Alfawise A8 TV Box is one of the most affordable TV Boxes, which was massively sold until recently and managed to gain great popularity among economical users in our review.
But despite some of its advantages, which are not present in other cheap TV Boxes – the presence of 4 USB connectors, the output of both digital and analog audio and video signals, the TV box had drawbacks – noticeable braking of the interface, problems with the output of Full HD video.
There are several models of Alfawise A8, with different processors and the amount of memory, this version running on the Rockchip 3229 processor.
Today we present a review of the updated model – Alfawise A8, which is an improved version of the same TV Box.
Unlike previous models, the novelty has an increased amount 2 GB of DDR3 RAM, as well as built-in memory 16 GB, which can be expanded to 32 GB using a memory card.
TV box works on the same 4 core processor Rockchip 3229 with the simplest GPU Mali 400, running the operating system Android 8.1.
The Alfawise A8 comes preinstalled for the same affordable price – $29.99 for the version with 2GB RAM + 16GB ROM version.
Alfawise A8 TV Box: Specifications
|Alfawise A8 TV Box:||Specs|
|Processor:||Rockchip 3229 Quad Cores at 1.5 GHz|
|Graphics accelerator GPU:||Mali-400MP2|
|Wifi:||IEEE 802.11 b / g / n|
|Ports:||4 x USB 2.0|
|Operating system:||Android 8.1|
|Size:||120.0 x 120.0 x 25.0 mm|
Alfawise A8 TV Box: Design and Appearance
Alfawise A8 TV Box in the analisis has become noticeably smaller than previous models and has dimensions of 12.00 x 12.00 x 2.50 cm.
Compactness is good, the main thing is that it does not damage the cooling. The surface of the top cover is matte, not marking, the side surfaces are glossy.
On one side there are three USB connectors, a port for the TF memory card and a hole behind which the reset button is located.
Three USB connectors are a controversial solution, often they are not enough. In addition, the SoC Rockchip RK3229 has support for four USB 2.0 ports.
The other ports on the rear panel are HDMI connector for connection to the TV; AV output, for outputting analog audio and video signals, which makes it possible to connect to the TV of previous generations without HDMI inputs. Also here is LAN port to connect to the network, a 5V power connector SPDIF and USB slot.
On the bottom cover of Alfawise A8 TV Box are 4 pretty thin rubber feet and a sticker with the name of the model. On the cover is a rather large number of ventilation holes for cooling.
The remote is the most common, without learning buttons. Nevertheless, it conveniently lies in the hand, contains a sufficient set of buttons for controlling all functions.
There are buttons for quick access to the main applications: media center, browser, application and settings menu.
There is also a function for simulating a mouse, without which it is sometimes difficult to do.
Feeds the panel from 2 mini type batteries AAA (not included).
Alfawise A8 TV Box: Multimedia and Software
The TV box Alfawise A8 turns on immediately after the power is turned on, and the blue indicator on the front panel lights up.
The indicator is small and not very bright, it does not blind the eyes in the dark.
I am glad that the old problem when it was necessary to glue the super bright LED with electrical tape, is becoming less common.
After a short pause during system boot, we get to the main menu of the standard launcher.
The launcher is very simple and straightforward, there are only a few fixed tabs and the bottom row of customizable icons for selected applications.
Large application icons are made for easy control of the console. There is a top notification bar and a convenient bottom navigation bar. In the settings you can change the launcher to another pre-installed:
The application menu also consists of large icons, the following applications are initially installed: browser, gallery, clock, App installer – application installer, music player, standard file manager, Kodi – multimedia center, Netflix, Skype, regular video player, Facebook, Play Market, Voice Assistant, and Youtube.
The settings menu is a standard setting for the Android 8.1, familiar to us on smartphones and tablets.
The Google Play Store finds all available apps, the installation runs smoothly.
The Alfawise A8 TV Box in our test supports updating the firmware on the network, but at the moment there are no updates.
The average amount of RAM used is about 443MB from 2GB and this is very good. 1.5GB of free memory will be enough for many applications.
Alfawise A8 TV Box: Hardware and Performance
The Antutu test of Alfawise A8 TV Box in the test is a modest result 14746.
Of course, this indicator has little effect on the main purpose of the console – video playback, but as a game console, it is clearly weak.
Test the speed of writing and reading internal memory using A1SD Bench. And although the prefix works quite fast, the results of the test are almost two times lower than those of the previous models. Most likely the reason is the use of memory chips of an indefinite producer.
The Alfawise A8 TV Box was located in the same room as the router, at a distance of about 6 meters.
Alfawise A8 TV Box: Heat
The temperature of the processor of Alfawise A8 TV Box is an important indicator on which reliability and stability of the system depend.
On average, the CPU temperature during the operation of the console varies from 70º to 90ºC, which is still acceptable.
But with the long-term work of resource-intensive applications, the installed small heatsink of the processor cannot cope with heating.
This does not apply to the usual tasks – watching a video, while the temperature is kept around 80º.
Alfawise A8 TV Box: Playing Videos
AnTuTu Video Tester showed that 6 formats are not supported, 8 – with partial support. Also, there are certain problems when playing 4K video, some test video clips came with a noticeable braking.
All this says about the raw software and maybe it will be fixed in the next update of the firmware.
Kodi Media Center has no complaints, all videos before Full HD are reproduced without any complaints.
Also, an MX Player media player with HW + enabled decoder was installed, which also comes with any Full HD video.
To view TV channels, the Torrent Stream Controller application was installed. A huge number of channels for every taste, in any capacity.
When watching HD channels, sometimes it was necessary to pause for a few seconds. There are no remarks to his work, the channels work without problems.
The installed Youtube application is a version for Android TV, capable of playing video up to FullHD, adapted for control from the console of the TV set-top box.
Despite the modest specs of the Alfawise A8 TV Box, we still decided to launch our favorite game Beach Buggy Racing. Surprisingly, it’s possible to play, although not as comfortable as on consoles with more powerful processors. In addition, the lack of Bluetooth does not allow you to connect a wireless gamepad.
Also, it was tested the connection of an external HDD and a web camera for the operation of Skype is OK.
Alfawise A8 TV Box: Conclusions and Reviews
Alfawise A8 TV Box in our review is not an expensive device, with the help of which you can organize video viewing in high quality online or from external sources.
You can, for example, give a second life to an old TV, in which there is no HDMI input, by connecting via an analog output.
The Alfawise A8 TV Box works quite normally under normal operation, without critical problems with overheating and video playback.
The presence of 2GB of RAM has a positive effect on the operation of the entire system, the console is fast and stable.
There are questions to the software – not all video formats are played, including 4K.
Alfawise A8 TV Box: Price and Where to buy cheaper?
At the moment, you can already buy the Alfawise A8 TV Box at a good and low price for only $29.99 with the coupon IT$CNGBA8 from 9 to 15 July. In general, we liked the TV Box and for this price is a great option.