Tronsmart Vega S89 Elite Review!

Android Set-top box featuring the quad core Amlogic S802 chipset with 2GB of ram and 16GB internal flash.
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Tronsmart Vega S89 Elite Review!

Postby deadhp1 » Fri Apr 11, 2014 7:22 pm

A few days ago I received the Tronsmart Vega S89 Elite. I have been eagerly awaiting since it's announcement.
It is currently available at Geekbuying for $105.00 ... 24693.html


For some of you that don’t know, the Vega S89 Elite is a new Android TV Box that features the Amlogic s802 SOC.

-2.0Ghz Amlogic s802 Quad-Core Arm Cortex A9 SOC
-Mali 450 8-core GPU
-2GB of RAM
-8GB Internal Storage
-Wifi A/B/G/N(AP6210)
-BT 4.0
-10/100 Ethernet
-2 Full Size USB 2.0 ports
-1 Micro-USB with OTG support
-1 DC Power Jack
-Female HDMI port
-Optical Audio Output port
-Micro-SD card slot
-AV Port
-IR Sensor
-Power LED
-Power Button
-Reset Button(hidden)

In addition it comes with the following accessories:
-5V 3A power adapter
-Micro-USB cable
-AV cable
-HDMI cable
-IR Remote Control
-User Manual

First Impressions:
The top of the S89 reminds me of a record. The Spiral grooves give it a nice look and feel.

The three rubber feet on the bottom give me confindence that it won't be sliding off the shelf by wires.

Initially I was a bit put off by the cirlcular design of the Tronsmart Vega S89. I wondered what it would look like with the mess of wires coming out of it.

It doesn't bother me at all! Even with all the wires plugged in I don't see them unless I'm looking for them.
Spacing the ports around the back perimeter really helps to keep the cables from becoming tangled.


Front left to right on the back there are the following ports:
-Power Button
-2 Full Size USB Ports
-AV port(with hidden reset button)
-DC Power Port
-10/100 Ethernet RJ45 port
-Full Size HDMI port
-Optical SPDIF audio port
-Micro-SD Card Slot
-Micro-USB OTG port

What's in the Box?

In addition to the Tronsmart Vega S89 Elite, there are several other accessories included in the box.
The power adapter, micro-usb cable, av cable, hdmi cable, and remote control come packed neatly in the box.

The 5V 3A power adapter ensures that there will be no power supply issues.

The included infrared remote is a nice addition. It works quite well with both the stock launcher and XBMC.
It has dedicate navigation buttons for Home, Back, and Menu.
There are also colored shortcut buttons that will launch 4K Player, Music, Browser, and an APP button that doesn't seem to launch anything.
Above the shortcut buttons is a power button. It puts the S89 to sleep, or at the very least turns off the display.
It even has a mouse mode(controlled by arrow keys)

The included micro-usb cable is a must if you want to use the OTG port.
The male micro-usb end is just a little longer to make up for the plastic casing. A normal micro-usb plug will fit, but may be loose or fall out.

First Boot:
After finding some AAA batteries for the remote I plugged the power in and was ready to start the S89.
45 seconds after pressing the power button on the s89 I was greeted by the stock launcher.

I explored the stock launcher and visted the different sections.
Online Video

My recommended

My Apps



I worked my way over to Settings.
I quickly setup my Wifi on the Network page.

Display allows you change between resolutions, hide the status bar, adjust the overscan/underscan,

Advanced brings you Miracast settings and is also where you change the audio output.

Other has a button to bring you to the stock android settings page.


At this point I decided to plug in my usb keyboard and loaded up the Play Store.
I installed a bunch of benchmarking apps, and updated MX Player as well as Netflix. It was all quite smooth and nothing missing that I noticed.

External Drives:
The S89 had no problem mounting a 1TB usb hard drive with a FAT32 partition. No issues with R/W.
The other drive I have is a 500GB with an NTFS partition. This drive could be read, but not written.
I tested NTFS again by formating a flash drive. Yet again the S89 failed to write to it.


The S89 scored a whopping 30699 in Antutu.







-Quadrant Standard
A respectable score of 5956 was obtained.



Here the S89 scored 1584 in HTML5 and 866 in METAL tests.


The Mali 450 does well in GFXBench.


Multimedia Playback:
I tested a bunch of different video files. I'd say the s802 in the Tronsmart Vega S89 easily rivals RK3188 based boxes/sticks.
H.265 has been a topic of discussion since it's listed on the box, I couldn't get any h.265 files to play well in any player.

-4K Player
Decent for many files, but most of my HD files have AC3, DD, or DTS....which this player doesn't play.

I tested Netflix for quite a while.
Quality seems to be the standard 480p that Netflix sends through the app. On wifi I didn't have any buffering, but at several times the screen was a bit pixelated.
Over ethernet the pixelation never showed and quality was at 480p the whole time.
Subtitles and Audio/Video sync is good.
I have no doubts that Tronsmart Vega S89 could playback 720p or 1080p streams, but we really need Netflix to add those options to the app.

Another popular streaming app. It works well. No Audio/Video sync issues.

I was not able to play anything in Crackle. Every time I clicked an item I was brought back to the main menu.

-MX Player
I needed to reinstall MX Player to make it work. After enabling H/W+ most files are played with no issues at all.
DTS and AC3 audio wouldn't play so I install the custom codecs to play them. Now I was able to software decode DTS and AC3. ... ?t=2156254

Works well.

And Finally...
Works Beautifully! I'd say the experience is right on par with my HTPC running XBMC.


As usual XBMC is generally the best player when hardware decoding is available.
DTS and AC3 are software decoded, unless you change the audio output to passthrough.
Menu's are fast and fluid.
Local playback was very good. No sync issues at all.

Network playback was a bit of hit or miss. At least we can adjust the audio sync.
Downloading the same file to the S89 resulted in good audio sync.

Most plugins I tried worked well. I took advantage of services and installed the hub wizard for easy setup.
I managed to freeze the S89 while streaming a movie and browsing the plugins. I haven't been able to replicate the problem yet.

XBMC on the S89 is pretty good. There are always going to be some issues when a device is first released.

The Tronsmart Vega S89 is a great value for fast box that can play XBMC. I frequently hop from android sticks/box to my HTPC for various tasks. With the S89 running XBMC so nicely I don't have to do that.
In general the S89 makes a great addition to any HDTV.

Things that could be changed:
-Add a Shutdown Menu when you press the power button on the S89.(Leave the remote sleep button alone)
-Fix audio sync issues when streaming HD videos in XBMC.
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