Roku Love

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My Roku Netflix Player showed up Thursday evening and I of course immediately set about installing it.

I ordered the cable package with it, as an HDMI, optical audio and component video cable, all for US$20, was a pretty good deal. Of course, I only really needed the HDMI cable, but having the optical audio cable can't hurt. It all came in one box, which took about a week to get here:

And here's what it looks like with the three cables, the simple "Getting Started" guide and the box with the remote and Roku box:
Probably should have put something down for scale, but here is the contents of the Roku box, including batteries for the remote, composite (sic) cables and a power adapter:
Setup was very speedy. It would have been even faster had I done a better job of inserting the batteries in the correct orientation, but even given that brain cramp, it still took almost no time at all. After typing in my WiFi password, it downloaded a software update (I had to power cycle to get it to find the wireless network after the update) and then it prompted me to add the code to the Netflix page. Within minutes, my Instant queue was downloaded and I was off and running. Some initial impressions, after watching some movies and some TV shows:
  • The first time I ran it, there were four white dots to the left of the word "quality" while it buffered the content. I really had no idea if this was good or bad. But after watching about 5 minutes of The Story of the Weeping Camel with my daughter, it reloaded the buffer, this time showing two white dots, followed by two white circles. So I guess the white dots are good and white circles are not. Although in neither case did I notice much difference. But I may try running a (long) wire to the back of the box.
  • Speaking of The Weeping Camel, it looks like the box remembers your position when you stop viewing, as we only watched about 45 minutes of it, yet it still says "Continue viewing"
  • Video quality is just fine, and this on a 50in hi-def Sony tv. Nothing to write home about, but not bad enough to be distracting
  • Audio quality has only been stereo, which is probably more disappointing than the video quality. The Player FAQ doesn't say anything about the audio quality, unfortunately, so I don't know if I just haven't seen anything in 5.1 or if it just isn't there.
  • It's truly addicting to just watch bits and pieces of movies. I did watch all of The Good German, but after that, I dabbled in a few movies. I also watched two episodes of Bullshit, the Penn and Teller series, and had a great time.
  • No power button, which is annoying.
The early line? So far, so good. Good enough for now, but I hope the quality of the video and, especially, the audio improves soon.

1 Comment

[this is good] Now I know three people that have them. And everybody seems to like them.

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This page contains a single entry by Jonathan published on June 2, 2008 2:06 PM.

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