REVIEW: Mecool KM3 with Android TV 9 and Google certification

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Mecool KM3 is an Android TV model that we present today in our review, a model that follows the path of other devices of this brand and that surprises us with its Google Certification that allows you to have Google Cast to streaming content from our smartphone to the TV-Box. We also have 4GB of DDR4 RAM and 64GB of internal storage, has a WiFi ac Dual-band adapter, Bluetooth 4.2 and operating system has Android TV 9. Let’s see in our review how this device behaves and the power of its hardware compared to its rivals.
  • Mecool KM3 available in Geekbuying only for $65.99 (59€) from china with the coupon MECOOLKM3 and with shipping from Europe (Spain) only for $73.99 (66€) with the coupon ESMCKM3

PRODUCT DETAILS

ModelMecool KM3
Basic SpecsSoC: Amlogic S905X2 Quad Core Cortex A-53 (64bit) / GPU Mali-G31 MP2 / 4x ARM-A53 @ 1.8GHz
System: Android TV 9 Oreo (32bit)
Ram and storage: 4 GB DDR4 / 64 GB eMMC
Network: Wifi ac 2T2R + Bluetooth 4.2 (AP6359S) – Ethernet 10/100
Ports: HDMI 2.1 4K @ 75fps / AV Jack 3.5mm / 1x USB 2.0 / 1x USB 3.0 / MicroSD
Extras: BT+IR remote with microphone / Cable HDMI / Manual / Adapter DC 5V 2A

Description

The Mecool KM3 TV-Box is presented in a cardboard box with magnetic lid, inside we have the TV-Box, remote control with microphone, HDMI 2.0 cable, small manual first steps and 5V 2A power adapter with its adapter if necessary. The IR + Bluetooth remote control with microphone can be connected automatically by pressing OK + Vol- on the remote control.

  • Remote Control: The default IR + Bluetooth remote with integrated microphone, basic but functional. We can choose other alternatives.
  • Voice control: By default we can use Google Assistant to perform searches by pressing the microphone button.
  • Alternate control: We can control remotely using the app  Cetusplay / Don’t have its own remote control app.

The model Mecool KM3 has a classic design, the tiny black box only has the logo of the brand in relief at the top. On the front we only have a small discrete white LED and on the perimeter we have all the connectors, the USB 3.0 port that is new in this SoC, we also have HDMI 2.1 connector up to 4K@75fps, AV jack, another USB 2.0, microSD reader and indicated with a red circle the power connector. In audio jack we have a hole for the update button of your firmware if necessary.

  • Materials and measures: Plastic / 109 x 109 x 18 mm / 166 gr.
  • Package contents: Manual / Adapter DC 5V 2A / HDMI cable / BT+IR remote with microphone (2x AAA batteries not included).
  • Interfaces: HDMI 2.1 4K@75fps / AV Jack 3.5mm / Jack AV / 1x USB 2.0 / 1x USB 3.0 / MicroSD / Reset.
  • Leds and panel: Frontal RGB LED.

When opening the TV-Box we can see the Wifi ac 2T2R + Bluetooth 4.2 (AP6359S), It has two antennas stuck to the outer shell. The cooling system consists of a simple metallic heatsink attached to the SoC, a fairly basic design that we will see how it behaves in the thermal tests.

SYSTEM AND PERFORMANCE

Environment and Android system

We connect the Mecool KM3 to the current, the TV-Box starts automatically with an animation and the frontal LED lights up. The system installed by default is Android TV 9, an Android version focused on its use on television screen and use with remote control that has its advantages and disadvantages, we have a lot of installed streaming apps (too many, we recommend deleting them). The performance is very good and the system moves very fluid, it shows much more powerful hardware than a Xiaomi Mi Box S for example.

  • Launcher: Android TV 9 Launcher / We can’t change the default launcher / Android UI rendering at 1080p.
  • Multitasking and access: Android TV notification system / Multitasking available directly with long press in Home.
  • Installed apps: Google play, Netflix, Sideload launcher, Youtube, FX Explorer. Settings and dozens of streaming apps.
  • Languages: All the international Android classics.
  • On/Off Controls: If we keep press the power button we have reset and power off option / Configurable in settings.

We check the system data within the Android settings and through analysis software, we can see the details of the system installed by default, in this case in Android TV 9 with support for 32bit apps only. The system has a Google Certification because Chromecast has an encrypted system that can only be obtained with that license, but that does not mean that we have Google system updates, we will only find a firmware file released by Mecool if we are lucky.

  • System version: Android TV 9 (32 bit) / Kernel 4.9.113 / Build 2019-03-20 / Reference U211.
  • App store: Google Play with all the apps available for the Android system.
  • Settings and root: Android + Droid Settings / The system IS NOT root by default / NO menu to deactivate it in settings.
  • Support: Mecool DON’T has a website to contact / Firmware available / Custom firmware no yet

Power and performance

In the power aspect the Mecool KM3 has very good results in the line of the new Amlogic S905X2 Quad Core SoC with ARM Cortex-A53 processors and Mali-G31 MP2 GPU in a very good position. This new SoC made in 12nm offers us a good efficiency, the temperatures do not reach a worrying figures at any time and in normal use it behaves fast and cool.

  • Consumption: Off 0W / Standby 2.7W / Basic use 3.8W / Maximum 7.2W
  • Thermals: Minimum 46ºC / Maximum 71ºC / Maintains performance up to 100% / Small heat zone on the top / Noise 0db
  • You can read our Comparison article for Amlogic S905X2 SoC with all its technical details

We pass our benchmarks and we can see how the Amlogic S905X2 SoC is almost on par with the most powerful Amlogic last generation SoC the S912. In general the results are below that a powerful SoC like the Rockchip RK3399 or the new Amlogic S922X as we has seen in the Beelink GT-King review few days ago.

In the following you can see a test of how PUBG moves in medium settings with the S905X2 SoC, the result is good and we can move without problems. We recommend reading our tutorial to play with keyboard and mouse to PUBG in a TV-Box.

  • Games and emulators: IS possible to play demanding titles such as PUBG / Emulators up to Wii / NO Vulkan support.
  • Controls: Compatible with Gamepads by cable or bluetooth.

Network, storage, RAM and ports

In the Mecool KM3 model we have integrated eMMC memory as internal storage, USB 3.0 ports and SD card reader. In the network section we have a Wifi ac 2T2R + Bluetooth 4.2 (AP6359S) and Ethernet 10/100 port. The performance of the Wifi chip is good and we arrive at correct figures for this type of adapter.

  • Storage: Total 64GB expandable with a USB memory stick / NTFS + exFAT compatible.
  • RAM: Total 4GB – Free 3GB / DDR4.
  • Network: Good speed in 5G with two wifi antenna / Range 26 dBm, correct. / Bluetooth works 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 / Write21/17 MB/s113/36 MB/s18/19 MB/s

VIDEO AND AUDIO TEST

Video playback test

Regarding the video playback section, the Mecool KM3 has the S905X2 SoC and a Amlogic TruLife Gen8 VPU compatible with most modern video formats such as h.265 and VP9. In this TV-Box we can use players like MX Player or install KODI from Google Play without the slightest problem, the system comes by default with the option to install to install KODI that works without problems. Thanks to the Google Certification we can use Chromecast from applications such as Youtube, Google Play Movies, Music or similar, but due to security limitations and certifications we can not use it in apps like Netflix or similar.

We perform several multimedia playback tests with the Mecool KM3 and check that it works perfectly using the new Amlogic S922X SoC, which has video output support for HDMI 2.1 that theoretically allows maximum resolution up to 4K@75fps with HDR information with  support for Dolby Vision, check the settings.

Video results

FormatsResult
h.264 / 1080p / 4K / 8bitOK
h.264 / 4K / 10bitOK
h.265 / 4K / 8bitOK
h.265 / 4K / 10bit HDROK
VP9 P1 / 4K / 8bitOK
VP9 P2 / 4K / 10bit HDROK
VP9 P2 / 8K / 10bit HDRFrameskip

Audio playback test

For testing the audio in the Mecool KM3 we use a Yamaha AV receiver, we check that they supports DD and DTS pass through sound. We can only listen to the multi-channel audio up to 5.1. If we do not have an AV receiver to listen the files with AC3 or multichannel sound we must configure the system to listen to configure the system to listen to multichannel AC3 videos in stereo on any TV.

Audio test results

FormatsDD / DTS 5.1DD+ / DTS MADD True / DTS HRDD Atmos / DTS X
HDMIOK / OKOK / CoreCorePCM / Core*
Optical-*
  • 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 the classic tests on streaming services to see how the most popular services work. The BMecool KM3 presents an unusual configuration since we are certified with both Google Widevine L1 and Microsoft Playready, in addition to support HDCP 2.2. On a practical level despite these certificates we can only see Netflix in SD+ quality, other services such as HBO or Amazon Prime Video can not be played despite having the DRM certificates for different incompatibilities.

Streaming serviceVideo / AudioResultManual
Youtube4K (2160p) / StereoOK
Google Play MoviesFullHD (1080p) / StereoOK
NetflixSD+ (540p) / StereoOK,  installing the apk and needs a mouseNetflix on Android
HBOHD (720p) / StereoOK, with Android TV apk
Amazon Prime VideoSD (480p) / StereoOK with apk for Android Mobile + mouse
Playback control are not the best
Amazon Prime video on Android

CONCLUSIONS

Score

Mecool KM3 _

0.00
7.3

DESIGN AND CONNECTIVITY

8.5/10

HARDWARE

7.0/10

SOFTWARE

7.5/10

SUPPORT

6.0/10

PRICE/QUALITY

7.5/10

Pros

  • Chromecast (with limitations)
  • Fast Android TV 9
  • Compact and powerful
  • BT remoto with voice
  • Wifi ac with two antennas

Cons

  • Ethernet 10/100
  • No Flymouse in the remote

Opinion

The TV-Box Mecool KM3 is a very interesting model based on the S905X2 SoC that has Google Certificate, a certificate that allows to use the Chromecast system in Google applications although unfortunately outside these app we can not use it, apart from that point the certificate does not provide special support or something extra remarkable. At the network level, the Wifi ac Dual band adapter gives us good figures, regrettably that a simple 10/100 Ethernet port is mounted instead of a Gigabit one that will allow us to go more relaxed in a local network.

This model Mecool KM3 integrates on its motherboard 4GB of DDR4 RAM, which allow us to load several apps from the internal memory and switch between them from the included remote control. This TV-Box has the latest Android TV 9 system that allows us to handle it in a very comfortable way on our TV and we can give orders with the microphone through Google Assistant, it’s a shame that it is not Flymouse because it limits the use of certain apps. A model that behaves well as a video player, for example with KODI or for powerful games and all kinds of commonly used apps.

This TV-Box is powerful and have Chromecast (to a certain extent), a perfectly valid model for local content playback that also has a remote control with microphone that facilitates user-level use. Consult our recommended models to see other alternatives.

WHERE TO BUY AND ADD-ONS

  • Mecool KM3 available in Geekbuying only for $65.99 (59€) from china with the coupon MECOOLKM3 and with shipping from Europe (Spain) only for $73.99 (66€) with the coupon ESMCKM3

Add-ons

Did you find apk for android? You can find new Free Android Games and apps.

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Bernard
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Bernard

Hello, I have discovered there is no built in customisable control of the audio sound in the KM3 settings menu. I would like to be able to equalise/customise audio sound from websites using the chrome web browser. Is this possible? Many thanks for your help in this matter!

Евгений Ширяев
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could you please in your future reviews test for EAC3 (dolby digital plus)? because km9pro doesn’t have eac3 support in plex for example (((

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