The MECOOL KM6 Deluxe is one of the latest Android TV boxes to hit the market, offering some exciting new features and upgrades from previous models. As an experienced Android TV user and reviewer, I was eager to get my hands on the KM6 Deluxe and put it through its paces. After using it as my main streaming device for over a week, I‘m ready to share my in-depth review on whether the KM6 Deluxe is worth the upgrade for MECOOL fans or new buyers looking for an affordable Android TV streaming box.
An Overview of the MECOOL Brand
Before jumping into the specifics on the KM6 Deluxe, it‘s helpful to understand MECOOL‘s place in the streaming device market. MECOOL is a Chinese electronics company that has been manufacturing Android TV boxes and mini PCs since 2016.
Some key things to know about MECOOL:
They offer affordable Android streaming boxes in the $50-$100 range, significantly cheaper than premium models like the NVIDIA Shield TV.
Their boxes run on standard Android OS, not the Android TV OS. This means you don‘t get the specialized Android TV interface and integrated Google Play store.
Most MECOOL models have decent core hardware specs but may lack extras like USB 3.0 ports or gigabit ethernet.
Frequent software updates and new model releases. MECOOL seems to put out refreshed versions every 6 months or so.
Overall, MECOOL targets budget-conscious cord cutters who want good 1080p performance for streaming, apps, and light gaming without spending a premium. Their products compete directly with other value Android TV box brands like Tanix and Xiaomi.
Now let‘s look at how the KM6 Deluxe compares to past MECOOL offerings and today‘s streaming device landscape.
MECOOL KM6 Deluxe Key Features
The KM6 Deluxe sports several upgrades over earlier MECOOL boxes that help it stand out:
Amlogic S905X4 quad-core ARM processor – This new generation chipset is faster and more efficient than the S905X3 and S905X2 used in past models.
4GB of RAM – Double the RAM of most older MECOOL devices for better multitasking.
64GB internal storage – Massive space for storing apps, games, and media files locally. No need for external USB storage.
AV1 video decoding – Next-generation video codec that‘s more efficient than H.265. Major streaming services are starting to use AV1.
Dual-band WiFi 5 – Supports both 2.4GHz and 5GHz wireless for faster speeds. Also compatible with WiFi 6 routers.
Gigabit ethernet – For those who can hardwire, gigabit ethernet enables speeds up to 1000Mbps vs just 100Mbps on past MECOOLs.
Android 10 – Ships with the latest Android TV OS at the time of writing.
Beyond the specs, the KM6 Deluxe retains the familiar compact chassis, remote control, and port selection that MECOOL owners will find familiar.
Next let‘s dig into the user experience and performance testing on the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe.
Unboxing and Setup Process
I ordered the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe directly from their website and it arrived about 2 weeks later in a compact package. Inside the box you get:
- 1x MECOOL KM6 Deluxe Android TV Box
- 1x Remote control (IR + Bluetooth)
- 1x HDMI cable
- 1x 5V DC power adapter
- 1x User manual
The included accessories are pretty barebones but provide everything you need to get started.
Setup was quick and straightforward:
Plug the power adapter into a wall outlet and connect it to the TV box.
Use the HDMI cable to connect the device to your TV.
Insert the batteries into the remote control. The remote works over both IR and Bluetooth which is convenient.
Turn on the device and follow the on-screen prompts to connect to your WiFi network and Google account. This takes just a few minutes.
Once setup, you‘ll see the standard Android TV 10 home screen. You can immediately start browsing the Play Store and installed apps.
So from unboxing to watching your first YouTube video or Netflix show takes around 10 minutes. Very quick and painless compared to some Android boxes I‘ve tested.
Note that the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe ships with the true Android TV operating system, not the more limited stock Android builds used on many cheaper boxes. This means you get the full Android TV interface optimized for TV screens, including the Google Play Store for easy app installs.
Benchmark Performance Tests
Moving onto some hard performance benchmarks, here are the key tests I ran on the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe:
Antutu Benchmark Overall Score
This measures overall system performance across CPU, GPU, memory, and I/O. For comparison, the Xiaomi Mi Box S scores around 110,000. So the KM6 Deluxe has over 20% faster overall performance.
Multi-Core CPU Score
This specifically tests the raw processing power of the box‘s 4-core ARM chipset. The S905X4 is clearly an improvement over past MECOOL processors.
3D Graphics Benchmark
This taxes the Mali-G31 MP2 GPU on the device with intensive 3D graphics. The KM6 Deluxe handles graphics reasonably well but isn‘t ideal for heavy gaming.
Internal Storage Read/Write Speeds
221 MB/s write | 494 MB/s read
I tested the internal eMMC storage speeds using AndroBench. Performance is decent but could be faster. Still way better than a microSD card though.
WiFi Speed Test (2.4 GHz band)
28 Mbps down / 11 Mbps up
Connecting over 2.4GHz WiFi in my home, I got about 30Mbps down which is expected. Enabling 5GHz I got 60Mbps down so faster WiFi speeds are achievable.
So in summary, the hardware performance is solid for an Android TV box in this price range. The S905X4 chipset and 4GB RAM make a noticeable difference compared to MECOOL‘s older models. While it‘s not as fast the NVIDIA Shield TV, the KM6 Deluxe handles 4K, HDR, gaming, and general use admirably.
Real-World Video and Streaming Tests
Now let‘s discuss how the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe handles core streaming and media playback functions. I tested it out with all the major streaming apps like YouTube, Netflix, Prime Video, Hulu, and Plex.
4K HDR Video Playback
I played several high bitrate 4K HDR demo videos from a USB drive. Performance was smooth with no stuttering or frame drops. The box handles 4K 60fps video without breaking a sweat.
Fast-forwarding and rewinding was quick. Plus MECOOL includes a floating playback controls menu rather than having to tap the remote constantly like on some cheaper boxes.
Streaming Video Services
All the top services I tested including YouTube, Amazon Prime, Disney+, and Hulu worked flawlessly in full HD.
However, Netflix is limited to 720p resolution since the box lacks the required DRM certification for HD Netflix. For Netflix viewers wanting full HD/4K, the NVIDIA Shield or another certified Android TV device is recommended.
International apps like Hotstar, JioTV, and SonyLiv needed to be sideloaded but worked well after installing.
Overall streaming performance was smooth and consistent across all the major apps I tested. The S905X4 processor keeps up with heavy streaming loads without any hiccups or choppiness.
If Netflix HD support isn‘t important, the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe provides an excellent overall streaming experience on par with more expensive Android TV boxes.
Like other MECOOL devices, the KM6 Deluxe isn’t positioned as a hardcore gaming box. But it can certainly handle casual gaming and less demanding titles from the Google Play Store.
I installed and tested popular games like:
- Asphalt 9
- Dead Trigger 2
- Shadowgun Legends
- Modern Combat 5
Performance was completely smooth with high graphics settings enabled. I didn‘t experience any stuttering or lag during gameplay.
The 4GB RAM definitely helps keep things running smoothly when multitasking between streaming and games. And the 64GB onboard storage means you can install lots of large games without needing expandable storage.
For casual gamers looking for a budget big-screen gaming platform, the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe gets the job done surprisingly well. But NVIDIA Shield TV remains the undisputed Android TV gaming champ.
Remote and User Experience
The included remote control with the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe will be familiar to owners of past MECOOL streaming boxes. It‘s a simple, no-frills design that gets the job done.
Some quick thoughts on the remote:
- Good tactile button feedback
- Works over both IR and Bluetooth
- Voice control button powered by Google Assistant
- No dedicated Netflix or Prime Video buttons
- Very lightweight plastic feel but solid overall construction
My only complaint is the lack of backlighting on the remote buttons means it‘s hard to use in the dark. But for $20 you can buy MECOOL‘s backlit remote if that‘s important.
One highlight is how seamlessly the device integrates with Google Home speakers for robust voice control. You can launch apps, search for content, control playback, adjust volume, and more completely hands free. This took just seconds to setup and worked flawlessly.
Overall, while not quite as refined as the NVIDIA Shield Android TV experience, MECOOL has created a pleasant streamlined OS with the KM6 Deluxe. Performance is swift and navigation feels natural on a television.
Who Should Buy the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe?
So after using the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe for a little over a week, I think it‘s a great option with some clear advantages:
For MECOOL owners looking to upgrade – With its faster processor, more RAM, and gigabit ethernet, the KM6 Deluxe is a solid step up from MECOOL‘s older devices. Owners of boxes like the KM9 Pro or KM3 will see noticeably snappier performance.
Cord cutters who want great 4K/HDR streaming under $100 – With flawless playback on YouTube, Prime Video, Plex, and other top streaming services, the KM6 Deluxe offers exceptional 4K streaming quality at a budget price. Lack of Netflix HD support is the only downside.
Amazon Prime Video viewers – Since it supports full HD on Prime Video, the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe is great for Prime members looking for an affordable streamer.
Casual gamers on a budget – Can‘t compete with the NVIDIA Shield TV, but provides a very solid big-screen gaming experience for the price.
However, there are some cases where you may want to consider other options:
Heavy Netflix users – No HD or 4K Netflix is a dealbreaker if you stream Netflix daily. The 4K Fire TV Stick is a better choice for dedicated Netflix fans.
Power users wanting maximum performance – With its Tegra X1+ processor, the NVIDIA Shield TV is still the performance king. Worth paying more if you demand cutting-edge power.
Advanced users wanting more customization – Experienced Android tinkerers may find MECOOL‘s UI too limiting. A custom ROM like LineageOS can‘t be installed.
Overall the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe should satisfy most mainstream users looking for a feature-packed Android TV streamer under $100. It‘s a well-rounded performer that I‘m happy to recommend based on my hands-on testing.
MECOOL KM6 Deluxe Review – The Bottom Line
After using the KM6 Deluxe daily for over a week, I‘m impressed with the thoughtful improvements MECOOL has added making this their best TV box yet:
- Excellent 4K/HDR streaming performance
- Snappy interface and navigation
- Amazon Prime Video in full HD
- Large 64GB internal storage
- Adds gigabit ethernet
- Great value under $100
- No HD/4K for Netflix
- Remote lacks backlighting
- Underpowered for heavy gaming
- Mediocre user support
In the sub-$100 price bracket, the MECOOL KM6 Deluxe is a streaming media powerhouse that offers great performance and features for the money. While Netflix support is disappointing, it excels at virtually everything else.
Overall rating: 4 out of 5 stars
For MECOOL fans wanting an impressive but affordable living room streamer, the KM6 Deluxe delivers excellent 4K streaming and light gaming performance. It‘s a clear step up from their older models and easy to recommend based on my hands-on testing and review.