must admit, I far prefer the Dune ecosystem to Zidoos - it allows very sophisticated skin manipulation, so you can really personalise the front end and get rid of the "My First Media Player" look that they all seem to have. It has a system whereby you can use external scrapers and that can be personalised in line with your skin design and you can completely hide Android altogether. It also has a very well developed IP protocol and being a Crestron guy, I really appreciate that.


But it's still hampered at the back end which is why I'm favouring the Z9S at the moment. I've said many times on the Dune forum that I believe that these issues are inherent in the silicon and it needs a new revision to sort it out. I fully expected the 1296 to have exactly the same issues, given, as you say, on paper it's just more IO and faster RAM, but I've been very pleasantly surprised for once.


Also, as a CI guy, the Z9S has an RS232 port for direct control which sounds pointless unless you're in the CI world, where it really is priceless.
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post #72 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 07:14 AM
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Prettied up a bit and Firmware versions added...


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post #73 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 07:30 AM
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Well my Z9S has been picked up in China, now the wait lol.

XBR65A8F / XBR65A1E
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post #74 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
Good idea - They're all latest as far as I know, but I'll add the firmware version and made it a bit prettier..
Thanks! Looks great!


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Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
I have tested the X9S on the previous firmware, and the frame rate was exactly the same, not sure about anything prior to that, but if there's a particular one you want me to try, I'll give it a go..
I'll dig into the Zidoo forum posts and try to select one that's referenced the most as not having that particular problem.


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I'm not sure whether Zidoo are the original manufacturer or not - they all obviously come from the same stable, but I'm not convinced Zidoo is the actual manufacturer, I suspect they buy from an OEM like the rest, but I don't know for sure.
They seem to be, or I believe them to be.

If you look here you will find their applications for OEM supply and distributor inquiries as well as calling themselves out as a branded OEM STB, Digital Signage, manufacture.

https://www.zidoo.tv/Contact/oem.html

https://www.zidoo.tv/Contact/distributor.html

https://www.zidoo.tv/About/index.html

Then I believe there were several statements by member kadqs that referenced the 4K coming from Zidoo. There is also a review of the 4K by Media Player Reviews where they refer to them as siblings from the same factory. It's the way I have connected the dots but I could be wrong.

http://mediaplayers.gr/dune-hd-pro-4k/


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Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
I must admit, I far prefer the Dune ecosystem to Zidoos - it allows very sophisticated skin manipulation, so you can really personalise the front end and get rid of the "My First Media Player" look that they all seem to have. It has a system whereby you can use external scrapers and that can be personalised in line with your skin design and you can completely hide Android altogether. It also has a very well developed IP protocol and being a Crestron guy, I really appreciate that.
Shure, me too. But I have to admit that I've come to enjoy the simplicity of using the X9S and it's Home Theater 2.0 app. On top of that, I've lost my access to the Zappiti Dune scraper and Zappiti refuses to or is not capable of restoring access for the Dune units.


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Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
But it's still hampered at the back end which is why I'm favouring the Z9S at the moment. I've said many times on the Dune forum that I believe that these issues are inherent in the silicon and it needs a new revision to sort it out. I fully expected the 1296 to have exactly the same issues, given, as you say, on paper it's just more IO and faster RAM, but I've been very pleasantly surprised for once.
I tend to agree here. But more and more I'm beginning to wonder if it has it's roots in the code writing...



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Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
Also, as a CI guy, the Z9S has an RS232 port for direct control which sounds pointless unless you're in the CI world, where it really is priceless.
For sure a plus if you need it.

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post #75 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 08:33 AM
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...But I have to admit that I've come to enjoy the simplicity of using the X9S and it's Home Theater 2.0 app. On top of that, I've lost my access to the Zappiti scraper and Zappiti refuses or is not capable of restoring access for the Dune units.

A very good point well made - the HT2 app can be a bit bonkers at times, but yes, once it's all set up, it just works and there's something to be said for just switching a device on, just being presented with a video wall and hitting play!


I do seem to remember the X9S boots into the Android Launcher before HT2, even if you set HT2 as the startup app - so, another nice thing about the Z9S is if you set HT2 to start on boot, you don't see the launcher, it just boots straight to the wall.
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post #76 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 05:14 PM
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The Zidoo seems to respect the HDMI specs correctly so you have to remember you can't output an illegal mode.

So you have explicitly set your bit depth to 10-bits and therefore 4:2:0 is not allowed at 23.976fps and 4:2:2 is only allowed at 12-bits.

Changing colour space has a big impact on transmission frequency and therefore bandwidth which becomes very important as resolution and HDMI cable lengths increase - for example, 4K 12-bit 422 transmits at 297MHz and 4K 12-bit 444 at 445MHz.

I just reread your question though and I suspect you are referring to frame rate, in which case, no, colour space has no bearing on frame rate.

YCbCr and YUV are synonymous.

Not sure what you mean by "where do you see the change"?

My result of 23.974fps is for the Z9S not the X9S.

So for standard HD, the X9S outputs 23.978fps in all modes (8-bit 444, 12-bit 422, 10-bit 444 and 12-bit 444) the same as for 4K.

I haven't tested with a Judder Pattern, but I would expect a frame repeat every 8.3 minutes at that frame rate.

This is on firmware 2.0.34, I wasn't aware of 2.1.14 - I'll load that and see if it makes a difference...

Mark




EDIT - Nope, updated to 2.1.14 and it's exactly the same, 23.978fps across the board.
@markswift2003 thanks for detailed explanation.

I only have one Zidoo X9S and don't have time to play even with this one.

My question "where do you see the change?" was in reference to your setting like 12-bit 422?
How do you know it is displaying 12-bit 422? Do you get this info from Vertex or you just set it in Zidoo and assume it is 422?


The reason I was asking because I can't get this mode to display in Zidoo player decoder info.

Going to 12-bit allows me to set any combination of 444, 422 or 420 but the player info screen does not match the settings.


Quick Settings > Display > Advanced Settings
Bit, YCbCr ----------------Display Output Bit, YUV

12, 444 ------------------------------------ 12, 444

12, 422 ------------------------------------- 8, 422

12, 420 ------------------------------------ 12, 444

Please note 12-bit, 422 drops the display to 8 bits, 422.
Attached pictures are in that sequence.

Anyway you could check the 3D signal on Zidoo X9S with Vertex? It appears correct without any doubled frames. Just wonder since everything else on X9S is showing 23.978 and doubled frames. If 3D on X9S is below it would prove and confirm this frame rate microstutter theory.
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post #77 of 1122 Old 11-21-2018, 09:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
Very weird, but kind of anecdotally verified elsewhere - I've seen reports on other forums of the Panasonic 820 and Oppo 203 both outputting 23.973fps when tested with a Vertex and they are both apparently rock solid UHD bluray players - frame skips never enter the conversation, so hey, my theory may hold water
Thanks for the deep dive! in my experience with the Oppo 203/205, Panasonic UB820 and Nvidia shield with UHD content and frame rates reported by vertex at 23.973 or 23.974 (depending on device)... I haven't see the skipped frame situation. definitely though with the Zidoo X9s and Dune 4K pro at the 23.978 and 23.981

It's good news to hear if the Z9S is behaving at 10 bit 444 / 23.974. I will pick one of these up based on your findings and give it a run, thanks again
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post #78 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 01:13 AM
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...My question "where do you see the change?" was in reference to your setting like 12-bit 422?
How do you know it is displaying 12-bit 422? Do you get this info from Vertex or you just set it in Zidoo and assume it is 422?

Right, I understand now. So when you select a mode on a player, you get full information for that mode on the Vertex - it's as much a diagnostic tool as it is one to manipulate HDMI signals.


So I set 12-bit 422 and the Vertex confirms that's what is being squirted out.


But, 12-bit 422 is a very special HDMI mode - it has the same bandwidth at 12-bit as 444 at 8-bit. It allows HDMI 1.4 displays to be utilised to the best of their abilities (depending on how the source handles it!) but not all displays will allow it in their EDID.


This may be happening to you here, but what's really interesting in your case is that screenshot shows 4K 23.976 8-bit 422 which isn't a legal HDMI mode. That doesn't mean it can't happen, it just means it's outside of the HDMI specification.


12-bit 422 on all the 129* players exhibits colour banding, which from a 10-bit source (UHD BluRay rip for example) I've always thought must mean there's an 8-bit process in the display pipeline - your screenshot seems to imply that.


It may be that at 422 12-bit the player is processing internally at 8-bit (as per your screenshot) and outputting at 12-bit - I'll check this with the Vertex later, but it would fully explain the banding at 12-bit 422.


That said, you really want to display at 10-bit 444 ideally or 12-bit 444, either will give exactly the same image but 10-bit just uses less bandwidth and is true to the original encoding bit depth.


As for setting 12-bit 420, that mode just doesn't exist at 23.976fps in the spec so the player will revert to 12-bit 444 if EDID allows - so that behaviour is expected. Don't forget, what you set in the player's settings is a "target" and will depend on the source and the EDID. The player will make adjustments if the three don't tally.

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...Anyway you could check the 3D signal on Zidoo X9S with Vertex? It appears correct without any doubled frames. Just wonder since everything else on X9S is showing 23.978 and doubled frames. If 3D on X9S is below it would prove and confirm this frame rate microstutter theory.

I'm afraid I don't use 3D at all so don't have any 3D videos to try - if you can point me in the direction of one, I'll certainly see what the Vertex says for frame rate - that'd be interesting to see for both the X9S and the Z9S.


This may help clear up the colour space vs bitdepth thing - another of my charts!! I created this one as cheat sheet to figure out what was going on with my display with all the different boxes dangling off it:



The green and orange numbers are bandwidth in Gbps.
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post #79 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 01:22 AM
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Thanks for the deep dive! in my experience with the Oppo 203/205, Panasonic UB820 and Nvidia shield with UHD content and frame rates reported by vertex at 23.973 or 23.974 (depending on device)... I haven't see the skipped frame situation. definitely though with the Zidoo X9s and Dune 4K pro at the 23.978 and 23.981

It's good news to hear if the Z9S is behaving at 10 bit 444 / 23.974. I will pick one of these up based on your findings and give it a run, thanks again

You're welcome, but it was your original report of the Panasonic and the Oppo outputting at 23.973 that gave me the head start to figure out what was happening


I think I'm about ready to call it on the Z9S - watched another couple of films and once again, no microstutter detected and the picture quality is subjectively excellent so I think I'll be writing a bit of Simpl+ code today to permanently install it in my cinema - It'll be taking 4K duties away from the Nvidia Shield.


I'd love @Sledgehamma to work his magic and do one of his reviews but I know he's said he hasn't got a 4K display yet...


Anyway, I don't think you'll be disappointed.
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post #80 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 03:06 AM
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Originally Posted by 3DVideoBuff View Post
...Please note 12-bit, 422 drops the display to 8 bits, 422.
Couldn't resist seeing what was going on here:




So this is the X9S set at 12-bit 422. The Zidoo info screen shows 8-bit and the Vertex shows 12-bit, which as we know is the only legal mode at 422.


So it looks like the Zidoo is processing the 10-bit file internally at 8-bit (which explains the banding) and then squirting it out at 12-bit.


Out of interest, you can see the HDR SEI message clearly showing the maxCLL and maxFALL data missing which is inherent in all the 129* boxes.


And here too:



...where you can see the full message.
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post #81 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 06:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zombie10k View Post
It's good news to hear if the Z9S is behaving at 10 bit 444 / 23.974. I will pick one of these up based on your findings and give it a run, thanks again
Only caveat is Zidoo mucking this up with a future firmware. With X9S, the pre-v.1.5.0 f/w also did 23.976 correctly, but re-encoded MKV's (like 1920x800) would play squished filling 16x9 frame.

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post #82 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 06:27 AM
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I usually just force 10 bit 444 or 422 on UHD blu-ray players, etc when it is available...

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post #83 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 06:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brajesh View Post
... re-encoded MKV's (like 1920x800) would play squished filling 16x9 frame.

The Egreat still does something similar - it shifts 2.35 encodes vertically! Mad.
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post #84 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 06:42 AM
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New firmware for the Z9S out today:


http://forum.zidoo.tv/index.php?thre...eleased.43240/


"10.Added HDR to SDR Gamma settings"


Nice!


EDIT - actually, not so nice... see this post:


https://www.avsforum.com/forum/39-ne...l#post57150272

Last edited by markswift2003; 11-23-2018 at 06:05 AM.
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post #85 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 10:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brajesh View Post
Only caveat is Zidoo mucking this up with a future firmware. With X9S, the pre-v.1.5.0 f/w also did 23.976 correctly, but re-encoded MKV's (like 1920x800) would play squished filling 16x9 frame.
I thought about that recently and went back and flashed to 1.4.2 and was surprised to see the same framerate issue with UHD content. This was on an X8 and the X9S as well. Maybe they tweaked something with the 1296?

I'll pick one up from futeko.com and have it shipped to the US to check out.
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post #86 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 11:09 AM
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The framerate being correct w/firmware prior to v1.5.0 was reported by @3DBuff at Kodi forum. I don't want to risk going back to that f/w as I'm reading some reports of units being bricked when attempting to do so.

Surprised Zidoo isn't selling Z-series via Amazon like they are X.

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post #87 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brajesh View Post
The framerate being correct w/firmware prior to v1.5.0 was reported by @3DBuff at Kodi forum. I don't want to risk going back to that f/w as I'm reading some reports of units being bricked when attempting to do so.

Surprised Zidoo isn't selling Z-series via Amazon like they are X.
I recall reading that and tried 2 pre 1.5.0 version on the X8 and X9S, unfortunately the Vertex reported the same exact framerate issues that Mark documented.

I'll pay for expedited shipping to the US, I'm curious to see this now.
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post #88 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 12:30 PM
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@markswift2003 great in-depth analysis of 12-bit 422 issue. Is it the same with Z9X?


I'm really curious what 3D MVC format will show. For sample file just use Kodi video library:
https://kodi.wiki/view/Samples

You probably need 3D TV or Porjector to get Zidoo into 3D mode unless Vertex can act like one.


I never got to test fw 1.5.0 for doubled frames on X9S myself. There were few posts in the Zidoo forum regarding this, people flashing the unit back to 1.5.0.
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post #89 of 1122 Old 11-22-2018, 12:56 PM
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Looking at Mark's table we can draw a conclusion that frame rate / micro stutter issue is tied into software to some degree.
There are 3 players with the same RTD 1295 chipset in the list:
1. Dune Pro 4K
2. Zidoo X9S
3. Zappiti mini 4K HDR
Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Dune and Zappiti look OK at lower resolutions and / or low demanding color space. They share the same issue when pushed to 4K, 10 or 12 bit and 444.

Ziddo X9S has a problem flat out

Last edited by 3DVideoBuff; 11-22-2018 at 03:17 PM.
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post #90 of 1122 Old 11-23-2018, 01:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post


I'd love @Sledgehamma to work his magic and do one of his reviews but I know he's said he hasn't got a 4K display yet...
The missing 4K Display is just one aspect why I haven’t done a review yet. I finished my degree now so the job hunting has started. Rest assured, when all this is settled I will get a 4K Display and will do reviews again
Sadly, I just can’t say when this will happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 3DVideoBuff View Post
Looking at Mark's table we can draw a conclusion that frame rate / micro stutter issue is tied into software to some degree.
There are 3 players with the same RTD 1295 chipset in the list:
1. Dune Pro 4K
2. Zidoo X9S
3. Zappiti mini 4K HDR
Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Dune and Zappiti look OK at lower resolutions and / or low demanding color space. They share the same issue when pushed to 4K, 10 or 12 bit and 444.

Ziddo X9S has a problem flat out
It’s most likely due to the use of different SDK versions. For example Dune always lagged behind in using the latest SDK on their Sigma based models.
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