Android TV – Google’s TV-optimized model of its smartphone working system – is quickly rising in reputation because of improved help and its look on a lot of widespread Android TV packing containers such because the Mi Field and Mecool M8 Professional L.
Nevertheless, some current Android bins haven’t been operating an “official” model of Android TV which suggests points similar to Chromecast not working or different quirks.
The brand new $60 Mecool KM8 is among the few Chinese language Android TV packing containers to function official Google certification which suggests extra performance for you – the top consumer.
On this Mecool KM8 evaluation, we’ll check out the hardware, software program, video playback checks and Android benchmark comparisons to reply an important query of all – is the Mecool KM8 value it?
- 1 Mecool KM8 Specs and Options
- 2 What’s within the Field?
- 3 Mecool KM8 Design
- 4 Mecool KM8 Software program
- 5 Mecool KM8 Video Playback Utilizing Kodi
- 6 Mecool KM8 Gaming Efficiency
- 7 Mecool KM8 Benchmarks Comparability
- 8 Energy Consumption
- 9 Ought to You Purchase The Mecool KM8?
- 10 The place to Purchase the Mecool KM8
Mecool KM8 Specs and Options
|CPU:||Quadcore Amlogic S905X|
|Storage:||16GB (expandable by way of Micro SD)|
|Ports:||HDMI, Ethernet, Composite Video, microSD, 2x USB 2.zero|
|100M Ethernet, 2.4GHz 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth|
|OS:||Android TV Eight|
|Measurement (Lx W x H):||98 x 98 x 26mm|
View Full Specs
The Mecool KM8’s specs are fairly normal on this worth level. The unit’s quadcore Amlogic S905X processor isn’t the quickest by any means however provides loads of grunt for watching films in Kodi, shopping the online and even some mild gaming. 2GB of DDR3 RAM and 16GB of storage (which could be expanded by chucking in a micro SD card) rounds out the package deal.
Networking is the weakest a part of the field, with solely 2.4Ghz wi-fi n and 100Mbps Ethernet. While this can be positive for 1080p streaming however these hoping for 4K streaming might encounter points resembling buffering.
You’re additionally getting newest model of Android TV Eight Oreo which is a pleasant contact.
What’s within the Field?
Contained in the field, you get:
- Mecool KM8 Android TV Field
- 5V 2A Energy Adapter
- Bluetooth Distant
- HDMI Cable
- English Consumer Guide
Mecool KM8 Design
The Mecool KM8 is a reasonably normal wanting Android TV field, with a matte black end.
As traditional, ports are situated on the left and again of the unit. On the left aspect, we’ve two full-size USB 2.zero ports and a micro SD card slot.
Across the again is composite video output , Ethernet, HDMI out and the exterior wifi antenna. That wifi antenna is certainly the worst antenna I’ve ever seen. It’s weirdly unfastened so it tends to fall over, regardless of how a lot I’ve tried to tighten it.
The included Bluetooth voice distant is identical one we’ve seen in packing containers such because the Mecool M8L Professional. It’s obtained all the usual Android buttons in addition to a Google Assistant button to entry Google’s AI assistant and being Bluetooth, it doesn’t want line of sight which is an enormous plus. That stated, I’d nonetheless contemplate an airmouse which provides you a couple of extra management choices.
The distant’s Google Assistant button is clearly one of many Mecool KM8’s standout options. Nevertheless, I discovered the entire thing a ache to make use of. To make use of the distant’s inbuilt microphone, you’ll want to carry down the button which feels pointless. This additionally signifies that voice search gained’t truly work anyplace else apart from Google Assistant as making an attempt to activate the microphone brings up the Assistant, inflicting the voice search immediate to be cancelled.
Truly utilizing it’s nice when it recognises what you’re truly saying however voice recognition was the worst I’ve ever seen with just one out of each 10 or so makes an attempt truly resembling what I requested it. It was truthfully extra of a headache to attempt to use.
Mecool KM8 Software program
The KM8 runs Android TV Eight Oreo which suggests you’re getting a refined TV-optimised expertise which is nice to navigating with a distant. Android TV Eight shuffles some issues round, with vertical classes corresponding to Apps, Suggestions and extra which might be scrolled via horizontally.
There’s additionally a handful of pre-installed apps resembling a file browser and media participant, and also you’ll get entry to the Google Play retailer to put in your favourite apps resembling Kodi. That stated, as an Android TV gadget, you’ll have a extra restricted choice of apps out there so I’d advocate putting in a Google Play various similar to AptoideTV to get entry to a extra full set of Android apps.
The firmware itself appears to run properly, with the quadcore processor holding every little thing operating clean. Nevertheless, it’s clear that there’s fairly a number of bugs that have to be ironed out. As of writing, Netflix isn’t working in any respect (both within the app or by way of Chromecast) and I had frequent “wifi disconnected” messages. These really feel like software program points so right here’s hoping Mecool repair them in future firmware updates.
Talking of software program updates, they seem like supported however on the time of writing, Mecool haven’t launched any.
Mecool KM8 Video Playback Utilizing Kodi
Video playback was examined utilizing Kodi 17.6 downloaded from the Google Play retailer.
After establishing Kodi, movies have been performed from a USB three.zero thumb drive or streamed over wifi from my server’s NFS share.
Should you’re planning on streaming films and TV exhibits with Kodi, shield your self with a VPN.
Why do you want a VPN for Kodi?
- Nameless on-line streaming
- Bypass geo-blocks and entry ALL Kodi add-ons
- Forestall ISP throttling and monitoring
- Cover Your IP Handle
Shield your privateness and safety when utilizing Kodi. Subscribe to the extremely beneficial IPVanish VPN now (save as much as 46% with this hyperlink) to remain protected and personal or take a look at our Greatest VPN for Kodi information to study extra.
Media playback on the Mecool KM8 was fairly good. Most of my check information performed with none points however 60fps content material wasn’t clean in any respect – disappointing provided that I’ve examined different Amlogic S905 bins which have performed it flawlessly.
Automated framerate switching isn’t supported which is disappointing for these delicate to movement judder.
|Decision / Codec / Container / Framerate||Okay/No/Points||Any notes about playback help|
|1080p 3D SBS H.264 (1920×2160 / AVC / MPEG-Four / 30fps)||Okay|
|1080p 3D ABL H.264 (1920×1080 / AVC / BDAV / 23.976fps)||Okay|
|1080p24 H.264 (1920×1080 / AVC / MPEG-Four / 24fps)||Okay|
|1080p Excessive Bitrate H.264 (1920×1080 / AVC / Matroska / 23.976fps)||Okay|
|1080p60 H.264 (1920×1080 / AVC / MPEG-Four / 60fps)||Okay|
|720p50 H.264 (1280×720 / AVC / MPEG-TS / 50fps)||Okay|
|1080i25 H.264 (1920×1080 / AVC / MPEG-TS / 25fps)||Okay|
|4K 30FPS H.264 (3840×2160 / AVC / MPEG-Four / 30fps)||Okay|
|4K 60FPS H.264 (3840×2160 / AVC / MPEG-Four / 60fps)||No||Too many dropped frames to be watchable|
|1080p24 HEVC (1920×1080 / HEVC / Matroska / 24fps)||Okay|
|4K 30FPS Eight-bit HEVC (3840×2160 / HEVC / MPEG-Four / 30fps)||Okay|
|1080p VP8 (1920×1080 / VP8 / WebM / 25fps)||Okay|
|720p Hello10p (1280×720 / AVC / Matroska / 23.976fps)||No||Too many dropped frames to be watchable|
|1080p Hello10p (1920×1080 / AVC / Matroska / 23.976fps)||No||Too many dropped frames to be watchable|
|1080p MPEG2 (1920×1080 / MPEG Video / MPEG-PS / 25fps)||Okay|
|1080p VC1 (1920×1080 / VC-1 / Home windows Media / 25fps)||Okay|
|Unencrypted Bluray ISO (Sintel) (1920×1080 / AVC / AVC / 24fps)||Okay|
5.1 Audio Passthrough
Dolby Digital 5.1 passthrough over HDMI labored when arrange in Kodi.
Even though the Mecool KM8 helps Google Widevine L1 DRM, Netflix wouldn’t work in any respect with the app simply giving error -13 – “This model of Netflix app shouldn’t be suitable together with your gadget”. This can be a large drawback for Netflix customers and is disappointing to see on a field that’s supposedly “Google-certified”
For extra details about Netflix on Android TV packing containers, take a look at my HD Netflix on Android information.
YouTube playback works at as much as 4K decision.
As a Google-certified Android TV field, the Mecool KM8 options Chromecast help inbuilt, permitting you to forged movies, photographs and music from all kinds of apps.
I didn’t have issues casting from most apps akin to YouTube and Freeview (Australia’s catch-up TV app). Nevertheless, Netflix movies wouldn’t begin regardless of seeming to attach. It definitely seems that Netflix is properly and really damaged on the KM8.
Mecool KM8 Gaming Efficiency
Gaming efficiency was examined utilizing my GameSir G4S controller (assessment) by way of Bluetooth with the next video games:
As with different Amlogic S905 packing containers, the Mecool KM8’s gaming efficiency is cheap. Easy 2D titles play properly, while 3D titles like Seashore Buggy Racing performed properly on decrease settings.
Mecool KM8 Benchmarks Comparability
|GeekBench Four.2.three Single Core||649|
|GeekBench Four.2.three Multi Core||1779|
|3DMark Ice Storm Limitless||App crashed when making an attempt to entry benchmark|
|3DMark Ice Storm Excessive||4228|
|3DMark Slingshot||Not Suitable|
|Working State||Energy Consumption (W)|
|1080p Video Playback||5.1W|
Ought to You Purchase The Mecool KM8?
I used to be hopeful that the Mecool KM8 can be a winner as one of many first Google-certified Android TV bins to return out of China. Nevertheless, there’s fairly a number of points that forestall it from surpassing its nearest competitor, the Xiaomi Mi Field, resembling damaged Netflix help, buggy firmware and lackluster connectivity. The shortage of Netflix help is an enormous deal breaker and anybody utilizing the streaming service ought to undoubtedly look elsewhere.
That stated, Chromecast help is an enormous plus and the field does deal with Android TV and common playback properly so it’s not all damaging.
General, the Mecool KM8 Plus finally ends up being a reasonably common Android TV field, regardless of its Google certification. While Android TV Eight, primary media playback and Chromecast help are all nice promoting factors, the bugs and damaged Netflix make it a tough one to advocate till these points are (hopefully) resolved0.6 in a future firmware replace.
The place to Purchase the Mecool KM8
The Mecool KM8 is on the market from GearBest for round $60 with free delivery.
Verify Worth at GearBest