Author Topic: Roku issues, possible replacement  (Read 2165 times)

meerkat

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Roku issues, possible replacement
« on: August 18, 2016, 06:15:27 AM »
We purchased a Roku last year when our previous set up for watching tv via the internet bit the dust. Unfortunately we've been experiencing intermittent problems with it and it's getting to the point that we're done fighting with it. The issue seems to be that it doesn't get good wifi signal from our router in the other room. This seems ridiculous because the previous method we had for watching tv was essentially a computer and it used wifi just fine. We also regularly use our phones and our tablet (which is wifi only) in the same room as the Roku and never have wifi issues with those devices. My husband, usually the person who deals with tech stuff in our house, even replaced the router with a more robust one. It has made no appreciable difference to the Roku.

The way I see it, there's a few options:
- Set up a signal relay device to boost the wifi signal. I haven't ever tried one of these but my mom uses one for her cell phone signal and loves it, I figure there's probably something comparable for boosting wifi signal. No idea how much it will cost or if that will even solve the issue.
- Replace the Roku entirely with something else. This is probably our preferred option at this point because we're just so frustrated with it. I debated selling the old Roku on Craigslist but I'd need to make sure none of our data (like our Netflix and Plex accounts) remains on it, plus I feel like I'd be selling a defective item which I'm not crazy about. I suppose I could state our issues in the ad so whoever is buying it would be aware. Or - this just occurred to me, I could try moving the Roku to our room where we're currently using a Wii to access Netflix. Then we'd be able to access other content as well. The only snag there is finding out if our ancient-but-functional tv would have the right cables/ports/whatever to work with the Roku.
- Run a really long ethernet cable across the house so the Roku wouldn't have to rely on wifi. This won't work in practical terms.

Questions for the crowd: Should we try to keep fixing the issue or just move on? If we move on, to what? What has been working well for you?

Uturn

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Re: Roku issues, possible replacement
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2016, 06:26:14 AM »
I have 2 of the Roku 3 and use the ethernet port.  I LOOOOVE my Roku.

Is Ethernet cable an option for you?

You said your husband replaced the wireless access point.  Do you still have the old one?  Nothing says that you cannot run two access points in your house for better wifi coverage.  But you will again need to run an ethernet cable. 

Charger

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Re: Roku issues, possible replacement
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2016, 07:41:27 AM »
Depending on how the electrical in the house is wired (more than one panel?) you could give a powerline adapter a try.

http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-powerline-networking-kit/

There are "better" options in terms of reliability and strength of signal but if the house has valid wiring and not using multiple panels it should work just fine. You have the option or portability as well as attaching it to any access point/extender or router/rub as well.

misshathaway

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Re: Roku issues, possible replacement
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2016, 07:52:44 AM »
The issue seems to be that it doesn't get good wifi signal from our router in the other room. This seems ridiculous because the previous method we had for watching tv was essentially a computer and it used wifi just fine.

One thing to try on the wifi router is going in to admin and giving the Roku top priority, in case something else is using up alot of bandwidth.  On mine the setting is "Bandwidth Control". Maybe it won't help, but it's worth a try.

katsiki

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Re: Roku issues, possible replacement
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2016, 07:55:02 AM »
I would try a wifi repeater.  You can get one for $50.  If it doesn't solve the problem, you can return it.  We have one at my office and it solved a lot of access problems in an old, winding building.

ketchup

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Re: Roku issues, possible replacement
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2016, 08:46:53 AM »
You can fiddle with settings on your router (different frequencies or channels to suss out interference, transmit power, etc.), but if that doesn't work, and given that you already replaced the router, you probably don't have many options.  I haven't had good luck with repeaters either, but a second AP might do the job if your issue is simply distance.
- Run a really long ethernet cable across the house so the Roku wouldn't have to rely on wifi. This won't work in practical terms.
Some flavor of this is your only real solution.  Wifi has come a long way, but it's still fundamentally garbage in the throughput/reliability department ("Everyone likes wifi until they have to use it.").  If I had a Roku/similar, I would definitely have it on a hardwired network connection.
You can be creative with the wiring though.  You can snake it through a vent, tuck it underneath something, or use that powerline adapter someone mentioned upthread.  I once used an ethernet cable that went out a living room window and up a story to a bedroom window (I wouldn't recommend that long-term).

simplified

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Re: Roku issues, possible replacement
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2016, 08:48:48 AM »
I have a gigabit internet connection with a strong wifi signal. In spite of that the roku gets disconnected from wifi every night. It won't work unless I restart it every morning. I have since switched it to a wired connection and it works flawlessly now.

I have an amazon fire stick that is connected to the same wifi and never drops the connection. So its definitely a problem with roku and not my wifi.

tweezers

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Re: Roku issues, possible replacement
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2016, 08:49:21 AM »
We had similar issues and raising the router higher than the desk it was on worked wonders.  We just hung it right on the wall at ~6ft from the floor (eventually a shelf...) and all the connectivity issues went away.