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insignia 50 4k

Insignia 50 4k Amazon Fire TV: Did They Finally Get It Right?

If you have been in the market for a 4K smart TV, you must have come across the Insignia 50 4K fire TV. Since the introduction of 4K display technology, the main concern among customers was the prices. However, manufacturers such as TCL, Hisense and Toshiba have come to the rescue to offer more budget-friendly options. Despite this, most of their sets are still not at par with what you expect. You either have display issues, limited connectivity options, or the smart platform resembled that prepared by a three-year-old.

Insignia 50 4K

Having collated all these problems from consumers, Insignia decided to answer the call. They have in their ranks a 4K smart TV that aims to address all your pressing issues. With all these bold claims, we decided to test out the capabilities of the Insignia 50 4K fire TV. After numerous tests, here is what we found out.

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Design quality

Unlike all other bargain TVs that we have reviewed, Insignia goes a different route with their TV design. The casing is still plastic; however, it features a false wood finish that incorporates the grain patterns and all. The difference in design makes the TV stand out when put side by side with other models in the same category.

The edges are much rounder and eliminate that stocky block look that you get from other sets such as the Sceptre A435BV. It is not the thinnest of the bunch, but at 8.3 cm including the stand, it is narrower than the Toshiba. The chassis also incorporates some metal elements, at the back panel and connection modules. These offer a decent variation and add to the uniqueness of the set. 

What stands out in the design are the perpendicular stands. They sit towards the edge of the screen and offer better stability as compared to other budget TVs. You have an allowance of VESA mounting of 200 X 200 mm, allowing you to mount the TV flush on your wall.

Display Technology

Where most budget TVs fail is on their display quality. However, with the Insignia 50 4K TV, this is not an issue. Testing it with multiple inputs did not expose any significant flaws that came as a surprise. With it being a budget TV, we definitely did not expect impressive low input lag numbers or a wide colour gamut. To our surprise, the TV accentuated colours well. Reds appeared brighter, and landscape scenes were vivid enough to reach near real-life quality. It is capable of beaming images at 3840 X 2160p at a refresh rate of 60Hz.

You do get HDR technology built-in, but the lack of local dimming hampers its effectiveness. Blacks are not as deep as you would expect, with distortion occurring in brightly lit scenes. The Insignia 50 4K TV is a selfish set, because of its viewing angles. Things go array once you stray further than 40 inches to the side. Colour spillage is horrendous, only making the TV watchable when you are facing the screen directly.

PC and Game console input also suffered when it came to fast games such as Need for Speed rivals and Mortal Kombat 11. The transition between fight scenes presented a little motion blur, which may not be an issue for casual gamers. The effects of lacking local dimming comes into full force when viewing the screen in a dark room.

Black uniformity goes out of the window, leaving you with an inconceivable image. If you are expecting exceptional chroma capabilities, you are better off looking elsewhere. The lack of proper image tuning options hampers this endeavor. It may not be the perfect TV for watching movies, but it will certainly do.

Also Read: Cool TV Accessories: Top 7 Simple Accessories For Your LED TV

Smart TV functionality

The Insignia 50 4k TV uses Amazon’s Fire TV platform. Although not at feature friendly as webOS or Smart HUB, you do get a decent number of apps to choose from for your streaming services. It comes with Alexa Voice Assistant and Alexa skills built-in. With these features at your disposal, you can control all your smart home devices directly from your voice-enabled remote. Navigating through the menus is also easy. All the items are neatly spread across the screen, with your favourite apps all in a ribbon at the bottom of the screen. 

You get Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus, and Hulu all pre-installed with your device. Fire TV also has thousands of apps from which to choose other smart TV services. However, many of them do little to enhance your viewing portfolio. The remote has a neat layout with dedicated buttons for Amazon Prime Video, HBO, Netflix, and PS Vue.

Despite all these improvements, there are some significant flaws on the platform. The constant bombardment of ads at every click of an option is excruciating. You will get everything from recommended videos to in-stock alerts of the latest line of beauty programs. To further your frustration, you cannot opt-out of the ads, meaning you are doomed from the get-go.

The Insignia 50 4K Fire TV also does not support far-field control, meaning if you will need an Alexa Echo if you want to control the TV from your patio. Finally, the lack of a volume control button on the remote may cause frustrations to first time users. Updates to your software are done automatically, provided that you are connected to the internet.

Connectivity

Insignia 50 4K

You get three HDMI ports with one supporting ARC, one USB, one 3.5mm, to connect all your devices. However, the lack of a proper cable management system will leave the whole place a mess.

Insignia 50 4K

In addition, you also have an RF connector for your antenna in case you want to binge on free-to-air channels. Wi-Fi capability and an Ethernet port make connecting to the internet a breeze. There is no Bluetooth connectivity, which would have been great to outdo their competition.

Also Read: The Best Apps For LG Smart TV: 11 Apps For The Best Viewing Experience

Audio

Insignia 50 4K fire TV is armed with two 8W speakers built-in. Their size may appear small, but they do pack quite the punch. The sound quality is superb, far superior to other models in the same range. The DTS TruSurround codec synthesizes the sound well for the speakers to produce a rich and clear sound. If you are using the TV in a large room, investing in a soundbar is highly recommended.

Technical Specifications

Model NumberNS-50DF710NA19
Dimensions44.4 x 26.1 x 3.3 Inches without stand VESA mountable 200 X200 mm 11.7 kilos net weight Plastic and metal chassis with false wood finish
DisplayVA direct-lit LED panel 3840 X 2160 pixels at 60 Hz refresh rate HDR 10 with 4000:1 contrast ratio 49.5 Inches viewable screen
Smart TV FeautresAmazon Fire TV smart Platform Apple TV plus, Disney Plus, Netflix, Hulu, YouTube and Sling TV built-in. Amazon Alexa voice assist and Alexa Skills built-in Digital TV Tuner Text-to-Speech compatible.
Connections3 HDMI with one ARC 1 USB 1 3.5 mm headphone jack 1 RF input 1 Ethernet and Wi-Fi internet connectivity 1 Digital Optical Audio Out 1 Composite Video Input
AccessoriesPerpendicular bezel stand 1 Quick setup guide 1 Alexa voice control remote 2 X AAA batteries 1 year manufacturer warranty.

Also Read: Insignia 50 Inch TV Review – Are They Your Best Buy?

Availability

The Insignia 50 4K Fire TV is available at all major retailers. With a little bit of further scouting, you may stumble upon fantastic offers on this device.

Check prices on Best Buy

Final Verdict

Despite being a 2018 model, the Insignia 50 4K Fire TV is a decent option to consider as a budget TV. It works reasonably well across all inputs and will make an excellent second TV for your home. If Insignia and Best Buy reach an agreement to stop the ad harassment, this would add to the appeal of the unit. With the year now coming to an end and more exciting options promised. You may want to wait a little longer and see what will be available. The final score is 5 out of 10.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who makes Insignia TVs?

Insignia TVs are part of the Consumer Electronics developed by Best Buy. They cover a wide range of models from FHD, 4K UHD and Smart TVs. TV screen sizes range from 19’’ to 65’’. The availability may vary depending on the series.

What new models are to be released in 2021?

The most recent release from Insignia is the NS-43DF, which is an upgrade to the Insignia 50 4K model. It comes with an update on the Fire TV platform and features better display technology. 

Check prices on Amazon

Does the Insignia 50 4K Fire TV work with Bluetooth devices?

Unfortunately, the Insignia line does not offer any Bluetooth technology. You however have the multiple connection ports to connect most devices that you many need for your entertainment hub.

How do you control the volume of an Insignia 50 4K Fire TV?

Volume control is only available via the onscreen menu. Newer models of Insignia Fire TVs and other brands, now come with a volume button on the Alexa voice remote control. You may want to check out the for Insignia NS-65DF710NA21 65’’ smart TV or Toshiba 50LF621U21 Fire TV Edition.

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