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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been a happy Dune smart series w/YaDis owner for a couple years now. Like many of us on this forum, I started small and simple and over time upgrading in search of the perfect setup. In the early days I used my Xbox360 as a extender, then updated to the WD Live TV and taking advantage network storage built into the box. Due to the WD not allowed to bitstream DTS HD Master codecs and its inability handle forced subtitles and seamless branching in MKV's or Iso's this led me to the Dune smart series. I loaded a 3tb drive into my dune, setup Yadis, loaded a skin/icon pack(lets face it, Dune's GUI is very ugly)and was set. This of course led to more storage needs so I purchased a Qnap 6 bay and loaded it up with five 3tb drives in a raid 5 config.

My Dune is still purring along nicely but I was shown XBMC running on a laptop and liked the video add-ons it could play. I started trying some android xbmc set top boxes but they seemed to be filled with bugs.

Fast forward to a week ago I found forum post on AVS about the chromebox and openelec. Everything seemed promising and I was asking questions, some where answered but some were not. I pulled the trigger and ordered the Asus chromebox, wireless keyboard w/track pad and remote w/usb ir.

The install was pretty straight forward and the direction that are laid out in the Wiki, forums and websites are pretty easy to follow. I purchased the above keyboard, due to the wiki stating that it will work without the chrome OS booting up. It does work but not very well. It wouldn't allow me to bring up the command prompt in the setup. So I had to make a run to best buy and get a wired usb keyboard. I choose to do a stand alone install as I didn't see why I would ever want to use chrome on my tv. Once I got everything up and running I put it the living room and started testing media.

Something to keep in mind when firing the openelec up for the first time and you set it to auto update. Mine was installed with version 5.0.5 and the newest version was 5.0.6 and my boxe started to update and it was acting laggy while updating but I had no idea it was updating in the background. So much infact I reset the settings in kodi and started over again after this I got it lined out it was acting normal. I have noticed that using the wireless keyboard directional keys are quick and responsive but using it to type in the dialog boxes is very slow and skips letters. This was very disappointing for me, so if I had to do it again I would have skipped buying the wireless keyboard. Remote works perfectly but more importantly the usb IR works perfectly with my harmony remote.

Both my Dune and Chromebox are over wired connection.

-Blu-ray Iso playback is almost flawless, I say almost flawless as it will not pick up the forces subtitles automatically like the Dune.
-Seamless branching works perfectly
-Bitstreams all audio codecs from Dolby and DTS, including PCM.
-Iso's start slightly faster than the Dune
-It did correctly display the menus on The 5th element but it wasn't a smooth operation, I wouldn't count it as a feature. This isn't a hard menu to show but its the only full disk copy I have. My iso's are main movie copies only.
-total boot up time is way faster than the dune, especially if you have the dune boot up into YaDis. (then again, the chromebox is only coming out of hibernation)
-There is a setting in Kodi to match the file's refresh rate, which seemed to work for my TV would show 24 and 60hz for different movies.
-I didn't see any problems with VC-1 content but I didn't watch the movies in their entirety.
-MKV's played without any issues and it seems to pick up on the Forced subtitle flag unlike the Dunes which do not.

My verdict

It's not cut and dry, it really depends on how important the little details are and what container files you prefer. The Dune handles Iso's better and using Yadis looks a beautiful as you can boot right into your library and the total control over the organization of your media edges out over kodi but it is at a price. The Chromebox is way cheaper then the Dune and it handles MKV's with forced subtitles better. Kodi can do more things without 3rd party indexers. You can basicly "test drive" Kodi by downloading the it for your PC.

The chromebox hasn't bumped my Dune off the shelf but If I had never owned a dune, I wouldn't look much past the Chromebox
 

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I sold all my media players, Dune D1 and 303TV, and I built a HTPC for $250 bucks with Windows 7 + Kodi. I love all of the things you can do with Kodi besides being able to watch my ripped content. PQ and sound just the same as Dune. Furthermore, Kodi recognized flagged forced subs in my MKVs or I can download the subtitle track via Kodi.

I think Chromeboxes are a good option.
 

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Long time Dune owner here. I agree with your assesment. The interactive options of Kodi make it a much more enjoyable experience for me. I won't be giving up my Dune, but the chromebox has defintely become my main media player. At least for now. :D
 
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Long time Dune owner here. I agree with your assesment. The interactive options of Kodi make it a much more enjoyable experience for me. I won't be giving up my Dune, but the chromebox has defintely become my main media player. At least for now. :D
At first, I was thinking of keeping the Dunes for back up, but thereafter I decided to sell them since pretty much I don't use ISO files anymore and any media player / PC can play my MKV / M2TS files without any issues.
 

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I was thinking of using MKV for now on as well, I thought about slowly going back through my library converting....or at least the ones that have forced subs
Everything is MKV for me now. I used to do M2TS via ClownBD + AnyDVD HD. However, now I use MakeMKV 100% of the time, and flag the forced subs whenever necessary. I had a few movies that MakeMKV wouldn't rip. So, I used ClownBD + AnyDVD HD, and thereafter I used the created MPLS file + MakeMKV to make an MKV file with chapters.
 

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Everything is MKV for me now. I used to do M2TS via ClownBD + AnyDVD HD. However, now I use MakeMKV 100% of the time, and flag the forced subs whenever necessary. I had a few movies that MakeMKV wouldn't rip. So, I used ClownBD + AnyDVD HD, and thereafter I used the created MPLS file + MakeMKV to make an MKV file with chapters.
Have you noticed any data loss in the deep blacks of the PQ? Whenever I do a rip to mkv I always notice pixleation in dark shadows, and other dark areas on screen. I never see this occur in mt2s files.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Have you noticed any data loss in the deep blacks of the PQ? Whenever I do a rip to mkv I always notice pixleation in dark shadows, and other dark areas on screen. I never see this occur in mt2s files.
As long as you are doing a pass through mkv then there shouldn't be any compression, you are simply putting the video/audio & subtitles into a MKV container file. I use dvdfab and it has this feature, makemkv should have this feature too.
 

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I have got all syabas /CM product unlucky.... a110, a210,a300 and a400 and also an hdx 1000 @pop110

chameleon after a lot of false spec is still plenty of bug and the trend of vten is the same

No firwmare update and no support for a400 after one year

tired of false promises of syabas/cm i buy an asus chromebox and installed open elec, yes it requires more time to configure it but it's another world

NB:I got banned as many others users from networkmediatank and chameleon forum cause asking firmware support even if they declare that the forums are not a property of syabas / CM
 
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