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Xbox one controller input lag on android shield TV

  • 13 October 2020
  • 16 replies
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Hello, 

Been using shadow for months on my mac without any issues and love it. 

Tried several times without luck to run it on my amazon fire stick so, after reading several good reports, took the plunge and ordered the latest shield TV Pro. Great piece of kit! 

On the stream there is noticeable input lag and its making games unplayable. The TV is on game mode. In the shadow menus (pressing start and select together) there is no lag (so the connection with the shield TV is a-OK).

 

I'm on 500mb up/down fibre. I've tried playing with all the settings, dropping the resolution and bitrate right down but it seems to make no difference.

 

Any ideas? 

 

Cheers! 

 

Max

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Best answer by Jim29er 20 October 2020, 05:09

Hey Max,

We were talking about this on the Discord today, and a guy named Richard gave me some tips which virtually eliminated the controller input lag problem on my Shield.

They are:

  • In the Shadow client, set the resolution to 1920x1080 @ 60 FPS (mine was already this way)
  • Put your TV into “game mode” (this made a huge difference for me)
  • Set the Shield’s upscaling to “basic” (this helped even more for me)

I never really took “game mode” seriously enough, because it didn’t impact GFN nor the Windows PC connected to the same TV. But it sure did make a difference with Shadow. If your TV has that setting, try it!

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Hi Max, is your Shield connected via Ethernet or WiFi? Also, is the controller wired or Bluetooth? I’m also curious what the Quick Menu overlay shows during gameplay.

Hi Jim, 

Thanks for coming back to me! 

The shield is connected via ethernet, the controller is Bluetooth. What would you like to see from the quick menu? 

 

Thanks, 

 

Max 

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Hi Jim, 

Thanks for coming back to me! 

The shield is connected via ethernet, the controller is Bluetooth. What would you like to see from the quick menu? 

 

Thanks, 

 

Max 

Just show a screenshot of the quick menu inclusive of all the graphs. 

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@Max01 Also, please let us know which specific game(s) you’ve tested with. I’d like to compare my experience with the same games, if possible...as my Shield/controller setup is the same as yours.

Hey Jim,

 

Thanks for coming back to me again! I’ve uploaded a screenshot of shadow and the graphs here: https://imgur.com/a/wyuDKbL

 

The lag is noticeable in:

  • Steam big picture
  • Borderlands 2
  • Titanfall 2

If I press start and select together it brings up a shadow menu on the left, the difference in input delay is really noticable between game menus and the shadow menu. However the fact that steam big picture is just as slow as the games suggests the issue is not related to the games.

 

Tried the same controller with my mac on wifi and the lag is gone. It’s something to do with the Android TV version.

 

Hope that helps! Really appreciate your help :)

 

Max 

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Thanks Max, your latency is nice and low, so that’s good. Do you get similar stats in the middle of a game?

I have Titanfall 2 and will give that a try after work.

Regarding your input lag, can you estimate/quantify how bad it is? In other words, quarter of a second, half second, etc.

Edit: And one more set of questions, which resolution are you using in the games? If you have a Shield 2019 Pro, are you using the AI upscaling feature?

Hi Jim, 

Thanks a lot for thinking about this again! 

I can't work out how to view the streaming settings on the shield whilst in game. However, the settings on the desktop are identical to those on the desktop when streaming to my mac and those stay pretty consistent when in a game.

 

I'd estimate it at half a second. I've got some experience synchronising AVRs and feel pretty confident in that estimation. Currently fairly unplayable in games.

 

I tried turning the ai upscaling off and it made no difference. 

 

I connected a second controller to a macbook (on WiFi) and booted shadow on that. Going straight from the shield to the mac there was a noticeable difference. I couldn't feel any lag from shadow on the mac.

Not sure if it's any help but I also don't get any lag from geforce now on the shield, also using an xbox one controller. 

 

Really appreciate the help! 

 

Max 

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Hey Max,

I tested this last night with Titanfall 2, and SBP and others. I’m definitely experiencing some input lag. I don’t think it’s half-a-second, but surely somewhere in the 250ms - 350ms range. As an example, if I quickly move the left stick “all the way” left and release it, the actual movement in the game doesn’t occur until “just after” the stick is back in the stationary position. I can’t be “super precise” since I’m not a robot, but you get the idea. :grinning:

I also tried GFN. We can’t play Titanfall 2 on that, but I tested with Tomb Raider. I experience input lag with that as well, but it’s not as much. I’d say somewhere between 150ms and 250ms.

My network latency with Shadow (in the Santa Clara data center) is around 35ms, while with GFN (in LA) it’s around 30. There’s not significant difference there, but of course the streaming implementations are different.

I want to do some more tests...from an Android tablet (I have an Ethernet adapter for it), and also from a Windows PC...both connected to the same switch the Shield is. I haven’t paid much attention to input lag because it apparently doesn’t bother me much, but also might explain why my gameplay is not very good. :grinning:

Regarding the Quick Menu overlay, sadly that does not look to be implemented in the Android client yet. The Android client is supposed to be “beta” (I’ve verified that through Google Play), but it always forces the switch to the “official” version, which installs the legacy “Shadow Control Panel,” which is what you used initially to get the stats. The Quick Menu overlay is a better version of that...it’s the Option+Command+O when using Shadow on your Mac.

I’m hopeful the Android client will be improved and perhaps more “optimized” for Android TV/Shield, as that is my preferred way to play. Until recently I’ve avoided it, due to the previous lack of surround-sound support.

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Just a quick update...I did my tests on the Windows PC connected to the same switch as the Shield, and that experience had no input lag. I then tried using a wired controller with the Shield (the XBO controller was “detected” but didn’t work over USB, so I used an old 360 controller), and that had the same input lag as with the controller via BT.

It sure seems like a limitation of the Android client, at least on the Shield...I’m going to try the Android tablet tomorrow.

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I tested with the Android tablet (Samsung Galaxy Tab A w/ Ethernet adapter), and the input lag with that is comparable to the PC...perhaps a scoatch more.

It does seem that the issue must be related to the app running on Android TV.

Hi Jim,

Thanks for trying all these tests! I tried getting VirtualHere to work for passing the the controller inputs through to the remote machine, bypassing the shield, but sadly my bluetooth adapter did not play well and I couldn’t get it to work.

 

I’m out of ideas for now! I opened a support ticket and pointed it to this thread, Shadow responded that the shield TV was not a supported platform. However they did also ask me to download the beta app and try a different controller. I don’t own another controller, and didn’t want to download the beta as it’s a hassle to log in from the PC again (has to roll stuff back).

 

I think you’re right with regards to latency being about 250-350ms and I suppose I’ll just have to live with that for now! If you have any crazy ideas or find a way to get it running faster - please let me know!

 

Thanks again, all the best,

 

Max

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Indeed I’ve used VirtualHere in the past (mostly for local GameStream), and it can be a bit finicky to deal with.

I have multiple controllers, and don’t believe this is a controller-specific issue.

And yes, switching between the beta/alpha versions and official is a pain. However, the Android app I’m using is “supposed” to be the beta version, but isn’t...I posted a reply in:

I guess we have to hope that things will improve with Android client updates. It was barely usable (at least for me) even on the tablet back in May, so it’s come a long way in ~six months. I’m hoping it’s getting the love it deserves!

… and It does deserve a lot of love!

Just outside of this issue (which is at a playable level now with all the tinkering), it’s in credible proposition, I love being able to play from my mac and then within a minute, continue playing on the TV.

Thanks for all your help and testing Jim - fingers crossed for future updates!

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Hey Max,

We were talking about this on the Discord today, and a guy named Richard gave me some tips which virtually eliminated the controller input lag problem on my Shield.

They are:

  • In the Shadow client, set the resolution to 1920x1080 @ 60 FPS (mine was already this way)
  • Put your TV into “game mode” (this made a huge difference for me)
  • Set the Shield’s upscaling to “basic” (this helped even more for me)

I never really took “game mode” seriously enough, because it didn’t impact GFN nor the Windows PC connected to the same TV. But it sure did make a difference with Shadow. If your TV has that setting, try it!

Hi Jim,

Really appreciate you coming back to update this post with those details - will be super helpful for future readers.

Unfortunately for me I already have my TV in game mode and AI upscaling set to basic. I tried setting resolution to 1080p but found it made no difference to input lag but looked worse so set it to 1440p (4k did feel a little slower to me).

However, surely useful for others!

I had the same issue with input lag on my Phone and on the Shield TV.

Issue was fixed by starting a desktop session. Do not launch a game. Open the SHadow menu and select restart streaming. Input lag gone.

Hope that helps, worked for me at least.

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