NVIDIA hasn’t officially announced it yet, but the company is updating its Shield TV line of Android TV devices. We already knew that thanks to a couple of leaked product listings that showed up online last week for a $200 NVIDIA Shield TV Pro and a someones$150 Shield TV with a brand new design.
Those web pages have been taken down… but someone at a Best Buy store apparently didn’t get the memo that these things haven’t been launched yet, because an AVSForum member walked into a Best Buy, spotted the new models in a basket, purchased an NVIDIA Shield TV Pro, and took it home.
Update: Make that two someones. A reddit user also spotted the new models at a Best Buy and successfully purchased a new Shield TV Pro.
The new model is pretty much exactly what we’d been expecting. Like earlier NVIDIA Shield TV it’s a box that you can use to stream online media using Google’s Android TV user interface, but it also supports NVIDIA-exclusive games and NVIDIA’s GeForce game streaming technology, among other things.
What makes the new model different is that it has an NVIDIA Tegra X1+ processor that the company says brings a 25-percent performance boost over the Tegra X1 chip used for earlier models.
The new Shield TV Pro also supports Bluetooth 5.0 and Dolby Vision HDR. And there seems to be a new “AI enhanced” video upscaling mode that NVIDIA says will offer a better experience when watching non-4K content on a 4K display.
The new entry-level Shield TV has the same basic hardware, but a more compact, cylindrical design, fewer ports, and half the storage (just 8GB instead of 16GB).
While it’s unclear when these things are supposed to go on sale, the fact that Best Buy stores are apparently getting some in stock seems to be an indication that a launch is imminent.
For now, it seems like someone just threw some items that were supposed to stay in the back room in a basket of items to be put on store shelves — and accidentally sold at least one to a customer a little early.
Update 2: Android Police reports that Best Buy isn’t supposed to put the new Shipped TV products on the shelf until Oct 27th or 28th, and that the SKU for the Shield TV Pro is 6370425, while the new smaller Shield TV is 6370422. Theoretically you might be able to get a Best Buy employee to grab one and sell it to you with that information.
Meanwhile the NVIDIA Shield team have hinted that something will be announced on October 28th. I wonder what it could be!
Update 3: It looks like the early sightings (and purchases) keep piling up:
First @BestBuy told me they didn’t have them till next week. Second one, few miles down the road, were already putting them on the shelves. Hey @NVIDIASHIELD , when are you actually going to announce these things. #worstkeptsecret pic.twitter.com/PMtJYLlF8z
— Killroy™ (@KillroyWasHere) October 24, 2019
Yeah, Best Buy is not doing a good job of concealing the new #Shield TV Pro. pic.twitter.com/cwGrlm0C3o
— Ryan (@That1DudeRyan) October 24, 2019
2019, and still 802.11ac, not ax WiFi.
Im not too worried about that. 802.11ac is fast enough. I get over 500mbps in my livingroom, and over 150mbps in my basement. I don’t need more that 50mbps for anything I do on my TV.
If you are not getting over 100 Mps then you have a problem somewhere else.
Sure, because everybody has an ax capable router at home…..let the technology sink in first, then launch the products to use it.
The video upscaling might be interesting, AI upscaling can do wonders to old content. I have the original Shield and it surprised me how long it is supported and still works with newest apps and content.
Instead of adding more performance to an already overpowered box or changing the size, they should be trying to get the price down.
$200 is ridiculous in today’s climate and $150 for a box with no ports is pointless.
I agree that they should work on a more affordable option. I suspect the current stock of the old device will go on clearance. I just bought mine a couple of months ago for $190 with the game controller. I don’t have any other device to compare it to though. I know Xiaomi has an Android TV box that is less than $100 that gets pretty good reviews.
Its the only android tv “official” device with giga ethernet connection that supports Netflix 4k. When I watch the 4k shows on netflix it gives me a feeling i am standing next to the actors. The apple tv 4k not bad also but kodi users would like shield better.
Nope … why try to get the price down, just to be like everybody else? They did exactly the right thing by going after the power market.
Some people wonder why not go with a XB1 or PS4 at $200 instead. It’s simple, Android + powerful specs in a setop box makes for the absolute best livingroom emulation experience out there. Even Nvidia themselves know it’s the #1 usecase for the shield, compliments their PC streaming visit very well.
I’m not too sure about that.
The Nintendo Switch is underclocked and only about as fast as the old Snapdragon 652 processor. Which is a shame they didn’t use something more modern like a Snapdragon 636 instead during their development/launch. I know the Shield TV has an overclocked chip, but that only puts it as fast as the Snapdragon 670. So to call it “powerful” is a little wrong, but perhaps it is fitting since 90% of other Android Boxes has cheap ARM Cortex A53 cores and a weak iGPU. Even modder boards/IoT/SBC are catching up to the Tegra X1 like the Raspberry Pi 4, LattePanda Alpha, and the Udoo Bolt V8.
Case in point, the Snapdragon 855 when underclocked is still faster than the Tegra X1 overclocked. And that’s not even mentioning the difference in power draw/TDP, something like ~3W vs ~7W.
According to the benchmarks on NotebookCheck, Manhattan Onscreen OGL on screen on the Shield TV is avg: 43.4, median: 48 (13%), and max: 55 fps, where the Adreno 616 in the 670 got avg: 27.9, median: 28 (8%), and max: 33 fps. This, the low price point and the fact that Nvidia helped with the SDK and optimizations for the chips is easily why they went with the X1 over anything Qualcomm has to offer. Remember that the Switch was in development for at least a year before release, and there was nothing close to the power of the X1 in 2016 — when it was only a 1 year old chip.
The Snapdragon 855 was released in late 2018, which is well after the Switch was released. Sure it is more powerful now — at a much higher cost. I bet that Nvidia has the next chip for the Switch ready and already testing. If it is based on Pascal GPU architecture, I’m sure it will be the next GPU to beat. Since Nintendo has probably locked Nvidia from releasing anything else while in contract, the X1 is all they can use right now.
I was looking at benchmarks related to this topic as well. The X1’s strength has always been its GPU capability. I think it is worth adding that there is likely a good reason(regulatory issues, patents, high cost?) that companies who make consoles and TV boxes avoid Snapdragon chips and I think the integrated cellular modems are a major factor there. I recall Razer’s TV box, the Forge had a Snapdragon 805 which was one of the rare Qualcomm SoCs for phones that didn’t have the cellular modems included.
That’s a good point. I didn’t even consider the modems.
I have the original Shield TV box and it was worth every penny. I’m considering getting the new Pro, just because I know it will be well supported.
I also got the Hisense 65H8F TV with Android TV built-in. I think it uses the Mediatek MT58xx series chipset. It is very slow and buggy compared to the Shield. I know the Hisense isn’t a big name like Sony or Samsung, but it really shows just how well Nvidia has tweaked the Shield platform over the years and how well it holds up.
I picked up the MiBox for my father-in-law a couple years back. He rarely uses it. Many of the apps on my Shield TV aren’t available for his, since Nvidia works with companies to port them, and he favors his Fire TV because they are there. If Google worked as hard as Nvidia on their Android TV platform, they’d really have a great system.
NVIDIA was probably just easier to work with, as Qualcomm seems to be run by complete assholes. NVIDIA ain’t saints either, but at the very least they at least have experience getting games optimized for their hardware which would be very beneficial for Nintendo who know nothing about modern hardware.
They could also make Ubuntu work on it as an option. It has enough power to double as a silent desktop PC for office work.
If you want cheap get a firestick or chinese crap box. Considering you save $1,000 or more on cable with a shield……….its a steal……..
I’m not really sure how you save “$1,000 or more on cable” as the cable companies will just continue to jack the internet pricing up to the level you paid before WITH cable and add a cap to boot.. For instance Comcast charges $50 to remove cap on speeds of 300Mbps or lower, whereas speeds above (which, MSRP for about $80-100) are only $15 to remove the cap.. or Spectrum essentially making $70 the cheapest internet package.. It used to be $70 for basic cable and internet, and people do not realize this. The cable company WILL get their money one way or another
All the while, you get to pay them the new “higher” amounts, as well as pay for streaming services (or pirate the content illegally)
I read things like this all the time and I guess i just lucked out and decided to live somewhere that has enough internet pipe to go around. No hardline provider in the area has any actual data cap (and trust me I’ve put forth effort to hit it for decades on both dsl and cable) and i can still sign up (with Spectrum) as new, or even change my current plan to a $30ish plan (with no tv or phone bundle BS), sure it won’t let me stream good 4K but its plenty fast for 1080 content.
Well…..people happily pay $300 for a Swiitch, which has the same hardware plus a screen from 2011, so…….?
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