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Old 01-16-2018, 05:03 PM   #1
IndyMLVC IndyMLVC is offline
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Default Roku vs Apple TV? Thoughts?

Has anyone here owned both devices? Likes? Dislikes? Opinions?
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Old 01-16-2018, 05:14 PM   #2
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I own both. The Apple TV 4K is much better. Quicker, more fluid, smooth AirPlay from Apple devices, amazing picture quality. Has amazon prime now. I own the most recent roku as well but donít really use it. My wife does like the Vudu app on the roku more than the Apple TV, but thatís about it.
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Old 01-16-2018, 06:55 PM   #3
jgo435 jgo435 is offline
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I've owned different Roku models for about 5 years and I've own the 4th Apple TV for about 6 months and also have the Apple TV 4K. I think it all depends on what you plan to use it for mostly. Roku's UI hasn't really changed at all in several years and it looks a bit dated (IMO). tvOS is definitely more pleasing to the eye. Once you get into the apps/channels, they more or less look the same and the user experience is pretty much the same. I will say that I had a really hard time adjusting to Apple TV's remote. It's just very small and thin and there's a bit of a learning curve with the swiping. Even now sometimes I still find myself swiping in the wrong direction. Maybe it's just me. I prefer Roku's remote even though it looks and feels a bit toy-like. If you already have a lot of digital media through iTunes, the Apple TV is probably better for you just because it'll be easier to view all of your media. To view any UV movies, Amazon Prime Video and Vudu are available. If you go for the Roku, you might be able to to view some of your iTunes media through Movies Anywhere, but all of the studios aren't part of MA so not all movies will be there. Also, Movies Anywhere is just for... movies, so if you have purchased any TV shows through iTunes, there's not an easy way to watch them on Roku. There are some workarounds, but it's not worth the trouble IMO. If you're already heavily in the Apple ecosystem, I'd go ahead and go for the Apple TV.

With regards to 4K and HDR... I consider myself a pretty tech savvy guy, but for the life of me, I can't get HDR to work properly on the Apple TV 4K. The colors just look really washed out. Playing video in just 4K looks great though. I haven't tried out the 4K Rokus.
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Old 01-16-2018, 07:25 PM   #4
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I think the best way to look at it would be which ecosystem you're more invested in. The Apple TV is great, but only if you're invested in Apple products and buy most of your movies through their service. I don't own one, but from what I've heard they've added Vudu and possibly Amazon recently, but now that MA exists that's pretty much a moot point.

I have owned a Roku stick for years now, and it's never let me down. I love that it was the only machine that has Vudu, Amazon, and Google on one device. I do own a few unique movies on iTunes that moved to the other services through MA, so I have pretty much my entire collection of digital movies in one place.

Again, I don't own the Apple TV and won't get one until I upgrade my projector to 4K down the road, but the sheer amount of content on the Roku gives it the edge to me for versatility. I do think most of my digital purchases and redemptions will be through Apple now to take advantage of the 4K upgrade, but for now the Roku works great with my current needs.
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Old 01-16-2018, 09:14 PM   #5
Greyman Greyman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by njdevil254 View Post
I think the best way to look at it would be which ecosystem you're more invested in. The Apple TV is great, but only if you're invested in Apple products and buy most of your movies through their service. I don't own one, but from what I've heard they've added Vudu and possibly Amazon recently, but now that MA exists that's pretty much a moot point.

I have owned a Roku stick for years now, and it's never let me down. I love that it was the only machine that has Vudu, Amazon, and Google on one device. I do own a few unique movies on iTunes that moved to the other services through MA, so I have pretty much my entire collection of digital movies in one place.

Again, I don't own the Apple TV and won't get one until I upgrade my projector to 4K down the road, but the sheer amount of content on the Roku gives it the edge to me for versatility. I do think most of my digital purchases and redemptions will be through Apple now to take advantage of the 4K upgrade, but for now the Roku works great with my current needs.
The fact that Apple TV now has Vudu, Amazon and MoviesAnywhere means it is also good for people that are not tied to the Apple ecosystem.
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:01 PM   #6
IndyMLVC IndyMLVC is offline
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The apple ecosystem doesn't have as much of a draw for me as the idea that moviesanywhere has made a lot of my movies available there and it's better to have more of a choice in encoding. In addition, I really like the idea that my HD titles will be upgraded. I already have a Roku 4k and i'm just wondering if I should sell that and move over to Apple.

My biggest concerns are:

1) channel availability - is a channel on Roku that's not on Apple?

2) are there drawbacks to the apps that I love on Apple as opposed to Roku?

3) is there any issue with displaying the frame-rate that the master is encoded with? I'd prefer to have 23.976 than 60fps on everything.
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:17 PM   #7
master gandhi master gandhi is online now
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VUDU on Apple TV 4K doesnít actually do 4K, so thatís my only real gripe with it compared to the Roku. Hoping they either add 4K to the VUDU app or all the studios join Movies Anywhere, so all the 4K movies I own on VUDU can just transfer to iTunes in 4K (and hopefully Disney adds 4K to iTunes).
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Old 01-16-2018, 11:41 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by master gandhi View Post
VUDU on Apple TV 4K doesn’t actually do 4K, so that’s my only real gripe with it compared to the Roku. Hoping they either add 4K to the VUDU app or all the studios join Movies Anywhere, so all the 4K movies I own on VUDU can just transfer to iTunes in 4K (and hopefully Disney adds 4K to iTunes).
Vudu on the Apple TV does not stream in HDX for some movies and TV episodes that I own in HDX quality and it's been this way ever since the app was released on the Apple TV. So if you mainly use Vudu and don't use iTunes then I think the Roku Ultra is the preferred device over the Apple TV 4k just because of the limitations of the Vudu app on the Apple TV. The Apple TV 4k does make sense if you mainly use iTunes or don't use Vudu. There are better devices than the Apple TV 4k for Vudu at this time.
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Old 01-17-2018, 12:05 AM   #9
IndyMLVC IndyMLVC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by master gandhi View Post
VUDU on Apple TV 4K doesnít actually do 4K, so thatís my only real gripe with it compared to the Roku. Hoping they either add 4K to the VUDU app or all the studios join Movies Anywhere, so all the 4K movies I own on VUDU can just transfer to iTunes in 4K (and hopefully Disney adds 4K to iTunes).
Hmm...that's a definite negative. Why is that?
Also - a thought: not all movies that are in 4k on Vudu are in 4k on iTunes. So simply joining MA doesn't change everything.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PCFan View Post
Vudu on the Apple TV does not stream in HDX for some movies and TV episodes that I own in HDX quality and it's been this way ever since the app was released on the Apple TV. So if you mainly use Vudu and don't use iTunes then I think the Roku Ultra is the preferred device over the Apple TV 4k just because of the limitations of the Vudu app on the Apple TV. The Apple TV 4k does make sense if you mainly use iTunes or don't use Vudu. There are better devices than the Apple TV 4k for Vudu at this time.
Hmm...that's super strange. How do you know if it's not streaming in HDX? Do we know why that is?

Thanks for the feedback!
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Old 01-17-2018, 12:05 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by njdevil254 View Post
I don't own one, but from what I've heard they've added Vudu and possibly Amazon recently, but now that MA exists that's pretty much a moot point.
The main draw of the Amazon app for me is access to movies and TV shows that are free with Amazon Prime (i.e. Amazon's Netflix equivalent). These are not accessible through MA. I recently disconnected my Roku that I had basically only used for Amazon lately.
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Old 01-17-2018, 12:27 AM   #11
PCFan PCFan is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndyMLVC View Post
Hmm...that's a definite negative. Why is that?
Also - a thought: not all movies that are in 4k on Vudu are in 4k on iTunes. So simply joining MA doesn't change everything.



Hmm...that's super strange. How do you know if it's not streaming in HDX? Do we know why that is?

Thanks for the feedback!
I know it's streaming in SD after I swipe down the remote's touchpad and it does not show the letters HD in top of the plot description and it also looks blurrier. If something is streaming in HDX it will show the letters HD at the top of the plot description. This issue is well known in the Vudu forum and I read that it has something to do with the file.

Last edited by PCFan; 01-17-2018 at 12:33 AM.
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Old 01-17-2018, 12:54 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndyMLVC View Post
Hmm...that's super strange. How do you know if it's not streaming in HDX? Do we know why that is?
Vudu has to convert their content library to a format compatible with Apple and they seem to do this on the basis of popularity. If you own a title in HDX but it's streaming in SD on an Apple device, it's not popular and/or they haven't gotten to doing it yet. Limited time and resources when you're a minority provider, I guess.
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Old 01-17-2018, 01:25 AM   #13
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Again, the Apple TV is great and they're adding many of the other storefronts, unlike the Amazon Fire system, which only is only good for their stuff and modding for Kodi. What sets Roku apart for me at least is the sheer number of channels it has available. Many of them may be crap, but there is a ton of stuff available on it. Again, don't own an Apple TV yet, but I can't imagine it having anywhere near the amount of content that Roku has.
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Old 01-17-2018, 02:03 AM   #14
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There are many websites that will give you all the info you need.

I have a Roku 3 and love it. I added a Roku Stick Plus which has 4k with HDR in another room and love that to. Not crazy on the thickness of the remote which I think is too thin but otherwise I love it. The remote even controls the power and volume and I donít see it behind the tv so itís one less wire. Get the Roku Stick Plus. I got two for $42.50 each, one from Target and the other from Amazon.
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Old 01-17-2018, 04:41 AM   #15
IndyMLVC IndyMLVC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by worldchmps View Post
There are many websites that will give you all the info you need.

I have a Roku 3 and love it. I added a Roku Stick Plus which has 4k with HDR in another room and love that to. Not crazy on the thickness of the remote which I think is too thin but otherwise I love it. The remote even controls the power and volume and I don’t see it behind the tv so it’s one less wire. Get the Roku Stick Plus. I got two for $42.50 each, one from Target and the other from Amazon.
I already have the most recent 4k Roku. The question isn't which one I should get. I just don't want to have both and I'm certainly not going to just have an Apple TV for Apple stuff. That's ridiculous and part of the reason why I hate their selfish BS in the first place. However, if the Apple TV did everything my Roku did, then that would be a bonus.

But, again, my SOLE interest in getting it is for the free 4k upgrades. Without that (and MA), I'd have little to no interest in Apple TV.
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Old 01-17-2018, 06:37 AM   #16
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I'll echo everything jgo435 said.

Also, if you have small children, the Apple TV remote can be pretty frustrating. It can even be frustrating to me, and I'd consider my finger dexterity quite good. The Roku remote is just easier, especially for kids.

While the overall interface is definitely more dated than Apple's, I'd also consider some of Roku's apps more user-friendly. For example, I love how easy it is to seek in the Roku Netflix app. The Apple Netflix app is good, but not quite as easy to use as the Roku.
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Old 01-17-2018, 11:33 AM   #17
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I have the original Roku Ultra (2016 model), and for right now, I am happy with it. However, I do want to mention a few things about my experience using it this past year. I bought it in December 2016, and for the first few months, it worked flawlessly. I previously had the Amazon Fire TV, but I was redeeming the digital copies that came with my Blu-rays, and I needed Vudu. Even with Movies Anywhere, I still have over 200 movies that are not MA compatible, and I only have those in Vudu.

One thing that I do not like about Roku is that they send you forced updates. Around February or March of last year, one of the updates added a chirping sound to the audio. That sound lasted for months, until around August, before it finally got fixed. But the update that fixed it caused new, worse problems that caused the audio to become very loud. I had to set the volume on my receiver lower by 10 to 20 places -- I normally watch movies with the volume set to 30 or 35. The next update didn't fix this issue but instead added an issue where the screen would randomly flash black. I would have to restart my device to get the flashes to stop, and this was something I had to do almost every time I turned the device on after it went to sleep. All of these issues were with version 7 of their operating system.

Finally, in the November or December update, when they released version 8.0 of their operating system, they fixed all of these issues and everything has been working flawlessly again. But I spent almost a year with the device having errors their updates created. Every time an update gets released, I wonder what new problems its going to cause instead of what fixes/new features it provides. On Roku's forums, it seems like different people have different issues depending on the Roku model they have. Also, not everybody ends up with issues when an update is released. Some people have had issues with version 8, while I have had none.

It has been working flawlessly for me for the past month or two. It even handled a 4K movie on my low speed (10mbps) Internet and only had to buffer one time during the movie. But if the next update causes new problems, I'm going to consider either the Apple TV 4K or the Nvidia Shield Pro.
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Old 01-18-2018, 08:15 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndyMLVC View Post
I already have the most recent 4k Roku. The question isn't which one I should get. I just don't want to have both and I'm certainly not going to just have an Apple TV for Apple stuff. That's ridiculous and part of the reason why I hate their selfish BS in the first place. However, if the Apple TV did everything my Roku did, then that would be a bonus.

But, again, my SOLE interest in getting it is for the free 4k upgrades. Without that (and MA), I'd have little to no interest in Apple TV.
I bought the Apple TV for the "free upgrades" you refer to (it sounded like that woudl be the case when they announced it). However, they have NOT upgraded my collection to 4K on titles that were HDX in Vudu. Yes, the movies are AVAILABLE as 4K but they are only HD in my iTunes after transferring over. You would have needed to either buy them on iTunes as HD or have redeemed an HD code on iTunes to get the "free upgrade".

I have both systems (in different rooms). One thing I love on the latest generation of ATV's is the ESPN app (I am a college sports fan). With it, you can have up to four ESPN channels playing at once via the multicast feature. I have not seen this on the ESPN roku app although it may be coming. If you like sports, this app is a game-changer.
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Old 01-18-2018, 02:42 PM   #19
IndyMLVC IndyMLVC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmrgoodr View Post
I bought the Apple TV for the "free upgrades" you refer to (it sounded like that woudl be the case when they announced it). However, they have NOT upgraded my collection to 4K on titles that were HDX in Vudu. Yes, the movies are AVAILABLE as 4K but they are only HD in my iTunes after transferring over. You would have needed to either buy them on iTunes as HD or have redeemed an HD code on iTunes to get the "free upgrade".

I have both systems (in different rooms). One thing I love on the latest generation of ATV's is the ESPN app (I am a college sports fan). With it, you can have up to four ESPN channels playing at once via the multicast feature. I have not seen this on the ESPN roku app although it may be coming. If you like sports, this app is a game-changer.
Correct. I redeemed my codes at both Itunes and Vudu. So, in that way, you do get them. I also like the ability to choose where I watch a movie that is digital-only. For instance, a lot of WB titles are stereo-only on Vudu but itunes has the full 5.1 track. Or one place will have the wrong aspect ratio but the other will be correct.

And, unfortunately, my interest in sports is more about the hot guys than any actual gaming. But thanks anyway.
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Old 01-18-2018, 05:12 PM   #20
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We use apple tv and amazon fire. If apple tv had new japan world, we would probably only use apple tv.
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