- Affordable price
- Good for 2018 hardware
- Remote Control
- HEVC support
- No Bluetooth
- No 4K@60fps
- Design could be better
- Value 1
- Value 2
- Value 3
- Value 4
- Value 5
The thing about Android Mini PCs is that there are only a few recognizable brands. The rest is mostly no-name manufactures and sometimes you can get amazing specs at even more amazing price. And if there is no brand, the component that suffers the most is usually the user experience. Which is mostly dependent on the software.
Let’s take a look at the Z69 Pro.
It arrives in a cardboard package which looks modest and universal. And we have seen the same kind for many other models. I am going to review the 2GB RAM and 16GB ROM version which is the more expensive variation. If you want to go budget – there is the 1GB RAM with 8 GB ROM variation. Unboxing experience is apparently just average. There is nothing unusual and nothing really missing. The TVbox is staying on the second floor of the package, underneath there is a remote controller, power adapter and HDMI cable. And the user manual. The remote controller is convenient, and is programmable and with some more patience you may teach it to control your TV. The power adapter provides 2A at 5 volts, which will generously feed most of the USB based peripherals you may connect.
Design and features
The Z69pro now. Interestingly, although brand new, mine had minor scratches on the front display. And yeah – this one is following the trend of having a digital monitor on the front (showing the clock and Wi-Di status). Internals are nothing spectacular. If we put them next to the price, you suddenly get the wow effect – Amlogics s905w CPUwhich outputs 4K. Yeah – having Ultra HD on a TV box is as affordable as a 30-is dollars. 1 or 2 GB RAM, 8 or 16GB ROM (internal storage) – sounds about right, especially packed with relatively current Android.
Turning it aside – there are three USB ports. This is admirable, especially for such a low price! Each one is USB 2.0, but based on the current performance of the SoCs used in these TVboxes I’d say USB 3.0 is good for nothing but marketing.
On the back there’s the army of ports: HDMI, weirdly named just HD. It is a 4K tv box, so they could have at least added a U on the front. AV gives an option to connect to analogue receivers, SPDIF, 100Mbit LAN port and the power source. I’d say – more than what most of us ever need. On the bottom there’s only the MAC address information. No visible serial number on the box – which won’t surprise most of us. The other side has microSD port and a reset button. Weirdly there was nothing to press inside, and likely the real reset button is accessible after you open the box. Most of the people never really need that.
Android & performance
Like most of the Chinese TV-boxes – this one is not using Android TV, but a rather close to stock pre-rooted and uncertified version of Android. Sounds scary, but this is usually among the most powerful combination of software and hardware if you need to run lightweight apps and extras (ftp server, chat clients, remote control options, etc) on top of the well-known TV features. And you heard me right – Root is there giving you great freedom. We will go through a few tests, and remember that user experience is not always following the same curve as the benchmarks.
Storage performs fine, so does the DDR3 memory used. Wifi speed is also good, although just covering the 2.4 range.
This processor supports all the needed codecs as of early (including VP9 and HEVC) 2018.
Widevine certification is at Level 3, meaning no high resolutions when you watch Netflix. If you are not going to use that service and prefer to focus mostly on Kodi – then you are good and there won’t be any restrictions. Geekbench results as expected are around 1400 multi-core . This is what the 905w usually gets. Kodi works great. You can look around for some awesome add-ons. Gaming is fine when it is not a high-demanding app.
And, from all we’ve seen – did you notice something missing? Well I do miss Bluetooth! And there are some other shortings because of the price point – no Gigabit Ethernet, no USB 3.0, no 5Ghz Wi-Fi. Hmm, maybe I want too much for that price, don’t I?
This is the Z69pro. Reviewed. It offers some pro-qualities with some corners cut so that it can meet the price around (and less than!) 50USD for the more powerful version.
Which one would you get? Z69 Pro or the Tanix TX3 Max?
android tvbeelinkunboxingz69 pro 4:04 pm