NVIDIA has introduced new versions of its SHIELD TV set-top-boxes featuring an all-new design as well as based on an improved Tegra X1+ SoC. The new STBs support all the features its predecessors do and add support for Dolby Vision HDR, Dolby Atmos audio, as well as a new AI-powered upscale algorithm. With the launch of the new devices NVIDIA somewhat changes concept of its STBs as they no longer come with a gamepad.

The new NVIDIA SHIELD TV devices use the company’s new Tegra X1+ SoC that is said to be 25% faster when compared to the original one launched over four years ago. The chip essentially has the same feature set and Maxwell graphics, so games developed with the original SoC in mind will work with the new one without any problems. Meanwhile, since the Tegra X1+ is made using a more advanced process technology, this allows NVIDIA to offer the new SHIELD TV in a more compact form-factor. At the same time, the new SoC is paired with 2 GB of RAM (down from 3 GB) as well as 8 GB of NAND flash storage (down from 16 GB previously), which can be expanded using a microSD card. The SHIELD Pro has 3 GB of RAM as well as 16 GB of NAND storage, but no longer has a hard drive.

NVIDIA made its new SHIELD TV smaller than the predecessor in a bid to better compete against compact streaming media device, such as Google’s Chromecast/Chromecast Ultra. From connectivity standpoint, the new STB features Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.0, a GbE port, an HDMI 2.0b output with HDCP 2.2, and a microSD card slot. Meanwhile, it no longer has USB 3.0 ports, possibly to save space and simplify design. Those who need USB 3.0 should buy the SHIELD Pro with two USB Type-A ports.

SoC Tegra X1+ Tegra X1
× Cortex A57 + 4 × Cortex A53,
Maxwell 2 SMM GPU)
RAM 2 GB 3 GB 3 GB LPDDR4-3200
Storage 8 GB NAND
500 GB HDD
500 GB HDD (Pro only)
Display Connectivity HDMI 2.0b with HDCP 2.2 (4Kp60, HDR)
Dimensions Height 40 mm
1.57 inch
98 mm
3.858 inch
130 mm
5.1 inch
Width 40mm
1.57 inch
159 mm
6.26 inch
210 mm
8.3 inch
Depth 165 mm
6.5 inch
26 mm
1.02 inch
25 mm
1 inch
Weight 137 grams 250 grams 654 grams
Power Adapter integrated ? 40 W
I/O Wireless 2x2 802.11a/b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth 4.1/BLE
USB - 2 × USB 3.0 2 × USB 3.0
1 × micro-USB 2.0
IR - - - IR Receiver
Ethernet Gigabit Ethernet
Launch Product Bundle Shield Remote Shield Controller
Shield Remote
Shield Controller
Launch Price $149.99 $199.99 $199.99 $299.99 Basic: $199.99
Pro: $299.99

When it comes to decoding capabilities, the new SHIELD TV can decode H.265/HEVC, VP8, VP9, H.264, MPEG1/2, H.263, MJPEG, MPEG4, and WMV9/VC1 video. Meanwhile, the STB does not support AV1 as well as VP9.2 codecs because they are not widespread at the moment. The new SHIELD TV can playback 4Kp60 HDR, 4Kp60, Full-HD 60 fps content, and can upscale 720p and 1080p content to 4Kp30 using an AI-enhanced algorithm. It is unclear whether the algorithm relies on a new hardware block that is present only inside NVIDIA’s Tegra X1+, or uses a combination of hardware and software, which means that it could be enabled on previous-generation SHIELD TV consoles too

4K HDR at 60 FPS H.265/HEVC
4K at 60 FPS VP8, VP9, H.264, MPEG1/2
1080p at 60 FPS H.263, MJPEG, MPEG4, WMV9/VC1
HDR HDR10, Dolby Vision
Audio Support AAC, AAC+, eAAC+, MP3, WAVE, AMR, OGG Vorbis, FLAC, PCM, WMA, WMA-Pro, WMA-Lossless, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD (pass-through), DTS-X (pass-through), and DTS-HD (pass-through)
High-Resolution Audio Playback up to 24-bit/192 kHz over HDMI and USB
High-Resolution Audio Upsample up to 24-bit/192 kHz over USB

The new SHIELD TV STBs come with a redesigned SHIELD remote with improved ergonomics and more buttons. The unit has a built-in microphone for Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa; motion-activated backlit buttons; Bluetooth connectivity to connect to the player; and an IR blaster to control volume and power on TVs, soundbars or receivers.

Being based on Android TV/Android 9.0 (Pie) platform, the SHIELD TV ships with a variety of content deliver apps, including Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, Amazon Music, Vudu, Google Play Movies & TV, Plex, Google Play Games, NVIDIA Games, and Google Games. End-users may install additional apps themselves if they need to.

Because of the simplified design and the lack of bundled gamepad, the new NVIDIA SHIELD TV media players are cheaper than their predecessors: the base model costs $149.99 (down from $199.99), whereas the Pro model is priced at $199.99 (down from $299.00).

Related Reading:

Source: NVIDIA

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  • BenSkywalker - Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - link

    You've never heard of 3DMark?

    I know, I was being outrageous comparing the device people explicitly named that cost $149 to a Shield that cost $149, I should have assumed that they meant the other, higher end model that has a SoC that throttles to a comical degree in every test I can find in some other device, assume that it is a *vastly* superior version that doesn't drop 50% or more of its performance when used for an extended period of time *and* ignore that Shield had an upgraded SoC.... Apple fans have to be in amazing shape with the leaps and mental gymnastics it takes :)
  • name99 - Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - link

    You seem to think the point of a discussion in a forum is to win points.
    The adults of us here see the point of a discussion as to enlarge understanding.

    BTW the life winner is the person who collects the most understanding, not the one who scores the most petty points.
  • BenSkywalker - Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - link

    The type of understanding where people flat out lie about performance?

    The type of understanding where people say one thing, get shown that isn't accurate then claim it is juvenile to state hard facts?

    The type of understanding where people result to personal insults when even their wholly dishonest straw mans are exposed?

    This is an article about the new Shield, some Apple fanboys jumped in spreading misinformation, I corrected it providing links including directly to Apple. This isn't about scoring points, it's about keeping dishonest trolls in check.
  • Alistair - Tuesday, October 29, 2019 - link

    and clearly you have no idea what you are talking about, but just to humor you:

    gfxbench: https://gfxbench.com/compare.jsp?benchmark=gfx40&a...

    Manhattan 3.1.1 offscreen ipad vs shield, it is 40fps vs 25fps, i.e. the apple tv is about 60 percent faster than the Tegra X1.
  • BenSkywalker - Tuesday, October 29, 2019 - link

    Manhattan extended test, 93.5 to 38.2, ouch, that is an embarrassing result.

    They seriously need massive help getting a remotely decent GPU done, don't they?
  • Alistair - Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - link

    You are a twit not worth talking to. I already rebutted every single one of your points. Put a clear link for you also. You might want to plant your flag and stand on something that is true, not a fanboy's juvenile fantasy.
  • BenSkywalker - Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - link

    I understand your embarrassment, you open with an outrageous fairy tail about the A8's performance, try to double down on it, then swap to claim you really meant another entirely different piece of hardware in a different device then link benchmarks that show even after jumping through three different levels of strawmans the numbers you picked out show that it *still* loses for extended gaming sessions.

    In my first post I stated the 4k Apple TV was the first device that didn't get crushed by Shield after talking about how the Apple TV was laughable in comparison. It's almost like when there are two different devices I use the modifier so people know which one I'm talking about. I guess you could call that juvenile, it's what, a third grade lesson?
  • Alistair - Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - link

    Again, you twit, you responded to my comment. Since you can't read, my comment was "The Apple 4K TV's CPU is much stronger. And the GPU is good in the Shield, but is basically an iPhone 8 level GPU, also not any faster than the Apple TV which uses the A10X."

    Notice I said Apple TV 4k? And anyways you are just playing juvenile games pretending people are talking about the Apple TV non 4k because everything you said was wrong. Have a nice day.
  • BenSkywalker - Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - link

    Let's go back to your initial claim that started this entire discourse, you said the Shield had an A8 level SoC- back that up.

    If you can't, you're just a silly troll.
  • Alistair - Wednesday, October 30, 2019 - link

    Anyways sorry for the insults, having a crappy day. But I said Apple TV 4k from the beginning, and the only one that has said "A8" is you, none of my comments have referred to the A8.

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