REVIEW: Dinobot U5 Mini with Android TV, Enigma 2, Dual Tuner and Netflix 4K

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Dinobot U5 Mini is the Android TV-Box of which we present today in our review, an updated version of the previous U4 Quad Hybrid with important improvements. A box that integrates the interesting Hisilicon Hi3798CV200 Quad Core SoC that stands out for the image quality that gives its video processor. This model has a Dual tuner DVB-T2 / S2 / C that supports up to 4K broadcasts, it also has Netflix and Youtube 4K support thanks to the certificates it integrates. It has a Flymouse remote that allows us to give orders to the Android TV system and also has a dual boot with Enigma 2. Let’s see in our analysis how this hardware behaves and how it is with respect to the competition.
  • Dinobot U5 Mini can be purchased in eBAY EEUU or eBay Europe for around $223 (€179) including free shipping.

PRODUCT DETAILS

Specifications

ModelDinobot U5 Mini 
Basic SpecsSoC: Hisilicon Hi3798CV200 Quad Core Cortex A-53 / GPU Mali-T720 MP2 / 4x ARM-A53 @ 1.6GHz
System: Android TV 7.1 (32bit) / Enigma 2
RAM and Storage: 2 GB DDR4 – 16 GB eMMC 5.1
Network: Wifi ac 2.4 / 5GHz – Bluetooth 4.1 – Gigabit Ethernet
Ports: HDMI 2.0a 4K @ 60fps / AV Jack 3.5mm / 1x USB 2.0 / 1x USB 3.0 / SPDIF / microSD / SAT + DVB-T
Extras: Flymouse Remote Control / Manual / DC 12V 2A Adapter / English and German Manual
Check full specifications

Description

The TV-Box Dinobot U5 Mini has a plastic box identical to the previous model U4, a box that has ventilation slots on the top which allows us to extract air efficiently and not compromise the hardware.

  • Materials and measures: Aluminum / 5.2 x 5.2 x 1.2 inches (135 x 135 x 30 mm) / 0.3 lb (130 gr)
  • Package content: IR remote control with light / Manual / DC adapter 12V 3A / English manual.
  • Interfaces: HDMI 2.0a 4K@60fps / AV Jack 3.5mm / 1x USB 2.0 / 1x USB 3.0 / SPDIF / microSD / SAT + TDT / Reset / Power button.
  • Leds and panel: Digital frontal panel / Time or channel.

In the lower part we have four rubber feet and ventilation holes, we can see an aluminum plate that serves as a heat exchanger in the lower area. If we open the box we can see the two Wi-Fi antennas stuck on the upper side and the small processor heatsink that as we will see fulfills its function.

The Flymouse remote that accompanies this model synchronised with Bluetooth and also has an IR emitter that allows us to copy the function of switching off and on another control, for example that of our TV. The control has an integrated microphone that works perfectly with Google Assistant and also allows you to enter terms in the search fields of apps like YouTube, something that we have not seen in other TV-Boxes. In the remote we have all the functions of Android in addition to the keys necessary to control the DVB-T2/C or SAT broadcasts. We can control remotely from our mobile or Android TV-Box the system using the app Android TV remoteCetusplay or connecting a mouse or keyboard.

ANDROID SYSTEM

Environment and user experience

We turn on the Dinobot U5 Mini, the power button has two positions, by default it can be on or off, we boot up and the front display lights up. When it starts we have a message that allows us to run the dual boot between Android TV or Enigma 2 with the red/vol+ or blue/vol- button on the remote. The system moves smoothly thanks to the Hi3798CV200 Quad Core SoC, the 2GB of RAM and the very fast eMMC 5.1 internal storage. We can reorder the apps installed in the rows of Android TV by pressing the OK button on the flymouse remote control.

  • Launcher: Classic Android TV Launcher with normal Android apps launcher / Android UI rendered at 1080p.
  • Multitasking and access: Multi task by leaving home button on the remote / Android Notifications type Android TV.
  • Installed apps: DinoTV, Plex, Google Play, Youtube, Airmouse Updater, Mediacenter, MovieBar, Miracast, Wrapper for Kodi, Magic Sing to use the control micro as Karaoke and Netflix. For the tuners we have the LiveTV app.
  • Languages: All the international Android languages.
  • On and off: Special Enigma 2 off and start menu.

Here you can see a small video where you can see how the system moves and how the integrated tuner works, we reproduce a 4K satellite channel without problems in a fluid way.

System, support and store apps

At the level of settings the Dinobot U5 Mini has two types of menu on the one hand those of the ATV Settings icon with the side menus for TV-Box settings and another called Settings with the classic Android settings.

  • System version: Android TV 7.1 (32 bit) with Kernel 3.10.104 (04-08-2018).
  • App store: Google Play certified with all the apps available for the Android TV system.
  • Brand support: On the Dinobot website we have the official support and a detailed manual of each option.
  • Root and scene: The system is NOT root. / There are still no custom firmwares for this TV-Box.

In this device we have dual boot, on the one hand we have Android TV 7.1 (32bit) with kernel 3.18.24 that seems quite stable in our tests and the Enigma 2 system (Opena.TV) that is specially designed to manage receivers integrated and shown extremely fluid. To boot one or the other system at the boot of the device we must press Vol + or Vol-, we also have options from the power menu inside Android. We can also activate Debian Linux on Android in the system settings, a option for the geeks.

  • NOTE. There is an Alpha of Android TV 8 Oreo but it is not public due to its large number of bugs, Android TV 9 is also expected.

HARDWARE TESTS

Storage and RAM Memory

We perform our usual memory tests and internal storage in the Dinobot U5 Mini using the SD bench app. The results are very good, we have an really fast eMMC 5.1 storage. Storage can not be expanded using the microSD card reader, there is no option in the system.

  • Storage: Total 16GB – Free 10GB.
  • RAM: Total 2GB – Free 1GB / DDR4.
  • Compatible formats: NTFS, exFAT compatible.
USB 2.0USB 3.0SATA 6GbpsmicroSD
Read / Write22/20 MB/s52/48 MB/s252/236 MB/s

WIFI and Bluetooth

In Wi-Fi connections, the Dinobot U5 Mini TV-Box has a Wifi ac 2.4/5GHzz wireless adapter with Bluetooth 4.1 and Ethernet Gigabit with which we connect to an ASUS RT-AC1200G+ Router, a mid-range device. We perform tests on the use of streaming using the iPerf measurement tool to see the maximum performance of each network adapter.

  • Wifi speed results: Very good speed and stable signal.
  • Wifi range: At a distance of 5 meters with a wall we have a signal of 39 dBm, correct but not excellent.
  • Bluetooth: Works correctly and connects without problems.
  • Services: This model has an integrated SAMBA server to share units connected to it.
  • We recommend reading our Tutorial SAMBA on Android networks if we are going to use files from our network PC.

Power consumption, temperature and noise

The Dinobot U5 Mini TV-box using the SoC Hi3798CV200 has correct results in terms of consumption. We are facing a low consumption device but when we use the DVB-T2 / S2 / C adapters it is noted that the consumption rises.

We check the performance of the TV-Box in scenarios of maximum sustained performance and in its usual use, we use a stress app for fifteen minutes and thermal camera to detect hot areas. As we have seen, the TV-Box has a heatsink and a series of perforations that comply well with the thermal section, when we use the receivers it is when the temperature rises the most.

  • Loss of performance: the system maintains a maximum performance of 100%, no thermal throttling.
  • Temperature: The top and bottom are heated although it does not affect the use of the TV-Box, better not put in a closed storage.
  • Noise: Fanless system, 0db.

PERFORMANCE TEST

SOC

In the section of power the Dinobot U5 Mini has acceptable results thanks to the Hi3798CV200 Quad Core Cortex-A53 SoC that moves between 400 MHz and 1.6 GHz, in the graphical section the power of the GPU Mali-T720 MP2 is enough to move the most common games or apps, although those with high 3D load suffer a bit. If we compare the results we can see how can be on par to the Amlogic S912 SoC and below of the powerful RK3399, but is superior to the Quad Core Cortex-A53 SoC’s in the midrange, such as the S905X and the RK3328.

Benchmarks

Games and gamepads

In the gaming aspect the Dinobot U5 Mini model has the Hi3798CV200 SoC with a Mali-T720 MP2 GPU that allows us to correctly move most Google Play games without performance problems and with good compatibility. The games with a lot of 3D load are those that do have frame drops in this GPU so it is better to limit yourself to titles of medium / high quality without be ultra demanding.

VIDEO AND AUDIO TEST

Video and audio connections

In the multimedia section the Dinobot U5 Mini has an excellent performance using the Hi3798CV200 SoC that has video output support for HDMI 2.0a which allows a maximum resolution of output up to 4K@60fps with HDR. We also have SPDIF optical audio output and AV stereo jack with video for old TV’s at 480p. A model that has several settings for image quality and subtitles appearance as well as management of network options.

Video playback test

We perform our video playback tests on the Android TV-Box Dinobot U5 Mini, a Box that uses the Hi3798CV200 SoC, which integrates a VPU with the video processor compatible with most modern video formats and supports HDR10 and Dolby vision HDR modes. As we can see, the performance is excellent and the image quality is very high thanks to the integrated processor of the Hisilicon ImpreX Engine for the treatment of the image, it is the same hardware as the excellent Himedia Q10 Pro.

By default this device comes without KODI installed but we can install it from Google Play without problems, with the KODI serial player we are limited to 5.1 audio and we do not have 3D support, HDR or navigation in menus. We can change with the Wrapper app the default player and use the native Himedia player to have the best results with this hardware.

  • Compatibility: HVEC compatible with 10 bit color or HDR files /  VP9 compatible with basic format but frameskip with P2.
  • Format support: Himedia Player 3D MCV, BDRemux, Bluray UHD with menus / Does not support ISO
  • You can read our Tutorial to install Addons in KODI in a simple way to get to watch the most popular streamings.

Test results

H.264 / VC-1Result
BBB – H.264 8bit – Simple@L1 – 1080p@25fps – 7 MbpsCorrect
Samsung Oceanic Life – H.264  8bit – High@L5.1 – 1080p@30fps – 40 MbpsCorrect
Timelapse – H.264 8bit – High@L5.1 – 4K@24fps – 43 MbpsCorrect
Anime – H.264 10bit – High 10@L5.1 – 1080p@24fps – 10 MbpsCorrect
MKV – VC-1 – Advance@L3 – 1080p@24fps – 17 MbpsCorrect
H.265 / VP9 SDR
Tears of steel – HVEC 8bit – Main@L6.2@Main – 1080p@24fps – 17 MbpsCorrect
Samsung UHD Dubai – HVEC 10bit – Main 10@L5.2@Main – 4K@24fps – 51 MbpsCorrect
Jellyfish – HVEC 10bit – Main 10@L6.1@High – 4K@30fps – 392 MbpsCorrect
Anime – HVEC 10bit –  Main 10@L4@Main – 1080p@24fps – 21 MbpsCorrect
Eye of the Storm – VP9 – 4K@24fps – 14 MbpsCorrect
H.265 / VP9 HDR 
Life of Pi HDR10 –  HVEC 10bit – Main 10@L5.1@High – 4K@24fps – 45 MbpsCorrect
LG Demo – Dolby Vision – HVEC 12bit – Main 10@L5@Main – 4K@24fps – 30 MbpsCorrect
Planet Earth II – HDR HLG 10bit  – Main 10@L5@High – 4K@25fps – 31 MbpsCorrect
The world in HDR – VP9 Profile 2 10bit – 4K@60fps – 20 MbpsNo compatible
Peru 8K HDR – VP9 Profile 2 10bit – 8K@60fps – 20 MbpsNo compatible


Audio playback test

Testing the Dinobot U5 Mini using a Yamaha RXV-577 AV receiver we check that they support DD and DTS 7.1 HD pass through sound. Remember that you have to indicate the connector to use in audio settings so that it sends the signal to the decoder.

  • Ports: HDMI up to 7.1 / SPDIF 5.1 / Audio stereo jack.
  • Certification and support: ATMOS, DTS:X, SACD, DSD, DFF, DSF, APE y  FLAC.

Audio test results

FormatsDD 5.1DD+ 7.1DD True 7.1DD Atms 7.1DTS 5.1DTS MA 5.1DTS HR 7.1DTS X 7.1
HDMIOKOKCoreOK*OKOKOKOK*
SPDIFOKCoreCoreCoreOKCoreCoreCore
  • PCM – Stereo only doing downmix from DD or DTS
  • Core – Only the core of the format is played back with what we passed to the Dolby / DTS base system
    * Our AV receiver does not support these native formats but we verify that it is played back to 7.1

Streaming services

We pass the classic tests on streaming services to see how the most popular services work. In this model does not have certificates for these services but as we can see supports Netflix 4K with the official app, this is achieved simulating the device as a NVidia Shield, a peculiar system but it seems to work well for now.

  • DRM: Widevine L1 / Is possible that when upgrading to Android TV 8 Oreo, Microsoft Playready (Amazon Prime Video) is included
  • NOTE: We remind this product do not have official support for these streaming apps, the compatibility with these services can vary depends of any new limitations imposed for this companies. The tests are perform with the indicated firmware and the version of the streaming app at the date of the review.
Streaming serviceVideo QualityAudio QualityResult
Youtube4K (2060p)StereoOK
Google Play MoviesHD (720p)5.1OK
Netflix4K (2060p)5.1OK
HBO NOW (EEUU)FullHD (1080p)StereoOK
HBO Nordic (EU)Don’t work in Android TV
Amazon Prime VideoDon’t work

INSTALLED TUNERS

Start up

The TV-Box Dinobot U5 Mini, series account with tuners DVB-T2, DVB-S2 and DVB-C, to manage and view content we have the LiveTV app, a very simple to use app that guides us throughout the laying process on going.

  • Tuners: Complete list of DVB-S2 satellites and zones for DVB-T2 / C.
  • Settings:Management of PVR recordings, child control, network, A / V, EPG and favorites settings.

Management and configuration

At the reproduction level we have an excellent image quality and without jumps even in the 4K channels, the jump between the different channels is fast and we can access all the functions in a fluid way, the EPG list is updated normally.

  • Image and audio quality: Up to 4K in playback and recording. Supports AC3 sound.
  • Channel management: Live list with search by name, EPG, Favorites and manager to schedule recordings.
  • Servers: Servers for satellite using OSCam, accessible with the IP of the TV-Box and the port 888 / IPTV Dinobot with this manual.

Enigma 2

In addition to the Android TV system we have the option using DualBoot with the Enigma 2 system (Opena.TV 6.1) which is ideal to use the system only with its tuners regardless of Android. This environment has many configuration options and allows us to manage the tuners in detail.

CONCLUSIONS

Score

Dinobot U5 Mini _

8.8

DESIGN AND CONNECTIVITY

9.5/10

HARDWARE

9.0/10

SOFTWARE

9.5/10

SUPPORT

8.5/10

PRICE

7.5/10

Pros

  • Android TV and Enigma 2
  • Image quality, Netflix and Youtuebe 4K HDR
  • DVB-T2/S2/C integrated
  • Good firmware
  • Good emmc and network performance

Cons

  • Missing frame rate auto switch

Opinion

As we have seen in the review the Dinobot U5 Mini is a very interesting product that is quite different from other models with a less careful software, this device has Android TV and Enigma 2 in dual boot which allows us to get the maximum performance of his two worlds. Undoubtedly one of its strengths is the image quality we have with the Himedia SoC, in addition to the other hardware components such as internal storage and network system gives very good performance, the whole system is quick and fluid, a point that It has improved a lot compared to the previous U4 that had a much more basic hardware.

In the aspect of tuners the Dinobot U5 Mini offers us a very interesting all-in-one solution and as we have seen with a well-worked software, we can see the hand of a Korean development group with a philosophy different from those we usually find in economic Chinese TV-Boxes. Note the stability of the Android TV system as well as the support of Netflix and Youtube 4K, as we can seen the first run without modifications. As we say in general we have a very interesting product that can fit perfectly for those looking for a quality video player purchase, with Netflix 4K and good environment to work with the integrated tuners.

WHERE TO BUY

  • Dinobot U5 Mini can be purchased in eBAY EEUU or eBay Europe for around $223 (€179) including shipping.

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