Response to the post “A mini guide to setting up an AndroidTV set-top box
Read the original post. I agree with some things, not with others, in any case, comrade @BlueScorpion is great, he brings knowledge to the people.
I initially wanted to write a couple of lines in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев, but in the end I thought it worthwhile to write a response to the post in which I will share with you my experience, as well as tell you what problems I encountered when using Android set-top boxes.
A couple of years ago, looking at the TV set-top box from my provider I wondered if I was paying about three hundred a month for TV to Beeline, and I was getting about 200 TV channels in the output for that money. That’s all. Point. I can’t find TV archive (it is available, but I have to pay extra for it) and I can’t watch YouTube. Besides TV there is a meager library of media, and for viewing each movie you also need to pay extra. As a result, when I wanted to watch a movie on TV, I had to drag the laptop and connect it via HDMI.
I decisively returned the TV set-top box to the provider, switched to a tariff without TV and plunged into the wonderful world of your Internet in order to study information about Android set-top boxes.
Before you choose a set-top box, decide for yourself what you want from it and what your budget is.
In my case the set-top box was NOT required to have 4K (the TV doesn’t support it) and sound output 5.1 (we are simple people, we don’t have home theaters). I needed to watch IPTV, YouTube, movies/series online from torrents.
My inquiries, I think, are just the “golden mean.”. On the one hand the set-top box is bought not only for watching TV, on the other hand. it does not require anything super cool like 8K.
Long or short, my choice was the X96 Max Plus 2 4/64.
Why did I choose it and what, in my opinion, is worth paying attention to.
You should buy a STB with 4 GB of RAM.
Looking ahead, I want to say that later I bought a 2Gb set-top box for my mother-in-law, and it works fine. But first of all it’s used only for watching TV and secondly you can’t have a lot of RAM, trust me. an IT guy with a lot of experience
At the moment I have 1.5 GB of RAM on my set-top box with the Slimbox firmware. The only thing that is in the autoload. OpenVPN to bypass blocking.
With each new update the software becomes more and more voracious, and if you want to use your TV-box happily ever after, you shouldn’t consider variants with 2 GB RAM.
Be sure to be concerned about the network. If you are planning to connect by cable the STB must support Gigabit connection. If you are going to connect by WI-FI. only 5 GHz, forget about 2,4 GHz.
I walked on this rake when buying a set-top box for my mother-in-law. I bought it without 5 GHz support and, as a result, I danced with tambourine for a long time in order to get a stable and normal signal.
Considering a set-top box in a budget segment, I wouldn’t recommend to buy a set-top box with any processor except S905X3 or S905X4. This is purely my opinion, but I would avoid any AllWinner` and other RK3328 processors.
When choosing a set-top box, pay attention to the firmware which is used “out of the box”. In my opinion, you either need to have Android TV or you need to be able to flash Android TV.
Many set-top boxes including my X96 Max Plus 2 come with AOSP out of the box. This is the usual “pure” Android with the launcher, remotely customized for use on the TV.
The only plus of “pure” AOSP is the possibility to install all the applications from Play Market, not only those customized for Android TV. The advantage of this one is rather relative.к. You can easily install any Android app from the APK file on your Android TV.
But Android TV has much more advantages compare to AOSP. more stable operation, more usable interface, with no hassle with the voice search (about this below).
So, I ran through the main points of the choice of the box. Now what about the dop. equipment.
Specify how things go with the cooling of your chosen model. In my case it gets noticeably warm when I watch “heavy” movies from torrents, and when the processor temperature is about 80 degrees the box just freezes. In the profile thread on 4pda chemists have cobbled together a lot of cooling options. If you do not want to hack it, you can order from ali a special stand cooler (like this https://a).aliexpress.com_AWxsEK ) which is powered by USB. Efficiency, of course, will be less, but for my tasks it is enough. Perhaps if you watch 4K, it can not cope. I don’t watch 4K, so I can’t say anything about it.
Without a normal air mouse you can not use the console comfortably. And it’s not the mouse pointer functionality, but the voice search. The thing is that the remote control that comes with the box is just an IR remote without a microphone. Aerial mouse is equipped with a microphone, which will help you to do the voice search. I used a few different aero mice and ended up with the G20s pro. Among the distinguishing features of this model is the presence of numeric buttons (it is convenient to enter the number of the desired channel when you watch TV) and the presence of backlighting for the buttons.
Aeromouse is obligatory for purchase, you can choose a suitable model according to its appearance.
Finally, you’ve made your choice, bought a set-top box and an air mouse.
Be happy that the set-top box works with Android TV or flash it to Android TV (I recommend the Slimbox firmware).
I’m considering the variant when the device is already working on Android TV, so I won’t dwell on the topic of setting the sound search for applications, it already works out of the box. If you decided to use AOSP firmware. googleogle installing Google Katniss.
Wipe the lens
Cleaning the camera eye seems to be the most obvious tip, and that’s why it’s always forgotten about. For wiping it down it is better to use a special wipe, but if you have nothing of the kind handy, you can simply breathe on the lens and wipe it with a T-shirt.
If you want to make a professional video, you have to get the proper application. Unlike the standard cameras of iPhones and Android-smartphones such applications have a lot of settings that allow you to control the process of shooting.
With Filmic Pro, for example, you can select not only the frame rate, bit rate and audio codec for the clip, but also adjust Focus, exposure, white balance and many other parameters.
MX Player is able to play not only local files, but also online video. You will need to open the menu in the main window of the program, select the “Network Stream” and specify the link to the deleted file.
In our hectic times it’s not always possible to watch a film from the beginning to the end. There will always be some urgent matter or call that will interrupt you. So you don’t have to look for the moment you stopped, activate the “Continue” option in the MX Player settings.
Turning off auto play
When one video ends, YouTube will give you the second one after a brief pause. This can be annoying at times. Click the “Autoplay” switch next to the “Next” section, and no new recordings will start at the end of the video.
If you were looking for something you don’t want anyone to see. click on the search icon at the top. In the drop-down list, select and hold the unneeded request and you will be prompted to delete it.
Free Android screen recording video apps
If the methods described above don’t work for you, you can use the free Android screen recording applications abundantly available on Play Market. Among them:
- Screen Recorder No Ads is a great screen recorder app (my choice), adds its own button in the notification area, has tons of settings (for example, you can add overlay video from the camera) and is completely ad-free. On phones with Android 10 and later can record system sounds, on older versions. only from the microphone. The app runs in English by default, but you can enable the Russian language in the settings. The official page of the application in Play Market. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?ID=com.kimcy929.screenrecorder
- Xrecorder Screen Recorder is a very simple and handy Android screen recording app, with the best user reviews on Play Market: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?ID=videoeditor.videorecorder.screenrecorder
- AZ Screen Recorder. this and the following application are very similar in functionality and operating principle to the previous one.
- Super Screen Recorder
- Mobizen is a very popular app, good reviews, but in my opinion, too many ads in the free version of the app.
In fact, there are many more such applications in the official store: I have listed only the most popular ones, the easiest to use and in Russian.
I am following all instructions but I can’t upload video. My friends have everything works.
This may be due to several problems:
- The program does not work smoothly with your phone model and the software installed on it. Try to update your operating system
- Your friends have another, more stable version of the program and your installed version has bugs. Download another version from developer’s official site
- Restrictions on downloading files set by your operator in accordance with the laws of your country. We do not recommend using a VPN. just a reminder of its existence
How to select the resolution of the video when downloading?
In general terms, the bigger the screen of your device, the higher the resolution should be for a comfortable viewing. But videos with a higher resolution weigh more, are slower to download and require more resources from your gadget to view. For the phone screen, you can choose the minimum. 360p or even 144p. And if you want to use the video for editing you need HD quality and higher.
Can I use downloaded videos for my YouTube channel??
If you’re downloading media files to use them on your public resources. your website, social networking page, or YouTube channel. make sure you’re not violating copyright.
Politics of Internet resources in this area is constantly toughening: you can get not only a virtual ban, but also quite real administrative or criminal responsibility.
TubeMate for Android
How to download video from the internet on your Android phone? | TOP 3 Ways to do it
InsTube. A Free Video and Music Downloader for Android 2018
How to download videos from the Internet to your Android phone? | 3 Ways to Download Videos on the Internet
Why Videos Can’t Play on Your Phone
- Check the current time. Time zone and date. Some services (especially from Google) may stop working in normal mode if parameters are set incorrectly;
- if you use ad-blockers (AdBLock) or VPN. it is recommended to switch them off while searching and eliminating the reasons (in some cases, they are used to. “culprits”);
- if you watch video via browser. try to turn off hardware acceleration (in Chrome you need to open the page: ” chrome://flags ” and enter into search “accelerated. “- from “Enabled” to “Disabled” found parameter );
Disabling hardware acceleration in Chrome
If we’re talking about online video. it’s very likely that the inability to play some clips online (and perhaps games, and a number of site elements) is due to the disabling of Flash Player.
For example, the mobile version of Chrome for Android. comes without Flash Player (and has been for a long time) and you can not turn it on.
As an alternative, I would recommend to try Dolphin or UC Browser (link on Google Play). They still play this kind of video (note: the codec is missing).: for which you need Flash Player).
over, for example, UC Browser has a built-in “library” of the most popular videos (you can surely find there most of what you want to watch).
The format and codec used to compress video
As you understand, each video is compressed with a specific codec (otherwise no amount of network bandwidth would be enough). ).
So, if the video doesn’t open, there is no image when you watch it (or you get a “can’t play video” error when you try to open it). probably that:
- The video format is not supported. For example, not every phone will be able to play FLV or MKV formats;
- ) they don’t have the right codec (often the video they play often has no sound or an image (just a black screen)).
There are two ways to solve this problem:
Before copying video to your phone. Run them through the special. converter on computer. For example, the “Video Wizard” (how to use) has ready-made templates for a variety of phones. Choose one of them. the program converts the video quickly enough, which is sure to play;
For which device to prepare the files / Video Wizard
If the video opens, but lags a lot, hangs
Quite a popular kind of problem. Usually phone freezes or lags when trying to open 4K (FullHD) video (especially if the device is quite “weak”/old).
In this case the solution will be similar. transcoding video into MP4 format with an acceptable bitrate and resolution (for your device).
How to convert video to MP4 (which supports most TV, PC and mobile gadgets: iPhone, iPad, Samsung, PSP, HTC).
Slow Internet connection/Alternative
If to watch online video you don’t have enough speed of your channel (for example, due to some technical problems with the. If you are working with a provider, you may experience “freezing”, frequent pauses of 1-2 seconds. (buffering), etc.
How to check the speed of your Android phone. see Help!!
How to check the speed of the Internet on your Android phone. see Help! instructions
As an alternative, we can recommend in this case to first download the video to the phone memory, and then watch. You can do it with the help of good old torrent programs ☝ (by the way, not everyone knows that you can also use torrents on your phone).
In addition, with the help of torrent trackers you can always find an analogue of the video, which does not play (only in another quality and compressed with an excellent codec!).
How to set up and use a torrent on Android (or how to download torrent files from your phone).
In some cases, the inability of the browser to display a page with videos and pictures is due to cache errors. The most common problem with this is that the page layout splits and “who knows what” is displayed instead of the video block.
To clear the cache in Chrome (for example), it is enough to enter the settings, open the personal data tab, and click on clear history (see screenshots below). screenshots below). It is recommended to delete the entire cache and history.
If instead of block with videos you see advertising proposals, intrusive windows pop up (even on those sites where they were not there before). it is likely that your Android is infected with a virus (or adware). This can also be one of the reasons why you can’t watch videos, pictures, etc.
How to remove a virus from your Android phone. see Help!
How to remove a virus from your Android phone. see Help. step-by-step instructions
In some cases you can completely remove viruses and adware from your phone only with the help of resetting (so called HARD Reset. t.е. return the device to its factory presets).
Important : with this operation all the files, contacts etc. will be saved. information from your phone will be deleted, save everything in advance.
Viewing with MX Player
Read also: Top 15 free screen recording software
The easiest and most effective way to configure Android is to install the MX Player utility, which can be downloaded from Google Market.
This is the most popular player for the Android system. This article will focus on playing video files.
To configure the player, proceed as follows:
- After downloading and installing MX Player, open and install it.
- Next, open the settings to download the utility decoder.
- After opening the decoder, check the box next to “HV decoder” and “HV decoder(locally)” to use for quality playback of default files.
- As a result, the files on the cell phone you use will open with this program. If the user opens them from the player, they will automatically find the file folders. So everyone can delete unused documents to save time searching for content.
In many modern smartphones these settings are optimal and you don’t need to install additional codecs. However, if you want, you can download them by opening the Google Play add-on and downloading the right version.
reasons why Android doesn’t show videos and how to fix it
In conclusion, a few rare but sometimes occurring reasons for videos not playing if the methods described above didn’t help.
- If you have Android 5 or 5.1 and does not show the video online, try to turn on the developer mode, and then in the menu of the developer mode switch the streaming player NUPlayer to AwesomePlayer or vice versa, if there is such an item.
- For older devices on MTK processors, as well as some of the newer, cheaper phones with Chinese processors may have limitations on the resolution and video formats, some they simply can not play (but the sound may be).
- If you have previously enabled Android developer mode, try disabling it.
- Provided that the problem occurs only in one application, for example, YouTube, try to go to Settings. Applications, find this application, and then clear its cache and data (the clearing buttons may be located in the “Storage” subsection in the latest versions of Android 10 and 9). If that didn’t work, try uninstalling and reinstalling, and for built-in apps. disable, agree to uninstall updates and check if the video starts working.
- In case if video starts playing normally, but at a certain moment there are problems (especially concerning the online video), the reason can be memory or internal storage of the phone is full during the playback. You can estimate the free space in various applications, for example, CPU-Z.
- According to some reviews, disabling the built-in Google Photos can interfere with video playback, and on older phones, where there was a pre-installed Google application sometimes worked by disabling it or removing its updates.