Affordable 4K Streaming
Think of this — the first high definition TV cost over $10,000 and more recently, when they introduced 4K TVs the price tag was in the tens of thousands. But with prices dropping for 4K TVs, it might sound blasé but it’s a big deal to get a tearing media box wit 4K for under $100.00 But tht’s exactly what’s going on with Jetstream’s 4K Ultra HD ANdroid TV Box. So let’s check it out to see exactly what the box has “under the hood” to support a 4K point of mind.
Now comparing the Jetstream to a high-end costly 4K streaming box is unfair, so instead let’s sit back and watch to see just how well it performs. The three aspects to consider as regards performance are 1)The technology being used, 2)The interface being used and 3)Just how good the picture being watched is.
It’s What’s Inside That Counts
First, as to the technology, the Android TV Box is employing fairly high-level so as to be able to include what is today modern viewing needs: the central processor is a quad-core which can translate into better multitasking functionality and a more stable performance, aided by a graphic processor and 2 gigabytes of internal memory also on-board. The speed and stability is needed in order to make streaming 4K a reality (of course the home network/WiFi Internet connection needs be fast enough and with enough bandwidth to support localized/Internet 4K streaming). Add to that HDR (high-dynamic range) for better color clarity — this now being a standard found in 4K TVs. Stereo for the audio is a given, but also Dolby Audio to enhance that stereo and make it more immersive tough a wider sound-field. All of this makes playing games more of a fun experience than a chore. For storage purposes, 8 gigabytes in internal but the microSD card slot allows for greater storage to be had. Physical ports are plentiful, so if you prefer to plug in an Ethernet cable or a 3.5mm audio plug to headphones or send the Dolby out to an audio system through an optical port, go ahead. There’s also 2 USB ports and just in case it wasn’t super duper obvious, the Android TV Box is powered by AC power and so must be plugged in to function.
Bluetooth 4.2 is included and can be used for connecting BT headphones for private listening — avoiding long cords getting in the way of watching and causing problems. Chromecast is built in and so can be used agnostically to stream from mobile devices/laptops, regardless of operating system (i.e., Android, Apple, Mac, Windows + Chromebook).
The remote is large enough to avoid being lost or fumbling with the few buttons that are there: dedicated Netflix, YouTube and Google Play taking up the bottom half, with the top featuring a directly pad, home button and other expected choices. The addition of voice search through Google Assistant is a nice touch, but as is often with VA’s, one must be as precise as possible in order to vocalize and get the desired results.
Get Ready To Watch
Setup is fairly quick and as expected, with connecting to the local WiFi network and account sign-one as needed. The interface is straightforward and powered by Android 8.1, so it’s not using an old version that might balk at what is needed for 4K viewing. This new interface has yet to be brought to some of the Android TVs out there, so it’s kind of cool to find it in this box.
Of course the actual viewing is important — what you see determines whether this 4K box is worth having, regardless of how good an interface or how inexpensive it is. Streaming HD was smooth and clean, as was 4K being taken off of Amazon Prime (a FIOS high-speed Internet connection proving a strong and stable signal directly through Ethernet). When switched to WiFi wireless connectivity, no issues developed although the fact that the router and box were fairly close could have been a factor. In general, connect through a wired cable if at all possible since this will totally eliminate a host of potential problems. BTW, the fact that 60fps (frames per second) is occurring wen watching (be that 1080p or 4K) translates into a smooth video that is realistic looking. Or to put it more simply, it just looks normal.
Jetstream notes that there is a huge number of apps that can be used with their 4K Ultra HD Android TV Box — with Netflix, Pandora, sling, HBO Now, Showtime and VUDU inciting offers of free use (7 day or 30 day trials). So pretty much everything you need to get up and running and start streaming is being supplied; that even includes a HDMI cable. Streaming is well on its way to making physical discs and other such media for viewing content (i.e., entertainment) superfluous, and when you take what this 4K box can do and its low price, it’s no wonder that this is happening.