Customer Review

356 of 409 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Roku HD: Simple. It Just Works!, May 9, 2012
This review is from: Roku HD Streaming Player (Old Model) (Electronics)
VIDEO:

The Roku HD is a great little wireless-only player. Despite its name, the Roku HD does not support HD video at 1080p. It supports 720p.

The Roku HD is the replacement for the Roku LT per Roku. Currently the Roku website as of this writing is listing both the Roku LT and the Roku HD, with both feature sets being identical. The Roku LT is sold out on Roku's website. Update July 11 2012: It is currently in stock again on Roku's website as of this writing.

It supports 802.11n WiFi (b/g/n compatible). It has the following video outputs, identical to the Roku LT: 480i over composite video, 480p over HDMI, and 720p over HDMI. Like the Roku LT, it will do the following video modes: 720p HD, 16:9 anamorphic, and 4:3 standard. It will not do 1080p.

--An HDMI cable is not included, but the composite video cable is.

NO GAME MODE:

The Roku HD is not capable of playing Angry Birds, Pac Man, or similar games. The Roku HD does not include bluetooth capability, which is necessary to play these games. The Roku players that are able to play Angry Birds/Pac Man as of this writing are Roku 2 XD and Roku 2 XS and the previous, older Roku 2 HD. Thus this Roku does not include the Roku Game Remote. Current price for that remote is around $35. The Roku 2 XS (model subject to change via Roku's website) comes with the Game Remote as of this writing, or you can purchase it in a package with a Micro SD card or separately.

REMOTE:

I love the Roku HD's simple remote -- it is the one with the Netflix, Pandora and Crackle buttons, although it cannot go frame-by-frame in slow motion like a DVR remote. It is still a great design. It is the same remote that I got with my Roku LT and the one supplied with the Roku 2 XD. Subtitles are available for Netflix on the Roku HD, if subtitles are available for that movie/show.

STREAMING:

Streaming is very fast with the wireless HD model.

WHAT'S IN THE BOX:

* Standard Roku infrared remote control
* 2 x AAA batteries
* A/V cable (mini-jack to left/right/composite video RCA)
* A/C Power adapter
* Getting Started guide
* 30-day money back guarantee
* 90-day hardware warranty

WHAT YOU WILL NEED:

* HDMI cable -- if you choose to hook up your TV with HDMI to view in 720p instead of the included A/V cable
* Wireless router (N router is best since this Roku is N compatible)
* High speed internet connection -- Roku recommends a 1.5 Mbps download speed for standard definition; live events like baseball need 3 Mbps; and just FYI, the Roku-recommended 5 Mbps HD download speed doesn't apply to the Roku HD, according to a conversation I had with a Roku representative since the Roku HD player doesn't do 1080p.
* Access to the internet to configure your Roku (to link the Roku player to your Roku account)

WHO SHOULD GET IT:

* If you have never had a Roku player before, this is a great one to start with.
* If you have the Roku LT and like it, this one is for you. It is identical except in color.
* If you have other Roku players and want to expand around the house, this is a good one. Inexpensive, yet has a good feature set.
* If you have an area in your house where you could use a wireless Roku, and you don't need to pay extra for ethernet, this is a great choice.
* If you do not want to play games on a Roku, this would be a good option.

SET-UP:

Set-up is simple and quick, although channel addition can be slightly clunky, in that the order you add the channels is the order in which they will display. As far as Roku content, Hulu Plus is offered, but Hulu is not. However, it is great for access to Netflix and Amazon Instant Video, and there are several great free movie channels to choose from like Crackle, although I would like to see more free movie channels. Content is always expanding on the Roku.

PHONE SUPPORT:

Roku phone support only covers 90 days per their warranty. After 90 days you have email or chat support only. Tech support has been cheerful and pleasant but spotty. They do not always provide the correct solution to the problem.

If you want additional phone support, you can get Roku Care Per-Incident or an Extended Warranty which provides as of this writing an additional two years of phone support.

CONCLUSION:

The Roku HD is a great value in the Roku line and I highly recommend it, as long as you don't want to play games.

Another great value, with an identical feature set if you are able to find it at a good price, is the Roku LT Streaming Player. Roku was selling them on their website at a cheaper price point but they sold out.

~~

>> "I want to die peacefully in my sleep, like my grandfather. Not screaming like the passengers in his cab." <<
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Comments

Tracked by 2 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 10 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jul 2, 2012 2:13:28 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 2, 2012 2:13:53 PM PDT
there's no such thing as a $49 roku player in reality. roku.com charges $10 for shipping, while amazon has free shipping. so the $49 roku on the roku website costs exactly the same as the $59 roku on amazon.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 10, 2012 7:32:55 PM PDT
Elizabeth says:
Yes, and Amazon used to carry the Roku LT for $49 with free shipping.

Posted on Jul 25, 2012 7:21:16 AM PDT
Marv Bozarth says:
Nice job on the write up Elizabeth. I hope to see your reviews on other products. cheers!

Posted on Oct 31, 2012 9:31:02 AM PDT
M. Curtis says:
Hello Miss Elizabeth: Thanks for your insightful and `systematically unbiased' review of this device. Like so many other `gadgets' that people own or feel compelled to comment on, they sometimes expose their own very personal and opinionated likes and dislikes. But it was your review that attracted me to you and guided me to purchase my first Roku.

And I found your quote at the end to be undeniably true and most touching.

Posted on Nov 25, 2012 11:16:01 AM PST
B. Guffey says:
Thorough review but one thing you mention that isn't correct. 720p is HD. 720p is HD. 1080p simply has more lines to create a sharper picture.

Posted on Nov 26, 2012 12:33:50 PM PST
[Deleted by the author on Nov 26, 2012 12:34:27 PM PST]

Posted on Nov 26, 2012 12:35:04 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 19, 2012 10:52:21 AM PST
Macfan 424 says:
Great review, albeit with a glitch at the start. As someone else noted, 720 is HD. Many HD broadcast and cable channels transmit in 720p.

True 1080p is rare except for Blu-Ray, and Internet connections that can handle it are rarer still. In actual use, few people will see any difference in picture quality between this and the 1080p capable models, although the latter have other features that may make them worth their higher price to some buyers.

Posted on Dec 19, 2012 10:44:50 AM PST
Sorry, but why would someone get this if they already have the LT?

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012 10:49:04 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 19, 2012 10:51:11 AM PST
Macfan 424 says:
They wouldn't, unless they wanted a second Roku. There's no discernible difference between them, other than color.

Posted on Mar 27, 2013 1:44:33 PM PDT
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]
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