REVIEW: A95X F3 the best cheap Smart Box with SoC S905X3

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A95X F3 is a new low-cost Android TV-Box that we present today in his review, a model that has the extended Amlogic S905X3 SoC, a chip that includes ARM Cortex-A55 CPU cores that replace the ARM Cortex-A53 from the previous S905X2. This smart box has several very similar hardware versions, the A95X F3 Air and the A95X F3 Slim, all with the Android 9 Pie system. Let’s see in our review how this device behaves and how it defends itself against its rivals.

PRODUCT DETAILS

 

ModelA95X F3
Basic SpecsSoC: Amlogic S905X3 Quad Core 4x ARM-A55 @ 1.9GHz (64bit) / GPU Mali-G31 MP2 / 12nm
System: Android 9 Pie (32bit)
Ram, storage and network:
– 4GB RAM DDR3 + 32/64/128GB eMCP / Wifi ac Dual + BT 4.2 (MT7668RSN) / Ethernet 10/100 (Review)
– 2GB RAM DDR3 + 16GB eMCP / Wifi ac Dual + BT 4.2  / Ethernet 10/100
Ports: HDMI 2.1 4K@75fps / Jack AV / SPDIF / 1x USB 2.0 / 1x USB 3.0 / MicroSD / Reset
Extras: IR remote / HDMI cable / Manual / DC 5V 2A adapter
Materials and measures: Plastic / Frontal LED panel / 77 x 77 x 15 mm / 125 gr.

Unboxing

The A95X F3 comes in a standard cardboard box with a generic name in the top, inside we found the TV-Box, IR remote, HDMI cable 4K@60fps compatible, Manual and a DC 5V 2A adapter.

Description

This model A95X F3 is made in plastic and has a box design with lines and stands out for its superior LED strip that changes color rhythmically (can be disabled). On the front we have an LED display that indicates the time, on the sides and in the back area we have all the connectors in a classic configuration. This model includes a simple IR remote control that allows us to perform basic functions in apps like KODI but is limited for more complex ones.

Inside the audio jack we have the update button in case it is necessary to update the firmware. On the motherboard we can see the Wifi aC Dual Band + Bluetooth 4.2 (Mediatek MT7668RSN) chip little known and has one internal Wi-Fi antenna. The cooling system is simple, an aluminum heatsink attached to the SoC that as we will see fulfills its function, while on the top cover we have attached the module of the LED strip with four cables to the motherboard.

  • Remote Control: Basic IR Remote with copy keys/ NO microphone / We can choose other alternatives.
  • Alternate control: Have its own control app / We can try Cetusplay in our smartphone.

SYSTEM AND PERFORMANCE

Environment and Android system

We turn on the A95X F3 boots automatically, we arrive at a simple launcher based in squares, it is valid for use with the default remote, it has a upper row that we can customize with the icons of the apps we want. The installed apps include Airscreen, Miracast, Cetusplay, PLEX and TVMC (KODI) with various addons installed. The performance of Android 9 is quite good at the desktop level or with heavy apps, it works stable and without forced app closures. You can turn off the light LEDS with the app color light settings.

If we are going to play and make intensive use of this model we recommend buying the variant with 4GB of RAM, if we want to adjust our budget and we are only going to use it as a media player we may have enough with the 2GB model.

  • Launcher: As an alternative we have Pixel launcher to use mouse or Ugoos for IR control / Android UI rendering at 1080p.
  • Multitasking and access: Multitasking ONLY available in lower bar / YES lower Android bar but NO upper bar.
  • Languages and Google Play: All the international Android classics / Google Play installed.
  • On/Off Controls: If we keep press the power button we have reset and power off option / Configurable in settings.
  • System version and root: Android 9 Pie (32 bit) / YES root by default / YES root menu / Build 2019-11-25 / Model Droidlogic Ampere.
  • Support: A95X don’t have a site with firmware / Firmware available / Custom firmware not available yet.

Network, storage, RAM and ports

The model A95X F3 has eMCP memory for internal storage + DDR3 RAM, it has two USB 3.0 port and SD card reader. In the network section it has a wireless adapter Wifi aC Dual Band + Bluetooth 4.2 (Mediatek MT7668RSN) and Ethernet 10/100 port. As we can see in the tests the results are good, the wifi does reach decent speed figures although the range is normal for a model with an internal antenna.

  • Storage: Total 32GB  – Free 29GB / NTFS + exFAT compatible / Expandable with a USB or SD external memory.
  • RAM: Total 4GB – Free 3GB / DDR3.
  • Network: Good speed with one internal wifi antenna / Range 42dBm, fine. / Bluetooth OK.
  • We recommend reading our Tutorial SAMBA on Android networks if we are going to use files from our network PC.
USB 2.0USB 3.0microSDSATA
Read / Write23/18 MB/s82/37 MB/s21/19 MB/s

Power and performance

In the performance level the A95X F3 has installed the Amlogic S905X3 a Quad Core SoC with ARM Cortex-A55 processors and in the graphic section a Mali-G31 MP2 GPU that is in the mid-range. This SoC is manufactured in 12nm, has a fairly low consumption but as we have seen the cooling system is basic and the temperatures are low all the time, the processor correctly scales the speeds so as not to overheat.

  • Thermals: Min. 40ºC / Working  53ºC / Max. 60ºC / Maintains performance up to 100% / Heat zone on the top / Noise 0db
  • Consumption: Off 0.6W / Min 3W / Working 4.1W / Max. 6.8W
  • Games and emulators: IS possible to play titles such as PUBG with low settings / Emulators up to Wii / NO Vulkan support.
  • Controls: Compatible with Gamepads by cable or bluetooth.

VIDEO AND AUDIO TEST

Video playback test

For the video playback aspect, the A95X F3 features the Amlogic S905X3 SoC and a VPU Advanced Video Engine Gen10 compatible with most modern video formats such as h.265 and VP9 with 4K HDR native resolution or even 8K@60fps support, don’t have video quality settings. We can use players like KODI or PLEX without the slightest problem, the system comes by default with a version of KODI full of addons that we recommend uninstalling. At the audio level we can play DD and DTS sound up to 5.1 through the HDMI port. Check our Amlogic S905X3 SoC Comparison against all SoCs to see more details about A/V aspects of this SoC.

Video results

FormatsResult
h.264 / 1080i / 8bitFrameskip
h.264 / 1080p / 4K / 8bitOK
h.264 / 1080p / 10bit (anime)Frameskip (SW)
h.265 / 1080p / 8bitOK
h.265 / 1080p / 10bit (anime)OK
h.265 / 4K@24fps / 8bitOK
h.265 / 4K@60fps / 10bit HDROK
VP9 P1 / 4K@24fps / 8bitOK
VP9 P2 / 4K@60fps / 10bit HDROK
VP9 P2 / 8K@60fps / 10bit HDROK (only in KODI)
AV1 / 4K@24fps / 10bitFrameskip (SW)
Max. Bitrate100 Mbps = 12,5 MB/s.
  • The maximum bitrate depends on the port used to connect or the limitations of SAMBA Networks.
  • SW = does not have hardware acceleration and may have have some frameskip in very heavy files.

Audio test results

FormatsDD / DTS 5.1DD+ / DTS MADD True / DTS HRDD Atmos / DTS X
HDMIOK / OKCoreCoreCore*
OpticalOK / OKCoreCoreCore*
  • PCM – Stereo only doing downmix from DD or DTS
  • Core – Only the core of the format is played back with what we passed to the Dolby / DTS base system
    * Our AV receiver does not support these native formats but we verify that it is played back to 7.1

Streaming services

We pass our usual tests with streaming services to check how the most popular services work. The A95X F3 presents the classic configuration without certifications which limits us in quality in several streaming services, luckily if it is compatible with most services even if they are in its most basic quality of SD video

Streaming serviceVideo / AudioResultManual
YoutubeHD HDR (720p) / StereoOK
Google Play MoviesHD (720p) / StereoOK
NetflixSD+ (540p) / StereoOK, installing the apk with mouseNetflix on Android
HBOFullHD (1080p) / StereoOK, with mouseHBO on Android
Amazon Prime VideoSD (480p) / StereoOK, with mouseAmazon Prime video on Android
DAZNHD (720p) / StereoOK, with mouse
IPTVFullHD (1080p) / StereoOK

CONCLUSIONS AND BUY LINKS

Score

A95X F3

0.00
7.4

DESIGN AND CONNECTIVITY

7.5/10

HARDWARE

7.5/10

SYSTEM

8.0/10

SUPPORT

6.5/10

PRICE/QUALITY

7.5/10

Pros

  • Cheap
  • Fine tuned Android 9
  • Good Wifi ac
  • Root selector and lower Android bar
  • LED lud can be turned off

Cons

  • No Android upper bar
  • Only Ethernet 10/100

Opinion

As we have seen in our analysis, the A95X F3 is Android TV-Box low-cost with many positive aspects, it has surprised us positively in general. In this device we have the Amlogic S905X3 SoC that improves its CPU cores to the Cortex-A55 and updates its VPU with VP9 video support up to 8K. The GPU allows us to play quite powerful titles like PUBG, if we are going to play we recommend the 4GB model, the 2GB model we only recommend as a media player with KODI programs.

At the level of WiFi connectivity the A95X F3 is quite good, its Wifi ac Dual Band adapter has acceptable speeds within its price, although its 10/100 Ethernet port could be Gigabit to take advantage of our local network. With this model we also have a basic IR control, a firmware with lower Android navigation bars, root selector, its cooling system works correctly and we will not have thermal problems at any time. Luckily the LED lighting strip located at the top is configurable and we can deactivate it through an app that includes.

In short, the A95X F3 is a low-cost TV-Box with good performance in general, at thermal level we have no problems, we have root selector and quite good Wi-Fi.

Where to buy

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25 Comments
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Waweru Njoroge

I might be a bit late to the party but I have an issue that I am hoping can be sorted out. The size of the mouse pointer on my A95X F3 Air is driving me up the wall! It’s way too big and I wanted to know if I can make it smaller. I have tried the usual method, settings>accessibility> etc. but the size will not change. Have tried to change the launcher but it seems the way the box is configured, one cannot change the native launcher without loosing some of the functionality of the box. If anyone… Read more »

Waweru Njoroge

Thanks for the quick revert. Figured there wouldn’t be a “quick fix”. Will look up how to do the dpi bit. If I was to install a new firmware can I assume that I would loose the “pretty lights”…not that I use them anyway.

Waweru Njoroge

have decided it is far too much hassle to deal with just to sort out a mouse pointer issue. Update_A95X F3 Air_202003090926 is supposed to be the latest firmware (Just under 1GB). Card maker and USB burner are easy enough to work but then you have to deal with passwrod.bin and switching off the temperature setting. Well considering I have been able to just explain that means that I should give it a try…i think it all boils down to the fact that I don’t have the patience to wait for the file to download (internet speeds here are terrible… Read more »

Dejtemir

Hello. Very nice website and reviews, congratulations. I wish to ask you if is it possible to somehow play YouTube videos on resolution higher than 720p on this device? Thank you.

Sky1and3r

Hi I’m really impressed with this review and I am really interested with A95X F3 but I’m wondering can it be used to play games from retroarch? How does it performance when playing games?

Sky1and3r

Im sorry im still new to this things. But what do you mean by wifi module is not compatible? So retroarch cant read the wifi module in the android box? so in order to connect I need to use LAN?

Αλέκο

I like your reviews! Are there any boxes at this price with ddr4 ram? Also do all these boxes have 32 bit android not 64bit? Is this the best box at this price or something new came out? 😀

TB1

I’ve had this box and for the price i’m impressed. The ANTUTU 6 is outdated. My benchmark was somewhere in the 70000s. Updated its firmware on it’s own. Temp stays at 42 no matter what game i throw at it. Not all games are compatible but i paid for higher end boxes with worse issues. This is probably the best budget box thats a notch below that boxes that cost a lot more with the s922x chips and their s905x3 out performs the s912. i say buy one

STEVEN day

tb1 which antutu version did you use as ive downloaded the latest version and cant get it to run on this a95x box. ty

mrx777

How do we turn off the LED lights?

mrx777

Thanks Kim.

Stefan H

Could you please confirm Google cast is working 100% ? Tried to find more documentation but was not able to find Google cast support on this box so far, only on this site. I consider buying this box if Google cast is supported. Thanks !

Vlada

Prety box,but very high temperature.Not recommended.

zeke

You should test the T95 MAX Plus, it could be the new s905x3 best buy or at least on par with the A95X F3!

Martin

The A95X has the CPU clocked to 1.7Ghz. This is also correctly reflected in the lower benchmark results when compared with Beelink GT1-MIni2 or X96 Max Plus and may also contribute to lower temperatures. Please update the value in “Basic Specs” and all benchmark score graphs if possible (all show 1.9Ghz). I don’t see this downside reflected in the conclusion, too. Thanks.

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