Price (RRP): $289/399
The NVIDIA SHIELD TV 2019 and it is bigger, even more, fully-featured brother NVIDIA SHIELD TV 2019 PRO adds 4K Dolby Vision HDR/Atmos decoding to any TV or flat panel monitor.
But there is more – NVIDIA SHIELD TV 2019 runs a certified Google Android 9 TV operating system (OS), so you get Google TV apps, Google Assistant and all that entails. And it can access a vast range of NVIDIA and Android games.
One of the first questions I put to NVIDIA is who the NVIDIA SHIELD TV 2019 and PRO are for? To be clear, there are two versions. The fundamental difference: Standard 2/8GB/microSD versus 3/16GB/USBx2/Plex server – I suspect that serious streamers and gamers will want the PRO.
Instead of defining the audience, the presenter spoke about what it could do – leaving me to identify the use cases for NVIDIA SHIELD TV 2019 and PRO.
NVIDIA SHIELD TV 2019
So while this is a review about the hardware it is also about Google Android TV, its apps and services, Google Assistant (and its smart home aspect) and an area that I am not an expert on – games casting with a GeForce RTX or GTX-powered PC to your TV with NVIDIA GameStream.
I would also like to add that this has been one of the hardest items to review. It has taken several days of use to discover its many features and options. As is practice, we use the terms FAIL, PASS and EXCEED against test items.
Australian website here
Price: $289 [standard] and $399 [PRO] and optional SHIELD Game Controller $89
It can also use PS4, Xbox and older SHIELD controllers.
Available: Now from dealers
What is NVIDIA SHIELD TV 2019, and who is it for?
It is a 4K Dolby Vision/Atmos capable decoder running on Android TV OS – a ‘set-top box’.
The ‘Standard’ is a snazzy small cylinder the size of a fat cigar, and the PRO is an angular box about the size of a videocassette. Both connect via HDMI to the TV/Monitor and receive content (video/audio/games) via its Ethernet/Wi-Fi connection and microSD [standard] and USB-A ports [PRO].
Before we explore the product, let’s explore the use cases. This review is for the PRO version, and all tests were on NBN 100/40Mbps. We had no speed issues, but I would not like to go below 50/20Mbps if you are a heavy user.
If you have a 4K TV (not a Google Android TV) – PASS to EXCEED
You will have a smart TV running an operating system like Samsung Tizen, LG WebOS, Hisense VIDAA, Panasonic MyHomeScreen, Roku TV and other proprietary TV OS. When you buy a TV, you may receive occasional bug fixes but few if any new OS or feature updates.
High-end TVs from 2019 may have Dolby Vision (TV decoding) and Atmos (TV decoding or passthrough to a soundbar), 4K upscaling and a range of apps. Adding the NVIDIA SHIELD TV 2019 for streaming may not be a compelling reason if your TV OS does everything you need.