Amazon FireTV Picture Quality degradation

Discussion in 'Video Streaming Boxes & Services' started by wonko, Apr 12, 2016.

  1. wonko

    wonko
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    I bought an original FireTV about 18 months ago and never regretted it... until now.

    Amazon forced a software update to the box (OS 5.0.5) and that has significantly degraded the performance of the box to the point where I can no longer bear to watch it.

    The box now drops so many frames that the image looks unnatural and jerky. Before the upgrade it was, if not perfect, then very watchable.

    Since the upgrade it when you start a new video, the resolution starts out at 720p, then inexplicably drops to something extremely low (like 240p) after a few seconds before grinding its way back up to 1080p. It does this whatever your connection speed. I currently have 200Mbs but tried it on lower speeds, too.

    It's much harder to get to 1080p with a slower connection speed than it was.

    Frustratingly, Netflix works just fine. As does BBC iPlayer (when you put the box in 50Hz output).

    I have been in contact with Amazon for weeks to try and find a resolution. Eventually I bought a 4K FTV box because I suspected that the new OS was too resource hungry for the little CPU in the original box and I was sick of waiting for Amazon to provide a solution. The newer, more powerful box is a lot better.

    But wait! The new box can't do iPlayer! The sound is 450ms early. That's how much correction I had to apply to get it back in sync.

    So now if I want to watch Amazon content, I have to use the new box. If I want to watch iPlayer, I have to unplug that one and plug the old one back in.

    [​IMG]

    Just to mix things up, Amazon has since sent out a replacement box (original version). Taking steps to ensure that the box did not update itself, I saw that the video was again just fine with the older OS (51.1.4.3).

    I would send back the other 2 boxes, but sooner or later Amazon will find a way to force another update and I will be back to square one.

    This is what I wonder: how can it be right (legally or morally) for a manufacturer to force an update to an out-of-warranty device which degrades its performance?
     
  2. russ9898

    russ9898
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  3. wonko

    wonko
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    I've got a dedicated router to block the updates using OpenDNS but the ADB method doesn't work pre-OS5.0.x so it's probably only a matter of time until they change the URLs. :-( They can't be rooted either, or I'd do that. I haven't found a router that can block https hence the OpenDNS method.

    I'm starting to wonder why I bother with these boxes when my TV can do it all so much better.
     

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