*Official* Roku 2 Media Streamer Thread - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 1153 Old 07-24-2011, 06:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles R View Post
- Netflix buffers quite a while before starting.
Not sure what "quite a while" is in terms of actual time or in comparison to other Netflix devices, but it's no different than previous Roku boxes in my experience.

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Originally Posted by Charles R View Post
- Netflix's image starts out very low resolution and progressively gets better (same as the PS3 I believe).
That's the adaptive bitrate streaming, which is new to the Roku 2 boxes for the Netflix channel. The streams typically start out at a very low bitrate and continually adjust to the actual speed of your internet connection. Adaptive bitrate streams have been used for the "live" channel offerings on Roku since they were first released over a year ago (MLB, UFC, NHL, MLS, etc.).
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post #32 of 1153 Old 07-24-2011, 09:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles R View Post

I picked up a XS for the fun of it. First time with a Roku so I can't compare it against the earlier models. First few points...

- I hate that the Ok button isn't located in the middle of the arrow keys.
- Bones via Amazon displays in 1080p60.
- Bones via Netflix displays in 1080p60.
- Netflix outputs DD+ (if the title supports it).
- Netflix buffers quite a while before starting.
- Netflix's image starts out very low resolution and progressively gets better (same as the PS3 I believe).
- Hulu Plus displays in 1080p60 (haven't played around).
- Overall the contrast ratio seems very hot (overly so) with blacks being crushed (compared to my TiVo). It will certainly need to be tweaked.
- Both Amazon and Netflix images look more 3D than my TiVo (some of it is probably the torch mode).

Under settings you can only pick 1080p. Nothing about 1080p24. It's a shame they don't support VUDU. It appears Plex is currently not compatible with the Roku 2... along with some other 3rd party channels so I couldn't test out streaming via my Mac Mini.

It certainly sounds like it's converting everything to 1080P since Hulu+ is 720P. Or did things change with it. Plus were the netflix titles actually 720P or 1080P?

And also does it have Amazon streaming or just amazon downloads?

How you described Netflix increasing the resolution is how it also seems to work on my Boxee Boxes and TiVos.

I was thinking about picking one up from BestBuy, but didn't feel like going out and getting stuck in traffic today since Sunday is usually worse than a weekday.

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post #33 of 1153 Old 07-24-2011, 09:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronwt View Post

It certainly sounds like it's converting everything to 1080P since Hulu+ is 720P. Or did things change with it. Plus were the netflix titles actually 720P or 1080P?

So far it appears to convert everything to 1080p/60. Even Netflix SD is upscaled.

Quote:


And also does it have Amazon streaming or just amazon downloads?

It has Prime Instant Videos (streaming) too.

Quote:


How you described Netflix increasing the resolution is how it also seems to work on my Boxee Boxes and TiVos.

I have used both and it's different. This starts at a very low resolution where both of the others begin close to their maximum. I think it uses the PS3 method... and it's getting their 1080p encodes.
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post #34 of 1153 Old 07-24-2011, 09:33 PM
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the PS3 does do this, but it escalates so fast for me, on Comcast, that unless I'm on the info screen watching it rise from low/medium/high/xhigh, I'd never notice it.
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post #35 of 1153 Old 07-24-2011, 09:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b_scott View Post

the PS3 does do this, but it escalates so fast for me, on Comcast, that unless I'm on the info screen watching it rise from low/medium/high/xhigh, I'd never notice it.

On an HD set it's always seems to be noticebale since the lower resolution is so blurry when compared to the higher resolution it switches to.

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post #36 of 1153 Old 07-25-2011, 11:06 AM
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I am sure I am not the only one to wonder about this, but does anybody know of any rumors regarding future DLNA support for Roku 2?
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post #37 of 1153 Old 07-25-2011, 11:29 AM
 
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Now that I have my Roku 2 and have flipped through the available channels, I'd say DLNA is likely to come from a 3rd party app purchase as some point.
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post #38 of 1153 Old 07-26-2011, 08:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronwt View Post

On an HD set it's always seems to be noticebale since the lower resolution is so blurry when compared to the higher resolution it switches to.

not to me. But the first 5-10 seconds of movie is black screen with credits or studio logo usually anyway.
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post #39 of 1153 Old 07-26-2011, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b_scott View Post

not to me. But the first 5-10 seconds of movie is black screen with credits or studio logo usually anyway.

For me it's even more noticeable with text on the screen.

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post #40 of 1153 Old 07-26-2011, 12:53 PM
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I must have the uber interwebz then
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post #41 of 1153 Old 07-27-2011, 12:42 PM
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Anyone else notice massively darker video quality with the Roku 2 than other sources? I watched a video clip over Roksbox and some video from Netflix that is much darker (to the point that I'm thinking of returning it) on the Roku 2 than the same things viewed on my PC or Netflix via my Blu-ray disk player. All my devices are connected via HDMI through a Yamaha 867 AVR to a Panasonic Plasma via HDMI, so all of them are using the same TV video settings.

Any suggestions? Anyone else experiencing anything similar?

I talked to Roku chat help today and they gave me nothing. They said to adjust the brightness of the TV....
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post #42 of 1153 Old 07-27-2011, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Khoram View Post

Anyone else notice massively darker video quality with the Roku 2 than other sources?

My first impression was that the contrast ratio is in torch mode (much like your typical TV setting). I mentioned this in my first look post. Since then I haven't used it much but I don't think it's too far out there. Worse case it would require a different setting than some of the other devices... and or might disappear with a firmware update. I have noticed similar with the Logitech Revue and other devices so it's not all that uncommon.
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post #43 of 1153 Old 07-27-2011, 01:47 PM
 
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I'm in the middle of adding an HDMI switchbox to my setup, so my Roku 2 mini-review has been a bit delayed.

Yes, it is crushing blacks at my default "Xbox 360 over HDMI" settings. My initial guess is that it is simply a "reference level" issue. I don't recall the Roku having a Reference Level option in it's settings, so I will play with my 360 and PS3 reference levels to see what I come up with. I'm guessing the Roku defaults to "dark" while my other devices are on "light".

I had the same problem with the PS3 when I first added it to my setup. It was crushing the hell out of blacks when I tossed in the Bluray of Sherlock Holmes to test on. Some twiddling with settings fixed it right up. We may have to call up Roku and tell them to add a Reference Level setting, like everything else has.
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post #44 of 1153 Old 07-27-2011, 02:07 PM
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I just compared a few dark suits via the Roku 2 and TiVo Premiere (identical Netflix content). The Roku has a much blacker black although there doesn't appear to be a lot of crushing going on. As an example I could see the same amount of gray pin-striping in the very dark gray suit. For me the whites are clearly brighter too so I tend to see it as a contrast ratio issue more so than just the black level.
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post #45 of 1153 Old 07-27-2011, 02:11 PM
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I'll have to check this out tonight. I just ordered one from Bestbuy and will be picking it up on the way home from work. I figure, worst case I will just leave it at my girlfriends house to use. Although I'm curious to see how Angry Birds works.

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post #46 of 1153 Old 07-27-2011, 06:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles R View Post

I just compared a few dark suits via the Roku 2 and TiVo Premiere (identical Netflix content). The Roku has a much blacker black although there doesn't appear to be a lot of crushing going on. As an example I could see the same amount of gray pin-striping in the very dark gray suit. For me the whites are clearly brighter too so I tend to see it as a contrast ratio issue more so than just the black level.

I set up the Roku2 XS an hour ago.
It is sending out PC signals instead of video. So I guess it's using 0-255 instead of 16-235 like it should be. I had to change my DVDO DUO for a PC input. Once I did that the picture was fine.

I'm guessing they should rectify this with a firmware update.

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post #47 of 1153 Old 07-28-2011, 01:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronwt View Post

I set up the Roku2 XS an hour ago.
It is sending out PC signals instead of video. So I guess it's using 0-255 instead of 16-235 like it should be. I had to change my DVDO DUO for a PC input. Once I did that the picture was fine.

I'm guessing they should rectify this with a firmware update.

Was just about to mention seeing something about the 0-255 issue on the Roku forums, looks like it was your post I saw there. - http://forums.roku.com/viewtopic.php...art=60#p282651

Wonder if that's something firmware can fix?

Anyone know what the previous model output?

Seems like a great little unit that will probably continue to get better. Hmmm... Kinda sitting on the fence here.
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post #48 of 1153 Old 07-28-2011, 03:27 AM
 
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Roku 2 XS mini-review:

-It's a tiny piece of hardware that eats very little power and doesn't make noise. Great!
-I wish it had optical out. I haven't moved to an HDMI receiver yet as mine is still extremely nice sans the lack of HDMI.
-The video level problem is annoying and an oversight. My girl doesn't care, but I hope it will get fixed in an update shortly.
-The channel selection is awesome. Tons of weird little channels to add to the front end. I wish that the channels were more laid out in a grid than a single line though.
-The Netflix app is great! Well organized with wrap-around rows, plus the newest encodes are supported. It is the first Netflix app that I'd say is on par with the very custom 360 version. Better in some places, worse in others. Maybe this is just what it's like on non-360/PS3 devices these days?
-The Hulu app is a piece of crap. It's just a port of the PS3 version, and operates just as poorly from what I've seen. It's a terribly organized interface with far too many layers required to navigate to get to any content. Plus it's the only thing that I've seen crash my Roku.
-The game remote is currently a novelty, quickly replaced with my Harmony. Hopefully it gets used for something interesting though. The $20 was worth it to give it a shot.
-My girl likes it! So much so that instead of picking up next year's Live Gold extension for the bedroom 360, she'll likely just get another Roku 2 XS for that room.
-It scales everything to your chosen video output format. You selected 1080p out? Everything gets spit out 1080p, regardless of whether it's natively 480/720/1080p. This is how the 360 operates, and it's awesome. Video devices like my PS3 that spit out native formats just get annoying with all the blanking of the screen as your display syncs up with the newly incoming format. I want my display to see one format from when I turn on my device until when I turn it off, and the Roku delivers that.

Overall, it's a pretty great value. It would be better with a much improved Hulu app, a shipped Youtube app, and proper options for HDMI Reference Level settings. As it is, it's totally worth the $60-100 asking price. It's just not the mind-blowingly good deal that it could be.
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post #49 of 1153 Old 07-28-2011, 06:35 AM
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Can this device stream MKV movies from your computer or do you have to hook up a USB drive?
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post #50 of 1153 Old 07-28-2011, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darklordjames View Post

Roku 2 XS mini-review:

-It scales everything to your chosen video output format. You selected 1080p out? Everything gets spit out 1080p, regardless of whether it's natively 480/720/1080p. This is how the 360 operates, and it's awesome. Video devices like my PS3 that spit out native formats just get annoying with all the blanking of the screen as your display syncs up with the newly incoming format. I want my display to see one format from when I turn on my device until when I turn it off, and the Roku delivers that.

you're going to get a lot of pushback here on that one
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post #51 of 1153 Old 07-28-2011, 01:30 PM
 
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It's a good thing that I don't care if you guys agree on that point then, isn't it?
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post #52 of 1153 Old 07-28-2011, 04:39 PM
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I just set up my Harmony One to work with my Roku 2 XS. It's working great with it. I can point the harmony in almost any direction and the Roku responds to it.

The BT remote that comes with the XS is to heavy and uncomfortable for me to use for extended periods. My hands are still aching from using it last night. I don't have that issue with the shape of the Harmony.

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post #53 of 1153 Old 07-29-2011, 03:18 AM
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Picked up an XS today at Best Buy with my daughters employee discount, saved $20! Joy...

So far it has worked perfect, watched a few hours of Netflix, some Crackle, Techzilla, played Angry Birds, Tunein Radio (great channel/app) Shoutcast Radio and tinkered with a few other channels. Have not had any lockups or crashes as reported at the Roku forums, zero buffering pauses (have great wireless in our home) everything loads super fast and menu response is quite good.

Only concern I have at the monent is that it seems to run a bit warm for "such a low power device" that's sitting out in th open. I assume it was well tested, and ventilation
was not needed. Would also be nice to power it down, it does go to sleep after a while or is it always displaying something?

So far so good, hope to see nice things added and improved upon in future updates.
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post #54 of 1153 Old 07-29-2011, 04:09 AM
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Hey guys!

Currently, I own a Boxee Box. I bought it when it was released mainly to play Local Files and even though with some bugs, it has played pretty much all the files that I have. However, I decided to give it a go for Netflix (since it was available on the Box, and all), and now I'm 'addicted' to streaming. I ended up subscribing to Netflix, renting a few movies on VUDU and even though it's not available on the Boxee Box I subscribed to Hulu Plus as well.

I'm now trying to find a second box for my setup, mainly because the Boxee doesn't have Hulu yet and it looks like it may take a while (if ever!) for it to get it. I was initially going for a box with all 4 major services (Netflix, Hulu+, Amazon and VUDU), but apparently such box does not exist. I did find a Sony Blu-Ray player but the interface was just terrible. Also very important to me is a device that displays captions/subtitles on Netflix and Hulu+.

That being said, I have my eye on the Roku 2 XS, and I do have a few questions:

1) Could you tell me (or take a picture, whatever works best for you), if the Roku Power Adapter is compatible to European Standards? I know the old model was, it was on the label "Input: 100/240V 50/60Hz". Is this one the same?

2) About the Hulu Plus channel. I tried Hulu Plus on a Samsung Player but returned it because I had the following issues:
* Constant freezing and buffering in HD quality, I have to drop to SD sometimes to watch a show (it's a known issue apparently, I do have the bandwidth to stream HD)
* An annoying "Loading..." that appeared in every transition:
- before the network animation at the beginning
- before the "This show is brought to you by...."
- before each commercial, etc etc...
Does it do that as well in the Roku? I saw a video on youtube and it seemed to play the videos/commercials without any delay at all, very seamlessly.
* The Closed Captions seem to be delayed sometimes, they aren't in synch with what the actors are saying, they usually come 1 second or 2 later, which is annoying to keep up.
Can you comment if you have any of these issues on the Roku?

3) Netflix. People are saying that it starts playing the stream in low quality and a few seconds later it "jumps" to HD. Does it take long? Even though the BBox is using adaptive streaming as well, it always starts in HD to me.

4) Last but not least, are you having buffering or crashing problems on the box? Some people (a lot, actually) are reporting issues with both netflix and hulu plus randomly crashing the box.

Anyway, I'm sorry for rambling a bit, I hope you find the time to answer my questions, it would help a lot in my decision
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post #55 of 1153 Old 07-29-2011, 04:35 AM
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It's been confirmed that the Roku 2 uses the 1080p Netflix encodes which up to now was exclusive to the PS3...

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...3#post20754013
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post #56 of 1153 Old 07-29-2011, 05:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smetaxas View Post

Can this device stream MKV movies from your computer or do you have to hook up a USB drive?

It can stream mkv's to your Roku, using a third party channel, and you have to setup a webserver on the main machine for the interface to work. They usually are $15 for a lifetime subscription.

Also, the video has to be h264 or wmv9, and audio has to be mp3/aac - though mkv can passthrough dts or ac3.
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post #57 of 1153 Old 07-29-2011, 05:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sabrewulf View Post

Would also be nice to power it down, it does go to sleep after a while or is it always displaying something?

It goes into a standby mode and consumes only 4 watts when it does. It has to stay on for two reasons - one, to receive updates... two, the bootup time is too long for that (1-1.5 minutes)
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post #58 of 1153 Old 07-29-2011, 05:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darklordjames View Post

Overall, it's a pretty great value. It would be better with a much improved Hulu app, a shipped Youtube app, and proper options for HDMI Reference Level settings. As it is, it's totally worth the $60-100 asking price. It's just not the mind-blowingly good deal that it could be.

I love my Roku - and I have the Roku1 and Roku2. Great value, and I think a great company.

Lots of people don't know, but their are private channels out there that extend the content even further. If you do a google search, I think you will be impressed of what is available.

There used to be a fantastic Youtube Private channel, but it was pulled at Youtube's request. Hopefully they are in talks to get an official channel.

There still is a playon private channel that will hook that up to your Roku.

I pay for a third party channel that allows me to stream all of my videos, music, and photos from my main computer to the Roku. It has basically replaced my satellite receiver in the bedroom.

Eventually I will have a mythtv setup and there is a hackable channel for that as well so I can use my main computer as an HD OTA PVR and stream the content (albeit a day later after commercial flagging and transcoding) to the Rokus. I think pretty good for sixty bucks!
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post #59 of 1153 Old 07-29-2011, 05:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samukas View Post

Hey guys!
That being said, I have my eye on the Roku 2 XS, and I do have a few questions:

1) Could you tell me (or take a picture, whatever works best for you), if the Roku Power Adapter is compatible to European Standards? I know the old model was, it was on the label "Input: 100/240V 50/60Hz". Is this one the same?

The Roku is really only intended for the US. I think several of the channels make sure you are using a US IP #, due to licensing concerns. However, if that isn't a concern, I am confident that if the AC wasn't good for 50hz, you could find a compatible adapter to give you the 5.6v...
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post #60 of 1153 Old 07-29-2011, 06:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krisbee View Post

I love my Roku - and I have the Roku1 and Roku2. Great value, and I think a great company.

Lots of people don't know, but their are private channels out there that extend the content even further. If you do a google search, I think you will be impressed of what is available.

There used to be a fantastic Youtube Private channel, but it was pulled at Youtube's request. Hopefully they are in talks to get an official channel.

There still is a playon private channel that will hook that up to your Roku.

I pay for a third party channel that allows me to stream all of my videos, music, and photos from my main computer to the Roku. It has basically replaced my satellite receiver in the bedroom.

Eventually I will have a mythtv setup and there is a hackable channel for that as well so I can use my main computer as an HD OTA PVR and stream the content (albeit a day later after commercial flagging and transcoding) to the Rokus. I think pretty good for sixty bucks!

Which third party channel and if you wouldn't mind some tips or guidance in how to set it up would be appreciated?
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