The Element Amazon Fire TV Review

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The Element Amazon Fire TV is a good 4K LED TV with Amazon’s Fire TV smart platform and Alexa voice assistant. While it has good contrast, its lack of additional features, narrow viewing angles, and HDR support limit its versatility. It also has a lot more advertisements than traditional tv.

PROS

  • High contrast gives deep and uniform blacks
  • Amazon’s Alexa is a powerful assistant

CONS

  • Picture quality degrades at an angle
  • Input lag is high
  • Ads are more intrusive than average

About this item

  • Fire TV Edition is a smart TV experience that seamlessly integrates your favorite streaming and live over-the-air content on a unified home screen (HD antenna required).
  • Experience true-to-life 4K UHD picture quality with over 8 million pixels for stunning clarity, deep contrast, and brilliant colors on a direct-lit LED screen with minimal motion blur. Refresh Rate: 60 Hz (Native), 120 Hz (Effective).
  • The Fire TV experience is built in so you can enjoy tens of thousands of channels, apps, and Alexa skills. Get universal search results across over 190 channels and apps including Netflix, Hulu, HBO NOW, SHOWTIME, STARZ, and Prime Video.
  • The included Voice Remote with Alexa allows you to control live TV playback, launch apps, search for TV shows, play music, switch inputs, control smart home devices, and much more.
  • Prime members get unlimited access to Prime Video including Thursday Night Football, thousands of movies, and TV episodes at no additional cost.
  • Dimensions (W x H x D): TV without stand: 57.4” x 33.3” x 3.5”, TV with stand: 57.4” x 35.2” x 11.8”
  • Multiple device input/output options: 4 HDMI 2.0 including 1 with ARC, 1 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.0, SD card, Ethernet, composite/component, headphone, optical audio out.

Design:

The Fire Version TV has a simplistic interface that looks good. When seen from the front, it appears to be quite stylish. Since the stand is very large, it is extremely secure. The controls are all under the front panel and resemble a desktop display with buttons for each feature.

The stand is quite wide, but does support the TV well and feels stable. Footprint of the 55″ TV stand: 10.2″ x 35.2″

The Fire TV has a good build quality. The TV is made up of a roughly equal mix of plastic and metallic components. In normal use, it does not cause any problems.

Picture Quality:

The native contrast ratio on the Fire TV is excellent. With a contrast ratio of more than 5000:1, it can view very dark blacks, which is perfect for dark scenes in movies and for viewing TV in a dark room. The Element Fire TV does not have a local dimming feature. The video is for reference only.

Movies: Mediocre TV for watching movies. The contrast on the Fire TV is sufficient, but it lacks a calibration or local dimming functionality. It still can’t play 24p material from any source without judder, which isn’t noticeable to everyone.

See also: Best TV for Movies

TV Shows: The Amazon Fire TV interface is very sensitive and intuitive, and it covers most streaming services. It’s a great TV for viewing TV shows. The TV is bright enough, but it might benefit from a better finish to manage reflections in a brighter setting.

Sports: The Element Fire TV is a successful sports television. It has an average uniformity, but there is no major dirty screen effect to distract from the presence of grassy fields. It has good motion, but the picture quality degrades at an angle, so it’s not suitable for living rooms with a greater seating area.

See also: Best TV for Sports

Video Games: For playing video games, this is an average television. Although it does a good job with motion blur, the Element Fire TV’s input lag is disappointing. More casual users do not mind the delay, but more demanding gamers may notice the extra “floatiness” caused by it.

See also: Best TV for Video Games

HDR Movies: The TV does not help HDR, and it does not get very light. It lacks a large colour gamut and 10 bits of colour depth, preventing any future HDR-supporting upgrade from improving picture quality.

HDR Gaming: The high input lag and no support for HDR makes the Fire TV a poor choice for HDR gaming.

See also: Best HDR Gaming TVs

PC Monitor: The Fire TV is a poor choice for use as a PC monitor due to its high input lag, small viewing angles, and minimal resolution support. The input lag, in particular, degrades the experience by making mouse movement annoyingly slow.

Motion:

The Fire TV has a fast response time, which results in a short path following moving objects, which is perfect for viewing fast-moving content.

The backlight on the Element Fire TV is faded using PWM at 220Hz, beginning at 99/100. The duty cycle is reduced when the setting is diminished, but the amplitude remains constant. PWM backlights create duplications when trailing moving objects, but they do tend to clear up motion a bit. PWM at 220Hz is rare, and this is the first and only TV we’ve seen that uses it. It results in shaky duplications following fast-moving items since it is not a multiple of the panel’s refresh rate, which is 60Hz.

Sound Quality:

The frequency response of the Element Fire TV is below normal. The lack of focus in the treble area makes the TV sound that little dark, but it shouldn’t interfere with dialogue. However, at larger volumes, there is some dynamic range compression.

Passable distortion levels. While there is a noticeable peak at 400 Hz when the TV is set to max volume, the distortion levels of the Fire TV remain within standard range of what’s found in TVs.

Smart Features:

Only Amazon applications existing guidelines on the TV, but several more, such as Netflix and YouTube, are available through the Amazon app store. However, before any apps can be downloaded, Amazon 1-click ordering must be set up, which demands a payment system even when installing free apps. While navigating apps seems easy, their reliability isn’t as strong as it is on many other devices, as Netflix crashed during testing and had to be force-stopped, and casting from a phone or tablet often failed on the first attempt. The TV can play content from a USB drive, but since it needs a built-in media player, you’ll need to use an app like VLC for Fire TV to do so.

The remote is compact and comfortable to use, with an excellent Alexa voice command feature. Since there are few keys, most things must be changed using voice commands or by navigating the interface; but, all of the navigation buttons are within easy reach, which is a good thing. The home button can be held down to open up a quick menu of settings, inputs, and applications, which is useful. The Alexa voice control will do a variety of things, like turning between apps and inputs, going to look for content, and even general tasks such as retrieving nearby restaurants.

Conclusion:

The Element Fire TV is a mediocre 4k TV with an average picture quality. Overall, it’s not a really competitive kit, and it doesn’t succeed at anything. It has some clever features, but they are all based on Amazon’s services.

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