Video, Software or hardware dependant?

Is video quality hardware or software dependant?

When i first started my Android journey i started with a 4K amazon firestick it didnt take long to learn that it was to restricted but for what it is its work the money IMO

As i gatherd all of the boxes i have (about 15 total now) im starting to notice that hardware speeds and faster GPU isnt looking any better then the 4K firestick which imo hasnt been beat yet what i mean is the hardware on that stick is so slow and outdated yet the video quality is amazing to say the least. Every time i use any of the boxes i have (except for the Nvidia shields) the sharpness and detail of the video is better then any other device (again except the shields)

So how did they do it? at first i thought the firestick used the newer S922X chip like the second gen cube but i was told its a Mediatek MT8695 Quad Core SoC which is comparable to a S905X2 but as far as video quality and sharpness the firestick is hands down better

I havnt seen any other device that uses the Mediatek chip nor the GE8300 MP4 GPU

So what makes the firestick image quality look so good? is it hardware or software?

Did they build a slimdown version of android that focuses more on image quality or is the hardware they use in the 4K firestick just better at handeling video then these other boxes?

When ever i set the firestick aside for a while and use some of my other boxes then go back to the firestick im always in ahh at how smooth the lines are and how clean and crisp everything looks

Now the firestick struggles at times on fast action and i can see it lag at times (rarely) but for a 1.5G ram 8gig memory it amazes me it does as good as it does for what little is there.

All these TV boxes/ firestick uses hardware decoding using VPU… Software decoding is just not feasible at 4k…

As far as I know there is little to no difference when using hardware decoding…

Shield is a different story though… It has some AI features… like AI upscaling which gives better picture quality… maybe Firestick is also using some image enhancing algorithms… But they would have advertised that if they are indeed using that…

hi, artificial intelligence, as they call it, seems to have appeared only in the 2019 version, but how much better it is is certainly a question.
In my opinion, HW has the best playback quality

What is HW? i have botht he tube tv and the pro, they look similar to me

Ide like to see an operating system like the firestick uses on a faster board, i dont like the system the firesticks use because of the lack of settings and control but as far as the quality its good for the hardware it uses.

hardware is basically the decoder… usually the videos are compressed to save space… the decoder just decompresses it… since all decoder uses algorithms (H.265 or H.264) the results (picture quality) should be almost independent from chip to chip

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basically Realtime 7z unzipping for videos…
but is done on specific hardware, dedicated for that purpose…