Amazon Echo - Siri thing from Amazon because their phone bombed


#482

I would definitely use the mini jack over bluetooth, if possible. If it only has composite audio in, you can get a very cheap adapter to a 1/8" mini jack.


#483

Or Amazon could have just included optical. I mean… come on. I just realized though I might not need that. I have a Roku on that TV too so it’s all probably going through the TV and the bar is hooked to that. I guess I will be looking at my set-up with the box comes in. My receiver set-up is easy… everything just goes into that.


#484

Well, these are cost-optimized devices. What most people do is plug the HDMI cable into their TV and then use HDMI audio-return or optical audio-out from their TV to their soundbar.


#485

Well assuming they are going to continue as is, the stick and the Fire TV are their cost savings device, the Cube would be their top tier, so they could do a little more with it.


#486

In their defense, nobody really does optical out anymore. Even the AppleTV 4K dropped it.


#487

What replaced it? This soundbar was released last year, all it has is the mini-jack, BT and optical… so which one of those is taking over?


#488

They could, but they like money. Amazon no longer even attempts to make high-end streamer boxes. Anyway if you really need optical out and can’t get it from your TV, you can always throw money at the problem. But most TVs do offer optical out so just do that.


#489

Just HDMI, I guess. There are three main types of people who use these boxes, I assume:

  1. Just owns a TV and plugs everything into HDMI ports on it
  2. Owns a dedicated receiver that he/she plugs all devices into, which then goes out to speakers and the TV
  3. Owns a soundbar, which takes audio passed through the TV via optical or HDMI

There are devices you can buy that will split that HDMI output into an HDMI and optical out.


#490

Just HDMI. That’s easy enough.

Thank you for the information guys. I am not super picky. I got the receiver for the surround sound set-up and to plug in a million devices into it. The others are just kind of whatever was on sale set-ups.

The only thing I don’t like are the Bluetooth set-ups. Something just auto shuts off on me, eventually, even when plugged in. Drives me nuts.


#491

Well I got my cube, but I haven’t set it up because it recommends it be placed at least 1-2 feet from any speaker. None of my TVs have that kind of set-up, but I will shift things around this weekend and try. Also all my fire TV remotes look the same. I need to start color coding them or something.


#492

Just unboxed and set mine up. The usual Fire TV stuff works just fine, but I wasn’t successful at configuring it to control my TV.

The Cube was able to power off the TV during the setup process, but it can’t turn it back on. It won’t move past the power on/off step and so won’t finalize the configuration. This means it won’t even settle for giving me power off and volume control. It’s all or nothing.

The Cube does have “learn your remote” feature for when it encounters issues, but it still wasn’t able to power the TV on, only off. In Amazon’s defense, it is an older TV (Panasonic TC-26LX60), this being my secondary TV and all. But I can’t be the only customer who owns an older TV and it seems odd that my ancient Harmony can learn this TV remote just fine, but a more modern Cube cannot.

The Cube also seems to have trouble hearing me while a show is playing, even when I’m facing it and sitting four feet away on the bed. I have to raise my voice above a comfortable level. Being eight feet away on an elliptical machine is probably going to make that even tougher.

The Fire TV features seem to be more or less the same as my older Fire TV. Finding stuff to play via voice control seems to work fine so far. It’ll give you a few options, and you can say “Play 1” or “Play 2”, etc. to make the selection. And as I mentioned upthread, I gave the Cube a unique wake word so that I can use my bedroom Echo as usual. That’s as far as I got. I’ll give it a week or two before making a decision about keeping it, and I’ll probably engage their support people at some point.


#493

Mine can turn my TV on and off, but every time I try to tell it to, say, “Watch NBC” it goes straight to the ABC app. “Watching NBC on ABC”. I have to say “Watch NBC on cable” for it to actually switch HDMI inputs to the cable box.

It’s driving me crazy.


#494

So far I am not hugely impressed. The set-up was a little weird. It turned my TV off but never turned it on, but after a few bumps there she seems to have no trouble controlling the soundbar or TV, so far but…

She could’t play Dr. Strange. A movie I own. Why? Well because I own the one with Bonus Features and she wants to play the one I don’t own… isn’t even smart enough to play the Dr. Strange I have in the library. Not a great sign Amazon. I am done screwing around with her tonight though. I’ll toy with it later.

As for the standalone speak… I don’t like it. It sounds weird like better than the echo dot but a lot worse than regular old echo.

At least I got a 10 dollar credit for my troubles, came with setting it up.


#495

I have the Amazon Tap, which has Alexa but not Echo capabilities. I can play music and Jeopardy and get the Flash Briefs on the Tap, all with voice commands, but can’t make calls to Echo devices, which is something I’m fairly curious about. The Tap speaker is pretty awesome, though, and it’s convenient to go wireless and take the thing out to the deck during a party.

Any of you guys do Echo-to-Echo calling? How does that work for you? Do you use it as an in-house intercom? (“Breakfast is ready - come downstairs!”)


#496

Echo-to-echo works great, but with friends I want to send texts and with famiy I want FaceTime to see my nephews, so we don’t use it often. Those 8 directional microphones mean it’s a great speaker phone.

I setup the intercom drop-in stuff too, and it works fine. Of course I live alone in a one-bedroom apartment so the utility of that is questionable at best.


#497

Sorry, haven’t experimented with the calling or intercom stuff. I also live alone in an apartment, and my friends/family are not Echo owners. I hear it works great, though, depending on your use case.


#498

So this Cube is buggy as hell for me. It really struggles with what I feel should be basic commands. For instance, when I ask to watch a channel it tries to watch that channel over the ABC app.

I also find it suspicious that Amazon still doesn’t have any user reviews on its page even though it officially went on sale on Thursday. I suspect that’s because of the wave of bad reviews they’re seeing.


#499

Are you sure that’s a bug?


#500

When I tell it I want to watch NBC and it launches the ABC app, then, yes, I consider that a bug.

Or i tell it I want to watch channel 105 (NBC) and it launches the ABC app, that’s also a bug in my book.


#501

You dont understand the concept of a joke much, do you? I could parse it for you but it loses something in translation.