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MK808/B FAQ's, includes 1080p, Fixes, XBMC Guides amd Benchmarks.

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    MK808/B FAQ's, includes 1080p, Fixes, XBMC Guides amd Benchmarks.

    I have decide to write an FAQ on what was important to me, the problems I ran into, and some general questions which are not as easy to find as they should. Some of this may be outdated by the time you read this, especially with XBMC, as new developments may occur. This is designed for MK808b users, but most will apply to MK808 users too. This should cover most issues new users should have, and will get you up to speed.

    Q: I just got my device. What rom would you recommend?

    MINIX Hybrid Rom is currently the best choice at the moment for the true 1080p XBMC experience. It has the latest libstagefright which is required for XBMC to work correctly. It also based on a newer rom than Finless 1.7.

    Issues: Skype is sketchy, native 1080p is slow, Ethernet fix required for USB Lan.

    Finless 2.1. (original mk808/b only) If you don't mind using XBMC at 720p, or have very little interest in XBMC then this is the rom to get. It runs extremely smooth, and is using the latest version of Android. It runs well, even at 1080p, and is recommended for general usage. Will need an overclocked kernel to unlock it's full potential.

    Issues: Netflix is broken, No auto hide staus bar, No overclockable kernels currently.

    Q: How can I run my device at 1080p?

    A: The MINIX Hybrid will come with the correct kernel for what version of the rom you choose. For Finless 2.1 read the readme file for a guide in how to flash the correct kernel.

    Q: There are so many distributions of XBMC, which one should I use?

    A: There are three main variants of XBMC, I will run through the following with pro's and con's.

    Official XBMC.

    Pro: Stable, official port.

    Con: Will not use the GPU at all, slowest version to use.

    XBMC test build with HW. (dated 2/19/13).

    Pro: Uses the GPU to help decode HD content. Works well with plugins.

    Con: Will have issues with very high bitrate or resolution. Will force 16:9 for 4:3 in some situations, with a few streaming plugins not allowing you to fast forward/rewind (can be fixed by toggling in options). Will need to place the advancedsettings.xml file in the xbmc folder after installation.

    For a better explanation check out this thread by the Abducted here, which also includes instructions for the advancedsettings.xml which is needed for full GPU decoding. Alternatively, you can download it here. Extract the zip to get the .xml file, and place in "/android/data/org.xbmc.xbmc/files/.xbmc/userdata", you may need to enable hidden files and folders to see this in your file manager app. You must run XBMC once before doing this.

    XAF custom XBMC: (use neon versions)

    Pro: Will play near all HD content without issues via local, network. Comes with pre-installed plugins.

    Con: Breaks plugins for streaming services as it uses a non native player. XBMC remote for android/iphone will not work correctly on this version. SMB not working.

    I recommend the using the test build over the XAF one if you want to use streaming services, any HD content which is jerky in XBMC can be played via local or network with the ehomemedia app, or any other player that supports GPU decoding like MX player.

    Q: I have a slight audio lag in XBMC, the mouths move slightly out of sync?

    A: For some TV's, the native player doesn't seem to sync the audio and video correctly. You will need to adjust the Audio Offset for XBMC. See this Youtube guide here and once you find a setting which works make sure you select to use as default, this will then use that setting for everything played.

    Q: Can I install two versions of XBMC, one for streaming, and one for HD?

    A: Currently, No.

    Q: Can I make XBMC run at boot?

    A: Yes, by using Startup Manager, free on the Google Play Store. If using the XAF version, it will give you the option to set it as your launcher.

    Q: Will running at native 1080p on the stock kernel affect video/XBMC performance? Will I get a performance hit at 1080p?

    A: Yes, considerably. An example is the XBMC test build, with the 1080p kernel expect around 30fps for the GUI, yet at 720p it will be around 60fps. It will also not play some HD movies at full speed, while using the 720p kernel the movie would work flawlessly. It will also use much more ram, and have a higher CPU usage using the 1080p kernel. The mali 400 GPU simply cant handle 1080p content well at the default GPU clock speed.

    Q: So, 1080p vs 720p kernel?

    A: There is no doubt the 1080p kernel makes the display look better, it's also the only way how you could watch true 1080p content without it being downscaled to 720p, but I cannot recommend it if using the current GPU accelerated XBMC for HD playback or gaming of any description on the stock kernel. If using 1080p on an overclocked kernel, XBMC 1080p video playing in the native player is entirely possible, with only very high bit-rated videos causing problems. For gaming, I still would recommend an overclocked 720p kernel, as running in 1080p is almost pointless, as your device will run much hotter and you will have far less performance. If you plan to use the device to only stream some SD content over the internet in XBMC and have no interest in gaming, except a few emulators, then the 1080p stock kernel is absolutely fine, especially when it comes to web browsing on Finless 2.1.

    Q: Can I use the 1080p stock kernel and still watch HD movies at full speed?

    A: Yes, via XAF XBMC, the ehomemedia app, or any other player that GPU decodes like MX Player. If your 1080p movie however has a very high bit-rate it may drop frames at fast moving scenes. The Gallery seems to be one of the best players for speed, as it seemed to drop less frames then anything else I have tried, but is horrendous to control as it was designed for touch screens. Some video players require a codec pack, make sure to check that you have downloaded one if needed. You will need the neon/armv7 version.

    Q: Can I overclock the GPU to help with 1080p?

    A: Yes, and no, this currently is kernel based. There are custom kernels for the mk808, but not for the B version currently. You can use MK808 kernels on the MK808b, but you will lose Wifi and Bluetooth. The one I would use is the 2dark4u kernel as it is by far the best custom kernel. If you want to have a true XBMC 1080p experiance you must use this kernel.

    Q: Can I overclock the CPU?

    A: SetCPU will overclock it up to 1.4ghz for the original mk808/b, and 1.2ghz for the cloned version of each device, bare in mind your device will run hotter so make sure you have cooling to compensate the extra heat. You will need to set the cpu to performance to achieve this, as the device has a built in 1ghz limiter which can only be bypassed doing this. It will still say you are running at 1ghz, but a quick Linpack test will show the overclock has worked. Most devices the max overclock is around 1.5ghz on a custom kernel, so you're not missing out by using the stock kernel for CPU overclocking.

    Q: Will I need a mouse/keyboard to set up the device?

    A: You will need a USB device (mouse is recommended) in order to configure Bluetooth and/or Wifi for remotes. If you have an airmouse/remote with a dongle then this may not apply to you.

    Q: I can't wake my device up with my remote, why?

    A: When in sleep mode, it turns off a number of features, including Wifi and Bluetooth. If you use any of these then you will not be able to wake the device up again.

    Q: Can I add new drivers to support my USB devices?

    A: Yes, you will need to seach online for the driver .ko file. If you can't find one for your chipset Leolas is offering to help compile drivers, including how to install. See the thread here.

    On the Minix Hybrid firmware, you can add .ko's to the root of the sdcard and name them custom(1-3).ko. They will then load on boot. See the readme/rom information.

    Q: I keep getting freezes, my device keeps crashing.

    A: The first step to take for any issues like these is to change the power supply. They are not all made equal, and some can't give the device what it requires to run stable. Any decent 2amp 5v charger should be more than enough.

    Q: I am using a controller, and the key layout is wrong, how can I set key commands?

    A: You will need to download a program called Keynumbertracker which can be found here.

    When the program is running, write down what key corrasponds to what input and change the /system/usr/keylayout/generic.kl to the correct key.

    Here is an example of key bindings.

    Q: Do these devices support Adobe Flash Player?

    A: Yes, you can use flash in both the stock browser, and some third party ones like Firefox. Some apps may also need it to run. Download the apk here.

    Q: How can I get BBC Iplayer, 4od and other streaming services to work?

    A: You can download flash from the post above, and run it in the browser if the android app doesn't work correctly, alternatively, you can run the vast majority of streaming services via XBMC plugins.

    Q: RKRemote doesn't work with Ethernet, any alternatives?

    A: Droidmote works very well on these devices, and is vastly superior with more features. You will need to download the rk3066 .kl from the official website to get it fully working.

    Q: How can I disable/hide the notification bar?

    A: Full!screen+ on Google Play will disable this on boot, or you can choose apps and F!S+ will auto hide the bar without user input. This is only for Finless 2.1, as it will auto hide on other roms.

    Q: Google Play says my device is incompatible with an app, how can I fix this?

    A: Build.prop will need adjusting, Google the correct way to do this. A modded Google Play store could also be used. Alternatively, you could just download the apk and install that way.

    Q: My hard drive doesn't work?

    A: You will need a powered USB hub, it is essential that it has its own power supply, as the USB does not have enough power to operate and needs additional help.

    Q: My Wifi signal is bad, all the mods I have seen are for the MK808, what can I do to help with the B version?

    A: There are two antennas, a big and small which are attached to the case, the big one via a wire, and the smaller one by pins.

    The first thing you want to do is check the soldering on the big antenna's wiring to see if it's causing a short circuit, as the units are sometimes soldered poorly.

    If all looks and checks out ok, the best method I have found is to remove the pins for the small antenna and solder a 12cm wire to the ant point, making a small hole in the case to poke the wire through. Ideally, if your wire has shielding, you can solder that to the gnd point where the other pin was located. Your signal should improve by doing this.

    The pins are on the far bottom left of this picture, and are clearly marked.

    Ethernet Fix/Work Around.

    For several roms, if you use an Ethernet adapter, you will not be able to get an IP on reboot. In order to get Ethernet working again, you would have to toggle or reconnect the device. This is not ideal, especially if you use Wifi remotes.

    Credit goes to b1g.p0ppa for the commands. This is not needed for Finless 2.1.

    You will need
    this file.

    1) Extract the .zip and place the into the root of the sdcard.
    2) Download Script Manager from Google Play store.
    3) Reboot the device with ethernet connected.
    4) You shouldn't have an internet connection, load up Script Manager and select the, choose the SU (skull and crossbones) and press RUN.

    If you get a connection afterwards then it works with your device. Keep SU selected and choose BOOT as well, go into advanced settings and there is a setting to disable notification/silent boot.

    Then from now on, you will get a connection within 5-10seconds after boot.
    Last edited by ididmytime; 05-21-2013, 05:03.
    Currently Using:
    2 x Nvidia Shield TV | MiniMX III
    Retired Devices:
    MiniMX III-II | Mk808b Pro | Mk808b Plus | Raspberry Pi 1 + 2 | UBOX R89 | MK808 | MK808b | CS008 | X1 4K (rk3288_809) | CYX_809III | Ouya | CX-919 | S82 Plus | Tronstmart R68

    Can a mod please replace my post on this thread with the updated FAQ please.

    Currently Using:
    2 x Nvidia Shield TV | MiniMX III
    Retired Devices:
    MiniMX III-II | Mk808b Pro | Mk808b Plus | Raspberry Pi 1 + 2 | UBOX R89 | MK808 | MK808b | CS008 | X1 4K (rk3288_809) | CYX_809III | Ouya | CX-919 | S82 Plus | Tronstmart R68