bensimmo wrote: ↑
Mon May 21, 2018 10:57 am
To whom is the 3B+ a huge disappointment*
It's a minor revision, a boost, hence the +. Hence it's still a 3B.
I didn't say "huge" disappointment I said "underwhelming" which I think fairly captures how most of us felt who expected a full blown Raspberry Pi 4 release this year - and before someone goes into full-on lecture slapdown mode to explain-the-obvious, YES I know that Eben said no new Pi's this year - him saying it doesn't make it less disappointing. Or from my personal experience, make it so. I have learned the painful lesson over the years to not put a lot of faith in the veracity of these kinds of pronouncements, after being BURNED literally 3 times in a row, when I bought into "No new Pi models for a long time" shtick from the Pi Foundation and bought the "underwhelming" current model - just weeks before a much less disappointing model was released.
On one of those early Raspberry Pi purchases, I gave into the Pi Foundations excuses about why they were forced BY LAW to charge me extra to decode MPEG2 in KODI, even though this was NOT the case on ANY other system I owned, including several other arm processors. But sadly, even though I PAID for an MPEG2 license, that original 512k Pi is such a pig in KODI, due to it's single core CPU and lack of RAM that it wasn't very usable.
So, looking to move that multi-media KODI setup to my Pi3, but of course discovered the MPEG2 "license" isn't transferable.
This is why, like a lot of other folks, I was looking forward to 2018, when the Pi foundation could no longer assert that they were "legally bound" to charge me a fee for patents that were no longer legally in force in either the UK, EU, or US.
But when I pointed out that the Pi Foundation was now free to issue FREE licenses, I was attacked for not understanding all the complex nuances of the international situation and th Pi Foundation's MPEG LA contractual obligations, and was told that, after covering expenses, the Pi Foundation is hardly making anything at all, and that I was pretty much a horrible person for implying that this might be price gouging.
Like most folks, I rather dislike being lectured by folks who don't know what the talking about, so HERE ARE THE FACTS - in the form of the actual agreement information from the MPEG LA website
So, as you can see, after Jan 2018, the agreement can be voluntarily terminated on 30 days notice, so no one is 'locked in' to anything, and the royalty rate for Consumer Products is $0.35 per unit.
That's really interesting, because with the exorbitant rates my credit card charges for small dollar amount international fund conversions, the current £2.40 MPEG2 License Fee works out to pretty close to $3.50 or pretty near exactly 10 TIMES THE OFFICIAL MPEG LA MPEG2 ROYALTY RATE FOR CONSUMER DEVICES.
If you went to a car dealer and were considering a car with a window sticker price of 22 thousand and was told that "after dealer markup, that'l be 220 thousand" would you think they were gouging, or would you just roll over and "pay the vig".
I was also given a not very helpful suggestion about not needing the MPEG2 license anyway since the Pi 3 could do such a peachy job of decoding lower resolution SD MPEG2, and that this should be fine since "HD MPEG2 is pretty uncommon".
Yes it will do a so-so job on SD content, but thanks to another corner cut by the Pi Foundation to save a few dollars, the Pi 3 is pretty much a thermal basket case as shipped, so it will quickly throttle and start to stutter and drop frames if not equipped fairly substantial heat sink. That little 12 dollar dual fan job sold on Amazon works well, so does the 16 dollar passively cooled FLIRC case - both of which not coincidentally cost MORE than the damn MPEG2 license.
As to HD MPEG2 being "pretty uncommon", yeah I can kind of see that - well, except that it is used for OTA Television broadcasts serving 330 MILLION AMERICANS - yeah, except for THAT.
Lot's of us rebellious colonials here in the US are getting fed up with greedy cable companies and 'cutting the cord' and returning to off-the -air broadcasts. This encouraged by the fact we can buy nifty little PVR boxes like the HW-150 and 180 or AT-163 for very little (~$39). If you go by the number of reviews and questions on Amazon, these boxes are VERY popular - AND EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM RECORDS IN HD MPEG2 PROGRAM STREAM FORMAT.
So, yeah, HD MPEG2 is, "pretty uncommon" - if you don't count or care about 330 MILLION AMERICANS.