Finding the best Kodi box doesn't have to be a painstaking process. However, it's true that Kodi is compatible with many different platforms, and there a wide range of very different devices that are considered to be 'Kodi boxes.' So, how to find truly the best option? Well, you need helpful advice from long-time Kodi users. With this said, welcome to TechNadu!
Our editorial team has years of experience when it comes to Kodi. That's why you'll find often-updated articles on our website about Kodi, its addons and skins. Now, it's time to help you find the best Kodi box - and trust us, we've taken this task very seriously.
Before we go into this article any further, we'd like to clarify something. If you're looking for a "fully loaded Kodi box," we'd recommend you reconsider your options. Keep in mind that fully loaded Kodi boxes typically come with illegal addons, which leads to piracy and copyright infringement.
So, what is this guide to the best Kodi boxes all about? Well, it's about legal options only. More precisely, you'll find ten media streaming devices below, all of which are compatible with Kodi. Once you buy one, it's up to you to install Kodi, create your media library, and use this application any way you want.
First, let's check out how to find a Kodi box aligned with all your needs. We'll talk about what makes a good Kodi box, followed by some on-point recommendations. With this said, let's jump right in, shall we?
The Best Kodi Boxes in 2021
Finally, we're ready to give you some on-point recommendations. So, we present to you the 10 best Kodi boxes in 2021.
- Amazon Fire TV Stick - Best Budget-Friendly HD (1080) Kodi Box
- Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K - Best Budget-Friendly 4K Kodi Box
- Amazon Fire TV Cube - Best FireOS-Powered Kodi Box
- Nvidia Shield TV - Best All-Around Android Kodi Box
- Nvidia Shield TV Pro - Best High-End Android Kodi Box
- Xiaomi Mi Box S - Best Entry Level Android Kodi Box
- Raspberry Pi 4 Starter Kit - Best DIY Kodi Box
- Pendoo X6 PRO - Best High-End Custom Kodi Box
- HK1 MAX - Best Customer Kodi Box for Home Users
- Turewell 9 - Best Cheap Custom-Made Kodi Box
1. Amazon Fire TV Stick - Best Budget-Friendly HD (1080p) Kodi Box
Platform: Amazon FireOS | CPU: Quad-Core 1.3Ghz | RAM: 1.5GB | Storage: 8GB | Video Resolution: Up to 1080p | Dimensions: 3.4 x 1.2 x 0.5 in | Weight: 1.1 oz.
Amazon's Fire TV Stick is a pocket-sized streamer and, at the same time, a heavy-weight champion of today's bestselling Kodi streaming devices. With the $39.99 price tag (often discounted to $29.99), the Amazon Fire TV Stick tops this list easily. Undoubtedly, this device is the most popular streaming device in the Kodi community.
This is an incredibly small media streaming device that plugs directly into your TV. It uses a video port on the backside of any TV, which means you won't even notice it. However, don't mistake its small size for less-than-capable features. A highly capable processor powers it, having 2GB of RAM, and 8GB of storage.
The main limitation here is that the Fire TV Stick is restricted to 1080p. Therefore, this is the best option if you have a Full-HD TV and not a 4K TV. However, if you've already switched to 4K, make sure to check our next recommendation, found below.
Even though Kodi is available for Fire OS devices, it isn't featured on Amazon's App Store. One needs to sideload Kodi separately and then install it. This isn't an overly complicated process, and you can check it out by clicking on the link found above.
- PROS: Access to hundreds of apps and media streaming services; Polished interface; Travel-friendly; Easy to set-up and use.
- CONS: No 4K playback; Kodi needs to be sideloaded.
2. Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K - Best 4K Kodi Box
Platform: Amazon FireOS | CPU: Quad-Core 1.7Ghz | RAM: 1.5GB | Storage: 8GB | Video Resolution: Up to 4K | Dimensions: 1.4 x 5.5 x 0.6 in | Weight: 1.4 oz.
The Fire TV Stick 4K, undoubtedly, is a prime choice for Kodi users. It's an excellent proof of a product which gives more than what you pay for. Commercially designed for Amazon Prime Video and Netflix, this media player supports services in 4K with HDR.
Its capability to play Ultra HD content (HDR10 and HDR10+ supported as well) is worth the mention, meaning that the Fire TV 4K will smoothly stream Kodi in 4K.
Unlike the smaller Fire TV Stick, the Fire TV Stick 4K comes with a 1.7GHz ARM processor. And even though it has only 1.5GB of RAM and 8GB of storage, keep in mind that this is a highly optimized device. As such, it's primarily meant for streaming, as it can store only 8GB of data, which isn't sufficient for large media libraries.
The Fire TV 4K also doesn't feature Kodi in its App Store. One must sideload Kodi to install it. It's not an overly complicated process, but you can use our quick guide, mentioned in the previous recommendation. Here too, you'll get the extra perks of Amazon's Alexa and voice command supporting remote.
- PROS: Supports HDR10 and HDR10+; Powered by Fire OS; A rich software ecosystem; Easy setup; Supports Dolby Atmos.
- CONS: Kodi needs to be sideloaded (which isn't an overly complicated process, though).
3. Amazon Fire TV Cube (Gen 2) - Best FireOS-Powered Kodi Box
Platform: Amazon FireOS | CPU: Hexa-Core 2.2Ghz | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 16GB | Video Resolution: Up to 4K | Dimensions: 3.4 x 3.4 x 3.0 in | Weight: 16.4 oz.
In case you need something more powerful, Amazon has come up with a solution. Called Fire TV Cube, this is perhaps the most powerful media streaming device made by this company - and as such, it presents a wide array of features designed for advanced users.
Powered by Fire OS, Fire TV Cube comes with access to thousands of apps. You can use pretty much any popular media streaming service, and of course, there's Kodi as well. Fire TV Cube lets you stream in 4K UHD and up to 60fps. There's HDR (High Dynamic Range) and Dolby Atmos support. And let's not forget to say that it's compatible with any TV, cable or satellite set-top box, soundbar, and A/V receiver.
We recommend the Fire TV Cube if you're looking for a long-term option. It comes with beefy specs, forcing us to believe that the device will perform smoothly for many years. It's not the most affordable option among the best Kodi boxes, but keep in mind that you'll be investing in a device that'll last for a long time.
Finally, Fire TV Cube is powered by Alexa, Amazon's digital assistant. You can set this device to be the central piece of your smart home system, which lets you use Alexa to play media files and control other devices, all at the same time.
- PROS: The most powerful FireOS device; Extremely fluid performance; 4K, 60fps; Acts as a central media hub.
- CONS: Not travel-friendly; Kodi needs to be sideloaded.
4. Nvidia Shield TV - Best All-Around Android Kodi Box
Platform: Android TV | CPU: NVIDIA Tegra X1+ | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 8GB | Video Resolution: Up to 4K | Dimensions: 1.5 x 1.5 x 6.5 in | Weight: 4.83 oz.
We believe it would be an understatement to say that Nvidia's Shield TV is just a media streamer. You can think of it as a computer powered by Android TV, featuring the company's own Tegra X1+ processor. You get 2GB of RAM and 8GB of storage, which should be more than enough for media streaming.
In terms of video playback, the Shield TV supports up to 4K resolution with AI-enhanced upscaling from lower resolutions. It comes with an incredibly crisp video, and it also supports Dolby Vision. In terms of its sound, you can count on Dolby Atmos.
One of the best things about the Shield TV is that it comes with Google's Play Store, meaning you get thousands of apps, including Kodi. And if you're a gamer, keep in mind that you can use GeForce NOW to stream and play AAA-level games.
Overall, the Shield TV isn't the most affordable Kodi box. However, considering everything it brings and that it's a future-proofed purchase, we believe it's well worth the asking price and should make many Kodi users more than happy.
- Pros: Inconspicuous design; Ultra-powerful performance; Smooth 4K playback; Supports GeForce NOW; Supports Dolby Vision & Atmos; Incredibly versatile remote.
- Cons: Only 8GB of storage.
5. Nvidia Shield TV Pro - Best High-End Android Kodi Box
Platform: Android TV | CPU: NVIDIA Tegra X1+ | RAM: 3GB | Storage: 16GB | Video Resolution: Up to 4K | Dimensions: 1.0 x 6.2 x 3.8 in | Weight: 1.8 lbs.
To make sure we've covered various needs and budgets, we'd like to recommend both low- and high-end versions of the same product. This is why we're recommending Nvidia's Shield TV Pro in our guide to the best Kodi boxes.
The Shield TV Pro is designed for more advanced users looking for truly the best of what Android TV brings. The device comes with a powerful processor, 3GB of RAM, and 16GB of storage. And just like its smaller cousin, it supports Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos.
So, what's different here? Well, plenty. The Shield TV Pro is a much larger device - in terms of its dimensions and weight. However, that comes with many benefits. You get more RAM, plenty of storage, two USB 3.0 ports for connecting additional devices, and you can create a PLEX Media Server, and plenty more. This also gives you more options when using Kodi, as you can easily connect external drives and create a sizeable media library.
Finally, the Shield TV Pro comes with the same remote as its more affordable counterpart. Unlike typical remotes, this one supports voice control, Bluetooth and IR, motion-activated backlit buttons, and a lost-remote locator. It seems like Nvidia didn't want to leave a single stone unturned.
- Pros: Beefy specs; USB connectivity; PLEX Media Server support; 4K playback; Supports Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos; Access to the Play Store.
- Cons: Not the most affordable option.
6. Xiaomi Mi Box S - Best Entry Level Android Kodi Box
Platform: Android 8.1 | CPU: Quad-core Cortex-A53 | RAM: 2GB | Storage: 8GB | Video Resolution: Up to 4K | Dimensions: 3.8 x 3.8 x 0.3 in | Weight: 3.6 oz.
Xiaomi's Mi Box S is an excellent example of how a capable media streaming device doesn't have to cost much. When you look at its price, you might imagine a set of entry-level features - but you wouldn't be more wrong. The Mi Box S is certainly going to surprise you.
First, let's start with its internals. The Mi Box S is powered by a quad-core processor, has 2GB of RAM, and 8GB of eMMC flash storage. You also get 2.4GHz/5GHz Wi-Fi connectivity, HDMI 2.0, and Bluetooth 4.1. All of this means that 4K playback is an easy possibility.
Then, you should also know that the Mi Box S comes with Google's Play Store included. Kodi seems to be available in many markets, but keep in mind that some regional Play Store versions might not come with Kodi. This isn't a major obstacle since you can easily sideload the app (considering it has an Android TV version).
We should also mention that the Mi Box S connects to other devices easily. Since it integrates with Google Assistant, you can easily control individual apps via your voice. This also applies to any smart home hardware you might own. It even comes with Chromecast built-in, which means you can mirror your smartphone's screen.
- Pros: Simple design; Supports 4K HDR; Supports Dolby Audio; Comes with the Google Play Store; Chromecast built-in.
- Cons: Not as frequently updated (in terms of its software).
7. Raspberry Pi 4 Starter Kit (By CanaKit) - Best DIY Kodi Box
Platform: N/A | CPU: Quad-core 1.5Ghz | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 32GB | Video Resolution: Up to 4K | Dimensions: 9.6 x 6.1 x 2.3 in | Weight: 1.05 lbs.
And now, we have something completely different. As you can see, we've also decided to recommend a Raspberry Pi kit. That's because it is an affordable way to enter the world of Kodi boxes - by assembling your own media streaming device. Therefore, this procedure requires some effort on your part, but it's highly rewarding.
As you can see in our article on installing Kodi on a Raspberry Pi computer, you're free to select individual hardware pieces. However, a much easier way is to go for a starter kit, just like this one. It's made by CanaKit, which is perhaps the most popular brand when it comes to custom Raspberry Pi computers.
You'll get a Raspberry Pi 4 board equipped with a 64-bit quad-core ARM processor in this starter kit. It has 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. Then, you'll get an elegant case that has a fan included and all of the required cables, including an HDMI cable. And yes, this is a 4K-compatible cable, as this Pi 4 board can easily handle 4K playback.
In terms of installing Kodi, you're free to select your personal platform. Some of the most popular options right now are LibreELEC and OSMC. With all of this said, we highly recommend this Raspberry Pi kit if you're into DIY projects.
- Pros: Great for tinkering; Brings a powerful Raspberry Pi board; Includes everything you need to assemble your device; Plenty of customization available.
- Cons: Be prepared to set aside some time for this DIY project.
8. Pendoo X6 PRO (Android TV) - Best High-End Custom Kodi Box
Platform: Android 9.0 | CPU: Quad-core 1.5Ghz | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 32GB | Video Resolution: Up to 4K | Dimensions: 4.0 x 4.0 x 0.9 in | Weight: 16 oz.
Up until this point, we've recommended products made by worldwide-popular brands. However, to make sure you have as many reliable options as possible, it's time to look at some other options - and this is where Pendoo's X6 PRO comes into play.
In terms of custom-made Android TV boxes, Pendoo is not a newcomer. This brand has a selection of media streaming devices, and it has plenty of experience building hardware compatible with Android TV. The X6 PRO is one of this company's most powerful devices, designed for those looking for 4K playback.
This Kodi box gets you a fast-performing quad-core 1.5Ghz chip, coupled with 4GB of DDR3 RAM. You also get 32GB of eMMC storage. In terms of connectivity, you can rely on 2.4GHz and 5Ghz Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2. As we can see, these are high-end specs.
Pendoo's X6 PRO is powered by Android 9.0 - unlike the majority of similar products that often come with Android 8.0 at best. However, keep in mind that Pendoo suggests sideloading Android apps. So, be prepared for some tinkering - and this applies to Kodi and any other app that you plan on using. In all honesty, this isn't an overly complicated process, where even inexperienced users should be covered well.
- Pros: Brings high-end specs; Plenty of connectivity options; Ready for tinkering; Supports 4K playback; Includes a USB port.
- Cons: You'll need to sideload Kodi.
9. HK1 MAX (Android TV Box) - Best Custom Kodi Box for Home Users
Platform: Android 9.0 | CPU: Quad-core Cortex-A53 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 64GB | Video Resolution: Up to 4K | Dimensions: 4.1 x 4.1 x 0.9 in | Weight: 13.4 oz.
The HK1 MAX is an Android TV box that comes with Android 9.0 out of the box. It means that it's ready for us as soon as you power it on. Considering that installing Kodi on Android takes only a few minutes of your time, we're talking about a convenient solution here.
What's unique about the HK1 MAX is its support for a wide range of screens. No matter if you have an older TV or perhaps a brand-new 4K TV, you'll get to connect it to this media streaming device. It also comes with expandable storage, which is crucial for Kodi, especially if you want to create a locally stored library.
Know that the HK1 MAX comes with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. This gives you plenty of freedom in terms of using numerous apps, without any loss of performance. We should also note that this device supports 3D movies along with the H.265 standard - known for its low-bandwidth impact. And lastly, considering that it supports Bluetooth, you're free to use to a remote, and even a keyboard or mouse.
Speaking of wireless keyboards, the HK1 MAX comes with a backlit one. Of course, you also get a remote - which gets you two methods of input. In terms of Kodi, this is more than you'll ever need, especially since Kodi's interface can be hard to navigate at times.
- Pros: A future-proof purchase; Plenty of internal storage; Supports 3D and 4K output; Includes a Bluetooth keyboard; Great connectivity options.
- Cons: You'll need to sideload Kodi.
10. Turewell T9 - Best Cheap Custom-Made Kodi Box
Platform: Android 9.0 | CPU: Quad-Core Cortex A53 | RAM: 4GB | Storage: 32GB | Video Resolution: Up to 4K | Dimensions: 4.1 x 4.1 x 0.7 in | Weight: 15.2 oz.
We are going to end our list of the best Kodi boxes with an affordable custom-made option. Made by Turewell, the T9 model is an excellent pick for average home users. It surely is a future-proof option that does not break the bank.
In terms of internals, you get a quad-core Cortex A53 processor. Even though it isn't the most powerful one, it's more than good enough for 4K video playback. Then, there is 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. However, this model comes with two USB ports as well, with a port acting as a memory card reader.
By having plenty of options to connect external storage, the T9 is an excellent Kodi box. You can use Kodi to stream media from the Web or to play locally stored files. No matter which way you go, Turewell's T9 will certainly meet your needs. Let's not forget to mention that the T9 is powered by Android 9.0, and we're hopeful that future updates are on the way as well.
With all of this said, we strongly believe that Turewell's T9 is an excellent purchase. It comes at an affordable price while offering more value than its more popular competitors. And most importantly, it will work without any problems for years to come.
- Pros: Powered by Andoird 9.0; Full compatibility with Kodi; Plenty of connectivity options; Supports 3D and 4K video playback; 32GB of internal storage.
- Cons: You'll need to sideload Kodi.
What Makes a Good Kodi Box? What to Look For?
When talking about Kodi boxes, we're talking about media streaming devices. You connect these to your TV (or a monitor) and use their remotes to interact with their interfaces. Also, these come with very different specs, they're built for different purposes, and they're compatible with various types of platforms.
So, let's take a look at what you should pay attention to when buying a Kodi box. Take a look below, think about your priorities, and you'll be well on your way to finding a product that you're going to love.
- Compatibility With Kodi: First and foremost, you'll want a device that's compatible with Kodi. With this said, keep in mind that Kodi has native apps for Android (TV), Fire OS, Raspberry Pi - in addition to Windows, macOS, Linux, and more. If you're getting an Android TV device, it's good to pick one that has access to the Play Store, so you can easily install Kodi and update it in the future.
- Supported Video Resolutions: Make sure to know the maximum video resolution of your TV. For example, if you have a 4K TV, you should get a Kodi box that can output video up to 4K (to take full advantage of your TV). However, if you have an HD TV, there's no reason to get a 4K Kodi box, as you can get away with a more affordable option limited to 1080p (HD).
- CPU (Processor) Unit: Again, keep in mind the maximum video output that you'd like to achieve. For example, 4K playback requires a powerful processor. In general, today's Kodi boxes and media streaming devices are already equipped with suitable CPUs. However, it's always wise to check this information, as you'll want to get the most out of your media streaming device.
- RAM & Available Storage: Remember that Kodi boxes can be used for purposes other than running Kodi. For example, Android and Fire OS devices can run individual apps, access media streaming services, store your media collection, and more. With this said, make sure that your Kodi box has at least 2GB of RAM (3 to 4GB is preferable), and at least 16GB of storage (32 or 64GB is even better).
This brings us to the end of our guide of the best Kodi boxes in 2021. In case of any doubts or questions, don't hesitate to post your comment below - you can be sure that TechNadu's editorial team will respond as soon as possible.