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NEO Z64 Windows 8.1 Video Review

Discussion in 'NEO Z64 Windows 10/8.1' started by robertojorge, Feb 22, 2015.

  1. Villa

    Villa Trusted Helper Super Moderator

    As Roberto says "No need!"

    But for future reference re-read my post above!
    Sorry, I edited it and you probably hadn't seen the extra bit I added.

    To send a member a PM just click on the members name under their Avatar (Little pic to the left) a popup window is displayed with options, select Start a Conversation.

    Also you can tag a member by inserting @ infront of their name @John P
    As you type the name a window appears below with close matches and you can select the member or continue to enter the name in full.
    robertojorge likes this.
  2. John P

    John P New Member

    Hi Roberto,

    Thank you for your quick reply. It's very early here, so I'm currently drinking my coffee to help wake up...lol

    As soon as I'm done, I will go type you a detailed reply via my laptop (on tablet now, and typing is a bit arduous).

    Talk soon.

    John
  3. John P

    John P New Member

    Hi Roberto,

    Sorry if this is a bit long, but I'm not sure how to ask my questions in a shorter format. My research into these options started when my wife and I decided to consider getting our cable TV unplugged. We don't feel we are getting adequate value for our dollar. So, then I began looking into what types of alternatives we would have for television content. I can give you a few details on my current setup.

    We currently have approximately 55 mbps per second download speed from our ISP (10 mbps upload). We have a netgear nighthawk wireless router (dual band high speed three antenna unit) that covers our whole home wirelessly. We also have two logitech music streaming devices (stream music from internet and from cpu), plus a play station 3 (which is an older unit). Through the PS3, we get our Netflix service, and are able to stream music and content from our cpu. The PS3 browser is not very good, and I find the entire workings of the system a bit cumbersome. My wife and I have two ipads (an older and a newer one), plus she has a iphone and I have a samsung S3 (older android). Other than this, we are PC all the way, with no other apple products. We don't store any content on our ipads, as they are used for email, internet browsing and the odd game.

    My wife recently won an apple TV piece, so I began looking into the benefits of hooking it up to our system. Unfortunately, because we don't do much (or anything) with itunes or any other apple proprietary systems, this system seems too restrictive for us.

    So, I spoke to a few people that told me to simply plug an external hard drive to my netgear router, then to look at getting a streaming device like the roku 3. Then, my friend who sent me your video on the minix system seem to suggest this would be a better option. After speaking to a few more people, I've concluded that a mini cpu like the minix might be the best solution. One of the local cpu stores suggested the Mygica 582 as an alternative to the minix (which they don't sell), but the specs seem to differ from the Neo Z64.

    So, what I want to primarily do is this: I want to centralize all of my media in one location (not sure if external hard drive is enough, or if I need entire cpu), and I'd like to access this data from all of my televisions wirelessly. I also want to stream various types of content from the internet, which would include pretty much everything (free and including paid subscriptions like Netflix, etc...). We don't do any type of gaming or video editing.

    One question I have is regarding the Windows 8.1 versus Android units. I know what Windows and Android are independently, but I'm not sure how this impacts what I want to do here. If you could please clarify, that would be greatly appreciated.

    I don't mind spending some money on hardware solutions, but I don't want to have too many limitations. I want whatever system we go with to be useful and relevant for years to come.

    I hope my information is sufficiently detailed. If you need more details, please don't hesitate to ask.

    Many thanks in advance.

    John
    robertojorge likes this.
  4. robertojorge

    robertojorge Member

    Hi John,

    Thanks for the detailed info.
    Let me start by saying that anything that i advise is my personal opinion and off course based on some experience.

    So starting with OSX / Windows / IOS / Android
    I use all :) But i also hate itunes i have no use for it, this just to mention that an apple tv as it is right now the old model (the new has some interesting features but non the less humm!! ) The only feature that i use that a apple tv would give me would be the airplay to stream our mac photo library to the living room but since i bought a Minix X8 H Plus last year that problem was solved :)

    2nd - a HDD connected to a router is a solution but not for multimedia as you will have a bad experience in streaming content, its good enough to store docs but that's about it

    On the other hand a NAS like a WD My Cloud can be a great choice, not a solution but a companion that will change the way that you use Android / mini PC´s in your living room for multimedia consumption, but i will be back to this in a few seconds :)

    Regarding the Mygica i have never tried, im expecting to test one of their new models but as for now i cannot recommenced as i have no idea how the firmware is integrated on those machines, unlike the Minix that i have tested almost all of their range of machines, and believe me they are great, nothing is 100% perfect but these are really close and always with updates that will keep to improve our devices.

    If you have a 1080p TV i would suggest the Z64, if you have a 4K tv i would go for the X8 H Plus just because it has native 4K output. The Z64 will play 4K just fine but will only output at 1080p

    Windows or Android, this is really a personal choice, if you ask me i prefer windows for work but i prefer android for media playback device, just because its very user friendly in terms of UI.

    My media consumption here on my house is all android machines, although i also have Minix Z64 Windows and other Mini PCs i tend to use them for other type of testing and see my self watching my content on the Android Devices.

    The way i have my library all centralized is in a NAS WD ( Check WD My Cloud), then i have 1 Minix X8 H Plus on the living room, 1 Z64 Android on the Bedroom, 1 Minix X6 on my kids bedroom and also a few other machines on the office for testing purposes etc, but everything stored at my NAS, this way i have all my movies / series collection on the NAS and any device on my network access the NAS and can play simultaneous on different machines.

    So i feel that this is the best way to go: Minix Z64 + NAS for now and once you feel that you need another machine in your house hold just get another and your library is all there, just tell the machine which folder and if you use Kodi like i do, then it will grab all the Covers art etc for you.

    Ok so i think that already have written more than necessary, but besides of giving a advice, i just shared the way i use my machines here :)

    Hope that it helps John
    If you go this route or any other please share with us your feedback, experience etc if possible off course

    All the Best
    RJ

    PS: Ah! I forgot something, WIFI - For high quality content at 1080p, lets say MKV movies i would not rely on Wifi, if you have no ethernet cables on the division of the house i always suggest a powerline adapter to get the best experience possible without any buffering and delays on the media consumption. Off course that you should before purchasing any powerline adapter to test your wifi enviroment but if you see a "buffering" sign and some freezes than you know the way to go (This is not with Minix but with any device that streams high quality content)
    Villa and Higgs like this.
  5. John P

    John P New Member

    Good morning Roberto,

    Thank you so much for the detailed information. It's much appreciated! It really helps to have you describe your home setup, as it sounds like I want to do pretty much the same thing.

    Was speaking to my friend who recommended the Minix product, and he suggested the Windows version, as it's much easier to network. The drawback he said is that it doesn't come with a remote. In other words, I would have to get a keyboard and mouse for each location. I recall you saying in your review that you didn't think the remote that came with the android system was very good. Seems to me you suggested upgrading the remote to another more user friendly one.

    I'm just wondering what your opinion is with respect to the above?

    Many thanks,

    John
    robertojorge likes this.
  6. robertojorge

    robertojorge Member

    Hey John, glad it was useful.
    Regarding OS Android vs Windows its really a matter of personal choice, i tend to use Android for Multimedia purposes and Windows for office and Plex Server / player combo tests.
    Regarding the Network, works fine on both Windows or Android.

    The remote included in the Z64 Android is a IR Remote so it will be ok for the basic usage, and yes :) i always recommend a wireless remote for a better overall experience specially with airmouse feature which is great.

    So regardless of your choice which i believe that you will enjoy either OS i would recommend a remote like the Minix A2 Lite that has besides airmouse capability also a small keyboard on the back. And its the size of a normal remote which is great!! :)

    RJ
    MatVekk likes this.
  7. Sensei Jiraiya

    Sensei Jiraiya New Member

    Hi,

    Can this be used for office/work related purposes primarily connecting through RDP/Citrix and install java-run programas/softwares?
    As i am thinking of using this mini desktop on our office, its cheaper and based from all the reviews its doing a good performance..

    Thanks for your replies
  8. Sensei Jiraiya

    Sensei Jiraiya New Member

    Hi,
    In addition do the pre-installed Windows 8.1 can be used to join in a domain?

    Thanks
  9. Tim-APCR

    Tim-APCR Member

  10. Tim-APCR

    Tim-APCR Member

    If you're using it as a thin-client for a Citrix setup or using RDP then the specs of the Z64 really don't matter that much. The reason is that the computer on the other end is the one that's doing all of the heavy-lifting.
    You'll want a good, solid network connection though. I'd recommend going wired through Ethernet unless you're going to be close to your router and have little in the way of interference.
  11. Sensei Jiraiya

    Sensei Jiraiya New Member

    Hi Tim-APCR

    Thank you for that prompt reply. yup currently we have samsung thin-client as well with 2GB RAM and 32GB SSD, but this Z64 is definitely cheaper by the looks. i was confused as i have read a other comment about this product that this can't be joined to the domain etc. going to test it anyway as most of the reviews are good and positive. ciao

    Thanks again