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Roku 2 HD

*Est. $60
Reviewed
April 2012
by ConsumerSearch
Roku 2 HD

Pros
  • Simple to use
  • Lots of content providers
  • Good picture quality
Cons
  • HD video is only 720p
  • Tricky to stream from a computer
  • Most content providers require subscriptions
  • Wi-Fi only
Where to Buy
 

The Roku 2 HD has the same core features as the top-of-the-line Roku 2 XS (*Est. $100). Key differences include a lower video resolution of 720p vs. 1080p for the Roku 2 XS, but experts note that 1080p content is still limited, and the apparent difference between 720p streaming video and 1080p streaming video isn't very large. More significant, the Roku 2 HD lacks an Ethernet connection (found in the Roku 2 XS), so Wi-Fi -- which can be problematic at times -- is the only link to your network's router. While the Roku 2 HD supports gaming, it doesn't include the needed gaming controller, which is sold as a separate accessory for $30. If gaming is of no interest, the newer Roku LT (*Est. $50) is worth considering. It strips out some features that are mainly used for gaming -- Bluetooth support for the optional gaming controller, for example -- but is otherwise identical and a little bit less expensive.

Critics who have weighed in the Roku 2 generally focus their attention on the top-of-the-line XS. However, because most features are the same and picture quality should be similar -- save for the few providers streaming 1080p video to the Roku -- some add commentary and advice regarding the Roku 2 HD. The most helpful feedback can be found at CNET and ZatzNotFunny.com. User reviews can be read at Amazon.com and Roku.com.

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Roku LT Streaming Player (Old Version)
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from Amazon.com
New: $49.99   
Average Customer Review:  
Where To Buy
Roku 2 XD Streaming Player 1080p refurbished with FREE HDMI cable

 
2 New from $55.99

In Stock. Eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping

 
Featured StoresStore RatingNotesTotal Price
eBayeBay rated 3.83 (1281 reviews)1,281 store reviewsIn Stock. Buy it new & now! with eBay Buyer Protection$52.95
 

Our Sources

1. CNET

CNET looks at the Roku digital media players in this detailed report. While the focus is on the Roku 2 XS, some observations are made about the Roku 2 HD, as well. John P. Falcone and David Carnoy say that unless you're interested in the gaming feature or need an Ethernet connection, the HD is a good choice. The lack of 1080p is a minus, but the reviewers add that few users will notice the lesser video quality, especially over a streaming video link.

Review: Review: Roku 2 XS, John P. Falcone and David Carnoy, Aug. 15, 2011

2. Zatz Not Funny!

Dave Zatz finds lots to like with the Roku 2 HD. He says the balance of features and cost make it a "no-brainer" for those looking for an inexpensive way to send Netflix and other Internet content to their TVs.

Review: The Roku 2 Review, Dave Zatz, July 23, 2011

3. Amazon.com

The Roku 2 HD digital media player draws more than 275 user reviews. Most seem happy, as reflected by the 4.2-star rating the player has earned thus far. However, a minority is irked by one issue or another, with connectivity problems leading the list.

Review: Roku 2 HD Streaming Player, Contributors to Amazon.com

4. Roku.com

More than 5,100 owners post their opinions of the Roku 2 HD at Roku's website. Though some negatives are noted, most owners are pleased, and 88 percent of those offering opinions say they'd recommend the Roku 2 HD digital media player to a friend.

Review: Roku Customer Reviews, Contributors to Roku.com

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