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First look: JVC Fire TV Edition 4K HDR TV

Amazon Fire TV
(Image credit: Amazon)

Amazon is all about TVs these days – and we’re not just talking about the Fire TV streaming stick either. The third-party Fire TV platform now comes built-in with sets by other manufacturers, including the Toshiba Fire TV announced earlier in the year. As of IFA 2019, though, that Fire TV family just got a lot bigger, including a new JVC Fire TV Edition set with a 4K panel and HDR (high dynamic range).

Multiple Fire TV-powered sets are being rolled out across the UK and Europe, of which the JVC Fire TV Edition is only one. However, given its low price (starting at £349, according to Amazon’s product page), and likely imminent release in the UK, we’ve put together our first impressions from seeing the JVC Fire TV Edition on display.

Design

As a budget set, the JVC Fire TV Edition keeps appearances simple. You have a plain black bezel hugging the panel on all sides, with a silver metal stand perched underneath. There’s an innocuous JVC logo underneath the screen too.

You can expect to get the Voice Remote with Alexa, which ships with new Fire TV streaming sticks and the Fire TV Cube – meaning you can use basic voice commands for your TV’s power settings (on/off), volume controls, and navigation.

We know the set will be available in three sizes: 40-inch, 49-inch, and 55-inch.

Performance

(Image credit: TechRadar)

There’s no direct point of comparison for the JVC Fire TV Edition, given the various other TV makers Amazon has collaborated with in the past. The Toshiba Fire TV launched in the US mid-2019, which we gauged as being best for a cheap TV for HD watching, rather than the more demanding processing needed for 4K.

The JVC Fire TV Edition is a 4K HDR TV though, and therefore supports the HDR10 standard, as well as the dynamic Dolby Vision HDR format. However, we’ve found that cheaper sets generally struggle with premium Dolby formats – either to draw out the quality, or play the format at all – and you may not want to buy this set for that purpose.

Given its low price point, you shouldn’t expect spectacular picture quality– though the Fire TV platform should provide a well-organized smart TV platform with which to access various streaming apps and services, like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hayu, and FreeView Play.

Early thoughts

We’ll be putting the JVC FIre TV Edition through our usual tests when it comes to market, which we assume will be in time for December shopping, if not Black Friday UK the month before.

What we’ve seen makes us think it will be a perfectly acceptable budget television, though it will likely struggle to make use of the high resolution and HDR capability Amazon is currently boasting for the set.