A few newbie setup questions for Vero 4K

Hello,

New to these forums and hope I’m posting in the right place. I have ordered one of these and am excited to receive it soon.

A few setup questions:

  1. Is it possible to disable HDMI CEC? It is not required in my setup and I find it can sometimes be problematic (things turning on accidentally etc)

  2. Relatedly, recommendations for using this with a Harmony Elite/Smart hub? I guess I can use the IR extender for IR control. But is it possible to add as a Harmony bluetooth device? Or IP device? If anybody could recommend the device/manufacturer to add would be much appreciated.

  3. The main reason I purchased this is to play 4K UHD rips, which I have just started making from my discs using Makemkv (archiving as m2ts files). I have bought an Anker USB gigabit adapter in preparation after seeing some people finding movies which would not stream reliably over the 100 ethernet port (I don’t want to use Wi-Fi). I just tested the USB adapter I bought on a raspberry pi 3, using iperf3, and it consistently gives 300Mbit/s. I believe the architecture is similar so I can expect the same performance with the Vero 4K just by “plug and play”? I also I assume I will be ok to use this from first boot onwards?

  4. Relatedly, should I still bother setting the buffer size in the advanced settings file to optimise playback of UHD rips given it will hopefully have a 300Mbit/s LAN connection via my USB adapter? I have set everything up in advance so the network shares will be via nfs and fstab.

  5. I bought this after getting fed up of colour space issues with an Nvidia shield. It will be connected to a Sony 4K OLED via a Denon 2400 AVR. Should I be ok to just use default settings and expect REC 709/REC 2020 colour spaces to be switched automatically? It will only be used to play 1080p regular blu-ray rips (all rec 709) or 4K UHD movie rips (all HDR rec 2020). I.e. I don’t have any “special case” files in terms of colour space/resolution combos.

Sorry - I know is lots of questions! If you have 2 cents to offer, even on any partial question above I’d be grateful.

Cheers,
Paul

Yes. Go to Settings -> Input -> Peripherals -> CEC and disable it.

It is possible, and usually yields faster response times.
There’s a few discussions here:

Yes – it should work without issue.

You shouldn’t need to tweak anything here.

You probably want to set 10-bit output via command line. As you are familiar with SSH, this shouldn’t be tricky.

We are working on an auto-switching option, but it’s not quite ready yet.

Sam

Thank you for the super quick reply! Great info.

I’ve seen in other threads how to set the “444,10” option in rc.local so yes will do that.

Just a clarification please based on pieces I’ve read in other threads on the forum.

Is the theory that both Rec 709 8 bit and Rec 2020 10 bit can be passed down in 444 10 bit without issue? I.e. if I set 444 10 bit then both 1080p blu-rays and 4K HDR blu-rays would be presented accurately?

Or, for 100% accuracy should I be disabling and enabling the 444,10 option according to 4k or 1080p blu-rays? (and this is what you’re working on being done automatically?)

Sorry I’m finding the colour space thing a very steep learning curve!

Cheers again.

It is quite complicated indeed

For proper output we want autoswitching, so that’s what we are working on

Cheers

Sam

Thanks again. So if I gather correctly if I leave it in 10 bit 444 then presentation of 4K HDR discs will be perfect. That is my main aim for now so I’ll do that while waiting for the autoswitching.

Cheers again,
Paul

That’s right.

Brilliant. Thanks again. Can’t wait to set it up.

If anybody was reading and interested, this is the USB gigabit adapter I bought:

I’ll post back to confirm it works well on the Vero 4K too.

By the way, I wonder if somewhere in the Wiki/Forums there could be a list of user reported working USB gigabit adapters. I couldn’t actually locate any explicit recommendations in the forums before I ordered the Vero 4K, which made me a bit nervous (perhaps I didn’t look hard enough). I’m happy to kick the list/thread off if someone could suggest where I put it.

Seeking “USB gigabit adapter” in this forum search above seems to return several valid results.

Thanks - I hadn’t actually thought to do that (doh).

Although most of those threads are ones I had read and are somewhat dominated by posts from people reporting issues with their adapters (although the issues may or may not be down to the adapters), which is what was making me nervous.

You are right though - there is a few posts from people solidly recommending something they are happy with. I was pleased to see one of these was for an Anker USB 3.0 adapter, which is what I bought.

PS - I’d definitely second the suggestions to have an adapter in the shop or (presumably less work) have an “officially” recommended one. I appreciate it is not a straight forward decision but depending on your average customer it could be really good for sales.

The 100 ethernet port delayed my purchase by several days, and would have averted it if the competition was better. I had a bit of a double take when I first saw in the specs (of a 4K streamer) that it was just ethernet 100. Fortunately I had the time to read on these forums, including the repeated posts by Sam explaining how it should actually be fine for the vast majority of 4K rips, and the decision process behind excluding a gigabit port. This in turn taught me about nfs, which was well worth learning about and I’ve implemented elsewhere in my network :slight_smile: But really it was hours of reading posts by people saying their 4K movies were stuttering on the 100 ethernet port, having to fiddle with nfs, playing with buffer sizes, trying the Wi-fi etc, which all did make me quite nervous.

If right from the main sales page you recommended an adapter (or had an add to basket option) for customers who are not confident in their Wifi strength, it would certainly help sales for any customers out there like me (who are aware of more specs than they understand!)

I’m still of the opinion that you do not need Gigabit Ethernet.
You have purchased a Gigabit Ethernet adapter before receiving your device. With that said, it won’t hurt.

Fortunately, users can add a variety of adapters easily and without issue. They can also probably find these adapters on their local market cheaper than we can sell them.

Selling an adapter is strange, because we’d be doing a disservice by suggesting it’s necessary, and it’s also not very appealing to have to buy an add-on. I’m still struggling to find a single 4K UHD rip that warrants this.

It’s only beneficial if you use userspace shares which have overhead. Even then, it’s still not always necessary, and we have some upcoming changes to significantly improve the performance of Kodi based shares.

Your feedback however is appreciated. I am aware that Fast Ethernet (100Mbps) is a huge put off for customers. Sadly sometimes marketing is about ticking a box without it meaning a lot.

3 Likes

Hi Sam,

I am very encouraged to hear you say that you do not think gigabit ethernet is needed. I would certainly bow to your wisdom here and would prefer to use the built in port despite having bought the USB adapter.

However, the reason I assumed I needed the adapter was post 2 in this thread:

where @fzinken says “Any file above 86Mbit average bandwidth will not be able to be played via Ethernet unless you get a USB Gigabit dongle”

One of the first UHDs I ripped was The Hitmans Bodyguard. Running media-info on the resulting m2ts, the average bitrate is reported as 89.5Mb/s, which is of course above the 86 threshold mentioned above. So straight up I thought I had a film which would not work over the built in ethernet port. I guess I have misunderstood something though…

General
ID : 0 (0x0)
Complete name : The Hitmans Bodyguard (2017)/The Hitmans Bodyguard (2017).m2ts
Format : BDAV
Format/Info : Blu-ray Video
File size : 74.0 GiB
Duration : 1 h 58 min
Overall bit rate mode : Variable
Overall bit rate : 89.5 Mb/s
Maximum Overall bit rate : 109 Mb/s

@encdpnew, my 86Mbit was a bit conservative I guess your 89 Mbit also plays fine if you use fstab based mounting.
Generally I suggest to use NFS instead of Samba if you have rips that are close to 100 Mbit.

What I’d suggest is you just try without the GB adaptor.

You might also consider using MakeMKV (free) and strip out unwanted audio tracks and subtitles. That would cut down on the network use (and file size).

many thanks @fzinken and @bmillham . Good to know 86 is not necessarily a hard threshold.

It’s good advice too to try and lower the bitrate with paired down mkvs. I actually own a MakeMkv license (and in fact use it to get the m2ts files). In my case though it was quite a considered decision to archive my UHDs as m2ts. In case anyone interested:

  • Full compatibility of HD audio with Sony Blu-ray players. Even my 4K x700 Player will only play Dolby TrueHD in m2ts, not mkv. I think blu-Ray players are underrated clients for lossless disc files - resolution switching, colour space switching, HD audio, impeccable image quality - so I’d like to keep this option as it has worked robustly for the last 10 years of my Sony players.
  • I think more chance of Dolby Vision working in the future, as the m2ts is the untouched original stream (and you can see the DV data in there as a second video track). May never work (may require full backup of whole disc) but it definitely won’t work with current mkvs, which strip the DV data away.
  • Can always convert m2ts to paired down mkv in future but obviously can not go back to untouched m2ts from mkv

Now, as it happens during setting up my system I did rip an mkv of this same film with just the Dolby Atmos and core audio saved. I just checked and - very interestingly - the bitrate of that file is considerably lower more like 76Mb/s (and the file is just 64ishgb IIRC). Since the extra AC3 audio tracks in the m2ts do not account for ~10 extra gb I think what is going on might be the Dolby Vision data. Does show though how effectively the bitrate could be lowered with mkvs. I’ll be getting hold of Force Awakens soon (another DV disc) and curious now to see if it is the same.

Anyhow, when the Vero 4K arrives later today I will try the built in ethernet port and watching the Hitmans Bodyguard start to finish and report back. While my instinct is to just use the USB adapter due to the very small amount of headroom, I’d be interested and happy to try and help prove Sam right. There’s not enough posts of people confirming it does actually work over 100 ethernet.

Are you using samba or nfs?

It will be nfs

That together with fstab based mounts should be perfect

Hi - sorry for delay - I discovered that my fileserver was not up to scratch for serving 4K media (an old MacBook Air with USB 2.0 ports). Long story short - I have now upgraded to a Synology 2 disk NAS (RAID 0), which I’ve been meaning to do for a while. It has superb read/write speeds that saturate my gigabit LAN network.

In limited testing so far - it seems to play the 4K lossless m2ts mentioned above just fine, using the built in ethernet port. It is reading from the Synology using nfs and /etc/fstab. I’ve only watched 10 mins so far but they were seamless :slight_smile:

Unfortunately an issue has arisen with colour banding. @sam_nazarko I am using your suggestion of adding the line:

echo ‘444,10bit’ > /sys/class/amhdmitx/amhdmitx0/attr

to /etc/rc.local

However, the 4K m2ts (Hitmans Bodyguard) above displays very clear banding, which is not present when playing the same file (via DLNA) on my Sony X700 4K blu-ray player (I’d be happy to send 2 comparison pictures). Both are connected to the receiver (i.e. same HDMI input on TV) with identical receiver settings (all AVR picture processing is bypassed and Enhanced HDMI is enabled).

So the Vero 4K is incorrectly handling this 4K rip (using the 444 10 bit setting), where as the Sony Blu-ray player is not. I was wondering if you have a suggestion of a different setting? I appreciate automatic switching isn’t ready yet but I’d be keen to verify the Vero can play these files correctly (with no banding), i.e. like my blu-ray player, even if I have to manually set it.

Thanks much.

Is your device up to date? We released an update today to address these very issues re. banding

If it is, I’d suggest sudo chmod +x /etc/rc.local and a reboot.

Sam