Roku Streambar Review: The Streaming and Listening Experience for All

Evaluation:
9/10
?

1 – Absolute hot garbage
2 – Sorta warm garbage
3 – Strongly imperfect design
4 – A few advantages, many disadvantages
5 – Acceptably imperfect
6 – Good enough to buy on sale
7 – Excellent, but not the best in its class
8 – Fantastic, with some footnotes
9 – shut up and take my money
10 – Absolute Conception Nirvana

Price: $ 130

Roku Streambar connected to TVJustin duino

Roku is the most popular streaming platform in the US and other markets because the interface is extremely simple to use and the relatively low cost of hardware makes the platform accessible to people of all budgets. . With the Streambar, Roku now has the de facto option for those looking to enhance their streaming video and audio experience with just one device.

This is what we like

All-in-one package
Sound quality is much better than your TV
Easy to set up and use

And what we don’t do

Does not come with an enhanced voice remote
Good in every room, but better in small bedrooms

Everything you need is in the box

Before we dig into the Roku Streambar, we should explain why you would even want an all-in-one product. If you’ve upgraded your TV in the past couple of years, it’s likely to be relatively thin, boasting a 4K resolution display, and packed with features like HDR, Dolby Vision, and more.

But unless you’ve paid extra for a bundle that includes audio gear, you’ve probably noticed that the built-in speakers are dull and maybe even muffled because they don’t tell you while watching TV.

Enter the Roku Streambar. Plug the 14-inch side soundbar into the HDMI ARC port on your television and you are good to go. With just one device, you get a Roku capable of streaming 4K HDR movies and TV shows and a sound bar with two front speakers and two side speakers.

Roku Streambar PortsJustin duino

What’s even better is that you don’t have to worry about buying additional cables or accessories to get started. You will find an HDMI cable and an optical cable in the box next to the Streambar. The HDMI cable should be the only one needed as the ARC port on your TV handles video and audio, but the optical cable is provided in case your TV does not support ARC or if this port is used by another device .

Unfortunately, like other new soundbars and audio systems, you won’t find any HDMI sockets in the ports on the back of the Streambar. The lack of ports isn’t a big deal if the Streambar is the only device plugged into your TV, but if you have other devices, you’ll have to rely on the rest of your TV’s HDMI slots and hope that it fits. distributes correctly. the audio signal to the sound bar.

Don’t expect Roku Ultra performance, but it’s okay

It’s easy to compare the Roku Streambar with the update Roku Ultra digital decoder. Both devices launch during the same time frame and have similar price tags. But even though the Streambar costs $ 30 more, you’ll find less powerful internals and performance than the Ultra.

Roku doesn’t promote exact processors in its streaming devices, but the company told me that the Streambar’s is less powerful than the Ultra’s. While I have never encountered any performance or lag issues when opening apps, the Ultra can stream Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos content. The Streambar, by comparison, is “limited” to Dolby Audio in addition to 4K and HDR.

Roku Streambar in front of a televisionJustin duino

The controller that comes with the Streambar is Roku’s standard voice remote. While still as good as the Ultra, you can’t plug headphones into the remote and listen privately to what’s on your TV.

As a soundbar, wanting a remote with a headphone jack might seem like the opposite. If you are paying a premium for speakers, why would you want to use headphones? Well, I found my spare bedroom and office to be ideal places for the Streambar. In both rooms, there are times when I want to watch TV without bothering or waking up my significant other.

You can still buy the enhanced voice remote from Roku if you want extra functionality.

The sound bar itself provides a solid listening experience. The dialogue and music (both in the background of videos and when paired with a smartphone via Bluetooth) is clear and loud. While good for general entertainment, I wouldn’t rely on it alone for an immersive experience.

If you want to increase the sound offered by the Streambar, you can combine the sound bar with Roku Wireless Speakers and subwoofer. Unfortunately, that would mean your low budget sound bar would turn into a sound system for around $ 460.

The best all-in-one streaming device

You want a streaming device that works, whether it’s a device from Roku, Google, or any number of other companies. The Streambar offers the best of all the major streaming platforms (unless you want to gamble) and adds speakers that sound on par with any economical sound bar.

Don’t expect to compare the Streambar to expensive speakers, but Roku has done a fantastic job tuning the soundbar’s four speakers to provide an enjoyable listening experience. While it might not fill a large living room, the Streambar is more than enough for a bedroom or small media room.

Roku Streambar with voice remoteJustin duino

The Roku Streambar is available to purchase today for $ 129.99 from Amazon, Best buy, and Roku website. As the holidays draw near, this could be the perfect gift for anyone looking to upgrade their TV’s sound system and streaming video quality.

Everything you need


This is what we like

All-in-one package
Sound quality is much better than your TV
Easy to set up and use

And what we don’t do

Does not come with an enhanced voice remote
Good in every room, but better in small bedrooms

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