questionswhy is my roku 2 xs so disappointing?

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I have heard that the new ROKU is faster streaming. I have had the current model for about a year and just got an AppleTV 1080 and it is noticeably faster & doesn't freeze like the ROKU. Still not as good as DirecTV DVR but virtually 1/10th of the price even with a HULU+ subscription. I have neeb considering upgrading to the new ROKU but am going to see how the reviews go and how my experience with AppleTV works out. I still have yet to hear from many Chromecast users on their experience.

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@zippy the pinhead: Chromecast: good picture when using Netflix and Hulu plus. The only reasons I tried the Roku is:
* I kept hearing how awesome the Roku is.
* Pausing TV when using chromecast requires you to unlock your android device.
* I would rather not give my kids my\my wife's personal tablet to watch TV.
* Casting a normal (non youtube) video tab with streaming is outside of my computer's power
* I like the idea of FF and Rewind

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Anything you can play with VLC media player, you can 'cast.

1) Do full install of VLC
2) Drag your intended video onto an open Google Chrome window
3) Click the 'cast button at the upper right of browser (assumes you installed Chromecast app/plugin on your Chrome browser).

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@rlapid2112: So my question has officially been hijacked, but I will play along.
Last I checked (before today) the 'watching local media in chrome' was broken, it would download the video. Today I tested and it did play but I had no sound (I will figure that out this weekend.)

Back to the subject, I hope.
Anyone else have Roku and experience the issues I had?

Do I have a bad device? Do I need to return it for a replacement?
Are my expectation too high? Should I get my money back?

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@caffeine_dude: I have a Roku that I use primarily with Netflix, though I have also used it for Amazon VOD. I get a sharp picture and really love mine - recommended it to dozens of people. During my entire Hulu trial I don't think I watched one thing, so I don't know how stable their app is.

Do you get a quality indicator when loading the video? Is it hitting the full level? Is it an HD program?

Have you checked for updates for the Hulu app? Looking online, though, it seems that the Hulu app is the problem and not the Roku. Lots of complaints everywhere about freezing, choppiness, and generally not working well. Many people recommend pulling the power cord out and plugging it back in right before launching a show in Hulu. Except on the Roku 3, which must be powerful enough to overcome the lousy coding of the Hulu app.

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@omnichad: Pretty much word for word my experience. My Roku 2 XS has given me lots of great Netflix watching. Looks clear and doesn't buffer at all despite being on WiFi. Fast forwarding and rewinding works great too. Haven't tried the Hulu app, frankly, because Hulu has commercials and there's tons of Netflix to watch. But I too have heard it's a mixed bag. Even plenty of Chromecast users complain of the Hulu app.

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I have a roku xs and xd. Neither present the issues you mentioned. Occasionally, the picture will get blurry when it thinks my connection is slow. (adjusts the quality so it can keep streaming) Usually if I pause and play again, it'll look normal. The unresponsive remote doesn't make sense since that wouldn't anything to do with the connection speed. I've heard some rokus can get interference from other remotes in the house and stuff, but that would be pretty easy to narrow down.
Try resetting it. If that doesn't help, return it if you still can.

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I've had my Roku 2 XS for about a year now (we cut the cable), and I've also not had any of your issues. The remote is Bluetooth, so the unresponsiveness is odd. Our picture is great on any app; though Hulu's app is cluttered and very annoying to navigate. Also, you might try installing Plex. I can stream videos from my PC and its free.

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We're on our second Roku -- the first one had the issues you described, but we talked to their support line and, after eventually convincing them to take an RMA (unfortunately, that took a while -- they insisted for a long while that it was the HDMI cable I was using, then tried to claim that they only support customers using OpenDNS), we got a replacement unit that has been working with no problems at all. You might have gotten a bum unit.

They're really nice when they work. :)

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Weird. I picked up a Roku 2 XS last month to use in addition to my first gen Roku. I also have streaming through a Sony DVD Player as well as internet devices.

I've found the Roku 2 XS to be dramatically faster than all my other devices and it's worked flawlessly. The picture is razor sharp. Fast forwarding and rewinding have always been better on the Roku vs other devices and this has been no exception.

Basically, I've had nearly 100% opposite experience as you. First instinct to me is that you got a bad device. Did you try a warranty replacement yet?

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@omnichad: I will try Amazon. I had no issues with Hulu and chromecast. I did not check for an update for the app, neat idea!
@bsmith1: I moved it slightly closer to the source and got full bars. My WiFi N with Full bars and 50mb down would tell me I should never have a slow connection. I did reboot.
@hammerpaw: Congrats on cutting cable. We did also. 'Bluetooth unresponsive', it was almost like the Roku was busy and qued up the button press and finally responded to the commands. As a non typical user I did not mash buttons until it worked. I pressed it once and waited almost a minute. Plex, is my next step. I do not have a Plex server on my PC yet, wanted to get this figured out first.
@eelhovercraft: @bingo969: I will try a differnt HDMI cable, and different ports. With all of the answers I think you are correct. I might have a bad one, I wanted to make sure I did not expect too much.

Thank you to all of you!

Even @zippy the hijacker: I mean @zippy the pinhead: ; )

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I'm guessing you probably got a bad unit. (There is a reason why there are always so many refurbs available for sale, right?) I've got the 720p Roku HD, I've had it for about 18 months, and I'm still very happy with it, no major problems. I've had to power cycle it twice after a crash, and every once in a blue moon, I get sluggish streaming speeds and buffering, but I believe that is due to occasional issues with my ISP, not the Roku. Overall, I've been quite happy with mine, as have most people who comment here on the various Roku threads. Hopefully you can return yours for a replacement that works better. (And then your current bad one can get factory re-flashed and sold as another cheap refurb!)

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@djp519:
Actually mine was a referb from NewEgg.

Stop checking out my unit, I know it is bad but you did not need to tell everyone.

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@caffeine_dude: reset not reboot. Use the small button on bottom our back

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Strange thing, the device is working good (Watched 1 show). I did not make any changes.
Could it be at the time we were attempting to watch have made a difference? It was prime time.

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We had a reburb 2 XD that did some of the things you're talking about, especially when the batteries in the "game" remote got low. But our other Roku refurb doesn't have any of those issues. Now we have a Roku 3 and LOVE it. I'm thinking some of the refurb units had an issue - maybe that was your problem as well?

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@caffeine_dude: I can see time of day impacting your streaming speed, but that wouldn't explain the laggy remote commands if that happened in the Roku hub. If it only happened within an app, then maybe that particular service was overwhelmed at the time.

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I noticed the light on the front is white and flickering. Is that normal?
Issues are intermittent.

I am calling Roku to see if it not too late to get something done.

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So I called support and followed the instructions to the letter:
Rebooted.
Moved the Roku farther away from the router.
Reloaded (Hulu Plus)
Changed my channel on my router.
Speed tests.
Change my DNS on my router.
Speed test again.
*Disabled my DD-WRT ad block script. (they did not ask me to do this but I figured I had better and they would ask if they knew I did it)

Called Hulu and explained what I all did.
Undid my DNS and enabled my ad block. (Hulu said if it working on the Wii, Chromecast, PC and Android devices but it is not working on the Roku then it is the Roku). To this I quietly said no duh.

Now I need to call back. They seem to gloss over (imhop) glaring indications the devices is bad. Hulu works on all devices but the Roku. The Roku's light should not be flickering, they told me it should not.

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Called back changed my MTU to 1428.
Flickering light normal. Per rep.
Had me try to enter the secret menu, but did not work (yet another indication there is something wrong with the roku?)
On the phone for 48 minutes this time.
Try this and call back tomorrow.

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I chatted with Newegg. Here is my 'question'.
What is wrong with the device.
The Roku is slow to launch a TV show in Hulu, it could take up to 5 minutes once play is hit before the show starts to play. Even the tech support did not want to wait the 5 minutes, and they only had to do it once. I made them 1 time.
Did I mention it randomly reboots, is blurry compared to Chromecast.(both using HDMI connections)
Admittedly I will not take the Roku to a different house to see if it works there, per the request of the Roku support. What good does that do me if it works over there, am I to go to their how to watch it ?

A summary of what I did to resolve the issue.
I spent hours and hours on the phone with Roku support.
I have changed my DNS MTU router settings. Rebooted router, rebooted modem.
Tested wireless speed 4 times.

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To the Roku I have rebooted, reloaded. Deleted channels, added channels, Factory reset. Factory reset again. Rebooted, added and removed channels again. Tried to do secret codes (the ones they gave me did not work, but the different ones on the Internet did.

Even when Hulu worked fine on my Chromecast, Android device, Laptop XP, Desktop WIn7, and Wii. Roku would not admit the was defective.
I called Hulu (Per Roku's request). They basically said if it worked on all the devices I would suspect the Roku. (big surprise hardware vs software)

My request.
I never want to see a Roku again I would like a full refund.
I am done!

Please consider paying return shipping due to the painstaking troubleshooting steps I took to resolve the issue with the Roku.
Newegg is giving me a full refund (store credit) and paying return shipping.