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MECOOL KM1 Review – Unbiased Review with Both Good & Bad

MECOOL KM1

This MECOOL KM1 Review was written by Troy from TROYPOINT after using the Android TV Box on a regular basis for one week.

This streaming device was provided free of charge to TROYPOINT by MECOOL.  However, this review is unbiased and you will see that I point out both the good and bad regarding this Android TV Box.  MECOOL did not have access to this post prior to publishing.

MECOOL KM1

The MECOOL KM1 is an Android TV Box running the true Android TV 9 operating system.  Yes, there is a difference as most generic Android TV Boxes run stock Android and not Android TV.


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Read about the differences between Android TV and Stock Android here

MECOOL KM1 Box & Remote

 

MECOOL refers to the KM1 as an Android TV Google certified TV box due to the fact that it integrates nicely with Google features such as voice control and Chromecast.

As with the other generic Android TV Boxes, this does not support Netflix out of the box but surprisingly it does support Amazon Prime Video in HD quality!

The MECOOL KM1 comes in different configurations that you can choose from when purchasing.


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You may pick between 2GB 16GB, 4 GB 32 GB, or 4GB 64GB models.  The first number is the amount of RAM and the second number is the amount of internal storage.

The model that MECOOL sent to me was the KM1 Classic which is the 2GB 16GB model.  If you’re going to purchase this, I would definitely recommend upgrading to either of the 4GB RAM models.

MECOOL KM1 Ad

MECOOL KM1 Features at a Glance

  • Runs Android 9.0 ATV on Amlogic S905X3, with high speed and smooth performance, which is designed to turn your regular TV into a smart one.
  • Google Cast allows you to enjoy entertainment on big screen through various devices such as tablets, smartphones or laptops. Just tap
  • Voice command capabilities mean you can make voice commands instead of punching down instructions. Simply hold and press the voice control key to activate the voice command feature.
  • Equipped with an impressive 4GB of DDR4 RAM which means plenty of space and high-speed performance.
  • Enjoy an H.264 H.265 supportive, Mali-G31 MP2 decoding graphics processor, which provides the you with professional image processing.
  • 2.4GHz and 5GHz dual-band WiFi offers dual-band support. It also comes with integrated connectors like USB 2.0 and USB 3.0. The Bluetooth 4.2 adapter is worth a mention as well.
  • Equipped with 100M LAN Interface for unfettered internet surfing.
  • HDR10+, HDR10, HLG and technicolor HDR processing support, you’ll be able to enjoy high-quality and super clear 4K images.
  • Small in size which makes it easy to place anywhere in your house

MECOOL KM1 CPU

Use coupon code TROYPOINT at checkout for 10% discount.

MECOOL KM1 Official Website & Purchasing Options

MECOOL KM1 Running Android TV

The Android TV operating system is meant for televisions and it’s great to see MECOOL embrace this.

Android TV is notably found on the NVIDIA Shield and TiVo Stream 4K as well.

Most of the generic Android TV Boxes run Stock Android and the apps aren’t optimized for the TV screen.  Yes, we can side-load some of them onto those devices but Android TV Google Play Store provides access to all applications meant for the Television.

MECOOL Android TV

The inclusion of Android TV into its boxes is what makes this device shine in my opinion.  You get many of the benefits of the NVIDIA Shield at a much lower price.

Expand Internal Storage

Since I was sent the classic version which only comes with 16GB of internal storage, the first thing I wanted to do was expand the internal storage.

Sometimes this works and sometimes it doesn’t.

I first enabled Developer Options by going into Settings / Device Preferences / About / clicked the Build menu item 7 or 8 times.  I then went back one screen and into Developer options where I enabled “Force allow apps on external”.

Developer Options


Vidgo

I then inserted a 256GB SandDisk 3.0 USB Drive into the unit and formatted as internal storage and it worked exactly like it would on the NVIDIA Shield.  Great news!

From now forward, all applications that I install will be added to the USB drive so I will never run out of space.

We can achieve this same feature with the Fire TV Stick 4K but the process is less than ideal.

When I go into Apps under the Settings panel, I can also indicate whether it should run off internal or external storage.  I typically run apps that require more resources on internal storage such as my VPN and Kodi.

Apps to External Storage

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Netflix & Amazon Prime Video

Most generic Android TV Boxes don’t support HD video in either Netflix or Amazon Prime Video.

Fortunately, Amazon Prime Video works in full HD on the MECOOL KM1.  As expected, the Amazon Prime Video experience is better on the Fire TV devices but at least it works on this system.

MECOOL KM1 Amazon Prime Video

Netflix does not currently work but there are some APK files floating around that can be side-loaded to bring 1080p HD video through this application.

I did try the above APK that I’m linking to and it did work but I needed a wireless keyboard with a virtual mouse to use the application.  The application is built for phones and tablets, not the TV.

It’s important to note that the MECOOL KM1 is not Netflix certified and the above APK is a hacked version of the app.  We don’t know how long the app will continue working.

Use coupon code TROYPOINT at checkout for 10% discount.

MECOOL KM1 Official Website & Purchasing Options

Side-loading Applications on the MECOOL KM1

I used the TROYPOINT App with the Rapid App Installer and installed all of the most popular APKs and my favorite IPTV service.

Everything worked great with no problems whatsoever.

The Amlogic S905X3 processor does an excellent job playing HD quality video, including 4K content.

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Gaming

I paired my NVIDIA Shield game controller with the MECOOL KM1 and tested some of the more popular games.

I didn’t experience any lag and the game performance was excellent on this Android TV Box.

Gaming on MECOOL KM1

The ability to expand internal storage should appeal to gamers.

One game can quickly reduce your storage by 1 GB.

MECOOL KM1 Download Speeds

I used Analiti Speed test app for the following tests.

I have 1 GB Fiber download speed plan through my Internet Service Provider.

During the WiFi tests, I am connected to the 5Ghz band on my Asus AC3100 Router.  This router resides in the same room as my MECOOL KM1 (approximately 20 feet away from wireless router).

I’m using IPVanish VPN as my VPN on Chicago Server 04 (chi-a04).

MECOOL KM1 Download Speeds

Ethernet

VPN On: Download = 70 Mbps & Upload = 47 Mbps

VPN Off: Download = 94 Mbps & Upload = 86 Mbps

WiFi

VPN On: Download = 72 Mbps & Upload = 36 Mbps

VPN Off: Download = 213 Mbps & Upload = 125 Mbps

Note: Higher speeds on WiFi is due to Ethernet port limited to 100 Mbps speeds.

Use coupon code TROYPOINT at checkout for 10% discount.

MECOOL KM1 Official Website & Purchasing Options

MECOOL KM1 Specs

MECOOL KM1 Specs

  • Brand: MECOOL
  • Model: KM1 CLASSIC
  • Type: TV Box
  • GPU: Mali-G31
  • System: Android 9.0
  • CPU: Amlogic S905X3
  • Core: Quad Core
  • RAM: 2G RAM
  • RAM Type: DDR4
  • ROM: 16G ROM
  • Max. Extended Capacity: TF card up to 32GB (not included)
  • Color: Black
  • Decoder Format: H.263, H.264, H.265, HD MPEG4
  • Audio format: AAC, AAC, FLAC, AVE, MP3, OGG, RM, WMA, WMV
  • Video format: VP9 Profile-2 up to 4Kx2K @ 60fps H.265 HEVC [email protected] up to 4Kx2K @ 60fps AVS2-P2 Profile up to 4Kx2K @ 60fps H.264 AVC [email protected] up to 4Kx2K @ 30fps
  • Photo Format: JPG, JPEG, BMP, GIF, PNG, JFIF … etc photo format
  • Support 5.1 Surround Sound Output: Yes
  • 5G WiFi: Yes
  • WIFI: 802.11 b/g/n/ac
  • Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.2
  • Power Supply: Charge Adapter
  • Interface: AV,DC 5V,HDMI,RJ45,TF card,USB3.0
  • Language: Multilanguage
  • HDMI Version: 2.1
  • Other Functions: Chromecast,Google Assistant,Others
  • HDMI Function: HDCP
  • Power Consumption.: 5W
  • RJ45 Port Speed: 100/10MBPS
  • Power Type: External Power Adapter Mode
  • Power Adapter Input: 100-240V / 50-60Hz
  • Remote Controller Battery: 2 x AAA Battery ( not included )
  • Product weight: 0.1850 kg
  • Package weight: 0.4500 kg
  • Product size (L x W x H): 12.00 x 12.00 x 2.00 cm / 4.72 x 4.72 x 0.79 inches
  • Package size (L x W x H): 18.50 x 14.00 x 6.00 cm / 7.28 x 5.51 x 2.36 inches
  • Package Contents: 1 x TV Box, 1 x Voice Remote, 1 x Power Supply, 1 x HD Cable, 1 x English User Manual

What I Like

  • Android TV Operating System
  • Powerful CPU
  • Bluetooth remote control, not cheap IR remote
  • Expanding internal storage works excellent
  • Fast download speeds with VPN on & off
  • Different models to choose from
  • Excellent price
  • Supports Amazon Prime Video in HD

What I Dislike

  • Netflix not supported (not certified)
  • Ethernet Adapter only 10/100M
  • Probably no updates provided
  • Shipping takes approximately 1 month to United States from MECOOL.
  • Limited support

Final Thoughts on the MECOOL KM1 Android TV Box

MECOOL has been my favorite generic Android TV Box manufacturer for a long time.

Now that they are loading these systems with Android TV, I like them even better.  I guess I can now stop calling them “generic”.

Would I purchase the KM1 if I was a heavy Netflix user?  No.

But, if I wasn’t a Netflix user, I would purchase this over both the Fire TV Stick 4K and the TiVo Stream 4K.

As mentioned earlier, I would suggest purchasing one of their models that comes with 4GB of RAM.  The additional 2GB of RAM will help “future-proof” this Android TV Box.

Due to the current worldwide pandemic, it’s difficult assessing how many of these items are currently available for purchase.  I do know that their has been a shortage as the same has occurred with the Fire TV Stick 4K as well.

Purchasing Options

MECOOL has instructed me to point customers to their official Website for ordering.

As stated above, shipping takes approximately 1 month to the United States.

If you need it quicker, I would suggest searching both Ebay and Amazon but you will probably pay a much higher price if you do that.

As of this post here are the prices for each model.

  • 2GB 16GB – $54.39
  • 4GB 32GB – $67.99
  • 4GB 64GB – $76.49

Use coupon code TROYPOINT at checkout for 10% discount.

MECOOL KM1 Official Website & Purchasing Options

 

Do you own a MECOOL KM1?  Tell us what you think of this Android TV Box in the comments section below.

 

I rate the MECOOL KM1 4.6 stars out of 5

Our Score

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2 thoughts on “MECOOL KM1 Review – Unbiased Review with Both Good & Bad”

  1. I’ve got a KM1 and this box has problems, notably overheating and intermittent sound dropouts. Mecool have promised an update to Android 10, which might fix the problems, but don’t hold your breath. Go for the Mecool KM3 or KM9 – only a slightly slower CPU but almost identical, they run Android 10, there lots of community support and alternative roms, without the KM1 problems.

    1. Had the same problem . Turn of dolby 7.1 in settings this cured mine. i don’t have overheating problem.

  2. I have the mecool km1 and it works great. Only problem I have is the sound level is way lower then regular tv and when I switch back and forth, it is very annoying. I wish there was a way to adjust the sound level up so it would be equal.

  3. How can I add a Status & Navigation bars to top and bottom of screen? Also, I can’t seem to find an ADM install that works. It will always play and not send to advanced download manager.

  4. I received my MECOOL KM1 4 days ago and still cannot figure out how to upload a Kodi Built on this new box can anyone Help?

    1. Do you have your kodi file like Version Leia 18.8 on a USB stick? Then plug it there to the USB slot and go to Apps, maybe you have to find the “settings” first to allow other apps, besides google official apps to be able to install.
      Well, when you are on Apps, install you will find your USB storage and locate your kodi file, click on it, that will take care of the installation.

  5. I mentioned around 4 weeks ago that I ordered this after Troys recommendation. My Shield broke down and I was looking for an alternative.
    I did buy a new shield pro in the meantime.
    The KM1 arrived yesterday and I have just given it a quick test drive. It is impressive and compares to the shield in some respects.
    One downside so far is the ethernet, it will not go beyond 100mbps, so I use wifi which on 5g is fast.
    So far liking this, it is day one and we will see how it goes when there is more clutter on it.

  6. Margaret Sikora

    you also rated the x96 max, which one do you feel is better, also there is a few of the x96 max on amazon, which seems to have the same inners so to speak, which one do you recommend..thanks so much, and also which one of th eme kool do you recommend , the 2 gb 64 at $76.49??? and thanks for your posting, I absolutely love following you and your advice.

    1. I have tested and bought several brand names, and the one that performs better to me is the ME COOL, KM9 of course with the higuer RAM that is 64GB

  7. This box was my introduction to cord cutting nearly a year ago and it works like a dream and highly recommend it. I had no idea what I was doing, but was drawn to the spec of the machine and price in comparison to nvidia. Nobody was reviewing it, so I got 4/64G Classic and after 1 month later a 4/64G Pro. The Pro had one or two more preloaded apps. Both are connected with a mini usb keyboard and recommend purchasing. Two features not mentioned is the signal strength Iamp that changes color and the internal fan is super quiet. I am an ozzy sports fan living in UK and use APK or kodi links for live tv through IPVanish without a hitch. Occasionally I watch Netflix through the APK mentioned, but found it on aptoid or apkpure and cannot scroll the titles across the page, so I search using voice. I have a firestick 4k as well, the content quality is the same on my network. As I found, for the price £35 you can’t go wrong.

  8. MY FireTV has been acting so stupid and slow lately (even though I tried all the tricks) I have been wondering which new one should I get. I tried an Android box in the past and it was worse than the firestick I was using at the time(about 2 yrs ago).
     
    Im going to give Mecool a shot, on the strength of your recommendation. Im trusting you.
    Thanks and Ill let you know. You are appreciated bro. Just sayin…
     
    PS if you have 1G and VPN on slows it to less than 100mbps… I dont see how thats justified. I used it before and it slowed everything down. I dont remember but, she you sign up do they ask you what country you are in?

    1. You only need 20 mbps or so to stream 4k, so anything close to 100 is overkill. At that point it depends more on the quality of the link than your speed.

  9. Enjoy all your reviews Troy,but I don’t believe I am going to see anything better than my nvidia shield.keep up the good work.

  10. Been using for over a year and agree with all you say. Only negative has been the extremely limited amount of apps available via Google Play Store. Needed other app providers such as Aptoide.

    1. I’ve had this box one week, and I am very disappointed because it doesn’t seem have a built-in browser so that I can side load apps I want. This is a big negative for this box. Google Play selections are severely limited and won’t even allow a Google Chrome download. Any suggestions on how to get easily get Google Chrome?

      1. Can’t remember exactly what I did 15 months ago, but if you go into Google Play Store, there is an app TVWeb Browser for TV. Install that, search for Aptoide and once you’ve installed that App provider, search for Google Chrome and install. You could then uninstall the TVWeb Browser. There are also other app providers which, along with Aptoide, can cover most requirements.

        1. Thanks Brian. I was able to download TV Web Browser for TV, but even though Aptoide “dowloaded” from there it did not appear in my Apps on the home screen. I have had other boxes for over 5 years, but this one is so hard to work with because there is no built in browser and the restrictions in Google Play. Do you know how I might reach Troy for assistance?

          1. Brian,

            I was finally able to download the Aptoide app, but much to my dismay, I am still unable to use the app I was seeking (USA TV News).
            It is my opinion that the problem lies with the Android TV 9.0 OS. Other android versions of this app have been and are currently working on my android phone and Matricom Q2 but have been blocked/deleted on this OS unless one is already a cable subscriber. I cannot help but think that this an intentional move to inhibit streaming device users from accessing these cable news networks.

            1. Think you might be right. Android 9 seems to have been a bridge too far for some apps etc to work on. Just remembered that it also hasn’t worked well with 2 VPNs. Keeps disconnecting ethernet cable, so I’ve closed the VPN. Of course my other 2 android 8 tv boxes, win7 and win 10 laptops and netbooks, are all working fine. Can’t help you re Troy either.

    1. Hi Bob: Been running the Z8 for the past 6 months as my main box. I’m not a gamer, so it’s Live tv and catch up for me. Watching the Z8 in MOL2 is pretty hard to beat. And since it’s priced lower than that of the Nvidia Shield, it’s a no-brainer. The Z8 with MOL2 was made for Live Tv. But if you’re an avid gamer, then by all means, the Nvidia Shield is the box for you. So it all depends on what you want to use a box for. I’m using the Z8 on an older Sharp television, it’s an HDTV, but some time I swear 4k couldn’t beat it. Hope this helps, if you haven’t decided already. Be well.

  11. Just as you described only down ting is the Netflix problem. either with mouse on an old netflix version.. pr the easy way just chromecast it from your phone. My isp 100/30 runs 138/44 via wifi.. 129/34 via VPN Wi-Fi. haven had it plugged via ethernet yet. runs all apps and iptv(of Course using tivimate premium as tur app for that) as good as my shield 2019 tube.have the biggest model of the mecool km1. very good remote. turns on very Quick.and the temperature is Very Leo meCOOL ??

  12. Do you have a tutorial on how to set up the external storage thumb drive for the MECOOL KM1. Thank you

  13. Since pretty much everyone that has cut the cable and streams uses Netflix, if only for their unique movies/shows, that is kind of a universal deal breaker for this box. Though I suppose there is a segment out there that doesn’t like/use/can’t afford Netflix. Everything else about this box seems great.

  14. OK, based on this recommendation I have just bought one from the linked site. It does say can take up to six weeks for delivery

  15. I have a Mecool KM1 and so far I think its very good.As far as Netflix app goes its no problem for me.As I think most tvs now have Netflix instaled.

    1. Darn, you pretty much nixed my comment above. Yes, if you have a smart tv — which most any tv aged 7 years or less will be — then Netflix app will be part of that. So this box seems like a good one.

  16. Tried to make a purchase, but my card wasn’t accepted. Enough money to cover the $72.67 discount amount. Confused and awaiting a response

  17. Angel R Miranda

    I don’t have a MECOOL KM1 but I got a MECOOL M8S PRO L. I got it from a DCN TV company where you need to subscribe and pay monthly fee $30 in order to watch 4000 channels. I pay $200 for the box. It have everything just like SPORTZTV. I cancel the subscription since was expensive to me. I got me a Firesticks less expensive. Since I bought the box now I used it. I did a factory reset to erase whatever DCN TV put in it. I have installed SPORTZTV, CINEMA HD, KODI…however everytime I turn it up the DCN TV LOGO comes up first. Don’t know how to get rid off. Other than that it works fine for me.

    1. That is probably because the box belongs to DCN TV. I think the only way to get rid of it would be to FLASH a new ROM, however you must be very careful and know what you are doing, as this can Brick the box.
       
      Mecool’s have always been a favorite of mine and mostly because they come with real Android TV. Apps just run better due to optimization (in my opinion) Thank you for the review Troy.

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