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HiMedia Q10 4K3D
Android media box with 7.1 channel HD-audio, 3D BD-ISO and H.265 4K support. Designed for ultimate video image quality. Internal 3.5" HDD drive bay. Quad-core HiSilicon CPU + Octa-core Mali-450 GPU. 2GB RAM. Pre-installed Kodi 14.2 with hardware video decode. 7.1 audio and 3D ISO support in Kodi.
£119.99 / €164
3.5" INTERNAL HDD
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A Brief History of Chipsets

We began this site in 2008 as a way to group and index products according to 'chipset'.

Modern media and computing products (media boxes / phones / tablets / HTPCs) are built around a single chip, containing the CPU, graphics processor (GPU), audio hardware and all other functions. This type of integrated design is called SoC (System on a Chip), or simply 'chipset'.

All products with the same chipset will have the same core performance and features. There will be some differences in terms of software (firmware) but these will be relatively minimal.

When we started in 2008 we concentrated on the specialist media player chipsets that were prevalent at the time. At around 2012 the market for media players switched to the Android operating system and the chipsets became ARM based. These same ARM chipsets are used in phones and tablets. At the start of 2015 a new breed of HTPC based on SoCs from Intel were launched running Windows, creating a viable alternative to Android.

This site lists all three types of chipset together in one index and has pages explaining chipsets for each category:

ARM Android Chipsets (2011-) : Mini-HTPC Chipsets (2014-) : Specialist Media Chipsets (2006-2013).

Android Chipsets

This section runs through the common Android chipsets. All products based on a chipset will be generally the same in terms of core performance and features. Click on the chipset name to see a list of all products in our database using that chipset.

We use rough Antutu benchmarks as an indicator of performance.

The Kodi column gives each chipset a rating of poor, average or good for Kodi features+performance. For newer chipsets the rating might change as firmware and/or Kodi are improved.

ChipsetRelease DateCPUGPUFeaturesKodiAntutu
Rockchip RK33682015 AugOcta-core 64bit ARM A5364-core PowerVR 6110H.265, 3D ISO, 4K60Average39,000
Allwinner H32015 MarQuad-core ARM A7Dual-core Mali-4004K30Poor17,000
Allwinner A802014 DecOcta-core ARM A1564-core PowerVR 62304K30Average36,000
Rockchip RK32882014 SepQuad-core ARM A17Quad-core Mali-T7644K60Average40,000
Realtek RTD11952014 SepDual-core ARM A7Dual-core Mali-4007.1 Audio, 3D ISOAverage12,000
HiSilicon Hi3798C2014 OctQuad-core ARM A9Octa-core Mali-4507.1 Audio, 3D ISO, H.265, 4K30Good25,000
Mstar MSO9180D1R2014 AprQuad-core ARM A9Octa-core Mali-450HDMI input, recordingPoor16,000
Amlogic S8052014 AprQuad-core ARM A5Quad-core Mali-450H.265. 1080pGood17,000
Amlogic S812-H2014 NovQuad-core ARM A9Octa-core Mali-450H.265. 4K30Good25,000
Amlogic S802-H2014 FebQuad-core ARM A9Octa-core Mali-4504K30Good25,000
Amlogic S8022014 FebQuad-core ARM A9Octa-core Mali-4504K30. No hardware 5.1 audioGood25,000
HiSilicon Hi3716C2013 AugDual-core ARM A9Single-core Mali-4007.1 HD-Audio. 3D BD-ISOPoor5,000
Allwinner A202013 MayDual-core ARM A7Dual-core Mali-400Poor5,000
Rockchip RK31882013 AprQuad-core ARM A9Quad-core Mali-400Average20,000
Allwinner A312013 FebQuad-core ARM A5Dual-core PowerVR SGX544Poor12,000
Actions ATM70292013 JanQuad-core ARM A9Dual-core Vivante GC1000Poor12,000
Rockchip RK30662012 AugDual-core ARM A9Quad-core Mali-400Average9,000
Amlogic 8726-M6/MX2012 JunDual-core ARM A9Quad-core Mali-400Good8,500
Allwinner A132012 NovSingle-core ARM A8Single-core Mali-400Poor2,500
Wondermedia WM88502012 AugSingle-core ARM A9Single-core Mali-400Poor3,000
Amlogic 8726-M32012 AprSingle-core ARM A9Single-core Mali-400Good3,000
Amlogic 8726-M12012 FebSingle-core ARM A9Single-core Mali-400Average2,000
Allwinner A102011 NovSingle-core ARM A8Single-core Mali-400Poor2,500

Android Chipsets

Single Core
Android Box
ARM chipsets running Google's Android operating system are increasingly used in today's Android Boxes. The versatility of the Android operating system offers web browsers, Youtube, games. etc.

Cortex A53, Cortex A17, Cortex A9, Cortex A8, Cortex A5, Cortex A7? WTF?!
You will often see ARM chipsets advertised as 'Cortex A8' or 'Cortex A9'. All this means is that the main processing part of the chipset uses either the A8 or A9 ARM core. In theory the Cortex A9 core is faster than the A8 but in reality it is not that simple. Other aspects of the chipset design are more important than the ARM core used.

1.5Ghz must be better than 1.2Ghz, right?
Clock speed is important in a chipset's performance but it cannot be used to make reliable comparisons. A quad-core RK3188 chipset running at 1.2Ghz will be many times more powerful than a single core WM8850 chipset running at 1.5Ghz. Manufacturers give misleading information regarding clock speed. Theoretical maximums are often quoted rather than the speed the device actually runs at on the default firmware.

Dual Core
Android Box

What about the GPU?
The other major factor when looking at ARM based chipsets is the graphics co-processor (GPU). This is more important than the processing core for decoding HD video streams, and is completely separate from it. For GPU intensive apps it is important that the GPU is compatable with the app. So for Kodi you want a GPU supported internally for hardware decoding. Similar for 3D games. You'll need to do some research here for your chipset / app combination.

Which chipset is the best?! That's all I want to know!
Calm yourself. There isn't a 'best', they're all different. See the specific Android chipset listing above for info.

Quad Core
Android Box

I want Kodi! Which is best for that?
Kodi support in Android is a lot better than it used to be. Most recent boxes will run Kodi capably as long as you're not pushing the boundaries with 4K, HD-Audio, or BD-ISOs. For the widest format support and best performance have a look at the table above. The chipsets rated 'good' are the ones to go for. But.. do your research! The Kodi forum has a hardware section which is a good place to start.

Hardware quality.
Manufacturing an Android box is actually fairly easy and hence many Chinese manufacturers are now doing it. Beware!, the vast majority of the products you'll find are basically junk. The hardware will be built badly so it will break, the manufacturers have no idea how to get the firmware running properly on the hardware, and the products will lack the legally required European (CE) or American (FCC) safety certification. We recommend sticking with the more well known manufacturers or reputable retailers operating out of your locality.

Quad Core
Android Box

Android Chipset Links

Actions Semiconductor Wiki
Allwinner Wiki
Rockchip Wiki
WonderMedia Wiki
HiSilicon Wiki
Actions Semiconductor Official
Allwinner Technology Official
Amlogic Official
RockChip Official
WonderMedia Official
HiSilicon Official

Chipset Rating

We have rated the most common media chipsets from 1 to 5. These ratings are used for the 'Chipset Rating' part of our main index.

Page last updated: 02-Sep-15

RatingChipset
5
4.5HiSilicon Hi3798C, Rockchip RK3368,
4Allwinner A80, Rockchip RK3288, Amlogic S802, Sigma 8910/8911, Intel Z3735F, Intel Z3736F, Amlogic S802-H, Amlogic S812-H.
3.5Amlogic S805, Rockchip RK3188, Amlogic 8726-M6, Amlogic 8726-M3 (high due to Linux XBMC), Realtek 1186 (with Gigabit LAN)
3Rockchip RK3066, Allwinner A31, Amlogic 8726-M1, Sigma 8647, Sigma 8673, Sigma 8670, Sigma 8643, Sigma 8642, Sigma 8655, Sigma 8654, HiSilicon Hi3716C, Realtek 1186 (with 10/100 LAN), Realtek 1185, Realtek 1055.
2Sigma 8635, Sigma 8634, Amlogic 8626, Realtek 1073, Realtek 1283, Boxchip F10, Allwinner A20, Allwinner A10, Allwinner A10S, Intel CE3000, Intel CE4000.
1
HiMedia H8 Octa
NEW AUG 2015 Octa-core 64bit Android 5.1 box with 4K60, 3D, 3D BD-ISO and H.265 support. 2GB RAM, 16GB flash. Pre-installed Kodi with hardware video decode. Powerful multi-purpose box suitable for media or gaming.
£89.99 / €123
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