May 30th - NetFlix Media Player by Roku - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 40 Old 05-29-2008, 10:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Today's Show:

So you want to watch movies with Netflix Watch it Now but you aren't thrilled about sitting in front of your computer to do it? Netflix and Roku have partnered together bring the Watch it Now functionality to your TV. We have one of these players and have spent a week putting it through its paces. more...

Listen now - mp3

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post #2 of 40 Old 06-03-2008, 05:08 AM
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I've had Netflix for nearly 2 years and for the last 2 months I have enjoyed about a dozen WATCH INSTANTLY steams to my home computer monitor (sigh, 19 inch CRT but a good one.)

I would have gone the ROKU route but for one factor, my DSL line is 1.5 Mbps download. The Roku specs call for 3.0 Mbps (also as Braden mentioned) so I haven't sprung for "the box."

Since I obviously CAN receive an uninterrupted stream of a movie with my 1.5 Mbps connection, is the 3.0 connection speed a REAL requirement or does it include a hefty safety factor? I have never had a movie (of the dozen I've watched) stall while the buffer played catch-up.

Has anyone connected ROKU with a 1.5 Mbps line?
I suppose I COULD write NETFLIX and ask but I fear that might be like trying to get an answer from a brick wall.
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post #3 of 40 Old 06-10-2008, 04:01 PM
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Awesome, that was my only problem with Netflix. I may start renting from there now.
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post #4 of 40 Old 06-12-2008, 08:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zip2play View Post

I've had Netflix for nearly 2 years and for the last 2 months I have enjoyed about a dozen WATCH INSTANTLY steams to my home computer monitor (sigh, 19 inch CRT but a good one.)

I would have gone the ROKU route but for one factor, my DSL line is 1.5 Mbps download. The Roku specs call for 3.0 Mbps (also as Braden mentioned) so I haven't sprung for "the box."

Since I obviously CAN receive an uninterrupted stream of a movie with my 1.5 Mbps connection, is the 3.0 connection speed a REAL requirement or does it include a hefty safety factor? I have never had a movie (of the dozen I've watched) stall while the buffer played catch-up.

Has anyone connected ROKU with a 1.5 Mbps line?
I suppose I COULD write NETFLIX and ask but I fear that might be like trying to get an answer from a brick wall.

According to the roku website FAQ (http://www.roku.com/netflixplayer/fr...ked-questions/)
You need at least 1.5 Mbps to watch movies instantly on The Netflix Player by Roku. The faster your connection, the better the quality. For high quality video and audio, a connection of least 4.0 Mbps is recommended.

I believe it will have steady playback, however I believe the slower connection speed means lower PQ.
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post #5 of 40 Old 06-20-2008, 11:34 AM
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I bought it. It is AWESOME! No brainer for a second TV. I use it primaly for my kid. Load up the instant watch list with kids shows and movies, and it is his own personal on demand. With wireless I can put it in his room for special occasions.

well worth th 99$
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post #6 of 40 Old 06-22-2008, 04:52 PM
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I've seen this advertised on their website.

Are there any advantages to this over hooking a VGA-HDMI and optic cable from your computer directly to your TV/AVR?

Right now I am enjoying streaming movies from Netflix to my 22" widescreen monitor. My HT is disassembled until I finish my remodeling. After that my TV and HT system will be hardwired to my computer. The video card is capable of outputting HD quality and I have a very good internet connection.

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post #7 of 40 Old 06-25-2008, 11:19 AM
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I have my Roku connected via HDMI to my Panasonic projector on a 100" screen. The viewing in most cases is what I would call good (as good as a cable channel I would say). In my case blowing the picture up on such a large screen lowers the PQ. I watch shows on my laptop and they are much sharper. I would be interested to know if anyone has run this through a video processor that can upscale the video to 1080p?? I have been looking at receivers that have this capability and would love to know if it significantly improves the picture quality.

The Roku is good for TV shows and art house type movies. It is great if you are into anime as the ones I have seen so far are crisp on this setup. Overall I am happy with what they are offering. With some memory for buffering for better video quality and digital sound this would be a real winner.
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post #8 of 40 Old 06-26-2008, 09:10 AM
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I must say that the WATCH INSTANTLY feature, if even only on my computer monitor, certainly quiets my grumblings when the NETFLIX mailings get slow. More companies in this country should be run with the consumer so in mind.


I think I will spring for the ROKU (thanks QQQ) and if my download speed (1.5Mbps) is too slow for a nice viewing on the 37" 720p screen, then I'll have to settle for a Comacast (shudder, shudder, shudder) Internet connection...high speed, high aggravation.

Do most of you have the connection hard wired or are you doing it wirelessly?
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post #9 of 40 Old 07-24-2008, 06:54 PM
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Our Roku arrived 7/24/08 (received in less than a week).

It installed very easily, I get a top-quality signal from my wireless router (4 circles out of 4), about 30 feet (a room and a hallway) away, and it's great! Decent quality image, compares favorably with Verizon FiOS SD channels.

$99 well spent, I'd say.

The selection of Indie films is great - movies we'll never see on Sundance or IFC or at the local theaters.

My normal FiOS Internet connection speed (download) is about 5000Kbps. With the Roku box streaming a movie, it drops to 1300Kbps, and I notice the slowness if I'm working on the Internet at the same time. When they start streaming Hi-Def movies, I may need to up my FiOS from 5/2 to 15/2.

When I stream movies from Netflix to my PC, though, the FiOS connection only slows to 2900Kbps. Interesting.
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post #10 of 40 Old 08-16-2008, 01:15 AM
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I got mine today. Quite nice. See my post here:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...8#post14456598
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post #11 of 40 Old 08-19-2008, 09:11 AM
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I like the idea of this gadget, but it does not offer Dolby Digital. At this point, it is worthless to me.
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post #12 of 40 Old 08-19-2008, 05:09 PM
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Wondering if anyone has compared this new unit to a hardwired direct from the PC to the TV. I have a VGA to HDMI cable and an optical cable going to the receiver then an HDMI from the receiver to the TV.

Besides it being wireless:
Does the box have any special features/functions?
Does it improve picture quality?
etc....


Thanks!

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post #13 of 40 Old 10-17-2008, 09:50 PM
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I got one too... And I love it!
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post #14 of 40 Old 10-22-2008, 05:20 AM
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Has anyone TRIED the ROKU with a connection as slow as 1.5 Mbps? Was the picture tolerable?
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post #15 of 40 Old 11-26-2008, 02:39 PM
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i like the idea of this wonder whats its like with a slow connection
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post #16 of 40 Old 12-06-2008, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kris259 View Post

i like the idea of this wonder whats its like with a slow connection

They have a speed test you can take and they are coming out with a more efficient compression scheme sometime soon which should help with connection speed. Check out the Roku forums for more info.
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post #17 of 40 Old 04-04-2009, 08:51 AM
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For those that are interested in an alternative I finally got around to running my cables from my PC to my HT system. (DVI to HDMI and an optical for audio) The cables cost about a third of what the Roku cost, but obviously the hook up is not as convenient.



I get three bars showing with their quality test, and the picture quality is actually quite good. Better than I expected it to be. Just like the Roku the audio is only stereo. Of course most receiver have Dolby Pro Logic and other multi-channel matrix programs, but that's about as good as the audio gets.

My PC is more of a gaming rig than a HTPC. The video card is a GeForce 8800GT and I'm currently using the on-board Realtek audio. Both capable of HD, but really nothing special when it comes to Home Theater.



One added benefit from running cables is you gain full PC functionality to your big screen as it is simply a duel monitor setup. Something the Roku can't do, AFAIK. Surf the web, stream PC radio stations, and other free video websites such as Hulu. PC Gaming is also possible, but I will be upgrading my soundcard so I can get 5.1 in games. The on-board audio does not have this feature. Oh, I guess one more benefit. If your DVD player is on the fritz you can play DVDs from your PC. Most on-board audio will pass 5.1 DVD audio through the optical cable.

The only con is you will have to run the cables. Not something everybody is able or willing to do. I was remodeling the two rooms that have my PC and my HT, so I was able to run the cables into the basement and add wall plates to give it a professional finished look. The hookup and PC configuration is pretty straight forward, though.


Well, If anything I'm really loving the added media library Netflix brings with the streaming option. A feature I very rarely used before I had it hooked up to the big screen.

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post #18 of 40 Old 05-09-2009, 08:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesToddA View Post

I bought it. It is AWESOME! No brainer for a second TV. I use it primaly for my kid. Load up the instant watch list with kids shows and movies, and it is his own personal on demand. With wireless I can put it in his room for special occasions.

well worth th 99$

OMG! You could have taken this home for 10% of that cost had you known it was going on auction at http://gobid.com! A few units have also been up for grabs at http://ebay.com at around that price or lower if you get lucky. But still, I'm pretty sure your enjoying what you have now and that's what really matters.
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post #19 of 40 Old 05-09-2009, 08:13 PM
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OMG!! He bought it almost a year ago!

If it sounds good, it is good. ~ Duke Ellington

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post #20 of 40 Old 05-11-2009, 04:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt1966 View Post

OMG!! He bought it almost a year ago!

Ooops! My bad there Matt! I got to tired to read the date of the post!
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post #21 of 40 Old 06-03-2009, 11:17 AM
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Who?
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post #22 of 40 Old 07-15-2009, 05:29 PM
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Pc better since none of the set top boxes can play 1080p h264 moderately compressed content smoothly. not even the ps3 can do it. A lot of pcs with coreavc codec can.
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post #23 of 40 Old 08-11-2009, 04:22 AM
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I purchased it weeks ago from my friend who is a retailer of NetFlix company It's worth every penny. You should give it a try!
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post #24 of 40 Old 08-11-2009, 09:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob13bob View Post

Pc better since none of the set top boxes can play 1080p h264 moderately compressed content smoothly. not even the ps3 can do it. A lot of pcs with coreavc codec can.

Really? Don't tell the NMT guys!
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post #25 of 40 Old 08-11-2009, 09:23 PM
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Quote:
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I purchased it weeks ago from my friend who is a retailer of NetFlix company It's worth every penny. You should give it a try!

Yep, I've recommended them to quite a few folks. Everyone who has one loves it (so far anyway). Especially now that they support HD (720p) and 5.1 audio (very limited). But mine is on a 32" HDTV via composite and I still love it. Hope to get it on component and 720p soon. Not enough ports or time.
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post #26 of 40 Old 08-26-2009, 01:52 PM
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I suppose Roku could be cabled to a A/V Receiver rather than going straight into the TV. Does anybody have experience with this?
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post #27 of 40 Old 08-26-2009, 03:12 PM
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Yes, you can.


Here's the page for the Roku user guide:
http://www.roku.com/support/userguide

The advantage to hooking it up to your AV receiver is you can matrix the 2.0 stereo signal into 5.1 using Dolby Pro Logic.

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post #28 of 40 Old 09-10-2009, 02:41 PM
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I got one too
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post #29 of 40 Old 09-25-2009, 01:23 PM
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I started out with a 1.5 dsl and it was decent. I think I averaged about 3 out of four bars. When I when to a 7.0 dsl the picture was even better.
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post #30 of 40 Old 09-25-2009, 01:38 PM
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If you have one of these already know the limitations as far as what you can stream. All you got is Netflix, Amazon.com and the pay for sports channel now. No music at all. Even though this is the same company that makes the soundbridge. The audio and video capabilities are already there in this box. I have no idea why they refuse to open up the internet on this box. I think they want to sell another soundbridge at 199.00. So rather than wait for other content which may or may not materialize on the Roku and I don't need another box in my armoire. I was thinking of what other ways to stream Netflix, Rhapsody, Pandora, tv shows to other parts of the house besides my computer. I know Samsung has a fancy one with blue-ray dvd and speakers for a whopping 500.00. Are there any other options out there priced reasonably that work as well? Any due out for xmas time maybe? Also I am going to buy a new computer before win7 launches next month. What would you recommend as far as add ons that would allow me to basically do what Roku does but allow me to access entire internet not just three channels? I have older tvs with digital converter boxes. I currently stream Rhapsody into livingroom with very long speaker wire to livingroom speakers. So I am prepared to use wires if necessary but have a 2wire as well.
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