The best Roku device to buy in 2022

Roku’s streaming video product line has never been as powerful as it is now. From the super affordable Roku Express to the Streambar Pro, which combines the best streaming experience in its class with a high-quality soundbar, Roku has a wide range of streaming sticks, boxes and speakers to choose from.

Whether you’re raving about a new series on Netflix or watching Harry Potter for the eleventh time, we’ve broken down all the different options in Roku’s lineup to help you decide which streaming product is right for you. agree with you.

The best Roku streaming device

Roku Ultra is both the best Roku player and our pick for a streaming device. Ultra gives you access to thousands of streaming services in the highest possible 4K quality. It’s also quick to start streaming and is easy to navigate using the handy voice remote.

The best soundbar and streaming player

For under $200, Roku’s Streambar Pro is the best streaming soundbar, with rich, clear sound. It can easily fill a large room with sound and is fully integrated with the Roku platform. Simply connect it to your TV via the included HDMI cord, plug it in and you’re set.

The Ultra set-top box is Roku’s most powerful and broadcast-capable streaming product yet, and that’s our pick for a streaming device. It offers 4K HDR and Cinematic Dolby Vision streaming, along with Dolby Atmos for any compatible audio system – essentially, the latest standards for the best picture.

But it’s the performance where the Ultra ultimately shines the most – like fast loading channels, switching between shows, and most importantly, streaming your videos.

Included in the box is everything you need to get started: HDMI cable, Voice Remote Control with wired headphones, batteries, and power adapter. This voice remote in conjunction with the Ultra allows for handy navigation functionality in case you misplace it.

Jason Cipriani / CNN

Roku’s Streambar Pro is a full-size soundbar and advanced streaming player combo. That means you can stream in full 4K your favorite shows or movies, plus an easy-to-setup soundbar. Its Our top picks for a soundbarthanks to its performance in the acoustic space.

We appreciate that it sounds better than most TV speakers, and for under $200 it does an excellent job at creating virtual surround sound that easily mimics directional sound. without the need for extra home theater speakers. Its four 2.5-inch full-range drivers produce a wide range of sounds, perfect for taking in action movies like “Captain America: Winter Soldier” or listening to clear dialogue on the evening news.

Since Streambar Pro is also a streaming player, it supports all major picture standards (HDR and Dolby Vision for example) and you have everything you need in the box, including remote control with voice with TV remote, power cable, HDMI cable, wired headset and optical cable. Those headphones can be plugged into the remote for a private listening experience.

Roku’s lineup of devices is ever-expanding, so you’ll want to consider what kind of TV you’ll be using and how much you’d like to spend. Devices range from $30 to $180, with the more expensive Roku products better suited to higher-end 4K TVs with features like Dolby Vision.

Once you’ve decided whether you want a streaming player that works with more basic HD or higher quality 4K, you should know that every Roku device runs Roku OS, giving you access to thousands of services streaming online. We’re fans of this interface because it’s easy to navigate, supports popular industry standards, and its agnostic approach to smart home services – and each device comes with something special. remote control and works with mobile app for easy control.

Roku’s entire product line also features smart home integration, allowing the device to stream using Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant, or Apple’s HomeKit for all your home automation needs. .

Jason Cipriani / CNN

The Roku Express is the cheapest and simplest streaming device in Roku’s lineup – best for older TVs without 4K and for those on a tight budget. The little box is capable of streaming 1080p HD content from your favorite services like HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video or Netflix.

At this price point, you can’t expect the best performance, but while Express does occasionally show some slowdowns when switching between channels, you won’t notice anything when you’re streaming a single stream. programme. Like all Roku devices, you’ll get software updates for Express, so even at this price, you’ll still have access to future features and capabilities.

The Express comes with an HDMI cable, power adapter and cable, basic Roku remote, and batteries.

If you’re looking for an affordable 4K streaming experience, consider upgrading to Express 4K +. For $10 more, it offers better performance, has faster Wi-Fi, and supports full 4K images with HDR. You also get the Voice Remote, which lets you control playback and navigate the experience without lifting a finger.

Roku Streaming Stick

The Roku Streaming Stick 4K looks like a giant USB drive that plugs directly into an open HDMI port on your TV. Just connect the power cable and you’re good to go.

Even if you haven’t upgraded your TV yet, it’s hard not to recommend the $50 Roku Streaming Stick 4K to everyone as a simple and affordable way to fend off the future.

Streaming Stick 4K supports full 4K resolution, with HDR and Dolby Vision for improved color on compatible TVs. Like the Ultra, the Streaming Stick 4K features dual-band Wi-Fi for a more reliable connection to your wireless modem. That should translate to less buffering and more consistent streaming. You’ll also get the Roku Voice Remote, which includes buttons for controlling the volume and power of the TV.

Want to add an upgraded remote to the package? For another 20$ you can get Streaming Stick 4K +, which offers an identical experience to Voice Remote Pro (also sold separately to pair with any Roku device for $29.99). Not only can you recharge this remote via a USB port instead of AA batteries, but it also has a remote locator function. Just say, “Hey Roku, where’s my remote?” and it will start beeping for easy retrieval.

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