Vero 4k review and poll

#1

Vero 4k review


The reason


Off course, as a systems administrator who has worked in IT for 20 years I could buy the cheapest option, a Raspberry Pi 3 or some cheap Chinese player. So why would I spend 119 pounds / 146 euro on a media player?

The first reason for me is that I used Raspbmc from Sam on a Pi way before he founded OSMC, which was always very well supported and updated. The support is now five (!) years on the Vero 4k, this is priceless. Monthly upgrades to keep everything run smoothly. Online you can always ask your questions and get a response from Sam, his team or even the community.

Also the hardware choices OSMC makes are the ones I would make myself. I remember that on the Vero 1 Sam tested the power adaptor rigorously, even with graphical representation. While most companies would go for the cheapest option.

The order


I ordered my Vero 4k in the weekend, and on Thursday it arrived in the Netherlands. Well packed, a box in a box with protective material. It was necessary, at the post office they like to throw those boxes around. What don’t they understand about fragile?


The box and its contents


The Vero 4k features 2GB of RAM, 16GB of eMMC storage, optical audio, Bluetooth 4.0, fast Ethernet at 100 mbps which is really more than you need and much more stable than the 10/100/1000 version. Wireless AC. Chipset - Amlogic S905X, quad core 1.6Ghz 64-bit SOC.

HDMI 2.0 for up to 4k at 60fps playback, VP-9/HEVC/H265/H264, HDR10 & HLG HDR Processing. For the less technical people, it plays almost everything and it plays it well, even if you buy a brand new 4K TV with HDR10 in the future.

HDMI CEC for control of Vero with your TV remote, if you TV supports this. Operating system Debian (Linux). A power adaptor for your location is automatically added, in my case EU. A RF USB receiver a RF Remote. IR receiver for the users that use an older remote. A bracket to mount the Vero behind a TV or on a wall. One HDMI cable.

The verdict


Setup was almost too easy, choose language, time zone, skin and done! The navigation runs smooth, a lot smoother than on the Vero 1.

Everything plays, everything works out of the box. I exported the library on my Vero 1 in Kodi and imported it on the Vero 4k so that the watched videos stay intact and also remembers where you were on an episode.

The option Settings/Player -> Sync playback to display, made the videos run even smoother. Pass-through sound can be affected. I only noticed a few glitches in sound after enabling it and only in Kodi not during video playback.

No Android support, yet. But running Kodi on Android causes a lot of overhead and I watch Netflix on my PS4. It would be nice to have the option to boot to Android to watch Netflix. If enough people want this, the OSMC team will build and support this.

I use the Estuary skin because the OSMC skin is not as clear and doesn’t have a lot of options for series like, Watching, not yet seen shows, etc. I’m sure OSMC is still improving their own skin and I will check the skin every couple of months.

If I do a lot of seeking in a video the video sometimes hangs, to solve this stop and start the video. I really don’t think this is a Vero 4k issue but a Kodi Krypton issue. The version of Kodi that is the default for Vero 4k.

Plex is also installable in Kodi/OSMC, for now you need a Plex Pass but it offers streaming of your own content from a Plex Server. The YouTube add-on is a must have. Also Library Update for automatic library updates and the Kodi add-on subtitles. If you’re in the Netherlands Uitzending Gemist too.

I do not think I will buy anything else than Vero in the future.

I would like to know what the community thinks? What is your opinion? Do you have any doubts? Is there something you miss, a must-have? A no-go? Still on Vero 1, 2 or a Pi and happy? Feel free to ask, discuss or to give your opinion, there is no wrong one!

A small poll to see your opinion, anonymously.


  • I am on Vero 1, I plan to buy a Vero 4k.
  • I am on Vero 1, I do not plan to buy a Vero 4k.
  • I am on Vero 2, I plan to buy a Vero 4k.
  • I am on Vero 2, I do not plan to buy a Vero 4k.
  • I am on a Raspberry Pi, I plan to buy a Vero 4k.
  • I am on a Raspberry Pi, I do not plan to buy a Vero 4k.
  • I don’t have a Pi or a Vero but I plan to buy a Vero 4k.
  • None of the above and I do not plan to buy a Vero 4k.

0 voters

Hope to hear from you all, the kindest regards,

Duncan Sluijter
The Netherlands

2 Likes
Vero4K Review
#2

heh. I can’t vote. As you, I started long before with Sam’s work, and since the Vero devices came out, I bought each and every one of them.
And I concur, that the Vero 4K is the nicest of them all! :slight_smile: smooth and clean!

3 Likes
#3

That is strange. Maybe Sam knows why? Thanks for the reply. I didn’t buy the Vero 2 the 1 was working fine for me then.

#4

Practice makes perfect.

Technology has also improved a lot since then…

Thanks for your kind review :slight_smile:

2 Likes
Vero 4K General Discussion
#5

Hi @sam_nazarko and others that might be interested.

I bought a Netgear R7000 router today (not from my Bitcoins :laughing: ) as a replacement for the standard provider router from KPN. I did a lot of pre work and googling because I wanted to run DD-WRT or Tomato. I really can’t stand the default firmware. KPN won’t even let you change the DHCP server on/off setting.

But I tested wireless beforehand rigorously and with the Vero 1 as well as the Vero 4k streaming was impossible with the KPN “N” router, no external antenna(s), the Netgear has 3 huge ones. Hardware version of the KPN router is the ZTE H368n.

Started up the Netgear R7000. Flashed the initial and the AOI firmware from Shibby for the R7000. Configured the MAC address to be the same as the ZTE. Configured some VLANs for Internet, IPTV and the phone-line. Set up wireless and security. And tested the Vero 4k the results are staggeringly better.

Vero 4k wireless 5Ghz / 80Mhz

root@osmc4k:/home/osmc# iperf -i 1 -t 60 -c pi
------------------------------------------------------------
Client connecting to pi, TCP port 5001
TCP window size: 85.0 KByte (default)
------------------------------------------------------------
[  3] local 192.168.2.23 port 54029 connected with 192.168.2.7 port 5001
[ ID] Interval       Transfer     Bandwidth
[  3]  0.0- 1.0 sec  8.88 MBytes  74.4 Mbits/sec
[  3]  1.0- 2.0 sec  9.75 MBytes  81.8 Mbits/sec
[  3]  2.0- 3.0 sec  11.0 MBytes  92.3 Mbits/sec
[  3]  3.0- 4.0 sec  10.1 MBytes  84.9 Mbits/sec
[  3]  4.0- 5.0 sec  11.0 MBytes  92.3 Mbits/sec
[  3]  5.0- 6.0 sec  10.4 MBytes  87.0 Mbits/sec
[  3]  6.0- 7.0 sec  11.1 MBytes  93.3 Mbits/sec
[  3]  7.0- 8.0 sec  10.2 MBytes  86.0 Mbits/sec
[  3]  8.0- 9.0 sec  10.5 MBytes  88.1 Mbits/sec

Streaming now feels the same as on cable.

Vero 1

osmc@osmc:~$ sudo iperf -i 1 -t 60 -c 192.168.2.7
------------------------------------------------------------
Client connecting to 192.168.2.7, TCP port 5001
TCP window size: 43.8 KByte (default)
------------------------------------------------------------
[  3] local 192.168.2.37 port 43460 connected with 192.168.2.7 port 5001
[ ID] Interval       Transfer     Bandwidth
[  3]  0.0- 1.0 sec   896 KBytes  7.34 Mbits/sec
[  3]  1.0- 2.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3]  2.0- 3.0 sec   512 KBytes  4.19 Mbits/sec
[  3]  3.0- 4.0 sec   512 KBytes  4.19 Mbits/sec
[  3]  4.0- 5.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3]  5.0- 6.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3]  6.0- 7.0 sec   384 KBytes  3.15 Mbits/sec
[  3]  7.0- 8.0 sec   128 KBytes  1.05 Mbits/sec
[  3]  8.0- 9.0 sec   512 KBytes  4.19 Mbits/sec
[  3]  9.0-10.0 sec   768 KBytes  6.29 Mbits/sec
[  3] 10.0-11.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3] 11.0-12.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3] 12.0-13.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec

Playback 720p and 1080p still fails. Buffering takes about 10-20 seconds. Will test more.

Macbook Pro wireless 5Ghz / 80Mhz for comparison:

DHWJs-MacBook-Pro:~ d.sluijter$ iperf -i 1 -t 60 -c pi
------------------------------------------------------------
Client connecting to pi, TCP port 5001
TCP window size:  129 KByte (default)
------------------------------------------------------------
[  5] local 192.168.2.35 port 59022 connected with 192.168.2.7 port 5001
[ ID] Interval       Transfer     Bandwidth
[  5]  0.0- 1.0 sec  11.2 MBytes  94.4 Mbits/sec
[  5]  1.0- 2.0 sec  11.0 MBytes  92.3 Mbits/sec
[  5]  2.0- 3.0 sec  11.0 MBytes  92.3 Mbits/sec
[  5]  3.0- 4.0 sec  10.9 MBytes  91.2 Mbits/sec
[  5]  4.0- 5.0 sec  11.1 MBytes  93.3 Mbits/sec
[  5]  5.0- 6.0 sec  10.8 MBytes  90.2 Mbits/sec
[  5]  6.0- 7.0 sec  11.0 MBytes  92.3 Mbits/sec
[  5]  7.0- 8.0 sec  11.0 MBytes  92.3 Mbits/sec
[  5]  8.0- 9.0 sec  10.9 MBytes  91.2 Mbits/sec
[  5]  9.0-10.0 sec  11.0 MBytes  92.3 Mbits/sec
#6

Vero 1 doesn’t support 5Ghz. Only Vero 4K.

Try:

sudo connmanctl
agent on
scan wifi
connect ID_OF_SERVICE

And let me know the output.

Sam

#7
osmc@osmc:~$ sudo connmanctl
connmanctl> agent on
Agent registered
connmanctl> scan wifi 
Scan completed for wifi
connmanctl> connect ID_OF_SERVICE
Error /net/connman/service/ID_OF_SERVICE: Method "Connect" with signature "" on interface "net.connman.Service" doesn't exist
#8

You need to run services to get the ID

#9

Connected wifi_6cadf804937b_576972656c6573733234_managed_psk

#10

Okay – is it working now?

Sam

#11

Don’t ask me why… but it is working now. What the heck. I’ll edit the post and add the Vero 1 results :grin:

#12

No problem. It should persist across reboots now.

Sam

#13

Vero 1

osmc@osmc:~$ sudo iperf -i 1 -t 60 -c 192.168.2.7
------------------------------------------------------------
Client connecting to 192.168.2.7, TCP port 5001
TCP window size: 43.8 KByte (default)
------------------------------------------------------------
[  3] local 192.168.2.37 port 43460 connected with 192.168.2.7 port 5001
[ ID] Interval       Transfer     Bandwidth
[  3]  0.0- 1.0 sec   896 KBytes  7.34 Mbits/sec
[  3]  1.0- 2.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3]  2.0- 3.0 sec   512 KBytes  4.19 Mbits/sec
[  3]  3.0- 4.0 sec   512 KBytes  4.19 Mbits/sec
[  3]  4.0- 5.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3]  5.0- 6.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3]  6.0- 7.0 sec   384 KBytes  3.15 Mbits/sec
[  3]  7.0- 8.0 sec   128 KBytes  1.05 Mbits/sec
[  3]  8.0- 9.0 sec   512 KBytes  4.19 Mbits/sec
[  3]  9.0-10.0 sec   768 KBytes  6.29 Mbits/sec
[  3] 10.0-11.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3] 11.0-12.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec
[  3] 12.0-13.0 sec   640 KBytes  5.24 Mbits/sec

Playback 720p and 1080p still fails. Buffering takes about 10-20 seconds. Will test more.

#14

Your values for Vero 4K and Vero 1 are lower than mine.

Try moving the antenna or any of the dark arts involved in improving WiFi performance.

Sam

1 Like
#15

I Own a Raspberry Pi 3 and a Vero 2 and I buy a Vero 4k too… So I own a Vero 4K too :smiley:

2 Likes
#16

I’ve been using OSMC/XBMC/etc on a Raspberry Pi (original, then 2, skipped 3) and I’ve just ordered a Vero 4k today; also in the Netherlands and hoping Post NL don’t decide to use it as a football or something :grin:

1 Like
#17

Haha. Well if they do OSMC has packed the Vero 4k very good. :laughing:

1 Like
#18

Cool review of a cool device :slight_smile:
has anyone compared Vero 4k vs Nvidia Shield TV?
Here in West Coast Canada both will be approximately the same price $200 CAN
Thanks for all your good work OSMC and Crew! #Hi5

1 Like
#19

As of March 2017, the Shield has:

  • No resolution switching, meaning if you have a 4K TV and want to watch 4K content, but also watch 1080p content, you may have softer upscaling.
  • HW deinterlacing issues
  • CEC issues
  • Automatic refresh rate switching doesn’t always work
  • VC-1 / WMV9 cannot be HW decoded
  • HD audio bitstreaming not supported in Kodi: possibly works with Kodi nightlies

If you want OSMC, and the best possible TV experience, the Shield won’t come close. If you want to play some Android games or need Netflix immediately (it’s in the works with Kodi v18) then get a shield.

2 Likes
#20

Nice, thanks for your reply Sam.
yes i have a big new samsung 4k tv and it has netflix and mlb :wink: and it’s wifi’d to my linksys 1900ac.
we love OSMC/kodi, i have a raspberry pi 2b and having been stumbling around with osmc :slight_smile: for awhile now.
mostly for my kids cartoon movies and i get the odd MMA or movie with the wife.
i’ll watch exchange rates :wink: and put in an order soon’ish lol
Thanks again :osmc:

1 Like