Amazon Fire TV

You can have a Fire TV, or you can have a Fire TV. The question is how much power you want inside of it — and how much you want to spend.

As a general rule, we recommend spending as much as you can. Maybe even a little more than you planned. Basically you get what you pay for, especially with this kind of product. A little extra hardware — that is, something more powerful — will perform better and last you longer in the long run.

Your choices, however, are pretty limited. There are currently only two models of Amazon Fire TV dongles available for purchase.

Our top pick: Amazon Fire HD with 4K ($69)

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The newest Amazon Fire TV dongle is of a "pendant" design. That is, it's a small square box with an HDMI cable on one end, and a microUSB port for power on the other. This is the model that supports 4K resolutions, and it's the most powerful Fire TV you can buy at retail. It also supports Dolby Atmos audio.

What's it lacking? Any sort of external storage, Dolby Vision for HDR (though it does have HDR10 support), and there's no Ethernet connection.

Still, this is the best current-generation Fire TV you can buy, and it's the one we recommend. It retails for $79.99, but you often can find it on sale on Amazon.

Amazon Fire TV Stick ($39)

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There's a lesser Amazon Fire TV that's still available for purchase, and it comes in stick form. Its resolution is limited to 1080p, and there's no support for HDR (obviously) or Dolby Atmos.

It is a basic Amazon Fire TV option, and it's only $30 less than the more impressive Fire TV dongle.

We don't recommend this stick — it has absolutely no future-proofing — but it'll get the job done if you just have to save the money.

TVs with Fire TV built in

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OK, there's actually a third option — that's a display that has the Fire TV operating system built in.

The Element brand has a decent TV that sports Fire OS as its operating system. That means no extra dongles or anything dangling from the TV, and no extra remote controls.

A 50-inch 4K set is $549, and a 65-inch set with 4K resolution runs just $650, which isn't a bad price at all for something that large.

Note: A new line of TVs with Amazon Fire TV baked in is coming this year from Amazon and Best Buy.

Amazon Fire TV


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