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Fire TV Stick 4K Max vs 4K vs Lite (2022): What’s The Difference?

Amazon’s lineup of streaming sticks allow you to stream various content on different streaming platforms with ease. There are five Amazon Fire TV devices in total, and if you are unfamiliar with them, choosing one can be quite confusing. Today, we’ll be taking a look at three of their most popular Fire TV Sticks—the Fire TV Stick 4K Max, the Fire TV Stick 4K and the Fire TV Stick Lite. How exactly do they differ and which one is right for you? Below is our in-depth look at the three.

Fire TV Stick 4K Max vs 4K vs Lite Comparison Chart

Model Fire TV Stick 4K Max Fire TV Stick 4K Fire TV Stick Lite
 
Price
Resolutions Supported720p, 1080p, 2160p (4K)720p, 1080p, 2160p (4K)720p, 1080p
WiFi802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax (WiFi 6)802.11a/b/g/n/ac802.11a/b/g/n/ac
BluetoothBluetooth 5.0 + LEBluetooth 5.0 + LEBluetooth 5.0 + LE
Voice SupportAlexa Voice RemoteAlexa Voice RemoteAlexa Voice Remote
Remote ControllerCompatible with IR-enabled devicesCompatible with IR-enabled devicesNot compatible with IR-enabled devices
Storage8GB
Free cloud storage
8GB
Free cloud storage
8GB
Free cloud storage
Live Picture-in-PictureYesNoNo
Video Format SupportDolby Vision, HDR 10, HDR10+, HLG, H.265, H.264, VP9, AV1ย Dolby Vision, HDR 10, HDR10+, HLG, H.265, H.264, VP9HDR 10, HDR10+, HLG, H.265, H.264, Vp9
Dolby AtmosYesYesYes
Included in the BoxAlexa Voice Remote (3rd Gen), USB cable and power adapter, HDMI extender cable for Fire TV Stick 4K Max, 2 AAA batteries,ย Quick Start GuideAlexa Voice Remote (3rd Gen), USB cable and power adapter, HDMI extender cable for Fire TV Stick 4K, 2 AAA batteries,ย Quick Start GuideAlexa Voice Remote Lite (2nd Gen), USB cable and power adapter, HDMI extender, 2 AAA batteries,ย Quick Start Guide

Design

The Fire TV Stick 4K Max, 4K and Lite all have the same form factor, but they come with different remote controllers.

fire tv stick 4k max vs 4k vs lite design
The Fire TV Stick 4K Max (left), Fire TV Stick 4K (center) and the Fire TV Stick Lite (right).

In terms of looks, the three streaming sticks are pretty much the same. They all have a similar USB dongle form factor that you can plug straight into your TV via a free HDMI port. All three of them also come with a micro USB port at the side for power.

The only noticeable difference with these Fire TV Sticks is with their remote controller. The Fire TV Stick Lite comes with the Alexa Voice Remote Lite (2nd Gen), while the Fire TV Stick 4K Max and 4K both come with the Alexa Voice Remote (3rd Gen). All of these remote controls come with a hold-to-speak Alexa function and dedicated buttons for popular streaming apps such as Prime Video, Netflix and Hulu. However, both the 4K Max and 4K remotes come with a mute function and volume controls, since these are compatible with IR-enabled devices such as AV receivers, soundbars and your TV.

Internally, they all have a quad-core processor, 8GB of storage and 1GB RAM. However, the Fire TV Stick 4K Max has a slightly higher-clocked processor at 1.8GHz, compared to the 1.7GHz clock speeds on the Fire TV Stick 4K and Lite. All three models come with free cloud storage for digital content purchased on Amazon.

As for what’s included with the devices, they all come with a USB cable, a power adapter, an HDMI extender and batteries for the remote. Both the Fire TV Stick 4K Max and Fire TV Stick 4K come with a 1-year limited warranty, while the Fire TV Stick Lite only has a 90-day warranty period.

Features

As the most expensive device among the three, the Fire TV Stick 4K Max comes with the most features.

fire tv stick 4k max vs 4k vs lite features
The Fire TV Stick 4K Max has WiFi 6 connectivity and live picture-in-picture view.

Features-wise, the Fire TV Stick 4K Max trumps the other two, which is expected since it is the most expensive. It comes with WiFi 6 connectivity, which is great if you have fast internet, and it has a live picture-in-picture view that allows you to check your front door camera without interrupting your TV show or your movie. Aside from those two features, it also has a boosted performance due to having a slightly higher clocked processor.

The Fire TV Stick 4K has the same set of features as the 4K Max, minus the WiFi 6 and live PIP view. It comes with the same Alexa Voice Remote that has power and volume control for your other IR-enabled devices.

The Fire TV Stick Lite is the entry-level model, and as such, it comes with the least number of features. It can only stream up to 1080p and it does not support Dolby Vision playback. The remote is also pretty basic. It has a hold-to-speak Alexa function, but it does not have power and volume buttons for your TV, AVR or soundbar.

Streaming

You can stream up to 4K with the 4K Max and 4K, while the Lite can only stream 1080p.

fire tv stick 4k max vs 4k vs lite streaming
The remote for the Fire TV Stick 4K Max and 4K (left) comes with a volume button and a mute function for IR-enabled TVs, soundbars and AV receivers.

Both the Fire TV Stick 4K Max and 4K models support 720p, 1080p and 4K streaming, while the Fire TV Stick Lite only supports 720p and 1080p. All three devices share the same Fire TV platform, so you’ll have access to all the same apps regardless of which streaming stick you decide to go with.

As for streaming HDR content, both the Fire TV Stick 4K Max and 4K are capable of streaming Dolby Vision content. On the other hand, the Fire TV Stick Lite only supports up to HDR10+.

For audio, the Fire TV Stick 4K Max and 4K can decode Dolby Atmos sound, while the Fire TV Stick Lite only supports HDMI passthrough of Dolby-encoded audio.

Verdict

We recommend that you get the Fire TV Stick 4K Max over the other streaming sticks. It offers the best value for your money.

If you have a 4K TV, you should definitely get the Fire TV Stick 4K Max over the Fire TV Stick 4K. The former comes with many useful features such as WiFi 6 connectivity, live PIP view and a boosted processor for better responsiveness. The price difference between the two is pretty much negligible.

The Fire TV Stick Lite is worth purchasing if you are still using a 1080p TV. However, we suggest that you get the Fire TV Stick 4K Max instead. It is backwards compatible with your 1080p TV and in case you do decide to upgrade to a 4K TV in the near future, it won’t be rendered useless.

FAQs

๐Ÿ“Œ What is the difference between Fire TV Stick 4K and Fire TV Stick Lite?

The main difference between the two models is that the Fire TV Stick 4K can stream up to 4K while the Fire TV Stick Lite can only go up to 1080p.

๐Ÿ“Œ What’s the difference between the Fire TV Stick 4K and 4K Max?

They are similar in many ways, but the latter comes with additional features such as WiFi 6 connectivity and live view picture-in-picture.

๐Ÿ“Œ Is the Fire TV Stick 4K Max worth it if I only have a 1080p TV?

Yes, it’s worth it since it supports Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos sound. Also, it offers a bit of future-proofing if you ever want to upgrade to a 4K TV in the near future.

๐Ÿ“Œ Is there a monthly fee for Amazon Fire TV?

No, you don’t need to pay a monthly fee or subscription to use any of the Amazon Fire TV Sticks.

Last update on 2022-05-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Carlo Salvador

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about fitness, gaming and music.