The Marantz NR1506 AV receiver offers a winning combination of full-featured streaming audio and fine sound quality in a sleek, low-profile package.
Western Digital WD TV Media Player ( 2014)
While not for everyone, the WD TV's adroit playback of video and music files makes it the perfect living room box for people with large digital media collections.
Philips Blu-ray Surround Base HTB3525B
The Philips HTB3525B packs Blu-ray, Smart TV, and Bluetooth into an affordable sound bar, making it a great choice if you're looking for an all-in-one system.
Roku Streaming Stick ( 2014)
Roku's Streaming Stick offers tons of apps, a real remote, and a compact design for just $50, making it the best streaming stick and an outstanding value.
Plair 2 is an interesting Chromecast alternative that offers access to the full suite of Android apps, but it's just not reliable enough to recommend.
The Roku 1 offers the same excellent experience that's found on other Roku boxes at a new low price, but there aren't many reasons to choose it over the new Streaming Stick or step-up Roku boxes.
Google's $35 Chromecast stick is a cheap and easy way to add streaming video and music to your TV, but it still isn't as fully featured as similarly priced Roku boxes.
Onkyo's TX-NR626 is a value-packed AV receiver with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and even a turntable input, but it's just short of being our top pick.
Netgear NeoTV ( NTV300)
The Netgear Neo TV NTV300 is one of the cheapest streaming boxes on the market, but it doesn't offer any compelling distinguishing features compared with the Roku.
Roku Streaming Stick
While the number of devices that support it will probably grow, the Roku Streaming Stick is still a niche item when compared with every other Roku device.