ATV Netflix picture quality vs Roku

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by GregBe, Aug 22, 2011.

  1. GregBe macrumors newbie

    Aug 18, 2011
    Help me out here. I am wondering if I am doing something wrong. I just picked up an ATV 2, and have a Roku XD (previous generation, not the Roku2). My display is a 110” 720P front projector. Everything is connected via HDMI through my receiver. My primary use is Netflix

    I really like the Apple TVs Netflix interface, and like 5.1 when I can get it. I really want to like this, but I am getting a much better picture quality through the Roku, which makes no sense to me. The ATV is almost blurry in comparison. Has anyone else noticed this? What could I be doing wrong?
  2. Mr. McMac Suspended

    Mr. McMac

    Dec 21, 2009
    Far away from liberals
    I watch my ATV2 on a 61" Samsung DLP. I find the picture is quite sharp with HD material. My biggest complaint is choppy camera panning I get on some videos. It's not the same as camera blur, it's almost like a low refresh rate, but only when panning. Everything else is fine

    I'm connected using Verizon Fios's 25/25 service and ethernet
  3. Lumpy05 macrumors regular

    Mar 16, 2010
    Bloomington, IN
    Are you connecting the ATV2 via wifi or ethernet? Mine struggled on wifi to get a good data rate so the picture quality downgraded, all fixed by connecting via wired to the network.

    Otherwise I wouldnt know, my ATV2 is razor sharp especially on HD material.
  4. GregBe thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 18, 2011
    Interesting...this is what I was thinking it might be. I am connected via wifi, but my wifi signal is really strong. The ATV is within inches of where my Roku is. The Roku, when connecting, shows an indicator with 4 dots and HD being the highest. The ATV signal is a picture quality similar to what the Roku looks like when it is downgraded from 4 dots and HD to 4 dots. I am wondering if the Roku has a better wifi adapter built in.
  5. Lumpy05 macrumors regular

    Mar 16, 2010
    Bloomington, IN

    My experience is that in general wifi connections for media streaming stink, they can work "most" of the time and still be frustratingly bad. Wired connections are solid all of the time. My ATV seemed to have a solid wifi signal but would downgrade the picture quality often enough that I bought a small switch to add wired ports so I could hard wire it, never looked back it has been solid and faster ever since.

    I'm not a RF engineer but its possible for wifi devices to conflict over frequencies/channels you might try powering off/removing the Roku and see if that improves the wifi to the apple tv??
  6. Cheffy Dave, Aug 22, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2011

    Cheffy Dave macrumors 68030

    Cheffy Dave

    Feb 5, 2007
    Sunny Florida, on the Gulf Coast in Homosassa Fl
    Had the same issue

    Went away when I went with eithernet connection!:cool:
    I have both the ATV, as well as an updated ROKU, both wired, I rent from both Apple and Amazon, like the way ATV syncs music,photos and files from our laptops, also like to watch TWIT TV on the ROKU
  7. cdavis11 macrumors 6502

    Aug 31, 2009
    I run 2 sets of each on 2 TVs - roku xd and aTV2 downstairs wireless and an older Roku HD XR upstairs and another aTV2, this one wired.

    As for PQ, I prefer the aTV PQ for netflix as well as the interface.

    I use the Roku as a backup and for Hulu Plus.
  8. GregBe thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 18, 2011
    Interesting, I must be doing something wrong then. I REALLY want to like the ATV, as the Netflix interface is much better. I also really like the HD trailers it provides. I might have to play with this some more and see if I can get a better picture. The only variable left is the wireless connection. I am not sure what to do about this, but maybe the Roku has a better wifi unit built in.
  9. thebignewt macrumors regular

    Jun 10, 2011
    Try disconnecting the Roku and just running the ATV by itself, as suggested above.
  10. DustinT macrumors 68000


    Feb 26, 2011
    I'm not sure about the Roku, since I don't own one. But, you know the ATV is a 720p device, right? That will make a pretty big difference when you blow the image up that large on a projector.
  11. Bearxor macrumors 6502a

    Jun 7, 2007
    He notes his projector is 720p, so there should be no difference in PQ.

    I have a 1080p projector on a 100" screen and I can still make out individual pixels from 15ft. :D. Can't imagine 110" on 720p.

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