Google Chromecast (2nd Generation): Unboxing & Review

by birtanpublished on February 8, 2021

What's up guys Mike here the Detroit pork and today we're taking a look at the second generation chromecast which returns once again at a $35 price point and remains a really interesting way of streaming media from the Internet to your television now instead of a lot of set-top boxes which have a box a remote controller and an on-screen interface the chromecast relies upon mobile devices like your phone tablet or computer to control the content streaming on the chromecast this makes it very lightweight and very compact so this can basically plug into the back of your TV and disappear which leaves your

System really clutter free so the chromecast this time is available in three distinct colors coral lemonade and black the new design also improves our Wi-Fi specs so we have three Wi-Fi antennas which are adaptive so they'll improve performance dependent on the Wi-Fi conditions we also have dual band support so we can support both 2.4 gigahertz and 5 gigahertz Wi-Fi networks at 802 11ac Wi-Fi speeds so all of that performance should improve video and audio quality although the chromecast is a Google product it's designed to work with Android iOS Mac OS 10 Chrome OS and

Windows so getting to the unboxing first thing we need to do is peel off the tab along the side that allows us to unwrap the sleeve holding the box together now if we look at the inside of the sleeve this will give you some instructions on how to set this up it's very simple and we'll go through that process in this video now getting back to the Box first thing you see on top is the chrome logo embossed in that cardboard box lifting the lid we'll find are very brightly colored chromecast in this case we're looking at the coral color taken out of the box we can see it's got this very

Glossy finish along the top but remains very lightweight and compact and along the back we'll find our HDMI cable magnetically attached to the back of the chromecast which just pops off now that magnet is pretty strong the great thing about this is that it allows us to travel neatly with our chromecast so if we need to take this somewhere for presentation purposes or if we just want to take our videos or music on the road you can do that with this chromecast so taking a close look at our hardware along the edges we'll find a reset button right next to our microUSB port

Which is used for powering the chromecast we also have an LED status light right next to it along the back we'll find all of our pertinent information including Google's a street address as well as our model number information so setting that aside really quickly underneath we'll find our accessories which includes a cable and a power adapter connected to it now the power adapter is chrome branded on both sides but there's otherwise a fairly standard power adapters in fact the chromecast can be powered by a USB port on the back of your television

Which is what I'm going to do in this video but if you don't have a USB port on your television you can connect it to a wall to power it instead and the cable is long enough the longest cable does come with a wire tie so if you're like me and just connect it into the back of my TV you can use this to sort of tie it up and keep it neat so before we set these up let's take a look at all the colors that are available so of course we have glossy black lemonade as well as quarrel so very bright colors I think the idea here is that you can travel with these

Chromecast's so you want them to sort of match your personality see if you want a brighter color you have an option obviously we're seeing some pretty big design changes from the previous generation so instead of a single USB stick type design we now have this puck style design with a flexible HDMI cable which means it's easier to install in tighter locations and the new design is a bit bigger and heavier to accommodate the beefed up antennas but they have very similar hardware features including a reset button a USB port for powering the chromecast and an LED status light

Next up let's go and connect everything up first thing I want to do is connect the micro USB cable to the back of the chromecast and then I want to connect that to the back of the TV in my case so I've used to be pouring on the back of the TV and it's powerful enough to power my chromecast again it just needs a standard USB port so most TV should have one of these available on the back so once it's connected you'll see the LED status light up indicating what's going on next up we need to connect our HDMI cable to a port on the back of the TV and of course we're gonna flip the TV

Around and switch to that port so as you can see it's not exactly tidy back here but the great thing about this new chromecast design is that with a flexible HDMI cable you no longer need to use an adapter if your port is crowded or facing toward the back of a wall like a lot of wall-mounted TVs are so once the chromecast is booted up we get a setup screen indicating that this has to be set up to be used for the first time so what we want to do is go to either our iOS device or Android device download the chromecast app this will allow us to set it up for the first

Time so launching the chromecast app the first thing you should see is the chromecast available to be paired once it selected the TV and the app will flash a set of codes so all we have to do is verify that those match next up you have to select your region and then you can go ahead and name your chromecast on the network so in my case I'm gonna name it chromecast red now your chromecast isn't yet connected to your Wi-Fi network it's just connected to your phone so what we'll have to do here is select our network and login with our password and

Once the chromecast is connected to your Wi-Fi network it will download the updates and install them and while that's happening you'll get a little tutorial a video tutorial explaining how to use your chromecast so with the chromecast booted up and ready to go it's ready to start receiving content so if your chromecast is sharing a Wi-Fi network with your phone any apps on your phone that are compatible with the chromecast will display the cast icon so for example if you're watching a YouTube video in the YouTube app you'll see this little cast icon in the upper corner so

If you tap it you have the option to select one of the cast devices on your network once you select it it pushes that video to the chromecast device and now you have audio and video on your TV your phone then becomes the remote controller so you can pause it play it skip ahead or even adjust the volume right from your phone now you don't need to stay on the app to continue watching it you can leave it and do something else in the background and all I have to do is jump right back to the amp to regain control of it this also works with many other apps like Netflix and

Again it pushes the content to the TV in a full-screen view and your phone or tablet becomes the remote controller this also works with many music apps such as google play music Pandora or even Spotify so this will allow you to play music on your TV speakers or your home entertainment system if your chromecast is connected to one and then your phone becomes a remote controller for that media and you get the album artwork on the TV even some photo apps work with chromecast such as Google's Photos app so you want to see a slideshow a full-screen slideshow right

On your TV you get this little chromecast icon within the photo gallery so you can swipe through your images and you get a full screen uninterrupted view right on your TV so you don't see any of the navigation tools and you can pinch in and out and look at your photos on your phone without affecting that on the TV so again a really slick solution for looking at your photos on the big screen now the chromecast is very similar to other set-top boxes it broadcasts in full 1080p HD video with 5.1 surround sound where supported now still the best experience with chromecast is via an

Android device for example with Iowa's if you leave the app or lock your phone you'll actually have to jump back to the app in order to regain control of your content but with Android you get quick access to that on your lock screen or from the drop-down notification shade so that means you can quickly react sess your media controls without having to open up the app directly Android also incorporates screen mirroring so if you want to mirror the screen of your Android device right to your TV you have that option that gives you a one more flexibility

For content that's not available through chromecast this also means you can do some level of game mirroring so the phone can do most of the processing power and just mirror it to the TV although it can be a little dodgy here because there is some latency but it works surprisingly well you can also mirror taps from a Chrome browser on your computer so this works with OS 10 Windows or a Chromebook so if you have the chromecast extension installed you'll see a little indicator toward the URL bar and you can select your chromecast device and then you get a

Full-screen view of whatever tab you're casting right now so this allows you to watch video live or just read through text you can also select full screen view for video and it pushes the audio to the television next up let's take a look at the chromecast app this is another way of interacting with your chromecast so this will give me suggested items to watch on YouTube Netflix or Google Play those are all media apps installed it or compatible with chromecast we also have our compatible chromecast apps listed down here so we can quickly

Jump into them if we want we can also just search for content star trek into darkness so if I tap on my movie listing here you can see our two options compatible with chromecast including Netflix and Google Play now if we go to devices you can actually see the current wallpaper display and then this will give them the option to find out more information about it or jump to a map where this photo was taken we can also go up to this gear icon to manage more settings for the chrome cast including rename it if we want you can also turn off the backdrop the backdrop is

Basically the screen saver if you want to turn this off you can or you can manage the content that feeds into it so we've Google follows which we can turn on and off we have Facebook so we can plug in our Facebook account if we want Flickr same story you can see it's all turned off by default we also have Play newsstand so if you want images from current event displayed on your TV you can we also have news and lifestyle so if I turn that on the next image to relate to some news in lifestyle image like sports or vests or thing we also have art which is on by default

And you can toggle on certain features here so we have Google Cultural Institute Google open gallery or Street aren't you can toggle that on and off we also have featured photos which includes Google Plus 500 pics and getting images so again you can granularly control that we have custom speed so if you want to slow it down or speed it up you can we have satellite images including Google Maps or NASA and you have weather information so if you don't want the weather information to appear you can turn that on and off or change it to Celsius or Fahrenheit we also have get

Apps if you want to find apps that are compatible with chromecast they're listed right here ultimately the new chromecast doesn't really add anything new from the previous generation but it does improve performance in terms of Wi-Fi speed and stability so that means this chromecast can deliver the best possible video and audio streaming quality that your network can support this also substantially improves the performance of meereen's so we see a higher frame rate and less latency although we're still stuck to 720p at best so at only $35 this is an excellent

Option for basically anybody who has an iOS or Android device this allows you to stream content from devices you already have and you don't need to buy a dedicated set-top box the only drawback here is that you can't really use a universal remote controller with the chromecast you'll have to use your mobile device and the universal remote to control everything else alright guys hope you enjoyed this video if you did please give it a thumbs up to let me know thanks for watching and I'll see you again in the next one

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