Best Digital Picture Frames Guide & Reviews of 2021

People of a certain generation can remember the days of looking through the family photo album. There is nothing like taking a trip down memory lane, but these bulky photo books are becoming obsolete. This is where the best digital picture frames come in. These products come in different styles and sizes, as well as a variety of aspect ratios. No matter the budget, there is an option available. This 2021 guide will help consumers find a digital frame with awesome features like Wi-Fi connectivity, HD quality, and automatic slideshows.

Steven Lewis

Steven Lewis - Editorial Staff

Updated: April 20, 2021

What We Did to Find the Best

There are more digital albums available than ever before, so finding the best digital picture frame isn’t always easy. While there is an option for every budget and family, it takes some work to find a good fit. Fortunately, this review guide is here to help.

To find the best products, the first step was figuring out the ideal features. Then, it was time to grade each option from zero to ten based on the metrics here:

  • Features

    0-10

    monitoring period, 24/7 alerts, disaster protection etc.

  • Support

    0-10

    telephone, email, chat, and other channels

  • Price

    0-10

    monthly fee, money-back, trial period

  • Ease of Use

    0-10

    installation, maintenance, service support

  • Trust Score

    0-10

    BBB.org and Trustpilot (positive, negative reviews)

The final step was to find the average scores to complete the top ten list. Check it out below, followed by some shopping tips.

1. Aura Mason Digital Picture Frame: Going Back to Basics

Total Score 8.8/10

  • Features9.0/10
  • Equipment8.0/10
  • Price9.0/10
  • Ease Of Use10/10
  • Trust Score8.0/10

Starting Price

$179.99

Visit Website
Best for Basics

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

If anyone is looking for a basic digital picture frame, look no further than the 9-inch Aura Mason. It covers the necessities but leaves the bells and whistles to the big-name brands. This doesn’t have to be a bad thing, especially for older folks who want a digital album.

It doesn’t have an SD card slot, but it works with Google and Instagram cloud services. So, individuals can log into their email to share and store photos.

Pros:

  • Aura app
  • Easy to use
  • Individuals can load it with photos without opening it
  • It has a motion sensor
  • Makes a good gift
  • Slideshows range from 15 seconds to 4 hours
  • Works with Instagram and Google cloud services

Cons:

  • No touchscreen or remote control
  • The price is a bit high
  • Very basic

Even though this is a basic digital photo frame, it boasts good looks. Plus, individuals can load it with images without even taking it out of the packaging.

It does have an Aura app, so it’s easy to scan the QR code and get started. This comes in handy if the person is giving it as a gift.


2. Pix-Star Wi-Fi Digital Photo Frame: An Affordable Way to Display Photos

Total Score 8.6/10

  • Features8.0/10
  • Equipment8.0/10
  • Price9.0/10
  • Ease Of Use9.0/10
  • Trust Score9.0/10

Starting Price

$154

Visit Website
Best for Wi-Fi

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

Pix-Star digital picture frames might not be the most well-known, but they’re worth checking out. The screen’s display size is quite basic, and it’s not a touchscreen, but it’s a good choice for getting back to basics. At least it comes with 8GB of storage, which is impressive for the price.

It takes a while to get the hang of it, but the 10-inch photo frame is Wi-Fi-enabled for greater convenience. Overall, it has many of all-in-one functions, but it won’t blow customers away with its features.

Pros:

  • Built-in storage
  • Decent screen size
  • Good for older people
  • Multimedia screen
  • Remote control access
  • Send/receive images via email
  • Wi-Fi compatibility

Cons:

  • Lacks SD slots
  • No video features
  • Not compatible with cloud services

Thanks to its email functions, this digital photo frame doesn’t necessarily require a USB or SD card. As long as the user has a stable Internet connection, they can get the images they want.


3. Google Nest Hub Digital Picture Frame: A Buddy for the Nest Smart Hub

Total Score 8.4/10

  • Features9.0/10
  • Equipment8.0/10
  • Price9.0/10
  • Ease Of Use8.0/10
  • Trust Score8.0/10

Starting Price

$89.99

Visit Website
BBB Rating A
Best for Compact

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

Some people wouldn’t expect a digital photo frame from the Nest Hub. Yet, this 7-inch digital album is a good deal. It works with Google Home, so users can say “Hey, Google” to activate the smart device.

The accessory also does voice calls and will integrate with the Nest Hub. While it’s true that the resolution is below 720p, the images are still colorful and crisp. For the cost, it would work well with a compatible smart home system.

Pros:

  • Affordability
  • Convenient touchscreen
  • Easy swiping (for icons)
  • Good for Android users
  • Home automation with the Nest Hub
  • Plays music
  • Voice commands

Cons:

  • Lower-quality resolution
  • No video-calling
  • Smaller screen size

Users can easily swipe between Google apps and find their favorite photos in seconds. The slideshows aren’t the most dynamic, but the digital photo frame plays music, which is a plus.


4. Facebook Portal Digital Photo Frame: A-Frame That Works With Amazon Alexa & FaceTime

Total Score 8.0/10

  • Features8.0/10
  • Equipment8.0/10
  • Price8.0/10
  • Ease Of Use9.0/10
  • Trust Score7.0/10

Starting Price

$169

Visit Website
Best for Video Calling

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

It may be strange to imagine Facebook creating digital photo frames, but it works well. It is moderately priced, and users can find the best price on Amazon. The smart camera works well on video calls, so that customers can chat with their friends through the frame.

There is no remote control, but it works with social media and Amazon Alexa. Plus, users can communicate with each other via WhatsApp on the device.

Pros:

  • Card slot
  • Compatibility with Facebook photos
  • Facebook and Instagram cloud services
  • Supports video
  • Touchscreen
  • Video calls via FaceTime or WhatsApp
  • Works with Amazon Alexa

Cons:

  • No built-in storage
  • Poor BBB rating
  • Smaller screen

Whether people want a basic digital album or they need something more, the Portal doesn’t disappoint. Plus, the price tag makes it an approachable choice for many homes.


5. Echo Show 8 Digital Picture Frame: Echo Functionality in a Frame

Total Score 8.0/10

  • Features7.0/10
  • Equipment8.0/10
  • Price8.0/10
  • Ease Of Use7.0/10
  • Trust Score10/10

Starting Price

$104.99

Visit Website
BBB Rating A+
Best for Remote control

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

The Echo 8 is one of those digital photo frames that offers high performance for a low price. It is a bit smaller than the standard Echo frame model, but it has the same high-definition image quality. In this way, the photo resolution is better.

Also, the price is right, and the LCD touchscreen is a huge advantage. With its speaker system, individuals can play music, watch videos, and get updates from Amazon Alexa.

Pros:

  • Great price
  • Has lots of Echo capabilities
  • Nice, clear speakers
  • Remote control
  • Sharp images
  • Syncs with select smart hubs
  • Trusted brand

Cons:

  • Bass is hard to adjust
  • Lack of storage
  • The dimensions are a bit smaller than competitors

The lack of storage is a huge bummer, but this digital photo frame can sync with lots of smart hubs, so it shouldn’t be too much of an issue.


6. Nixplay Seed Wave: Good Storage & Display

Total Score 7.8/10

  • Features8.0/10
  • Equipment8.0/10
  • Price7.0/10
  • Ease Of Use9.0/10
  • Trust Score7.0/10

Starting Price

$259.99

Visit Website
Best for Display Size

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

Nixplay offers some good-sized digital photo frames. The Seed Wave has a 13.3-inch display screen, so it’s quite easy to see from afar. The device works remotely via the Nixplay app, and there is a decent amount of storage, at 10GB.

However, there is no SD card slot, which can be annoying for people who want to transfer files from a camera to the frame. That said, Nixplay’s resolution is good, and cloud services come with the purchase.

Pros:

  • A good amount of storage
  • HD resolution
  • Nixplay integrates with Google Photos and Facebook
  • Motion sensors
  • Music streaming
  • Wi-Fi compatible

Cons:

  • It doesn't have an SD card slot
  • No touchscreen
  • The video is limited to 15 seconds

To be fair, this comprehensive Nixplay frame is a bit expensive. Plus, the video playback is limited to 15 seconds. This isn’t too bad, and at least it has a video feature.

Still, it would be a lot better if customers could playback a minute or so. The digital picture frame has a motion sensor and Bluetooth speakers, so that Nixplay clients can enjoy music with their images.


7. NIX Advanced 8-Inch: Lots of Features for a Low Price

Total Score 7.6/10

  • Features7.0/10
  • Equipment7.0/10
  • Price10/10
  • Ease Of Use6.0/10
  • Trust Score8.0/10

Starting Price

$59.99

Visit Website
Best for Size

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

The Advance 8-inch album is one of Nix’s most affordable digital photo frames. The widescreen display is nice, even though it’s only 8 inches. The screen features high-resolution images and adjustable brightness.

Motion-sensing technology seems like a strange add-on, especially considering the device doesn’t have Wi-Fi capabilities or a touchscreen. For being such a low cost, it is great that the frame includes video qualities, even if the limit is 15 seconds.

Pros:

  • Affordability
  • Clear picture
  • Decent resolution
  • Includes USB ports
  • Nice widescreen display
  • Remote capabilities
  • Video slideshows

Cons:

  • Doesn't include Wi-Fi capabilities
  • No BBB rating
  • Not a touchscreen

For best results, users should keep the resolution at 720p when doing video playback. Also, if they’re wondering what the motion sensor does, it automatically shuts the frame off when everyone leaves the room. This is helpful because it can save on the digital picture frame’s battery life.


8. Skylight Digital Picture Frame: Responsive and Simple

Total Score 7.4/10

  • Features7.0/10
  • Equipment6.0/10
  • Price8.0/10
  • Ease Of Use7.0/10
  • Trust Score9.0/10

Starting Price

$159

Best for Ease of Use

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

The Skylight digital photo album is an Amazon’s Choice and features slideshows ranging from 5 to 240 seconds. It’s true that 10 inches aren’t a huge screen size, but it is on par with many competitors.

Besides, the setup is super easy. First, start by turning on the smart device and syncing it to a power source, such as Wi-Fi. Send photos via email, and they will go onto the frame in seconds.

Pros:

  • Easy setup
  • Good customer reviews
  • Notifications of new images
  • Quality resolution
  • Sleek and lightweight
  • Touchscreen
  • Users can "like" their favorites

Cons:

  • Customer service isn't good
  • No USB ports
  • Some reviews mention brightness issues

The digital picture frame’s touchscreen display is a nice detail, especially considering the price. That said, it’s not the cheapest option, and for the cost, it would be nice to have more video capabilities.


9. Aluratek 8-Inch LCD Digital Photo Frame: Low-Cost, Simple Design

Total Score 7.4/10

  • Features7.0/10
  • Equipment7.0/10
  • Price10/10
  • Ease Of Use6.0/10
  • Trust Score7.0/10

Starting Price

$37.99

Best for Price

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

Ideally, people would give this low-resolution screen to someone who doesn’t want to do too much with technology. While the frame is incredibly inexpensive, it doesn’t come with most of the cool features that the competition has.

For instance, it can’t play video slideshows, which is what makes digital frames so great. Yet, it does have nearly a dozen image transition styles, and it can do static displays that last between 3 seconds and one hour on the screen.

Pros:

  • Displays range from 3 seconds to 1 hour
  • Easy to use
  • Good for older users
  • Highly affordable
  • No Internet networks to figure out
  • Stand included
  • Supports USBs up to 32GB

Cons:

  • Doesn't have video features
  • Lacks remote control
  • No internal storage

Moreover, if a customer has a USB or a camera SD card, they can insert it and load their pictures that way. The smart device can handle flash drives up to 32GB.

So, this digital picture frame won’t blow anyone away, but it’s good if a grandparent wants a modern digital album.


10. Dragon Touch Classic 10: A Boosted Version of the Classic

Total Score 7.2/10

  • Features7.0/10
  • Equipment7.0/10
  • Price8.0/10
  • Ease Of Use6.0/10
  • Trust Score8.0/10

Starting Price

$129.99

Best for Internal Storage

DIY instal

YES

Trial Period

30 days

To work this 10-inch digital album, clients can load their images through the free mobile app, email, or via Wi-Fi. Plus, the device comes with built-in storage, although cloud services are available, too.

The frame is aesthetically pleasing, and it’s even sturdy enough to mount on the wall. That said, it would be nice to have a larger screen and longer video time. At least the price is quite good, so customers get a nice deal for what they pay.

Pros:

  • Built-in Wi-Fi
  • Cloud functionality
  • Reasonable price
  • Free-to-download smartphone app
  • Remote control
  • USB and SD card slots
  • Video slideshows

Cons:

  • No remote control
  • Smaller screen size
  • 30-second limit on videos

If there is one thing the Dragon frame should have, it is a remote control. On the other hand, it’s great that there are video capabilities, and the display is a touchscreen.

To get around the lack of remote access, individuals can download the free Dragon app.


Best Digital Picture Frame of 2021 (Pricing & Features)

To make it easier to find the best digital picture frame, consider this convenient comparison chart. Most people won’t need all the features in the table, but it helps to see different products and traits side by side.

Provider Price Best for Cloud Services Display Music Remote Control Resolution SD Slot Storage Touch Screen Video
1. Aura Mason $180 Basics Yes 9” No No 1600X800 No N/A No No
2. Pix-Star $154 Wi-Fi No 10” No Yes 1024X768 No 8GB No No
3. Nest Hub $90 Compact Yes 7” Yes Yes 1024X600 No No Yes Yes
4. FB Portal $169 Video Calling Yes 10” Yes No 1280X900 Yes N/A Yes Yes
5. Echo Show 8 $105 Remote Control Yes 8” Yes Yes 1280X800 Yes No Yes Yes
6. Nix Play Adv. $260 Display size Yes 13.3” Yes Yes 1920X1080 No 10GB No Yes
7. NIX Advance $60 Size No 8” No Yes 1280X800 Yes N/A No Yes
8. Sky Light $159 Ease of use No 10” No Yes 1280X800 No N/A Yes No
9. Aluratek $38 Price No 8” No No 800×600 Yes N/A No No
10. Dragon Touch $130 Internal Storage Yes 10” No No 1280X800 Yes 16GB Yes Yes

Digital Home Photo Frame Shopping Guide

While customers can’t go wrong with one of the models in the chart, they will enjoy the experience more if they know what to look for. These are the top tips for finding the most suitable frame, even for those on a budget.

Display

Along with size, the display quality is crucial. Most digital picture frame models (and all of the options in this review) show HD images. Yet some products are now available and show pictures in 2K resolution.

Size

Size is more personal because different people have specific preferences. For example, an older consumer may need a larger screen. The good news is that digital frames can be as big as 21 inches. For those who want something smaller, many compact digital picture frame models don’t skimp on image quality.

Memory

Memory is something that people didn’t have to worry about with traditional albums. However, it’s a critical component of a great digital frame.

Photo-Sharing Functionality

Another thing to consider with a digital frame is how to get the images onto the device. Depending on the model, there are different ways to do this. Some products allow users to upload photos from social media or Dropbox. Others require individuals to log in to their email account and get the pictures that way.

Cloud Capabilities

The more technologically advanced frames will automatically sync to the home’s Wi-Fi for better easy access. This feature makes it a lot easier to transfer images from one device to another.

Other models may have an accompanying mobile app so individuals can access the files on their phones and put them in the digital album.

Ease of Use

Finally, consider who the digital frame is for. A younger person may take to this new-fangled technology much better than an elderly relative. Consumers should remember that they may need to help their older loved one get used to the device. It’s worth it, though.

Three Other Ways to Display Digital Photos

Whether they don’t have the money for a high-tech frame, or they simply don’t want one, there are other ways to display family photos. Check out three suitable alternatives below.

Smart Displays

A voice assistant or smart hub like Amazon Alexa or Echo can be a wonderful alternative to a digital album. These intelligent devices have loads of features, including the ability to display different media. It can be as simple as saying, "Alexa, show me my photos".

Tablets

Those who already have a tablet are ahead of the game. That's because they can let this convenient accessory show off their favorite pictures. Plus, there are tons of different tablets that have this functionality.

TVs

Finally, homes that have smart TV can integrate this device to showcase family portraits and vacation pictures. The process isn’t as straightforward, but if they plug a USB drive into the television, they can access the images. One of the most popular models with this functionality is Samsung Frame TV.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How Does a Digital Frame Work?

    To put it in simple terms, these devices work in much the same way as a computer. Usually, they have a CPU processor, a predetermined amount of memory, a USB port, and a display screen. Users can plug a flash drive into the frame, or sync their phone, to upload images.

  • What is the Best Digital Photo Frame?

    Any of the options on the top ten list above will be a great choice for individuals or families. The devices are simple, provide a beautiful photo quality, and can hold thousands of images.

    Consumers can determine which model is best for them by looking at their budget and the specific features they want.

  • How Do You Transfer Photos to a Digital Photo Frame?

    The process varies depending on the type of frame.

    Even so, the steps are quite similar.

    1. First, make sure the images are in a universal format, such as JPG.
    2. If the device has a USB port, plug in a flash drive. Otherwise, users may need to log into their email account on the photo frame or the accompanying mobile app.
    3. Select which pictures to upload to the digital frame and wait for them to finish transferring.

  • How Many Photos Can a Digital Frame Hold?

    According to reviews, the smallest amount of memory these photo frames will have is 4 gigabytes, which can hold 2,000 photos. That said, some models go up to 8, 16, 32, or even 64 gigabytes. For reference, 64GB of memory can hold around 20,000 images.

  • Can You Leave a Digital Photo Frame on All the Time?

    Typically, the best digital photo frame can stay on for an extended period of time, but not forever. The product will eventually run out of juice, and they will have to charge it.

    In most cases, individuals can leave their frames, running a slideshow for a few hours because they need to plug it in again.

Keep Family Memories Going Strong

While it’s true that digital frames have been around for years, they have become much more accessible recently. This is good news for families that want to preserve their memories without the extra clutter. A digital picture album is a minimalist way to hold on to special moments. Plus, there are more than enough varieties available today, so there is something out there for everyone.

Hopefully, this guide helps individuals find a photo frame in their budget that they can cherish for years to come. If you have a digital album, let us know how you like it in the comments below.


Steven Lewis

Editorial Staff

Steven Lewis combined his writing talent and home security knowledge and became a journalist researching the topic. He holds a Degree in Criminal Law and has spent a significant part of his career studying security issues backed up with his legal knowledge.


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