The age of IPTV is definitely upon us! The H96 MAX TV box is living up to its name with great specs running on Android 6.0 but is it best box of 2017?
With 4GB of RAM and the Rockchip RK3399 this box could prove to be the Ferrari of TV boxes. This SoC is well known for completely trouncing the Amlogic S912 SoC on benchmark tests so that, coupled with the additional RAM could prove to be a winner.
If you are into gaming or running demanding apps the 4GB should ensure a smooth performance and could be a good investment. This review will hopefully help you to decide.
H96 MAX Smart TV Box Full Review
Price: $108.23 + FREE shipping
Best place to buy: Geekbuying
Product size: 8.7 x 5.9 x 2.8 inches
Weight: 0.15 Kg.
Connections: Ethernet & WiFi
Guarantee: 1 year
Best place to buy
The H96 MAX is cheapest on Geekbuying but I checked other online stores to compare prices. Even though there is a Flash Sale on Gearbest, it’s still cheaper on Geekbuying. Price comparison is as follows:
What’s in the box?
- 1 x TV Box
- 1 x I/R Remote control
- 1 x HDMI cable
- 1 x Power adapter
- 1 x User manual (basic leaflet)
- System: Android 6.0
- Processor: RK3399
- CPU: ARM Cortex-A72, Cortex-A53 Core: 2.0GHz
- GPU: Mali-T860
- 4GB of RAM
- RAM Type: LPDDR3
- 32GB ROM
- Decoder Format: H.263, H.264, H.265, HD MPEG4
- Video format: 4Kx2K, AVI, DAT, ISO, MKV, MOV, MP4, MPEG, RM, RMVB, TS, WMV
- Audio format: DTS, TrueHD
- Photo Format: BMP, JPEG, JPG, PNG, TIFF
- Supports 5.1 Surround Sound Output
- Bluetooth 4.0
- Power Supply: Charge Adapter Interface: DC Power Port, RJ45, SPDIF, Type-C, USB2.0, USB3.0
- Camera: No
- Multi-language support
- DVD Support: No
- HDMI Version: 2.0
- Other Functions: 3D Games, 3D Video, DLNA, Miracast
- HDMI Function: CEC
- Power Consumption: 10W
- RJ45 Port Speed: 1000M Gigabit
- Dual Band WiFi 2.4GHz/5GHz
This box comes with a generic I/R remote and you will be stressed out trying to use this. As always I would recommend investing in a wireless keyboard or air mouse.
I have a Microsoft keyboard and also a Minix Neo air mouse which I use for my IPTV MAG box. Best thing I ever did was to buy these and it really improves the overall UX.
The box runs well with Kodi but for some reason it won’t play files from a USB stick and you are left with a blank screen most of the time. They do play well using the onboard video player app so please keep this in mind. 4K files run very well.
Using the box is frustrating when you are trying to navigate between the various apps and there is a very bad delay when clicking on these. This is disappointing especially since it has 4GB of RAM.
Gaming is fairly good but definitely not the best compared to other top boxes that come with the Amlogic S912 SoC onboard. Another disappointment.
Pros and Cons
Things I liked:
- Good price
- Performance with Kodi
Things I didn’t like:
- Poor WiFi speeds at 2.4GHz
- Box casing is a bit tacky and feels quite cheap
- Poor usability
- Not good video playback for files using Kodi
- Disappointing results with the extra RAM
H96 MAX vs Yundoo Y8
The Yundoo Y8 TV box has very similar specs with the RK3399 SoC and also 4GB of RAM. I decided to do a quick comparison and the ratings below are my own scores from my Yundoo Y8 Review. Ratings are out of 5 stars.
|TV Box||PRICE||PERFORMANCE||USABILITY||TECH SPECS|
As you can see the Yundoo Y8 comes out on top but at a slightly higher price.
Using Kodi or another free TV app with the H96 MAX
This is due to a recent security scare with earlier versions of Kodi (pre 17.2) which caused a bit of a scare. There was a problem with the subtitles in Kodi which could have proved fatal for cyber attacks from hackers.
The last thing you want to do is spend good money on a TV box only to get infected with malware or worse. Don’t worry, the latest Kodi has been updated and this problem resolved.
It’s still a good idea to use a VPN though and this will protect you against snoopers or hackers. It’s common knowledge that a VPN can steal 8 to 10% of the bandwidth but in some cases it can also improve speeds. It depends if your ISP is being naughty with bandwidth throttling.
This happens in Malaysia with my ISP and my VPN actually bypasses this and makes it faster. It’s also worth considering if you are worried about accessing illegal streams.
A free VPN won’t be much good to you due to the limitations on servers and bandwidth but it’s not expensive to sign up to a provider and my #1 recommended supplier costs only $2.95 / month. Why chance it for this price?
I have to say I’m not overly impressed with the H96 MAX TV box. It should perform much better with these specs and you can definitely get better Android TV boxes for less money.
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