Amazon Echo Show 5 (2nd Gen) review: This Echo sounds familiar

The first smart speaker products most people think of are the Amazon Echo devices. The original Echo speaker introduced the category and made it popular. Later, the Echo Show did the same with smart displays. We're now almost seven years since the launch of the first cylindrical Echo, and nearly four years have passed between the debut of the first Echo Show. This has allowed us to observe the products and their product categories mature. Like other mature product categories, once you reach a certain point there isn't much opportunity to change or improve on the existing form factor. This is evident in the Echo Show line. The Show line, with the exception of the Echo Show 10 (3rd Generation), has maintained a consistent design for almost three years. The Echo Show 8 (2nd Generation), Echo Show 5 Kids (2nd Gen), and Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) all look very similar to one another, as well as to their predecessors and to the Echo Show (2nd generation) from 2018. It's a design that works. VPN Deals: A lifetime license for $16, and monthly plans starting at $1. This device shares many similarities with the original-generation Show 5. I was curious to see if it would be as enjoyable. Turns out, no. It was actually more enjoyable for me.
Amazon Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation): The official motto for the Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) should be "If it isn't broken, don't fix It". Amazon may have done the minimum to improve its smart screen, but it is still a great product. You'll love this version if you loved the original-generation Show 5. The new Show 5 comes in Deep Sea Blue and features a slightly improved camera for video calls. New Deep Sea Blue color option

Camera with improved features

Small form factor fits almost anywhere. The Bad Adjustable stand is sold separately

No more 3.5mm audio jack

Multimedia experience on Echo Show larger devices is not as good $55 Amazon

$55 on Best Buy

B&H: $63

Amazon Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation): Prices and availability

Source: Amazon

In mid-May 2021, the second-generation Echo Show 5 was released along with an Echo Show 8 and a brand-new Echo Show 5 Kids. Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) is now available at $85. The new smart display features a better camera and is available in the same price as its predecessor, $85. You can purchase it directly from Amazon as well as at other retailers such as Best Buy and B&H. Amazon Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation): What's the good?

Source: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central

The form factor of Amazon's Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) is not always the same. You won't be able to tell the difference if you place the new speaker next to its older sibling. The only changes to the device that are noticeable are the color options and camera. Deep Sea Blue is a great choice. It adds personality and style without being distracting. Amazon's blue colors have been my favorite, including the Twilight Blue Echo and Echo Dot (4th Gen), as well as the Echo Frames (2nd Generation) with the same blue hue. It's no surprise that I love the Deep Sea Blue Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation). The darker blue is striking, but it doesn't make you stand out. It blends well into its environment, so it will not clash with any home decor. Although the Echo Show line was one of the first connected home devices that offered video calling, it wasn't tied directly to a phone. The cameras in the first generation were poor. The Echo Show 5 (1st Generation) and Echo Show 8 (1st Generation) both had 1MP cameras. They were adequate but not the best for calling. The camera has seen significant improvements in its second generation. It's actually twice as good now, at 2MP. You're probably thinking "big deal", right? It's kind of a big deal. It's not quite as powerful as the Echo Show 8 (2nd Generation) or Echo Show 10 (3rd Generation), but it's a significant improvement that you might be able to notice when you next call your video calling friends.

Source: Michael Hicks/Android Central2nd Gen left;1st Gen right

My first-gen Show 5 and Show 5 (2nd Gen), video calls were attempted with Michael Hicks. He told me that it was difficult for him to distinguish the differences between the cameras. Although the difference was not that significant, he admitted that the newer device appeared slightly sharper. He wouldn't be able to guess from his own mind if I hadn't told him the device I was calling.

2nd Gen cutout bottom; 1st Generation top 2nd Gen top; 1stGen bottom

The camera cutout in the top right corner of the Echo Show 8 (2nd Generation) is slightly different. It shares the same rectangular shape as the Echo Show 8 (2nd Generation), and not the circular one from the previous generation. The Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) camera can also be used as a bonus security camera. While it won't replace an expensive setup that allows you to zoom and pan, it's a nice extra that you can use without paying any additional. Remotely view your space anywhere you have internet access using the Alexa app for your smartphone. It's easy to set up Home Monitoring either during the initial speaker setup, or at any time later.

The Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) is a second-generation serviceable security camera that can be used to monitor your home. The Show 5 can be used to detect sounds like broken glass or smoke alarms with Alexa Guard. Soon, Amazon will allow the service to hear other sounds, such as crying babies, barking dogs, or coughing or snoring. These sounds can be used to create Alexa Routines or automation. Alexa will turn on your baby monitor to alert you if your child is upset. Alexa will also play loud music to scare off potential intruders when your Show hears Rover barking. You might be curious about how this smart speaker sounds. It's actually not bad. It does have a 1.65-inch speaker, which Amazon claims is "full-range", but it is actually only slightly bigger than the Echo Dot (4th Gen). The speaker can still produce a lot of sound considering its small size. Although it doesn't sound as dynamic or rich as the full-size Echo (4th Generation) or the Echo Show 8 (2nd Generation), the sound is clear and crisp. The mids and highs are quite good for a rear-firing speaker. Although it doesn't have the same impressive lows and bass as the Echoes, it does the job well when it's next to you at your desk. But don't expect it will deliver a room-filling immersive sound. The Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) is small and compact. While some may consider this a disadvantage, I love that the Echo Show 5 (2nd Gen) is small enough to be placed anywhere in my home. It's a great sidekick and has proven to be a productivity boost for me. It's not something I use as an entertainment platform. Therefore, its smaller screen resolution and lower-power speakers aren’t a problem for me. Amazon Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation): What's wrong?

Source: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central

Although I mentioned in the previous section that the camera upgrade was a pro, it is not going to be a popular upgrade. Although the 2MP camera is twice as good as the 1MP one in the original Show 5, it pales in comparison with other smart display cameras. Echo Show 8 (2nd Generation) and Echo Show 10 (3rd Generation) have impressive 13MP cameras. Even the Nest Hub Max has an impressive 6.5MP camera. It almost seems like the video calling feature on the Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) is a throw in and not a tent pole function as it is on larger competitors. This device is not the best for multimedia or video consumption. The next complaint that I have falls under the heading of "you need to know what you are getting into", but a screen as small is not ideal for longer-form content. It's about the same size as most smartphones screens we use to stream Netflix and YouTube. However, the advantage of these is that they can be held or placed in whatever orientation is most comfortable for us. It's not as appealing to watch a half-hour sitcom on a five-inch screen if it is positioned at an angle on a desk, or on an end table. This screen is much more suitable for short video updates, displaying relevant information to your queries, and as a digital frame.

Source: Jeramy Johnson/Android CentralThe bottom of the 2nd Gen is the same as the 1st Gen.

You will need a stand to rotate the display and change its orientation. You can use the same stand that you used for your first-gen Show 5 on this device.

No 3.5mm port for 2nd Gen. (top). No 3.5mm Port on 2nd Generation (top).

I am sad that Amazon removed the 3.5mm audio out jack from the Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation), but I can understand why. It saved the company money and Amazon probably has data that shows most people didn’t use it on their previous devices. It's still a bummer to see features and ports removed. There was once a way to connect a pair wired headphones to the device or to a bigger, more powerful speaker. But that is no longer possible. The device still has a micro-USB port at the back, but I was unable to figure out its purpose. Amazon Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation): Competition

Source: Daniel Bader / Android Central

Although smart displays are steadily increasing in number, not many of them fit into the same size category as the Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation). The Show 5's size and capabilities are best matched by the Lenovo Smart Clock 2. The display is just four inches in size, but it also includes a wireless charging dock and wired earbuds. If you prefer the Assistant ecosystem, Google's Nest Hub (2nd Generation) is another option. With a 7-inch display, the new Nest Hub is between the Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) and Echo Show 8 (2nd Generation). It offers an identical experience to both of these devices. Although it doesn't have a camera, the Nest Hub does have a Soli radar sensor which can track your sleep patterns and help you monitor them. It's $15 more expensive than the Show 5. The Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) is priced around $15 more than the Show 5. The first device has a larger screen and better camera, while the second offers the advantages of an LED clock and timer with a lower cost. If you are willing to sacrifice a little bit of quality, the first-gen Echo Show 5 can still be found at many retailers at a slightly lower price. Amazon Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation): Should You Buy It?

Source: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central

This is the right display for you if you want a smaller, smarter display

When you are away, you want to be able to see inside your home.

The best screen and camera are not necessary.

The best speaker should be the best sounding

A 3.5mm audio output Jack is required for 4 of 5 The bottom line is that the Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) is not a device that will wow you with its impressive specs. However, it is the Echo Show device you'll get the most bangfor your buck, at least on an average basis. It is not a rival to larger Echo Show 8 (2nd Generation) and Echo Show 10 (3rd Generation). You won't likely be streaming movies or watching videos on the Echo Show 5 (2nd Gen) as much as you would with its larger siblings, the Echo Show 8 (2nd Gen) and Echo Show 10 (3rd Gen). The Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) is more like an Alexa-powered alarm system on steroids. It can display updates throughout the day and serve as a digital photo frame.

Amazon Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) Bottom Line: While the Echo Show 5 (2nd Generation) isn't a major upgrade, it's still an amazing value. This is the ideal companion device for your bedside, or at work. Amazon: $55

$55 on Best Buy

B&H: $63