Nvidia Defend TV analysis (2017): The proper TV streamer money can buy

Nvidia Shield TV review (2017): The best TV streamer money can buy


Everytime you’ve already constructed the best Android TV area within the market, the place do you go from there? That’s the question Nvidia confronted after releasing its Defend TV Android console once more in 2015. The distinctive Defend TV obtained me over nevertheless was let down by a shortage of content material materials, lack of bundled distant and a fairly cumbersome (and ugly) controller.

Two years on and by no means solely is Android TV now a content-rich proposition, nevertheless Nvidia has addressed every single one among many genuine Defend’s factors, growing the system’s choices on the same time.

Video video games and content material materials streaming are nonetheless very loads on the core of the Defend’s enchantment, nevertheless this yr Nvidia is using its latest console to go after the giants of dwelling automation – Google Residence and Amazon Echo. This Defend TV is about to show into the centre of your linked dwelling.

In what is likely to be thought-about a controversial alternative, there’s fully nothing completely completely different – in {{hardware}} phrases – between this yr’s Defend TV and the 2015 model. Many have been anticipating Nvidia to enhance its spectacular Tegra X1 chip nevertheless as a result of it’s nonetheless a reasonably extremely efficient chip, Nvidia felt it could possibly be an pointless expense. Having seen what the Tegra X1 is ready to, not merely throughout the Defend TV itself however moreover inside Nintendo’s upcoming Tegra X1-equipped Change console, it seems desire it nonetheless has a great deal of life left in it. The RRP is £189 and it can be found on Amazon UK for that (or Amazon US for $199)


Alongside the Tegra X1, you’ll get 3GB of RAM, Bluetooth 4.1 assist, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, two USB 3 ports and 16GB of inside storage. As with the sooner model, Nvidia will be offering a “Skilled” alternative for the Defend that incorporates a 500GB HDD, which is near essential for anyone who plans to do higher than merely stream video video games or media content material materials to their TV. The Defend TV Skilled is exactly the an identical as a result of the 2015 model, even all the way in which all the way down to the inclusion of a microSD slot, which has been omitted from the standard 2017 Defend TV model.

Nvidia Defend TV analysis (2017): What’s modified?

So if the Defend TV’s guts are exactly the an identical as they’ve been two years previously, what’s modified? First up, Nvidia has made it smaller, lowering the scale by 40%, and whereas the distinctive Defend TV (and the model new Defend TV Skilled) measured 210 x 130 x 25mm (WDH), this yr’s model is a mere 159 x 98 x 26mm, meaning it’s even easier to tuck away behind a TV for many who’d fairly not have it on current.

This yr’s model stays to be merely as engaging to check out because the distinctive Defend TV. It may now be manufactured from plastic, as a substitute of the plastic and metallic assemble chassis of the distinctive (that’s now reserved for the Skilled model), nevertheless its faceted design is just as eye-catching. And that angular design look has moreover made its means all through to the absolutely overhauled Defend TV controller, which is a big enchancment on the distinctive and not seems like an unsightly lump of plastic.


Plus, in a switch that is constructive to make the Defend a additional partaking proposition to newcomers, Nvidia is now along with the Defend Distant throughout the area together with that new sport controller. Beforehand, Defend householders wanted to pay £35 for the privilege, which was not solely unreasonably expensive, nevertheless those who sprung for it may even have been upset to hunt out its rechargeable battery would die inside each week or two of use.

Sadly, one disappointing change is the elimination of a microSD slot on the standard Defend TV model. This isn’t truly the highest of the world as a consequence of USB 3 storage assist, nevertheless now that the Defend TV helps Android TV 7 Nougat’s adaptable storage, microSD assist would have been a welcome addition.

And I found that using the USB 3 expandable storage alternative, effectivity by a USB flash drive and a conveyable 4TB laborious drive merely wasn’t that good. Video video games akin to The Witness and Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance had important factors with loading fast adequate – factors that melted away as quickly as put in on the inside storage.

Nvidia Defend TV analysis (2017): Peripheral pondering

The important thing enchantment in choosing up a model new Defend TV, over attempting to pay cash for an outdated model on eBay, is the revamped controller. And whereas its polygonal pores and pores and skin seems good, what makes it a higher controller is the assemble top quality and the feel of the sticks and buttons. All of the issues regarding the new controller feels elevated top quality and additional refined than Nvidia’s earlier effort, and that makes it way more comfortable to utilize for extended intervals.

As part of the redesign, Nvidia has moreover eradicated the entire touch-sensitive navigation buttons from the pad, altering them with bodily ones positioned on the bottom of the controller, barely under and between the two thumbsticks.


These can take just a little little bit of getting used to at first, notably as you’d anticipate the “dwelling” button to be the huge Nvidia emblem throughout the centre – as a substitute of the button beneath the appropriate thumbstick – nevertheless they’re a world of enchancment over the distinctive.

Nvidia has moreover improved gamepad battery life, claiming it’s going to presumably now final so long as 60 hours per price. I was sceptical, nevertheless I’ve put a robust 40 hours or so of pretty intense use into it up to now, and the Defend Controller stays to be going sturdy.

Battery life will be the primary goal Nvidia tweaked its Defend Distant. Now ever so barely thicker than the sooner model, the newly bundled-in distant ditches the rechargeable battery and headphone port in favour of two removable CR2032 batteries, a change that Nvidia says presents it a yr’s worth of battery life.

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