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  1. Cheesegeezer

    Android Mini PC Quad Core Review

    So my new little box turned up today and I lost my android virginity. So this is the unit i bought http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00GY1B3PU/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 This is the mini keyboard/mouse i bought http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00BX0YKX4/ref=oh_details_o00_s01_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 Initial Setup Ok so I opened up the box and got all the bits out (you can see the bits in the link above). I set it up on my bedroom TV (LG 47LN575V) So first things first was to attach the WIFI antenna to the mini pc. I then used the HDMI extension cable that came with it to attach the mini pc to the TV's HDMI port, as the mini pc itself is too wide for a single HMDI slot and if you have other HDMI connections then you'll run into problems. I then connected the USB power to my TV's USB (HDD) socket and hey presto the little thing powered up and saw the boot screen straight away. Within about 10 secs I could see the dash with all the little preloaded icons on there. Now you have to remember that i'm an Android Virgin so all of the little system icons were alien to me at this point. Anyways next step was to connect the mini keyboard to the mini pc. Haha!! Well this was kinda odd. I had a Bluetooth mini pc in the tv, I had a bluetooth mini pc but there was no automatic discovery for the keyboard. I plugged the USB into the keyboard and then into the mini pc in order to try to control the UI via a wired connected, however all it did was charge the keyboard. So i went and got a spare full size USB keyboard I had and connected it, and thankfully I could navigate to the settings. I clicked on the bluetooth setting and paired the mini keyboard. I was now controlling the UI with the little keyboard now. I then connected up the WIFI in the settings. My bedroom is the opposite end of the house and one floor up (on the diagonal), which is pretty much as far as I can get them apart from my router. It's a BT HomeHub3 with 150N wifi capabilities. Anyways this is what the interface had to say about my WIFI strength I went thru each setting header and just checked thru them (as you do when you get something new) and I was quietly surprised that everything else was automatically detected based on the mini pc and what my TV was capable of. The last thing to do in the settings was to add an account and credit card details. Performance I can honestly say that i didn't experience any lagginess in the UI when navigating around. Launching the browser was quick, loading pages seems like my desktop, even sorting out the clock/time zone and Weather was all very snappy. By this point I had multiple apps open and have no idea how to close them, so the performance is absolutely fine. MediaBrowser The google play icon was already on the Home screen so I just clicked that and went straight to the app store where there was one mission in this and that was to acquire @@Redshirt MediaBrowser App. Suprisingly it's easy to find what you want but it wasn't immediately obvious what to click to install the app. but literally 4 clicks and I was there PS YOU HAVE TO CLICK ON THE PRICE TO GET THE APP IN THE SCREEN SHOT BELOW I DID ENABLE THE AUTOMATIC UPDATING OPTION Thats it. MB was installed and I saw the all famous Icon on the Home Screen So Clicking on the MB icon, the app immediately picked up my server and I was away. I experienced no lag when browsing the UI, the artwork updated very quickly and playback buffering only took a max of 5 secs. I really like the fact that the app tells you with audio and video what the app is doing with regards to directstream or transcoding... that's a really nice touch. I played "Prisoners" @ 1080p and 6mb/s stream and to be fair I think my BT HomeHub router is a bit crap so I experienced ever such a slight judder on playback, this was a direct stream. I then played an NCIS episode which was transcoded and this played fine but was only 480p stream. The Mini Keyboard Well it works, but i can't get used to it, the mouse seems to be the focus on this keyboard and even navigating with the directional buttons when pressing the enter key, it actually mouse clicks where ever the cursor is and not on the highlighted item. When using the mediabrowser app (I understand it's designed for touchscreen) but you need to swipe left and right to get to the different collections so you basically hold down the left mouse button and swipe the touchpad, this feels so un-natural it's unreal. I'm going to buy an Air/fly mouse with keyboard and see how I get on with that. I can't say I'm a fan of this handset for keyboard and mouse. however it may grow on me after a bit of getting used to.
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