Streaming, 4K BR & gaming solution - Shield, X-Box One-X?

Discussion in 'Digital TV & Video Players & Recorders' started by tenohfive, Apr 5, 2018.

  1. tenohfive

    tenohfive
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    Having taken delivery of my 65XE9305 I'm one step closer to my AV setup being finished. The next issue I'm trying to work out is content. And some games.

    I want to be able to stream 4K/HDR through Netflix/Amazon etc and take advantage of that lovely screen by playing some games on it. Then maybe once or twice a week stick a 4K UHD bluray on, not heavy use. Both PC and TV are in the same room connected by ethernet to the router.

    I'm loosely considering two solutions:

    1. Panasonic UB400 for BR, nVidia Shield connected to my PC for streaming and gaming.
    2. X-Box One X for BR and gaming, Roku+ for streaming, Steam Link (already owned) for the odd PC game.

    I've always been a PC gamer (albeit casual) but playing mostly FPS games I don't think it'd be a huge jump to go to a console, and I've heard tell of how good the One X looks on a properly specced TV. I've also enjoyed messing around on some Android games on the TV using a Xiaomi BT controller.
    I gather a firmware issue has sorted the X-Box UHD BR issues.

    On the other side, the Shield looks very capable but I don't game enough to pay for their subscription service. And my PC is due an upgrade (TV money put paid to that) but will run BF1 on a mix of medium and high settings, I don't know if that would be a bottleneck for picture quality when gaming or if the Shield upscales things.

    Any views on the pro's and con's of either of those solutions, or is there a third solution I should consider?
     
  2. next010

    next010
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    If getting the XB1X you don't really need a Roku, it already has all the major streaming services. It's pretty much an all in one, any cons are really nitpicking I think but can list some if need be.

    Separate boxes like the Shield and UB400 do the same job (other than games), maybe a little better in certain areas but probably not worth it for an average user.
     
  3. tenohfive

    tenohfive
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    I wouldn't be able to use the X-Box for gaming whilst streaming TV simultaneously though. i.e. wife watching Netflix whilst I'm playing games.

    I should have mentioned, I want to be able to do both at the same time. My PC monitor is good enough to game on (27" QWHD) but the X-Box only has one HDMI out doesn't it? My AVR (a Denon X2400H) has two HDMI outs but I don't think it can run two separate inputs to two outputs simultaneously. That's another headache.

    And the headache on the Shield side is that to get decent quality 4K gaming it looks like at the very least I'd need a decent GPU. That more than anything it pushing me towards the X-Box route.
     
  4. next010

    next010
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    Yeah the XB1X has a HDMI 2.0b output and a HDMI 1.4 input (for running a set top box through it).

    But to use both at the same time is not possible so yeah the other will have to use TV built in apps or get a Roku.

    Now the other problem is having the XB1X connected to both the monitor and the TV, the QWHD is fine and actually supported by the XB1X so you will get native resolution output for the monitor.

    However to use both even if you got a splitter which clones the XB1X output to two displays (monitor and TV), you will lose QWHD support as the splitter and TV's do not support this 1440p resolution. This will drop the resolution that can be supported across both to 1080p.

    If you replaced the QWHD monitor with a 4K monitor that would allow a clone output system to work provided you can get a splitter that supports 4K and HDR or this (if you care about it but better left disabled IMO with monitor), ones without HDR support are available like this. Obviously that's is a lot more money being spent.

    The other alternative is simply use the Xbox streaming app on Windows 10, this will stream the console full screen on the PC. It's doesnt work well for every game, some are better than others but it's free and wont cost you anything.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2018
  5. tenohfive

    tenohfive
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    I can't really get away with replacing the monitor - it was bought for photo processing first and foremost.

    Rather than cloning the X-Box output I can't help but think I'd be better with a switch. I don't need it feeding to two locations at once. Would a simple switch (preferably with an IR remote, so I can hide it and control via Harmony) work? X-Box to switch, then two feeds out - one to my AVR, the second to the Monitor. As long as I make sure I've set the output to the correct display prior to switching on the X-Box and the HDMI handshake, the X-Box should scale appropriately shouldn't it? If so, and if I can find one with an IR or BT controller then the Harmony can automate that process anyway.

    ETA:

    Something like this is what I'm picturing.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2018
  6. next010

    next010
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    I know what you mean but that device you linked to is a common HDMI switch in this context it is used for having more than one device run off a single HDMI port.

    The kind of switch you would need is something with a single input then switch to multiple outputs (or a cable with two connectors at one end), the HDMI splitters/cloners tend to full fill that purpose. Maybe there is an device that will do what you need but I don't know of any off hand also 1440p is a non-standard resolution not supported by most HDMI AV devices, it is a PC resolution.

    It also sounds like a lot of work changing the display and audio settings each time, the video settings may auto adapt but the audio settings may not (stereo or bitstream).

    Edit: You could try cloning the output of the AV receiver so that goes to the TV and monitor, that could solve the audio issue possibly with some tinkering depending upon other factors.

    OR purchase a second hand/cheapest Xbox One S you can find, all of your digital purchases can be downloaded onto two consoles, the X is the home console and the S is the secondary, all of your saves will auto sync between the two. The S supports 1440p too but only upscaling from 1080p.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2018
  7. tenohfive

    tenohfive
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    The link I sent went funny - there's another item on there that's a twin output HDMI switch, but it doesn't have an IR remote. Not world ending but not ideal - and I want ideal for this home cinema setup.

    This looks like it'd do the job, albeit it's 4 times more inputs than I need and £70. Seems silly for what on paper is a much simpler task than all the splitters out there - take an input, and pass it through to Output 1 or Output 2. Seems crazy to me. I'm really keen to avoid a splitter for all the reasons we've already covered. I think I should be searching for an HDMI matrix; hopefully something will crop up.

    The two other options are new TV/monitor, or a new AVR. Both of which are very very pricey.
     
  8. next010

    next010
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    Yeah that device looks the right one for what you want to do.

    Though whether 1440p will work is the question, you wont really know until you test it.

    Also the 1440p support is part of the spring update which isn't out yet but due very soon.
     
  9. tenohfive

    tenohfive
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    I think I've had a bit of an idea.

    I'd initially dismissed splitters due to the issue of it outputting the lowest detected resolution. What I'm thinking though is to connect the PC monitor power to a smart plug, controlled by Harmony. And as part of the Activity of 'Play X-Box on TV' include a command to firstly switch off the PC Monitor, so when the splitter fires up it only detects the TV not the monitor - and outputs accordingly.

    The possible fly in that ointment is Harmony - it views smart plugs as home automation control, and I think it won't let me control the home automations until the AV components have been turned on.
     

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