echo auto vs input vs dot vs link vs amp

Amazon Echo Auto Vs Input Vs Dot Vs Link Vs Amp [2024]

In Echo & Alexa by Tim Brennan

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In this post, I will explore the differences between Amazon’s Echo Auto vs Input vs Dot vs Link vs Amp.

A Surprising Echo Question

Surprisingly, I often get asked to explain the differences between two or more of these speakers.

Boy with Echo Auto Vs Input Vs Dot Vs Link Vs AmpWhy is this surprising? I mean, some of them look the same.  Two are roundish, two look like Ham radios, and they all let you engage with Amazon Alexa in some fashion.


They are five very different products. They all have Alexa, sure, but that’s where the similarities end.

Amazon Echo Auto puts Alexa in your car. Echo Input has been discontinued and was replaced with the higher-end Echo Link and Echo Link Amp. Echo Link adds Alexa to your existing A/V Receiver, and Echo Link Amp can enable your existing dumb speakers with Alexa. Echo Dot is a great entry-level smart speaker with Alexa built-in.

In the rest of this post, I will take a closer look and examine what each device can and can’t do.

Let’s dive in.

Echo Auto vs Dot vs Link vs Amp: Quick Compare

First, let’s start with a quick comparison table that compares these four devices side-by-side. Echo Input has been discontinued, so I have removed it from the table.

Table could not be displayed.

What Echo Auto Can and Can’t Do

Echo Auto Vs Input Vs Dot Vs Link Vs Amp

The Echo Auto is a Smart speaker for your car. It essentially puts Alexa in your passenger seat. Amazon recently announced the next generation of this device. The Amazon Echo Auto 2nd Gen will not only let you not only make phone calls and listen to music and send text messages hands-free but there are also some cool new integration features as well.

These include a new form factor with an adhesive mount, integration with Whole Foods for grocery shopping, follow-me music, and new hunch capabilities that will prompt Alexa to message you if you leave your front door open after you have left the house. Very space age!

You can read my full review of the Echo Auto here: Amazon Echo Auto Review.

Video Credit: CNET Highlights

Can do

  • Get turn by turn navigation via Waze and Apple Maps
  • Listen to music, weather, sports
  • Make phone calls hands-free
  • Location-aware smart device control

Can’t do

  • Enable an existing speaker with Alexa
  • Won’t work anywhere other than your car


What Echo Dot Can and Can’t Do

amazon echo dot

The Echo Dot is Amazon’s littlest smart speaker. It is available in multiple generations, but the latest and best-sounding speaker is the 4th generation. It features an improved spherical design, and better sound, and it is still one of the most affordable ways to bring Alexa into your home. I like the one that has a built-in clock (pictured above).

Here’s a video that I just published on my TecTimmy YouTube Channel, where I unbox three generations of the Echo Dot. Please subscribe.

Can do

  • Music, weather, sports
  • Alarms and timers
  • Smart device control

Can’t do

  • Location-aware smart device control
  • Turn-by-turn directions (without some hack)
  • Make a dumb speaker smart


What Echo Input Can and Can’t Do

echo auto vs input vs dot vs link vs amp

Amazon Echo Input has been discontinued and replaced with the Echo Link and Echo Link Amp. Refer to the info about those products below for more details.

What Echo Link Can and Can’t Do

echo auto vs echo input vs dot link amp

Echo Link was designed to be connected to your existing home sterio system or home theater setup. The main differences between the Echo Link and Echo Link Amp products are the Link requires a receiver and the amp does not. The Link Amp also has more input and output options. If you have an existing audio receiver set up that you love, this is the perfect way to add Alexa to it as well as your favorite streaming services.

Video Credit: Amazon Alexa

Can do

  • Multiple digital and analog inputs and outputs.
  • Works with Multiroom music so you can group.
  • Alexa responds through all your connected speakers

Can’t do

  • Requires an existing receiver or amplfier.
  • Requires an existing Echo speaker.
  • No built-in microphone.


What Echo Link Amp Can and Can’t Do

amazon echo link amp

The Echo Link Amp is a great way to add Alexa and streaming music to your favorite speakers, including bookshelf, tower, in-wall, in-ceiling, or outdoors. Since it has a powerful 60w amplifier, it does not require a separate audio receiver like the Echo Link. While there are less expensive ways to enable the same functionality, this may be a worthwhile option for anyone vested in the Amazon ecosystem.

Seedubs Media does a great job of giving us the scoop on the Echo Link Amp. Dig the accent, my friend.

If you are interested in learning more about other Amazon Alexa devices, don’t miss this post: The Year of Alexa! 17 Awesome Amazon Echo Device Gifts To Give

Can do

  • Includes dual-channel, 60w Class D digital amplifier.
  • Even more digital and analog inputs and outputs.
  • Works with multi-room music to connect to other Alexa speakers.
  • Easily plug in your old-school components like a vinyl turntable or CD player.

Can’t do

  • It’s expensive and there are cheaper options out there.
  • Requires strong wi-fi for multiple units and large implementations.
  • No way to adjust the volume on your connected devices themselves.


Echo Auto Vs Input Vs Dot Vs Link Vs Amp: What Do You Think?

So what do you think of this comparison between Echo Auto Vs Input Vs Dot Vs Link Vs Amp? Were you “surprised” by the differences?

Do you own any of these devices now? Thinking about purchasing any of them? What do you think about Amazon Alexa?

Do you like monkeys, like me? Monkeys are cool. 🐒

Please leave me a comment below and let me know. I would love to hear from you.


Has Amazon Echo Input Been Discontinued?

Yes, the Amazon Echo Input was discontinued in late 2019. It has since been replaced by two superior products: the Amazon Echo Link and the Echo Link Amp.

What is the Difference Between Echo Link and Echo Link Amp?

The main difference between the Echo Link and Echo Link Amp is the Echo Link does not include an amplifier; instead, it requires that you connect it to your existing A/V receiver. Echo Link Amp has a 60-watt amplifier built-in and does not require a separate receiver.

What is the Difference Between the 1st Generation and 2nd Gen Echo Auto?

Aside from a new form factor, Amazon has made several improvements to the new Echo Auto. It sports a more compact design, and it includes a Quick Charge 3.0 port so you can charge your phone on the go. Amazon also now offers a roadside assistance program. You can ask Alexa to call roadside assistance if you break down or get a flat connected to a live human for help.

Related Links

You may also enjoy some of my other Echo posts:


Tim Brennan

Tim Brennan, a tech blogger and host of the @TecTimmy YouTube channel, writes about smart homes at oneSmartcrib, home theaters at UniversalRemoteReviews, and AI in writing at Writeinteractive. He holds a Journalism degree from Northeastern University and has covered technology for three decades. He lives on the ocean in Nahant, Massachusetts.

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