echo show 5 3rd gen vs 2nd

Echo Show 5 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen: 5 Key Differences [2023 vs 2021]

In Echo & Alexa by Tim Brennan

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There’s a new Echo Show in town, and I’m going to give you a complete breakdown of the similarities and five differences between Echo Show 5 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen smart displays with Alexa.

In a rush?

Here’s a summary of the differences between Echo Show 3rd Gen (2023) and Echo Show 5 2nd Gen (2021):

The 2023 Echo Show 5 3rd Gen is slightly larger than the 2021 2nd Gen model, but both feature a 5.5″ touchscreen with a 960 x 480 resolution. While the 2nd Gen offers a Blue color option, the 3rd Gen does not. Each model includes a MediaTek MT 8163 processor, a 1.7” speaker, and the 3rd Gen maintains the 2MP camera upgrade.

Alexa’s Little Smart Display

With the Echo Spot discontinued, the Echo Show 5 is now Amazon’s littlest smart display. While smaller than its siblings the Echo Show 8, 10, and now 15, this miniature speaker is still an incredible value.

echo show 5 3rd gen vs 2nd genYou get everything Alexa plus a smart display that you can use to make video calls, view step-by-step recipes, and watch your favorite shows and YouTube videos.

To call it what it is, it’s half the size of the Echo Show 10 and a quarter of the size of the new Echo Show 15 that Amazon recently announced.

However, being more compact makes it ideal for a small space such as a bookshelf or bedside table. While not as feature-packed as its larger siblings, the Show 5’s small screen delivers crisp visuals via its 5.5″ screen. Oh, and it’s more affordable too.

The 3rd generation Echo Show 5 is the latest version of this neat little smart display. Arriving a few years after the 1st gen model, it looks similar to its predecessors. Although, it does deliver a few nice upgrades that I will cover in more detail below.

📚 Related: Echo Show 10 vs 15: Showdown!

Echo Show 5 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen: Technical Specifications

The following table compares the major technical specifications of the Echo Show 2023 vs 2021 side by side.

Table could not be displayed.

Video Review

2023 Model

Craig from Craig’s Tech Talk does a great job explaining the differences with the upgraded 2023 3rd Gen model in this helpful video review:

Echo Show 5 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen: What’s the Same?

Echo Show 5 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen share several features. Both models have a 5.5-inch touchscreen display with a 960 x 480 resolution and are designed with user-friendly controls.

In terms of privacy, the Echo Show 5 3rd Gen and 2nd Gen both offer a camera shutter and a mute option, ensuring user security and privacy.

The audio experience is consistent across both the 3rd Gen and 2nd Gen, with each housing a 1.65-inch speaker that delivers decent sound quality.

Echo Show 5 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen run on similar software features, offering Alexa’s smart home control, news updates, games, and call functionalities.

Both models provide access to popular streaming services like Netflix, Prime Video, Spotify, and Apple Music, making entertainment easily accessible.

Echo Show 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen: What’s Different?

When looking at Echo Show 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen side by side, these devices certainly do look the same. The overall design and dimensions are about the same.  However, there are also a few noteworthy differences that may sway your decision to get one over the other. Here are some of the notable ones that I found that you may want to take a closer look at.

Difference #1: Design and Size

The Echo Show 5 3rd Gen and 2nd Gen models share a similar design, but the 3rd Gen introduces the sophisticated Cloud Blue color, replacing the 2nd Gen’s Deep Sea Blue.

This update offers a modern aesthetic, aligning with contemporary design trends.

Additionally, the 3rd Gen continues to offer a Kids Edition, appealing to families looking for a fun, child-friendly design. I think the new Kids Edition color will appeal more to a broader age range.

My Pick: A tie, unless specific color preferences or Kids Edition are important.

Difference #2: Camera Quality

Echo Show 5 3rd Gen continues with the 2MP camera introduced in the 2nd Gen, offering clearer video calls. It also includes the remote camera access feature, which could be useful for home monitoring.


Image credit: Amazon

If you like the idea of video calling or checking up on your baby, nanny, or pets using the display upgrading to the more responsive 2023 model makes sense.

My Pick: Echo Show 5 2023 (3rd Gen)

Difference #3: Audio Hardware and Connectivity

Both the Echo Show 5 3rd Gen and 2nd Gen models exclude the 3.5mm audio output jack, favoring wireless connectivity. This design choice aligns with the trend of using high-speed internet and Bluetooth for audio connections.


Image credit: Amazon

If this outweighs the other benefits of upgrading to the 2023 edition for you, go with the 2021 model.

My Pick: Echo Show 5 2021 (2nd Gen)

Difference #4: Environment Friendliness

echo-show-5-1st-gen-2019-1024x540-5450513Continuing the environmental efforts, the Echo Show 5 3rd Gen, like its predecessor, uses recycled materials and eco-friendly packaging.

The commitment to sustainability is a consistent feature in these newer Amazon device models.

Save the trees!🌳 Save the whales! 🐳

My Pick: Echo Show 5 (3rd Gen)

Difference #5: Pricing and Value

The Echo Show 5 3rd Gen and 2nd Gen are priced competitively, with the newer model potentially offering better deals during sales events. Given the similar feature set, the 3rd Gen might provide slightly better value for money on Prime Day, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday.

My Pick: Echo Show 5 3rd Gen

Verdict and Final Thoughts: Echo Show 5 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen

When choosing between the Echo Show 5 3rd Gen vs 2nd Gen, the latest model, the 3rd Gen, clearly has the edge. It maintains the 2MP camera from the 2nd Gen and enhances sound quality and processing power. A notable update is the replacement of the Deep Sea Blue color with a more refined and modern Cloud Blue in the 3rd Gen, adding to its aesthetic appeal.

The Echo Show 5 3rd Gen is not just an incremental upgrade; it combines functionality with a better design, making it a smart investment. It continues Amazon’s commitment to sustainability, using eco-friendly materials and packaging. While the 1st and 2nd Gen models are still good choices, especially if available at a discount, the 3rd Gen’s improvements and contemporary design give it a considerable advantage.

In conclusion, the Echo Show 5 3rd Gen stands out in the Echo lineup, offering a perfect mix of features, usability, and style. Its compatibility with various smart home devices and user-friendly interface make it an excellent choice for any home. Ideal for personal use or as a gift, the 3rd Gen model is an attractive and practical option, especially when taking advantage of seasonal sales.

📚 RelatedEcho Show 8 vs Echo Show 5 

Final Thoughts

You can never go wrong with the Echo Show 5, whether you’re getting the 1st gen or 2nd gen model. They’re both easy to use and a great way to get Alexa going.

The displays may not be as big as some of the other devices in the Echo lineup, but if you visually consume information and can’t afford a bigger one, you will appreciate the Show 5 even at 5.5. inches.

All of the Echo devices make excellent gifts to friends and family, and you can typically get them at a bargain during holiday season sales.


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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