New Media Player - Advice needed

Tjopper

Active Member
I have a Mede8er med600x3d for years now and it has always done a very good job in playing content from the internal HD.

As I have a 4K capable TV now it a looking for a new media player. As I am not familiar with the current media player market, I hope that some of you can give me a lead or information about what media player might suite my needs. Here are some of my requirements:
  • Price range between € 200 - € 300,-
  • Must be able to play 4K HDR and Dolby Vision
  • Must be able to passthrough High Quality audio (like Dolby True HD, DTS-HD MA etc)
  • No need for using Android Apps as I will be using those on my TV
  • No need for game support
  • USB 3.0 or higher support for external drive or ability for internal drive
  • No need for streaming as for that I will use my TV apps
  • Only needed for smooth playback of movie rips
  • Brand must have a good hardware and software reputation with good support
A quick search resulted in the following players: Nvidia Shield Pro, Dune HD Real Vision 4K and ZIDOO ZX9.

  • Would you recommend any of above players looking at my requirements?
  • Are there any other players you would recommend?

Thanks in advance for your feedback :)
 
Last edited:

John7

Well-known Member
AFAIK (although I could be wrong, I sometimes am!) the only players (?) on the market right now to support DV are the newer Zidoo range, the "Z" series

Z9X is a small box with no provision for internal drives but has USB3, USB2, LAN and Wi-Fi and BT connectivity. If you want one with onboard storage capability, the Z10 Pro is the one to go for.

Be advised however that these players are fairly new iterations of earlier designs with new chip sets and have a few teething problems/glitches. HOWEVER, the manufacturer is constantly providing incremental FW updates to sort out issues.

All your other "wants" are catered for

I have the Z9X after previously owning the X9S and I have to say I am very happy with it. It does have a couple of niggles, which I can live with at the moment but I am confident future FW updates will ensure these are ironed out. Biggest problem for me is the Zidoo causes issues with CEC in my system chain and some control features are prevented (such as my AVR not switching on when the TV is powered up). I've tried a CEC blocker but it does not work for me. If you read the Zidoo Forum, it works for others, so it must be unique to my setup.

All my 4K discs are ripped to MKV (using MakeMKV) and stored on a NAS. They all playback fine including the ones with DV.
 

Nice Monkey

Active Member
When my Dune HD Real Vision 4K arrives next week a review will follow soon. I will compare it with my Zidoo Z9X too. Dune Real Vision has the essential connectors while Zidoo Z9X has almost everything.
If you want BD ISO's and Folders to work with BD Menu's too then Zidoo or Dune are the media players to look at. If you like streaming services then nVidia is a good choice and maybe Dune (with Android TV) too? (will test this for sure).

All 3 match your requirements list. If you like an Internal HDD bay just look for the more expensive models from Dune or Zidoo.
 
Last edited:

compingharry

Standard Member
NVidia Shield Pro is advised for streaming, Dune Real Vision and Zidoo Z9x for fileplaying. Some differences: Dune is best at Bluray ISO with menu's, has a solid Control App in addition to a traditional remote, but no customizable EDID. Zidoo does poor on Bluray ISO with menu's, Control App is in development, but has customizable EDID. You can for instance play Dolby Vision on a non DV display (Samsung) , if you can set the TV to the right setting. (Mostly discussed on AVSforum...) Poster Wall of Zidoo is much praised, Dune's Posterwall will be updated soon...MKV files do well on both...
 

Nice Monkey

Active Member
Great, looking forward to your findings :)
A version in development but most included by now:
Comments are very welcome.

Regarding streaming services: YES get an NVidia Shield or Apple-TV (or a TV Powered by Android). In fact both Dune and Zidoo with Android 9 on them can run the APP's and Streaming Services perfect in a technical sense. They only lack the big multinational status and relations with many video streaming providers which reduce Audio-features/PQ for them on purpose (a kind of unspoken boycot).
 
Last edited:

compingharry

Standard Member
 

Tjopper

Active Member
From above review: 'If you prefer simplicity and stability, then DUNE HD is for you." This among other things I like about the Dune Real Vision 4K.

However, there might be a catch here. I intend of using an external hard drive. At the moment I have a WD My Passport USB3.0 that has a speed of 114 Mb/s for sequential read/write. I have got some questions about this:

1) Will this drive be fast enough to watch 4K (uncompressed) movies;
2) Or do I better upgrade to an external SSD drive like the Samsung T5 USB 3.1?
3) Or should I consider to go for the Zidoo Z9X as it has an eSATA port?
 

compingharry

Standard Member
I use WD MyBook 8TB external HD on Pro Vision to play Bluray ISO with menu's...I have no trouble. So if you already own a WD My Passport, try that first since it is USB3. As far as I know, even USB2 can manage larger files, but again, I mostly play MKVx264x265 up to 12GB and Bluray ISO myself. SSD seems expensive and not needed in regard to stutters. I own Dune Pro Vision and Zidoo Z9x (as a learning device). Zidoo's Poster Wall still is better, and Zidoo supports custom Edid for advanced use. Zidoo is bad with Bluray ISO with menu's. EDIT: Dune is better with Bluray ISO with menu's and multiple episodes. I like Dune's Interface, Dune's Control App which is so much better than Zidoo Control App. So it depends which features are most important for you...If Dune launches the Posterwall/My Collection update, the only Zidoo ace is custom Edid.
 
Last edited:

Nice Monkey

Active Member
USB is more that fast enough to play any type of media. This may even be USB2 but USB3 is preferred.

To be honest have far less troubles playing Music with my Dune Real Vision than with my Zidoo Z9X.
This is not interface related but effective processing power for playing high definition audio.
 

ajohnson30

Active Member
Just be aware that not all USB ports are created equal. What may work in one case; direct connected to the media player, or pc, etc.. may fail you later on if you decide for some reason to move the drive to a usb port on a router or something like that. People have tried this to allow multiple players access to their files, and found performance to be lacking.
 

compingharry

Standard Member
I think when working with routers, just like with NAS, it would be wise to use internal drives. Also bad ethernet ports on the computer, or failing routers could be an issue. I have not tried to connect an external HDD to a computer, and then route it to the mediaplayer. This would certainly be the last configuration I would use...My routers only have ethernet ports, no USB ports...
 

The latest video from AVForums

Oculus Quest 2 VR headset + Rotel A14 MkII Amp Reviews & Best of the Month
Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Full fat HDMI teeshirts

Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom