Roku Rocks HDMI With Its New Compact Dongle - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #1 of 25 Old 03-10-14, 03:46 PM Thread Starter
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Roku Rocks HDMI With Its New Compact Dongle

It seems as if every week presents us with new video streaming news; this week’s headline thief is a company that’s been around the block for a while: Roku. It just so happens that Roku is one of two heavy weights (Google Chromcast being the other) looking for a little elbow room in the discrete streaming device arena. Recently, Roku unveiled the latest member of its dongle club, the Roku Streaming Stick (HDMI version).


"The new Roku Streaming Stick gives consumers more choice for streaming entertainment to the TV than any other device," said Jim Funk, senior vice president of product management at Roku. "Consumers want a ton of entertainment, an easy way to search for movies and TV shows, and options to control the experience with a remote or mobile device. This new Roku Streaming Stick brings all that and more."

Somehow, Roku has managed to take its box top technology and jam it into a form factor of a 3-inch stick (3.1 X 1.1 X 0.5-inches, to be exact). That’s certainly slick, and its new HDMI compatibility allows it to be plugged directly into any television’s HDMI port, making the device especially handy for TVs mounted on walls and other areas where cords are best left out of sight. This feature alone is a significant upgrade over the company’s previous dongle, which connected to a television’s MHL port. Of course, this goes without mentioning that the HDMI version is nearly half the cost, priced at $50.00 MSRP.

One of Roku’s selling points (and one that trumps Google’s offerings) is content. Loads and loads of content. At launch, the Streaming Stick will allow access to more than 1,200 channels (more than 750 channels in Canada, the U.K. and the Republic of Ireland), crammed with movies, television series, and family entertainment along with services like Netflix, Hulu Plus, HBO Go, Amazon Instant, and VUDU, all delivered in hi-def (Roku suggests a minimum 3mbps connection for HD). If you’re a Roku newb, the initial buy-in cost for the hardware will give you access to hundreds of free channels. Other channels may require a fee that you’re only required to pay if you’d like to play.

The Streaming Stick offers several other nifty features. Users can use Netflix and YouTube apps to cast videos from smart devices onto their television screen. Likewise, users can also send personal videos, photos and music to their TVs using the Roku app. It’s also “wireless N” compliant, which simply means you can enjoy an extended wireless range if you have the right gear.

The Roku Streaming Stick (HDMI Version) will begin shipping sometime next month, and is available for pre-order right now on the company’s website. The original Roku Streaming Stick (Roku Ready version) will still be available as bundled add-on when buying other Roku Ready devices.


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post #2 of 25 Old 03-10-14, 06:43 PM
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Thanks for the info, it sounds like this may actually be something worth buying. It's amazing how they can fit all those features in to such a small design.
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post #3 of 25 Old 03-10-14, 07:06 PM
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Having ditched cable and having lousy reception for OTA transmissions this could be interesting.
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post #4 of 25 Old 03-10-14, 08:07 PM
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Re: Roku Rocks HDMI With Its New Compact Dongle

Thanks for the details. So, which Roku is worth getting?

Streaming Roku Stick
Roku 1
Roku 2
Roku 3

I would like to have one but don't want to plug it into a power outlet. I am assuming the Streaming Roku Stick is the option then? I can stick it into the oppo..

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post #5 of 25 Old 03-10-14, 08:15 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Roku Rocks HDMI With Its New Compact Dongle

If you're looking for no outlet... the Stick is the way to go. The Roku 3 gives you features such as motion control and a faster processor.

You'd have to weigh the pros and cons...
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post #6 of 25 Old 03-10-14, 09:23 PM
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Re: Roku Rocks HDMI With Its New Compact Dongle

Thanks for the details. I am leaning toward the roku stick since I don't have many open outlets nearby to plug the other roku models which need power. From what I am reading, the stick is the most convenient. I did check the manual for the roku stick and it does require a powered usb. Wonder if the oppo has a powered usb??

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Last edited by tripplej; 03-10-14 at 10:36 PM.
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post #7 of 25 Old 03-11-14, 08:59 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Roku Rocks HDMI With Its New Compact Dongle

Good question. But the latest Roku stick is HDMI....
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post #8 of 25 Old 03-11-14, 09:54 AM
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Re: Roku Rocks HDMI With Its New Compact Dongle

I would still go with the Roku 3 over this for the faster processor. All of my HDMI devices run through my receiver so the small form factor is not a selling point for me.
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post #9 of 25 Old 03-11-14, 10:01 AM
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Re: Roku Rocks HDMI With Its New Compact Dongle

Wow! I bought a Roku HD a few months back for $40, and this one looks like it is lightyears ahead. I have loved the one we have (for the tv in the master bedroom). Our tv in the front room is a smart tv, but this may be an awesome solution for downstairs. With the quality I've experienced so far from Roku, I wouldn't hesitate to buy another of their products.
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post #10 of 25 Old 03-11-14, 10:23 AM
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Re: Roku Rocks HDMI With Its New Compact Dongle

I did some more research, from the roku website, I found that the stick has two connectors.

one is for hdmi
one is for power which goes to a powered usb or an electrical outlet

However, for certain manufacturers such as Oppo, the 103 model has the option to use MHL port for power and hdmi connection. See link here. Will look into this more.

Main:
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