HiMedia Q30 Review: A Solid Android TV Box with Strong Specs

Find out if the HiMedia Q30 is worth it with my comprehensive HiMedia Q30 review

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HiMedia Q30 Review 01

HiMedia have recently released the HiMedia Q30, a compact Android TV box featuring a new chipset targeting those who want a better media experience. I’ve tested out this Android TV box to see how it performs in media playback, movie streaming and more. Is the HiMedia Q30 worth it? Keep reading my HiMedia Q30 review to find out.

What is the HiMedia Q30?

The HiMedia Q30 is the latest Android TV box from the company powered by the quadcore Hisilicon Hi3798M V200 and running Android 7.0.

Being an Android TV box, you can watch videos using Kodi, stream movies from Netflix, play your favorite Android games and more.

HiMedia have focused on media playback, ensuring features such as automatic framerate switching and HD audio passthrough works (with some caveats as we’ll cover later on).

Key Features

  • Runs Android 7.0
  • Quadcore HiSilicon Hi3798M V200 Processor with Mali-450 GPU
  • 2GB of DDR3 RAM and 8GB of onboard storage
  • Strong media playback capabilities including 4K 60fps video decoding for certain codecs
  • Built-in b/g/n Wifi for network streaming
  • 7.1 HD Audio passthrough and downmix for an improved audio experience on supported hardware

Where to Buy the HiMedia Q30

The HiMedia Q30 is available from GeekBuying.

Check Price at GeekBuying

HiMedia Q30 Technical Specifications

View Specifications

General

  • Processor
    Hisilicon Hi3798M V200
  • CPU CPU
    Quad-core 64bit Cortex A53 CPU
  • GPU
    ARM® Mali™-450
  • Operating System
    Android 7.0
  • RAM
    2GB DDR3
  • Storage
    8GB eMMC
    SD Card Slot
  • Other Features
    IR Reciever/Transmitter
    Power Button
  • Power
    5V/2A

Interfaces

  • Video Output
    HDMI 2.0
    Composite
  • Audio Output
    HDMI 2.0
    SP-DIF
    Composite
  • Other Interfaces
    1x USB 3.0
    2x USB 2.0

Connectivity

  • WiFi
    b/g/n (2.4GHz)
  • Ethernet
    100Mbps
  • Bluetooth
    N/A

Physical

    What’s in the Box?

    HiMedia Q30 Review In The Box

    Inside the box, you’ll get:

    • HiMedia Q30 Android TV Box
    • Power Adapter
    • IR Remote
    • HDMI Cable
    • English User Manual

    HiMedia Q30 Review: Hardware

    The HiMedia Q30 is an attractive Android TV box, featuring a black metal case with a brushed metal finish that looks great.

    There’s a power button on the front of the unit, with a USB 2.0 port and SD card slot on one side and another 2 USB 2.0 ports and a USB 3.0 port on the other side.

    On the back, we’ve got the wifi antenna, optical audio, composite A/V out, HDMI port and DC In.

    That composite A/V output will be fantastic for those with older TVs who would otherwise need to invest in a separate adapter.

    The included IR remote is the identical to HiMedia’s other remotes.  It’s a high quality device, with tactile buttons, a full set of Android functions and multimedia controls, in addition to a mouse mode and learning mode so you can control your TV or amplifier from the one remote.

    That said, I’d recommend picking up an air mouse for a better Android experience. You can see my picks for the best Air Mouse here.

    HiMedia Q30 Review Remote Control

    HiMedia Q30 Review: Software

    The HiMedia Q30 uses the same colorful launcher we’ve seen in their other Android TV boxes. It’s got large, colorful app tiles as well as a customisable row of shortcuts along the bottom.

    HiMedia Q30 Review Android 01

    HiMedia have included apps like Netflix, Skype, HappyCast and Kodi. You can also use the Google Play store to install your favorite Android TV box apps and games. Root access isn’t available out of the box, though this won’t affect most users.

    I was glad to see that they’ve pre-installed the Kodi Wrapper App that will configure Kodi to use HiMedia’s media player for the best media experience. It makes the whole process so much easier.

    HiMedia Q30 Review Android 02

    There’s also a built-in SAMBA server, allowing you to share your Q30’s storage using Microsoft’s protocol, though with only 8GB of onboard storage, it wasn’t particularly useful unless you added a large USB hard drive.

    OTA updates are supported for easy firmware updates, with the company releasing several firmware updates adding new features and fixing bugs. HiMedia are one of the better Android TV box manufacturers for support so I’m glad to see this continuing on their latest device.

    HiMedia Q30 Review: Video Playback

    HiMedia Q30 Review Kodi 17.4

    Video playback was tested using Kodi 17.4 downloaded from the Google Play store and configured using the HiMedia Wrapper as this is how the device is expected to be used.

    After setting up Kodi, videos were played from a USB 3.0 hard drive and streamed over wifi from my server’s NFS share.

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    Kodi playback support was a mixed bag when using Kodi’s built-in media player. However, getting Kodi to use the internal player (via the Wrapper app) saw video playback greatly improve, with excellent playback of nearly everything I threw at it.

    Automatic framerate switching works but only when using the internal player in Kodi.

    This makes the HiMedia Q30 one of the best performing Android-based media players I’ve tested to date.

    CodecVideo Performance (Kodi 17.4)
    1080p 3D SBS H.264
    1080p 3D ABL H.264
    1080p24 H.264
    1080p High Bitrate H.264
    1080p60 H.264OK when using Internal Player
    720p50 H.264
    1080i25 H.264
    4K 30FPS H.264OK when using Internal Player
    4K 60FPS H.264
    1080p24 HEVC
    4K 30FPS 8-bit HEVC
    4K 30FPS 10-bit HEVC
    1080p VP8
    720p Hi10pOK when using Internal Player
    1080p Hi10p
    1080p MPEG2
    1080p VC1
    Unencrypted Bluray ISO (Sintel)

    5.1 Audio Passthrough

    HDMI audio passthrough only worked when using the built-in media player in Kodi (configured using the Wrapper app). Otherwise, I had issues getting sound in stock Kodi.

    Netflix

    The HiMedia Q30 isn’t Netflix-certified so streaming videos are limited to 480p (DVD resolution).

    The device does support Widevine L1 however, so it should support HD Netflix in theory, though trying to install the Android TV version of Netflix just returns a “Device not Compatible” error.

    For more information about Netflix on Android TV boxes, check out my HD Netflix on Android guide.

    Smartphone Screen Mirroring (Miracast/AirPlay)

    The HiMedia Q30 supports Miracast using its built-in app. I didn’t have any issues mirroring my Samsung Galaxy S8’s screen

    There’s no AirPlay app installed, though you can install something like AirPin Pro to enable AirPlay support.

    HiMedia Q30 Review: Gaming Performance

    HiMedia Q30 Review Beach Buggy Racing

    The HiMedia Q30’s Hisilicon SoC features a mult-core Mali-450 GPU which offers respectable gaming performance.

    Gaming performance was tested using using Crossy Road (Android) and Beach Buggy Racing (Android) using my GameSir G4S controller (read my review) via the 2.4GHz wireless adapter as Bluetooth isn’t supported.

    The HiMedia Q30’s gaming performance was good, with Crossy Road and Beach Buggy Racing playing great when maxed out.

    Should You Buy the HiMedia Q30?

    HiMedia Q30 Review 04

    The HiMedia Q30 is a solid media player and follows HiMedia’s tradition of producing high quality Android devices. As long as you’re using the internal player with Kodi, media playback was exceptional, making the Q30 one of the best Android-based media streamers I’ve used.

    Whilst I was disappointed that HiMedia didn’t include Bluetooth and HD Netflix support isn’t explicitly supported, those wanting an excellent media player for Kodi should definitely consider buying the HiMedia Q30.

    Pros

    • Excellent media playback
    • Attractive, comprehensive skin
    • Regular firmware update and support

    Cons

    • No Bluetooth limits peripherals like Bluetooth controls
    • Netflix limited to 480p

    Where to Buy the HiMedia Q30

    The HiMedia Q30 is available from GeekBuying.

    Check Price at GeekBuying

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    REVIEW OVERVIEW
    Design
    7
    Features
    7
    Performance
    9
    Usability
    8
    Value
    7
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    Michael is a technology expert with over 10 years of experience in IT, Home Theatre and Automation. Feel free to send Michael a message here.