Roku 2 Hardware Specification

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Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby M1cha » Thu Oct 06, 2011 12:27 am

Hi,

I'm thinking of buying an Roku2-MediaPlayer.
But because there's an Android-Box around with very Powerful CPU I wanted to know before which Hardware is build in Roku2-box.
I couldn't find such information.

Best regards,
M1cha
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby renojim » Thu Oct 06, 2011 2:43 am

First of all, I wouldn't call it a Media Player. That sort of implies it will play just about anything and the Roku isn't meant to play just about anything. Secondly, if you're that concerned about what the hardware is, this really may not be the box for you. The Roku boxes are pretty good for Internet streaming, but not so good as general purpose media players.

Having said that, maybe this teardown will help.

-JT
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby atheling » Thu Oct 06, 2011 7:52 am

"Powerful CPU" has different meanings to different people. Having started with computers in a world where a "mainframe" computer was clocked around 1 MHz and had less than a meg of memory, I have the impression that even my microwave oven has a powerful CPU. :)

With respect to the Roku2, there are reports on the Internet that it is based around the Broadcom 2835 chip. http://www.broadcom.com/products/BCM2835

Whether that is a "powerful CPU" for your intended application or not is for you to decide. Of course, if you actually want to put your own firmware on it you will also have to figure out how to do that which may be non-trivial. If you don't want to put your own firmware on it then you will be using what Roku provides. In which case what is in the Roku2 doesn't matter to you, only what the entire package provides.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby M1cha » Thu Oct 06, 2011 10:14 am

I'm only an enthusiast which wants to know everything about the hardware before buying anything :)
And the fact, that Roku2 is based on Linux 2.6-Kernel makes this product very interesting.
I could run nearly everything without being limited by the SDK. Maybe a port of Ubuntu is possible.

However, I contacted the engineers to get these information.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby mikebdoss » Thu Oct 06, 2011 10:21 am

M1cha wrote:I'm only an enthusiast which wants to know everything about the hardware before buying anything :)
And the fact, that Roku2 is based on Linux 2.6-Kernel makes this product very interesting.
I could run nearly everything without being limited by the SDK. Maybe a port of Ubuntu is possible.

However, I contacted the engineers to get these information.


I've never heard of anyone doing any successful ports to the Roku. Not that it's not possible, but I believe the device is absurdly well locked down.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby M1cha » Thu Oct 06, 2011 10:34 am

I think the only reason why there are no mods or ports is that the Roku is not very popular in the home of specialists.
Multimedia-Boxes will be the Trend but are not very popular at this time.

I'm not an expert in this things but I have enough knowledge to experiment with these things maybe I will find any special usage for this great product.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby Gilgamesh » Thu Oct 06, 2011 10:41 am

mikebdoss wrote:I've never heard of anyone doing any successful ports to the Roku. Not that it's not possible, but I believe the device is absurdly well locked down.


You are correct. Roku is NOT a box that even remotely is a reasonable candidate for that kind of mod.

If anyone is really interested in modding an internet streaming box the WD-Live or WD-Live plus are much better choices.

There are already several successful mods for both of those and the ways of opening it up are well documented.

While modding the Roku is not a reasonable choice there are many examples of using the SDK to do some VERY creative things and it has been shown that, mostly, the only limiting factors are the formats that are actually supported and the developer's imagination.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby M1cha » Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:23 am

WDLive is a completely different box.
The fact, that Roku2 is very cheap and is based on Linux 2.6 makes it very interesting for me.

Even without complex ports of whole Linux-Systems it would be great to have access to the Linux-Shell of the box to run different applications.
I don't want to rewrite every application(which would be unbelievable much work) to work on Roku.

You are right. Roku is very good as it is in it's original state.
But executing native Linux-applications would be a nice extra as mentioned above.

We will see, what the engineers will answer to my mail.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby kc8pql » Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:26 am

M1cha wrote:
We will see, what the engineers will answer to my mail.

I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for an answer...

I think the only reason why there are no mods or ports is that the Roku is not very popular in the home of specialists.

Roku has sold well over a million boxes in the last three years. I think if what you want to do was possible or practical, it would have happened long ago.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby M1cha » Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:38 am

I'm from germany and here the roku isn't very popular.
As far as I know there isn't any german shop which sells roku.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby kc8pql » Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:44 am

That's correct. Roku doesn't ship or support the box outside the US, although there are other sources that will send you one.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby sharpedge » Thu Oct 06, 2011 7:57 pm

M1cha wrote:I'm only an enthusiast which wants to know everything about the hardware before buying anything :)
And the fact, that Roku2 is based on Linux 2.6-Kernel makes this product very interesting.
I could run nearly everything without being limited by the SDK. Maybe a port of Ubuntu is possible.

However, I contacted the engineers to get these information.


You might be better off waiting and buying Raspberry Pi, it's supposed to be out next month.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby stratcat96 » Thu Oct 06, 2011 8:31 pm

M1cha wrote:WDLive is a completely different box.
The fact, that Roku2 is very cheap and is based on Linux 2.6 makes it very interesting for me.

Even without complex ports of whole Linux-Systems it would be great to have access to the Linux-Shell of the box to run different applications.
I don't want to rewrite every application(which would be unbelievable much work) to work on Roku.

You are right. Roku is very good as it is in it's original state.
But executing native Linux-applications would be a nice extra as mentioned above.

We will see, what the engineers will answer to my mail.


Roku engineers probably aren't going to be much [any] help to you in your quest to mod the box. Thy don't want anybody altering anything about the software of the box and worked hard to lock it down. Unlike other boxes, they have provided an open SDK and given access to much [but not everything] of the components of their proprietary operating system. If you want a box to mod outside the operating system and components developers are given access to, this isn't it
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby mkiker2089 » Fri Oct 07, 2011 3:16 pm

I think on a scale of "powerful" CPU's it sums it up best to say the Roku doesn't have a CPU at all compared to most modern devices. Someone mentioned a microwave and that may actually be close. Roku can barely run the channels it has sometimes and I think putting programs on it would cause all sorts of unforeseen problems.

If I were going to hack something I'd get a Logitech Revue. Hardware versus cost puts it as the cheapest device out there and it's the cheapest to run Honeycomb Android as far as I know also. It's not the easiest to get root on however.

Also, don't let the fact that the Roku has linux buried deep inside of it somewhere mislead you. The box is actually using a specific software shell and gets updates from, and only from, Roku. It's not going to be easy to get to root on this box either. Some tried, on the Roku1 but I don't know if anyone succeeded. Getting it to accept software is going to be a huge stumbling block. Now if you are content to write "channels" and leaving the box as is, a media player, that might be different.
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Re: Roku 2 Hardware Specification

Postby M1cha » Mon Oct 10, 2011 1:30 pm

A little question: will 1080p MKV-Videos with bitrates up to 20mbps play smoothly?
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