Our verdict of the Roku Premiere:
Slick, easy, and speedy — the Roku Premiere is an unbelievable machine for such a low worth. While it has minor niggles, with such a wide selection of apps in such a compact package deal, that is a tremendous media streamer with 4K capabilities at an unmissable worth.
The media streamer market is at saturation level, with a number of gadgets out there from all the large names. There’s Apple TV, Amazon Fire sticks and containers, Android TV models, and Google Chromecast.
And then there’s Roku. With a few gadgets to select from, their finances Roku Premiere is especially attention-grabbing. It prices below $50, streams 4K video, and appears to have an app for each service you possibly can consider, and fairly a couple of you possibly can’t.
But does the Roku Premiere ship on the efficiency promised on the field?
We’ve teamed up with Plex to supply a incredible giveaway bundle to 1 fortunate reader, consisting of a Roku Premiere, HD HomeRun Connect Duo TV-tuner, indoor antenna, and LIFETIME Plex Pass! You’ll discover the entry widget on the finish of this overview, and the bonus code in the video. Good luck!
Unboxing the Roku Premiere
In the field, you’ll discover the Roku Premiere (3920 mannequin), USB cable, energy adapter, and a surprisingly brief HDMI cable. Also in the field is an IR distant management (Wi-Fi followers can use the cellular app), that includes pre-set channel shortcut buttons (together with Netflix) and two AAA batteries. Along with a quick set-up information, an adhesive strip can be included.
All of that is wrapped up in an orange field that guarantees a lot: “4K & HDR streaming made easy” and a bunch of free and subscription companies. If you have got 4K content material, an acceptable web connection, and a TV with the requisite HDCP 2.2 compliant HDMI port, you’ll get 4K. Otherwise, the Roku Premiere is ideal for commonplace 1080p content material, too.
Roku Premiere Specification
On the face of it, the Roku Premiere is extremely unimpressive. It’s a small plastic slab, measuring 3.30 x 1.40 x 0.70 inches and weighing simply 1.28 ounces. On the again is a single micro-USB energy port and a single HDMI port. You’ll additionally discover a small reset button, accessed utilizing a pin.
For connecting the Roku Premiere to your community, there’s an 802.11bgn single-band wi-fi chip.
At the center of the Roku is a quad-core ARM Cortex A53 CPU with 1GB of RAM and 512MB channel storage. There is not any microSD card slot with the Roku Premiere.
The machine can deal with 4K UHD as much as 2160p at 60fps, and helps HDR10 and HLG (Hybrid Log-Gamma). Audiophiles can take pleasure in DTS Digital Surround and Dolby Audio, with Dolby ATMOS move by over HDMI, and Digital stereo over HDMI.
Can you join Roku to your TV? Well, you probably have an HDTV or higher, try to be positive. The field can stream to plain HDTVs with 1080p, in addition to upscaling 720p.
For 4K UHD TVs, the Roku streams as much as 2160p at 60fps (3840×2160) with up-scaling from 720p and 1080p. For this, the 4K TV ought to have an HDMI enter that helps HDCP 2.2. The Roku Premiere may stream at HDR10 to 4K UHD HDR TVs, utilizing the identical HDCP 2.2 HDMI enter.
Note: as most individuals personal a 1080p HDTV, we’ve reviewed the Roku Premiere on such a tool.
Setting Up the Roku Premiere
While simple to arrange and set up, the Roku Premiere comes with a few positional challenges.
- How must you energy it?
- Where must you place it?
Both are simple. The machine ships with its personal USB energy adapter, so if there’s a mains electrical connection close by, use this. However, this isn’t all the time the case. Fortunately, most trendy TVs supply a 5V USB energy outlet which is right for the Roku Premiere.
With the ability sorted out, positioning is the subsequent problem. The Roku Premiere is compact and mild sufficient to be mounted in your TV. It comes with a double-sided adhesive strip to connect the machine to the highest or backside of your tv. If there’s a constant floor for the adhesive, the Roku Premiere could be reliably hooked up. Given the size of the HDMI cable, it is sensible to maintain the machine near your TV.
Hooking up the Roku Premiere to Wi-Fi is simple, as is your entire arrange course of. You’ll have to arrange your Roku account on a PC or pill, nonetheless, in order to activate the machine. This is an easy course of that helps you initialize the Roku for your territory and obtain the related collection of apps. Once that is completed you possibly can change again to the Roku Premiere itself so as to add channel apps, log in or create new accounts, and put together for viewing.
It’s truthful to say that every little thing about this unit, from the compact measurement and ergonomic distant management to the simplicity of the person interface, makes it appropriate even for essentially the most tech-averse particular person .
Another instance: the material tab on the distant’s battery compartment. No extra struggling together with your distant’s battery cowl—it actually pulls off to allow you to rapidly change the batteries. The distant itself is mild, simple to make use of, and sits properly in your hand. The lack of quantity management is a shock, however a minor disappointment.
Everything about Roku is designed with usability in thoughts. It’s an exquisite philosophy that will get a giant thumbs up.
Finding and Installing Apps on Roku Premiere
The Roku Premiere encompasses a huge collection of channels that may be put in or eliminated like apps. Among these are large names resembling Netflix, Google Play TV, and Apple TV. The choice is determined by the place you reside, so some apps don’t seem or received’t work in specific territories.
Thousands of channels can be found general. You’ll even discover issues like Plex and HD Homerun for streaming video and TV from your personal networked gadgets.
Other channel apps embody Disney+, Prime, Apple TV, Now TV, and YouTube. Channels are divided by class, and the platform even helps fundamental video games.
Managing apps on the Roku Premiere is straightforward, too.
You can and delete as obligatory, and the settings display screen opens a complete host of choices. You can change the theme, the screensaver, allow community entry for cellular apps, manufacturing facility reset, system replace, change the language, and even provoke a visitor mode. This lets guests to your own home enter their very own credentials for a selected app. A helpful choice for borrowing Disney+ to catch the newest addition to the service with pals and household.
As famous, the Roku has 512MB of channel storage. I spent round 30 minutes discovering and putting in apps with out operating out of house, so except you’re actually indecisive you most likely received’t hit that restrict.
Missing Channels? Use Mirroring
Incredibly, regardless of having 100s of channels, the Roku Premiere may not characteristic a channel app you wish to use. For instance, in the UK there is no such thing as a Britbox app (though the US model is listed). Similarly, there is no such thing as a Kodi app for Roku.
So, what’s the resolution? Fortunately, Roku helps display screen mirroring. All you might want to do is open Settings > System > Screen Mirroring, then select whether or not to permit all connections or situation a immediate.
On the machine you’re mirroring from, use the mirroring choice. So, on Android, use a mirroring app moderately than Chromecast. We tried it out on Windows, Android, and iOS—the cellular gadgets labored whereas Windows 10 didn’t. Connection was made, however no streaming was established, regardless of a number of makes an attempt and reboots.
Setting Up Roku Premiere with HD Homerun DUO and Plex
This overview is all concerning the Roku Premiere, however because of Plex, our unbelievable prize bundle additionally contains an HD Homerun DUO, HDTV indoor UHF antenna, and a Lifetime Plex Pass.
But how properly do these techniques play collectively?
Well, we predict you’ll be impressed. While the HD Homerun DUO
requires a powerful, constant terrestrial HDTV sign, it’s simple so as to add to your community. Just plug it into your router utilizing Ethernet, hook up the antenna (inside or exterior), and over the air TV could be seen on any appropriate machine. The Roku Premiere options an HD Homerun app, so any TV you’re lacking could be loved that means.
has expanded in current years, now providing content material solely out there with a Plex Pass together with your personal media hosted on a community drive. The Plex app on Roku simply connects to your present Plex server, giving entry to each media file you want.
Roku: The Perfect Plex Partner
Over the years I’ve used a number of media streamers, from Apple TV and Chromecast to Amazon Fire TV and Chromecast Ultra. They all have their benefits and disadvantages, however none are as simple to make use of and slick as Roku.
Of course, the Roku Premiere has some shortcomings. HDMI-CEC—the system that permits your TV distant to manage a media streamer or vice versa—appears inconsistent. There can be a scarcity of quantity management. Screen mirroring from Windows 10, in the meantime, seems fraught with pitfalls and is presumably greatest prevented. The lack of Kodi could be a deal-breaker, too.
However, these are minor. Overall, this can be a nice media streamer, at a surprisingly low worth for 4K and HDR. It’s simple to arrange, surprisingly easy to make use of, and you most likely received’t use your commonplace TV decoder for days after putting in the Roku Premiere.
Enter the Competition!
Affiliate Disclosure: By shopping for the merchandise we suggest, you assist maintain the positioning alive. Read extra.