Comparison of 1st-Gen Element and 2nd-Gen Toshiba Fire TV Edition televisions

Now that more details about the new 2018 2nd-generation Fire TV Edition televisions by Toshiba have been revealed and the TVs are available for pre-order, here’s a look at how they stack up against last years Fire TV Edition televisions by Element. The new TVs are about 27% cheaper than the TVs they’re replacing. While the two versions are very similar in many aspects, a few things have been cut in order to reduce the price by more than a quarter. Here’s a detailed look at each TVs specs and features.

Better specs are marked in bold text.

 
2017 1st-Gen
Element Fire TV Edition

2018 2nd-Gen
Toshiba Fire TV Edition
Price43-in: $449.99
50-in: $549.99
55-in: $649.99
65-in: $899.99
43-in: $329.99
50-in: $399.99
55-in: $479.99
CPUMStar T1 938
Quad-Core up to 1.4 Ghz
MStar T12
Quad-Core up to 1.4 Ghz
GPUARM Mali-T820 MP3
(~25% more powerful than MP2)
ARM Mali-T820 MP2
Memory3 GB2 GB
Storage16 GB8 GB
Ethernet10/100/1000 Mbps10/100 Mbps
Wifi802.11a/b/g/n/ac 2x2 MIMO802.11a/b/g/n/ac 2x2 MIMO
Bluetooth4.14.2
HDMI4 Ports (1 with ARC)3 Ports (1 with ARC)
Analog Video1 x Composite/Component1 x Composite
Audio Out1 x Optical Aduio
1 x 3.5mm Headphone
1 x Optical Aduio
1 x 3.5mm Headphone
USB1 x USB 2.0
1 x USB 3.0
1 x USB 2.0
Expandable Storage1 x SD Card Slot up to 128 GBNo
OSFire OS 5
Based on Android 5.1
Fire OS 6
Based on Android 7.1
Resolution3840 x 21603840 x 2160
HDRNoHDR10 support*
Video FormatsH.265 HEVC:
3840x2160p @ 60fps
Main/Main10 Profiles
Level 5.1 High Tier

H.264: 3840x2160p @ 60fps
Main/High Profiles Level 5.1

H.263: 1920x1080p @ 60fps

VP8: 1920x1080p @ 30fps
VP9: 3840x2160p @ 60fps

MPEG2: 1920x1080p @ 60fps
MPEG4: 1920x1080p @ 30fps
H.265 HEVC:
3840x2160p @ 60fps
Main/Main10 Profiles
Level 5.1 Main Tier

H.264: 3840x2160p @ 30fps
Main/High Profiles Level 5.0

H.263: 1920x1080p @ 60fps

VP8: 1920x1080p @ 60fps
VP9: 3840x2160p @ 60fps

MPEG2: 1920x1080p @ 60fps
MPEG4: 1920x1080p @ 60fps
Audio FormatsDolby Atmos: No
Dolby Digital: Yes
Dolby Digital Plus: Yes
Dolby Passthrough: Yes
Dolby Atmos: No
Dolby Digital: Yes
Dolby Digital Plus: Yes
Dolby Passthrough: Yes

*HDR support for the 2018 Toshiba Fire TV Edition television is unclear. The hardware (SoC) can decode HDR video but it is unclear if the LCD panel is capable of displaying a true HDR image.

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36 comments
  1. clocks says:

    Had to make some cuts to get to the lower price point and compete with TCL/Roku. HDR will make or break these sets though. If they don’t have it, they could be dead in the water.

    • Mark B says:

      That’s a poor excuse though and the race the bottom hurts us all. Toshiba gutted on tech, storage and ram which costs very little and hurts the final product. If Fire Tv = Fire OS shoved on the cheapest garbage Chinese SOC a vendor can find it only makes Amazon a botttom feeder. That’s basically how they have set themselves up. When you look at all the Smart TVs out there so far Fire TV means cheapest low end tech possible.

      Amazon is making a massive mistake by not specing their own high end sets and slapping their name on them. The Amazon name has huge consumer confidence and value. Meanwhile brands like Toshiba and Element = cheap no expectations brands. They should be competing against LG and Samsung, their OS”s don’t begin to compare with what you can do with Fire OS.

      • clocks says:

        I don’t know. From everything I see online it seems like people are buying those cheap Roku TCLs like crazy. Hell, I even bought one. It is a nice TV besides the fact that the HDR on it is worthless from what I have seen (and Consumer Reports said the same).

        Anyway, nothing is stopping you from buying a Samsung and adding a FTV to it.

        • Zack says:

          If you got last years TCL P series or this years 6 series its arguably the best value for a TV and certainly has HDR.

          Much much better than of these TVs. Also Consumer Reports is a terrible place to review TVs.

          • clocks says:

            I got a TCL 49S403, and as Cons Rpts says, the HDR is “ineffective”. I notice no difference.

        • Zack says:

          The 4 series don;t have HDR. It can accept a signal, but can’t do anything with it. It doesn’t have WCG nor get bright enough for HDR.

          The TCL P(2017) and 6(2018) Series does have all of that and is the TV that everyone is going crazy for. The other TCLs are just decent TVs for the money.

        • Zack says:

          OH damn, read that wrong, yes the S series, but everything else is the same as far as no WCG nor bright enough so its faux HDR.

          • clocks says:

            Yep, the HDR on this set is pretty worthless from what I have seen. It was a waste of an upgrade, as the 1080p Sony I gave away had a better picture than this.

        • Fran says:

          How would you compare a vizio 65 inch m series looking for under $1,000

      • clocks says:

        The thing with TVs, is the tech is changing fast. Every couple years something new is coming out (3d, 4k, hdr, etc..) I personally don’t want to spend $2,000 on a TV that will be out of date 3 years later.

  2. Pip says:

    Is it just me or are some of the Specs reversed? I.E.
    —————-tosh—-elm
    Bluetooth 4.1 4.2
    OS Fire OS 5 Fire OS 6
    Based on Android 5.1 Based on Android 7.1

    • AFTVnews says:

      Element (2017) is on the left and Toshiba (2018) is on the right. Your confusion is my fault because I originally had them flipped in the main large image, which probably made you think that it was that way in the table. I’ve flipped the header image to match the table now.

  3. Pip says:

    I am sure this will sound like a stupid question but I’m asking anyway. Would a person be able to sideload Kodi directly into the TV?

  4. Tony Ramirez says:

    Less storage, less HDMI ports and Fast Ethernet. I am surprised they did not cut the 5ghz WiFi.

  5. shwru980r says:

    I would think at this stage of the game, folks would be looking for access to cloud storage to access media. The reduction of storage space and the inability to expand storage will be a deal breaker for many as will the lack of gigabit internet.
    Advertising HDR without knowing if it will really be available is deceptive.

    If it doesn’t have HDR, then I think most people would prefer the 1st gen TV unless Amazon bricks it.

  6. Tom says:

    Seems as all there new line product’s is a step down from what they were.

    If you noticed, same is going on with the Fire TV boxes.

    • AFTVnews says:

      Remember, this is a Toshiba TV, not an Amazon TV. I don’t think Amazon had any say in the specs, apart from maybe a minimum requirement to run Fire OS well enough.

      Seems like most manufacturers are chasing the lowest price, instead of the best specs. It sucks for enthusiasts like us, but that’s just the way the demand is going. The Fire TV Stick outsells the Fire TV by a lot, so it makes sense that cheaper TVs would do the same compared to high-end sets.

  7. Steve Lofman says:

    If the consumer knows about and understands HDR they will almost demand it in a new TV. However there are plenty of customers that only know 4K.

  8. Tim S says:

    Thank you for the side-by-side comparison !!
    I have the Element 50″ which I bought last Black Friday week.
    I like what Amazon started out with and I like this TV.
    The price was excellent at $299.
    HDR is overrated !!! Mine is 4K and there really isn’t that much 4K content, so I’m not complaining about that.
    I’m a big proponent of OTA/Antenna HD TV, so I like that Amazon put OTA and streaming together in ONE nice TV.
    I was hopeful that Amazon would update me to OS6 though ,,, any chance of that happening ???
    I love the pause/rewind/etc, but I want the DVR capability that OS6 supposedly has.

    All in all people QUIT WHINING and expecting so much, for such a little price !! Appreciate value when you see it !!

    Again, Thanks for all your ATVNews,
    Tim :)

    • Tommy F.A. says:

      I’m just guessing, but I think the whiners are requesting a better specced model that also costs more. Better specs + higher price = still a good value

    • Dave says:

      Go watch the 4K blu ray of Planet Earth II on an LG OLED and tell me again that HDR is “overrated”.

  9. Steve says:

    Is there anymore information on the Bestbuy’s Insignia FireTv editions that were rumored? There was a post on this site that said they planned to ditch the Roku OS for Fire OS.

    • AFTVnews says:

      No, no information yet. There are supposed to be 11 new Fire TV Edition televisions released this year. These Toshiba sets are 3 of them, so there are 8 left. I’m guessing that there will be two different Insignia models, with each coming in 4 sizes, like the 1st-gen Element TVs.

  10. TechyChris says:

    I would not be comfortable in the long run with one of these combo TV’s, so I just placed a pre-order for HP’s Chromebox G2 and won’t be looking back! (The $199 version and the G2 now supports android apps.)
    Still lots of love for my Fire TV’s though…

  11. King Nothing says:

    In the developer docs about Fire OS 6 there was also a sentenced included which left room for a possible update for the older devices still running OS 5. I don’t remember the exact words but it said something like it’s still undecided wether the previous devices will uplevel to OS 6 or not. But now this sentence is gone. Instead there is some updated text that only says:

    “Newer Fire TV devices run Android Nougat (Android 7.1.2, level 25). However, older Fire TV devices remain on Fire OS 5 (which is based on Lollipop, or Android 5.1, level 22, and some backported Marshmallow).”

    Following a table that shows which device runs which OS. Including the just announced 2nd Gen Toshiba 4K TV sets.

    https://developer.amazon.com/de/docs/fire-tv/fire-os-6.html#devices-running-fire-os-6-versus-fire-os-5

    I think the fact that the previous sentence is gone and the way this this is written now is quite a clear hint that Amazon has decided against updating the old devices to OS 6.

  12. rjdriver says:

    Neither of these hits it right in enough categories to be a sure purchase. I would just buy the best TV you can afford, and then buy a Fire TV or stick.

  13. Dlarry says:

    Like the improved audio and glad they kept the LAN port. Would like to know if remote will again be Bluetooth.

    Disappointed in the reduction of inputs, one less HDMI and no component will be difficult to overcome with my current setup.

    With the lack of SD card, will be curious to learn if this model will pause/rewind live TV as the previous did and if additional storage can be added to the USB port to extend recording time. Was really hoping the new model would have at least rudimentary DVR capability for scheduling a recording.

    • AFTVnews says:

      Yes, the Toshiba can pause live TV. Adding a thumb drive to the USB port will increase the amount of time you can pause live TV. The only thing lost from the last generation, as far as external storage goes, is the ability to store apps on external storage. There is no DVR capability.

  14. Jason says:

    I was excited about this TV price point at first, but reading that it only has 8GB storage with no external storage options and lowering the LAN to 10/100 drops this model from consideration.

  15. Frank Nitty says:

    Amazon is shooting themselves in the own foot, trying to downgrade the specs on the 2018 version just to lower the price

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