Is Popcorn Hour outdated now?

Discussion in 'Video Streaming Boxes & Services' started by tvb0y, Jun 17, 2015.

  1. tvb0y

    tvb0y
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    Hi everyone. I have been using a Popcorn Hour A-110 for the past few years and I love it. However, recently it has started overheating if I keep it on for too long, so I think it's time to replace it. I was just going to go and order the latest Popcorn Hour model which seems to be the A-410, but I can't even find it for sale on any well-known sites. Where do you buy this thing?

    I also looked at some others on Amazon and narrowed it down to the KDLinks HD720, and the WD TV. Has anyone gone from a Popcorn Hour to one of these?

    Uses:
    - I will be using it to play MKV files ranging from 1 GB up to about 20 GB.
    - It must be able to play from external USB/flash drive, as well as connect to my NAS.
    - I do not care about apps like Netflix, YouTube, etc.
    - I love how the Popcorn Hour remote has dedicated buttons for subtitles, audio tracks, time seek, and so on, it just makes everything much easier.
    - I will be using it daily.

    I have a 60" LG TV, and a 5.1 Klipsch system with Onkyo TX-NR626 receiver (Fronts - RF-62, Rears - RB41's, Center - RC62, Subwoofer - SW-112).
    I won't be using it to play music, however if the audio output is horrible while watching a movie I'll obviously be able to notice it.

    Was hoping someone could give me a recommendation here. Should I stick to Popcorn Hour (and if so, where do you buy them now?) or just go with a cheaper option? Thanks in advance.
     
  2. graham.myers

    graham.myers
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    popcornhour.eu dont seem to list it for some reason - I will have words with them :)
    www.PopcornHour.eu :. will show the two UK stockists, one of which I know has stock
     
  3. MarkE19

    MarkE19
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    Welcome to the forum tvb0y :hiya:

    Searching around I couldn't see any USA retailers advertising the A-410, well none with any stock. But I am in the UK so don't know the usual places you would look at.

    You could look at the cloudmedia website - Popcorn Hour : Popcorn Hour A-410

    But the most up to date model is the VTEN which is full 4K
    Popcorn Hour : VTEN with WN-160P

    Mark.
     
  4. tvb0y

    tvb0y
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    Has anyone done a comparison of the A-410 vs VTEN? I searched but couldn't find one. I wanted the 410 because of all the positive feedback on this forum regarding it and figured it would be a safer choice.

    I did email CloudMedia and they tried to sell me the VTEN instead. The fact that it's $100 cheaper makes me a little uneasy though and don't see how it can be just as good
     
  5. Rom

    Rom
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    The differences are the VTEN supports 4k video where the 4XX does not. The A4XX supports internal storage and has high end DACs, the VTEN does not.

    If I was to purchase one, personally I would go for the VTEN as it is the only one (apart from OpenHour) that is still getting support in terms of firmware updates. The 4XX series has not been updated since last August and no more firmwares are in sight even though there are some issues (I personally can put up with the small ones I have, other users have more frustration).

    As a long time popcorn user and having multiple PCH players (C200, A210, A300 & 2 A400's), I myself wouldn't buy another as the firmware support seems to be getting shorter & shorter (The A410 got less than 8 months of firmware updates). The NMT forum is pretty much devoid of any responses from Cloudmedia since Werner (the Cloud Media forum admin) left the company last year. I can't see things getting any better only worse than it is now.

    I still love my PCH's (even with it's niggles) which is why I still use the PCH's I have and I continue to update my NMJ jukebox editor for myself and other PCH users - but they (Cloudmedia) will not get any more new money from me unless they re-invest in their customer and hardware support.
     
  6. tvb0y

    tvb0y
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    I have to admit I don't really understand the technical side of DAC differences, but I would assume that I'd want the player with the better ones if I'm going to be connecting it to a high end sound system, right?

    If you wouldn't buy PCH anymore, do you mind me asking what you WOULD buy? Really I'm just looking for something simple that plays from USB and NAS, and has excellent audio/video quality. Low quality audio does get on my nerves which is why I've been hesitant about buying a cheaper box like a WD TV because I just assumed something with such mass market appeal would probably skimp out on stuff that most people won't notice (but please correct me if I'm wrong)
     
  7. Rom

    Rom
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    I assume as you are using mainly for video files that you would be wanting HD audio and using the HDMI connection for sound to an AVR? If so the DACs are irrelevant as they are for the analogue outputs. This is mainly for audiophiles using the stereo phono outs.

    If I *had* to buy a player today I would maybe consider the VTEN as it is still getting updates or one of the Mede8ter players as the reports are good on those and is still getting updated. However the picture quality is reported to be lower on the Realtek based players - whether you would notice it I can't say and I do not own one. No player is perfect and no company is. I think all I was really trying to say is that the A400 is good if you buy with a mind that any issues you find caused by firmware, don't expect them to get fixed.
     
  8. halfelite

    halfelite
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    I agree with ROM. But if I would most likely go a different route and go Rpi2 or asus chromebox. I know some places dont get asus chromebox as cheap as we do in the US. But would run them with kodi or PHT
     
  9. MarkE19

    MarkE19
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    I think the lower picture quality was true a while back for Realtek players. But from what I have read (I don't own one either) Mede8er have made big improvements getting true 24p & 23.975p playback working that previously was only available on the Sigma chipset players. I think there was even a side by side comparison done by somebody on here of Sigma vs Realtek players and there has certainly been a lot of talk about their differences. But I think the consensus now is that they are so close that most people wouldn't see any real world quality differences even on a back to back comparison.

    I think that for firmware updates and general support the Mede8er's are going to be hard to beat. Dune as well as PCH have dropped their support to bare minimum and I can not longer see how they can justify their price premium.

    Mark.
     
  10. halfelite

    halfelite
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    in a double blind test I would not be able to tell the difference. But having both the 600x and the 400 and vten I can tell you the PQ is slightly different the med600 is slightly "grainyer" but only way I ever noticed was switching back and fourth between players.
     
  11. Bossk128

    Bossk128
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    Has anybody compared a PH to a Pi2 running Kodi? I have an old a110 but haven't used it for so long because I found the performance on high bitrate files was terrible.
     
  12. a5ian300zx

    a5ian300zx
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    At one point I owned the a410, Mede8er 1000x3d, hdi base 3d.

    The picture quality was best on the popcorn a410 from all three but the mede8er is the best supported and regular firmware and bug fixes and good developments.

    But I believe media players are taking different way forward now personally it's all about andriod players and kodi or htpc with kodi.

    I currently have my old dune prime 3.0 and Intel nuc htpc and have to say I'm impressed with picture quality of kodi on the nuc.

    I want to try the new amlogic based Android boxes with openelec kodi.
     
  13. Bizness

    Bizness
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    Good thread, cheers chaps. I'm in the same boat as the OP with an old A110, will have a look through some of the suggestions.

    Ta.
     
  14. Trollslayer

    Trollslayer
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    I have an A400 which has the same video support as the A410 and it is very good on detail in dark scenes but ended up moving to Kodi for the UI and support.
     
  15. frog61

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    @ TvBoy

    Not sure if your still looking or what options you went for, but thought I would add my voice to
    a5ian300zx. I to have a NUC ( Intel NUC 2820) with kodi installed.
    I have a NAS connected and my NUC does everything! great pictures and sound, even with the big 50GB files I throw at it.

    Currently I am thinking about the next step, I want to keep with NUCs but have started to look at the nvidea shield. This little box can run Kodi (xbmx) and even outputs to 4k @ 60fps. See the dedicated thread on it on here.
    Might well be worth a look.
    Also can play games on it, if your up for that!
     
  16. Trollslayer

    Trollslayer
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    Good point about the Shield.
     
  17. a5ian300zx

    a5ian300zx
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    Frog61 I was also looking into the shield as I like the all in one. If it had itv player then I would get one and recycle my nuc into a hackintosh (mac) to mess around with and also get rid of the roku 3.

    Thanks
     
  18. frog61

    frog61
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    I think in a previous forum you asked the same question.
    I seem to recall someone did mention in there that Kodi does have an ITV player add on; Look at this:

    Tutorial How to install ITV Player Add-On Kodi XBMC

    the Shield I beleive can have kodi on it, so you might be in luck!
     
  19. a5ian300zx

    a5ian300zx
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    Thanks frog61 but I already have this.

    I want a user friendly solution for the other half I have kodi fully configured on my nuc inc the plug ins.

    I want to replace the roku 3 with something that offers itv player, 4od, iplayer and the benefits of have a top notch media player not bothered about games as I have xbox one which the kids play on, I have yet to use it lol.

    Thanks
     

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