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clemdog
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What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sat Mar 26, 2016 2:14 pm

I continue to read in many forums that the 4 is crap. That it's buggy and riddled with problems. Some have gone as far as to warn that potential buyers will likely be sorry.

Keep in mind that this isn't just 1 or 2 goofy individuals. It's literally coming from many, many sources.

All that said I've got 2 of them and although they run uncomfortably hot I've had no real issues.

So I ask this esteemed group, what's wrong with the Roku 4?
 
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vnazario
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sat Mar 26, 2016 3:31 pm

Hello:

Software issues I am sure Roku can address with future firmware updates. Where you need to worry is with hardware related issues like noisy fans and over-heating issues. Concerning hardware:

1. Noisy fans. As a result of over-heating and melting/expansion of the plastic enclosure. Bad design and improper QA implementations.
2. Some units are missing the thermal pads that go between the CPU and heat sink. Some are missing and others are improperly mounted. Bad design and improper QA implementation.
3. Buggy software mostly reported problems with waking from sleep mode.
4. Audio sync and proper video ramping.
5. Some have reported issues with optical out settings.

These are the ones I remember. Again, points 3 to 5 Roku can/will be fixed with firmware updates but hardware related issues you need to return and exchange for a working unit as soon as you can. Roku is honoring exchanges on defective units. So, if yours is unusually hot despite seeming to work right you may want to consider exchanging before they get worse or Roku changes its return policy with the R4.

Hope this information is helpful.
vnazario

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knuckle
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sat Mar 26, 2016 3:33 pm

Well clemdog it depends on whom you ask ... but to put it in general terms some folk have problems with tv A or receiver B or the unit waking or sound issues and so forth and some are having no problems at all.There is not a single catch all problem that every one is having.When you read a thread on these problems it stacks up and about 2 pages in it quits being a bug thread but a "the R 4 is junk " page which you know isn't the case ( at least not for you) and if left to run it's course there would soon be reports of R4 jumping out of the entertainment cabinet to kick poor old granny in the knee ( ok I may be exaggerating here) but you get the gist of what I am saying.

I believe that most of the bug reports can be fixed by firmware .... when that firmware will be pushed is up to Roku
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clemdog
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sat Mar 26, 2016 4:32 pm

Good info. Thanks.

How long has the 4 been on the market? Any word on a 5?
 
mtg1974
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sat Mar 26, 2016 4:44 pm

My Roku 4 is connected to my receiver which is connected to my TV. Until I found a firmware update from Denon I couldn't get any picture from the Roku at all. To this day I cannot watch 4K video on Netflix. Others have reported similar problems with different equipment.

Software updates have greatly cut down the number of times that it reboots itself while watching Amazon but it still happens occasionally.

I also occasionally have the wake up problem. It doesn't seem to be the Roku that has the problem but my receiver and TV. If I turn them off and back on a couple of times then I get a picture from the Roku.
 
dfgsrzwer
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sat Mar 26, 2016 8:04 pm

clemdog wrote:
Any word on a 5?

If they continue in the future as they have in the past, not for a while. They'll discontinue the present Roku 4 and call the next one Roku 4 as well.
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FX4
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sat Mar 26, 2016 8:59 pm

Oh that's not all of it. A lot of us have problems pulling 4k streams. And it is across services. Tested and verified. I can never pull a Netflix 4k stream if in 10 bit mode, kind of hit and and miss in 8 bit mode. A lot of us also have problems with a magenta color push. It kind of comes and goes with my Roku 4, but man when it does it, just wow in a bad way.
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thetick
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sun Mar 27, 2016 5:55 am

The biggest problem is the quality of cheap electronics along with Roku's lack of good design choices which exacerbates the problem tremendously.
Most people don't realize overheating is a big issue (especially when not every device is immediately affected), but actually it is huge problem industry wide. Let me explain.

Electronics .. . silicon designs are not complete exact perfect copies. There are endless tolerances which individually are generally not a issue , but added up and with poor heat dissipation lead to many faulty products with the number of failing products increasing over time. The silicon industry has a term call yield that is amount of usable products after manufacture but does not estimate the long term faults as they vary drastically largely on design practices and heat dissipation.

For a high level overview of yield concerns (not including long term faults) see :
http://anysilicon.com/6-ways-improve-ch ... ect-starts

The point is Roku is walking on thin ice by even thinking about delivering such a hot silicon design. Now overclocking is common with computer CPUs, but computer CPU designs generally have much better designs (and higher cost) specifically to get higher yields. For products like Roku it's an economic game to use the cheapest parts that can deliver a high enough yield. Long term quality is usually adequately addressed with ample heat dissipation in the cheaper silicon designs.

I have worked professionally over 10 years in the ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) industry so have pretty good idea of the issues involved.
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dfgsrzwer
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sun Mar 27, 2016 7:47 am

To a lesser extant this applies to other Roku models* as well, which is why some people have problems and others don't; and which is why I believe keeping them plugged in 24/7/365 is a bad idea.

*or any electronic device
Charter Spectrum 60; d-link dual band router
Roku 4210, 3710; Xbox One, 360; Samsung BD player
Samsung tablet; Windows Vista laptop; LG phone
Toshiba DVD-R; Sony AVR; Panasonic AR
1080p and 720p TVs
 
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DubTaylor
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sun Mar 27, 2016 8:44 am

Unless you want the outlandish and unreasonable convenience of turning the TV on and watching something.

I've had a Roku2HD plugged in for about 6 years - except when I would unplug it for a 'reboot'. That's now handled through that handy system function. I have prepared myself for the real possibility that a FW upgrade could brick my old unit at any moment, but that pretty much goes for all Rokus everywhere.

Buying a Roku 4 at this time would be a poor consumer choice.
 
barneypoo69
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sun Mar 27, 2016 11:25 am

Of all the responses, how many own a Roku 4 & along with a 4k display ? I do but I'm not going to upgrade my Netflix account to include UHD movies because the Roku 4 has a known issue with streaming 4k from Netflix wheither the 4k or 4k 10 bit is selected in the Roku 4 settings. Will not stream 2160p, will stream 2160p but when you come back you have to reboot, change from 4k 10 bit to 4k and hope it works, or change settings during the stream,.....can't remember all the stuff customers go through to try to stream 4k from Netflix.
The resason I got the Roku 4 so I could watch College Football Bowl games on ESPN with SlingTV and start streaming 4K movies on my new Samsung SUHD. The SlingTV turned out to be a hassel then, freezing/video blank etc.
Since I read that Roku 4 would later get firmware update to be able to handle/display HDR and everyone loved their Roku's, I bought my Roku 4 thinking down the road I would be good. Still waiting to see if and when Roku/Netflix gets corrected and not a hint about Roku 4 and HDR 10.
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Rcosta
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sun Mar 27, 2016 11:35 am

All,

With all of these discussions, as we know, it is fine balance between performance, first to market, reliability and price point. Roku has wonderful products, but think of the competition that they are going against. Google, one of the most capitalized companies in the world, Amazon, again another deep pocket company, Apple.....do I need to say anymore?

I know that Roku has it share of problems, but considering where they are in market share, still being a private company and competing against these massive Fortune 500 companies, please give Roku a bit of slack.

My 2 cents!
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clemdog
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Sun Mar 27, 2016 12:06 pm

So has there been and official Roku feedback on any of this or have they gone radio silence?
 
hackztor
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Mon Mar 28, 2016 3:11 pm

I love the fact that Roku is neutral (it does not preference one service over another, example: voice search randomizes the order, every other box promotes their service first). The downside is the company is much smaller than the other big 3 and has resorted to advertising on the main screen, on the apps and on the remote. I hate advertisement but I understand putting on the main screen. The apps is borderline (based on potentially filling up the already small storage space) but on the remote is horrendous. When/If an app goes out of business the button is stuck on the remote. Roku reprogrammed it to another app but obviously the icon no longer matches. Roku should let users reprogram the apps to what they want and SELL buttons with the icons and make money that way. I still prefer none of those buttons as the whole point of the home screen is to show you your apps. I can see some people using them as shortcuts for faster access.

Rcosta wrote:
All,

With all of these discussions, as we know, it is fine balance between performance, first to market, reliability and price point. Roku has wonderful products, but think of the competition that they are going against. Google, one of the most capitalized companies in the world, Amazon, again another deep pocket company, Apple.....do I need to say anymore?

I know that Roku has it share of problems, but considering where they are in market share, still being a private company and competing against these massive Fortune 500 companies, please give Roku a bit of slack.

My 2 cents!
 
barneypoo69
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Re: What's Wrong With Roku 4?

Tue Mar 29, 2016 7:22 pm

Rcosta wrote:
All,

With all of these discussions, as we know, it is fine balance between performance, first to market, reliability and price point. Roku has wonderful products, but think of the competition that they are going against. Google, one of the most capitalized companies in the world, Amazon, again another deep pocket company, Apple.....do I need to say anymore?

I know that Roku has it share of problems, but considering where they are in market share, still being a private company and competing against these massive Fortune 500 companies, please give Roku a bit of slack.

My 2 cents!


There is a small Company that has over 400 employees with half in California & the other half in South Dakota. They are competing with the big boys like Sony, Samsung, LG, and others. Just recently they introduced a product that has the big boys attention.
That company is Vizio.
And no, I don't work for Vizio and don't own anything that they make. But their new 4K P series monitors that can display Dolby Digital and in 90 days will also display HDR 10 with firmware update for thousands less than Sony and Samsung......got my attention too.

So Roku should try to stay in the driver's seat and not ride off into the sunset. They have a good name and loyal customers. They offer a product line that is growing like crazy. Everyone has heard about Roku, keep it all good.
Roku 4, Time Warner Cable 200/20 & Asus RT-N66U
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