I'm sure anyone out there looking to spend $100 on the Roku digital player is wondering how well the streaming video quality will look when it is set up using the HDMI port, and HDMI cables.
I have a 1080p LCD HDTV, and I wanted to make 100% sure that the Roku
delivered decent quality video onto my tube! I mean hell I spent close
to 2 grand on the dang thing, and better believe I want the best quality
one can get.
Before even purchasing the Roku though, I read numerous complaints in
forums and threads that the Roku delivers horrendous video quality.
Being the stubborn person I am though, I went ahead and purchased the
Roku, even though I worried about the video quality being bad. I spent a
mini fortune on my HDTV, and frankly when it comes to viewing, I want
the quality to be at least better than my old school boob tube.
Everyones experience is different though. HDMI cables can sometimes make all the difference. If you buy cheap HDMI cables, expect poor quality.
I have always been a fan of HDMI Monster cables, and I don't care how many people out there say that there is no difference. THERE IS! At least that has been my experience!
At any rate, I plugged in the Roku using the standard VGA cables that
the box came with. The video quality was decent, and played like
standard DVD videos would. I had no complaints.
After viewing the Roku videos using the VGA cable for awhile, I decided to finally put it's HDMI port to use.
I had an extra Monster HDMI cable, so I decided to plug it into the back of the Roku, and into my HDTV.
Now the video quality depends on the quality that Netflix delivers it
to the Roku. Some movies still played in standard 4 star quality, while a
smaller selection of videos played in HD quality.
The only real difference for me was that HD quality movies played
filling up my entire screen, while the lesser 4 star quality videos
played in a smaller scrunched format, which leaves a 3 inch black box
around the sides, or top of the video.
Honestly though, the HD quality was seriously so subtle in quality
that playing the Roku with the standard VGA cables is best if you don't
want to spend $75.00 on a high quality HDMI cable.
All in all I was not disappointed, but I definitely was not impressed.
Thankfully I had the HDMI cable just sitting around, because I would of
been pretty annoyed had I went out to buy one purposely for the Roku.
So ladies and gents, if you are getting a Roku, stick to the VGA
cables that come with the unit. Buying HDMI cables won't do much of an
improvement for the video quality anyway.