I purchased the Nvidia Shield in 2015, and day in and day out it continues to prove to be the best tech purchase I have ever made.
A quick glance at my order confirmation email allows me to confirm this: I purchased an Nvidia Shield TV on November 27, 2015. And that was the time when Nvidia’s Shield family was the latest product, illustrated by rather good tablets at low prices, and a strange concept To control with an external monitor. This time, we had the right to a box under Android TV, with the power of the Nvidia Tegra X1 chip that will change a lot of things.
Considering my various tech purchases over the past few years, whether it’s smartphones, tablets, monitors, or even consoles, the Nvidia Shield is clearly the best purchase I’ve made. It’s a product that I still use daily, more than six years after I bought it.
You might be wondering what is the purpose of using the Nvidia Shield and why it wouldn’t be better to use the player box or the built-in TV system instead. Before that, let’s explain the unreasonable longevity.
It’s almost sad to admit, but in a world where smartphones no longer have the right to get major updates after two or three years, especially on Android, Nvidia seems to be an excellent student with its constant monitoring. This week, the brand announced the 27th update to the Nvidia Shield that upgrades the box to Android 11. When Nvidia launched its box in 2015, it was running Android 5.0 Lollipop.
This long life can be explained in several ways. First, there’s the Nvidia Tegra X1 chip. In terms of performance, it is a very modern and powerful chip for its time, and as such it can age very slowly. Most importantly, since it’s an in-house design, Nvidia is free to expand the development of drivers needed to keep up. This is not the case for other box manufacturers, who necessarily rely on the goodwill of Qualcomm or MediaTek.
The Tegra X1 chip is not only powerful, but also modern. By this, we mean that it allows the Nvidia Shield to manage 4K and HDR TVs right from the start, with the HDMI 2.0 port just starting to look old.
Off-road multimedia box and game box
It’s nice to have a device that doesn’t expire a few months after you buy it, but that’s clearly not the only reason I love the Shield. The product itself is excellent. In addition to the quality of manufacture, it is a powerful and functional device with a particularly flexible interface.
The Nvidia Shield is above all a multimedia box under Android TV. Its strength is the ability to play any video format: H.264/AVC, H.265/HEVC, VC-1, WMV9, VP8, VP9, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, in short all the commonly used formats for video files. Audio-wise, it’s the same with hassle-free playback of AAC, FLAC, MP3, Dolby Digital (AC3), Dolby TrueHD, DTS, DTS-HD and DTS HD Master Audio formats. Connected to a Plex server, it will be possible to easily read all of your content outside of SVoD. Video-on-demand services are also available. Of course, Netflix, Disney + and other Apple TV or Salto are native to the app with a regularly updated app through the Play Store.
So we have a full multimedia experience since the release of the device.
The Nvidia Shield is also a true gaming console. This is how Nvidia originally sold the device, which also came with a wireless controller rather than a remote. In its call, the manufacturer highlighted the local games available on its platform such as The Witcher 3, but it must be admitted, they were not very convincing against the classic console, despite the lower price of the Shield. What is most compelling is first of all the range of emulators available on the Shield where we are going to use the power of the chip to run many of the old games. It’s somewhat similar to what the Raspberry Pi offers, with less mess and more power.
Alternatively, Nvidia Shield offers streaming games. Either using the Nvidia GameStream function, where the game will be launched on your hard PC locally if you have a PC with a GeForce graphics card, or thanks to popular cloud games. Obviously the best service for that is GeForce Now, which was recently enhanced with the power of the RTX 3080. I can’t wait to see Microsoft’s Xbox Cloud Gaming officially land, there’s even a way to actually allow access to the service.
The best of both worlds
From its launch until today, the Nvidia Shield has been for me the perfect device to combine two things. As I explained, the Nvidia Shield is first and foremost an excellent multimedia box with capabilities that far exceed what game consoles like Xbox or PlayStation can offer. It’s also a box that allows you to play video games locally or while streaming, which classic boxes or built-in TV systems don’t.
The Nvidia Shield is a box for which I paid 159 euros in 2015 and the manufacturer still follows it to this day and continues to carry out its mission to the fullest. How are you not satisfied?
To follow us, we invite you to download our Android and iOS app. You can read our articles and files and watch the latest videos on YouTube.