Buffering problem with 2016 Roku stick

I’ve been using the previous version of the Roku stick with the Tablo with no buffering issues. I just got the 2016 Roku stick and the buffering makes Tablo live TV unwatchable.

I was having buffering issues with all the Roku channels and contacted Roku support. We changed the bitrate to 3.5 Mbps and the buffering on all channels except the Tablo has gone away.

I’ve reset my modem, the Roku stick, and the Tablo, I removed and readded the Tablo channel, and have set the Tablo to 3 Mbps and unchecked the fast live tv startup but nothing has helped. When I go back to using the previous version Roku stick there are no buffering problems with the Tablo. Roku is sending me an HDMI extender so I’ll see if that makes any difference.

Since the old one works just fine I’m thinking there must be something going on between the 2016 stick and Tablo that’s a problem. I haven’t seen any other complaints of this though so I thought I’d document it here.

I just had a Roku stick go bad, one of the old ones. I was going to replace it with one of the new sticks, but Walmart has the old ones for $39… hope they still have some stock at my local store.

Did that stick use to get hot? Mine does and I always worried about it but it’s been running 24x7 so nice I pre-ordered it and still works. I did recently get the new stick and noticed it runs a lot cooler.

Mine all run fairly cool to the touch. I’ve got 4 of them, 3 of the 3400X and 1 3500X that’s integrated with my living room JVC TV set. Are you having any issues with the new stick? If it plays nicely with Tablo, I’d consider buying that one instead of one of the old model leftovers.

I have antenna connections to all of my TVs, so I normally do not use Tablo for live stream. But since I have a new Roku stick, I thought I’d check it for you. In my house I have Tablo connected with Ethernet to router, Roku stick connected using 5GHz Wifi band to router. I used a 3 inch HDMI cable to connect the stick to the wall-mounted TV since that older TV has rear-facing HDMI jacks. Tablo record rate is 720HD 5Mbps. I had zero interruptions to the live stream in 60 minutes. How frequently was it getting interrupted for you?

when I first posted it was every few seconds making it unwatchable. I switched back to my old Roku stick and there was no buffering at all.

Last night I decided to try the new stick again. After it booted up I immediately changed the bitrate to 3.5. I have the Tablo set to 3 with the fast start up deselected, although with the old stick I never had to change the Roku bitrate and the Tablo was at 5 with the fast startup selected. When I selected a station it loaded and then as soon as the picture started it immediately did a “loading…please wait” then repeated that cycle 3 more times and then the rest of the time there was no more buffering. That cycle repeated every time I changed stations. So it is watchable but this cycle of buffering every time I change the channel is still a problem.

My Tablo is also connected by ethernet. My stick is connected directly to the back of the TV with power plugged into the wall. The router is in the room directly across the hall so distance isn’t a problem, the connection says excellent.

Hmmm. I’ve made no bitrate changes to any of my Rokus. I’m not getting any “loading…please wait” messages, just the delay of a few seconds initially while Tablo transcodes the first few seconds and sends it across to the Roku. That buffering delay will occur each time you change channels in Live TV since the Tablo has to transcode and set up a packet to send to the Roku, but that would also have been the case with your old stick and any other Rokus you’re using for Live TV. It’s possible you’re just getting an unexpected message on the Tablo app that’s running on the Roku stick. I’ve no idea why that would be different, though, since you just loaded the app.
For reference, my Tablo is running V2.2.8 and the 3600x Roku Stick is running V7.1.0 build 4073-24. The Tablo app on my Roku stick is showing “Channel 2.0 build 20”
I’d suggest opening a ticket with Tablo so they can take a look.

I did open a ticket but so far no reply except for the auto reply.

@TabloSupport can you check it please? What I’ve documented here may be helpful.

All of the buffering I’m describing is in addition to the intial normal buffering delay.

This morning the first station I went to started playing and I thought it was working without the additional “loading…please wait” but then after about 20-30 sec it did the “loading…please wait” and took me right back to the beginning and then repeated the “loading…please wait” cycle 5 more times before it stopped and showed the entire program without a problem. When I went to a different station it did the “loading…please wait” just once as soon as the program loaded after the intial buffering. Went to a different station and it did it 3 times. The last time I changed the station it played without a problem right after the initial buffering. I watched an entire program from the hulu channel without any buffering at all. It’s odd how flakey it is on tablo.

@dlrmn - Unfortunately we haven’t been able to get our hands on one yet in Canada. Ours is supposed to arrive Friday.

I’ve forwarded this to support in case they have any suggestions in the meantime.

Thank you. If it gets too bad I just switch back to my old stick. Not ideal because the new one is faster but I’d rather put up with the slowness than all the buffering interruptions.

I just got an email saying this: “Your request (17263) has been solved.” What exactly has been solved since I just tried it and the behavior hasn’t changed?

@dlrmn Depending on how our agents marked the ticket, its status can change depending on whether or not they provide you with a resolution. There should have been a reply in the email though (presumably with a fix); did that not come through?

the “fix” referred to a Roku firmware update for the previous version of the stick and mentioned changing the recording quality and unchecking fast tv startup which I had already done.

@dlrmn This is typically what we rewocmmend for buffering on the Roku; this usually solves the problem. As @TabloTV mentioned, we should be getting our 2016 Roku sticks soon. Hopefully we’ll be able to reproduce what you’re seeing and dive deeper on this.

How do you know if you have a 2016 Roku stick? We have had Roku 1 for several years and I thought why not use the stick in our camper due to space issues even if it is slower - we have time. Well, I noticed buffering on Youtube and Tablo so much so that I showed someone Simon’s Cat from Youtube on my Kindle inside. If I can help test out anything for you let me know. Jan

The 2016 Roku stick is black. The previous version was purple.

I need to do more testing with it but so far it’s day and night performance against the old stick. I can’t give a fair eval with it against the Tablo yet cause now there’s the live play issue with the last Roku update.

The local store here was out of stock on the new sticks and I wanted to replace it right away, so I ended up getting the last generation for $39… I’m willing to live with it for another couple of years at this point. Still curious to hear how the new sticks work in case it happens again in the meantime.

I’ve been using the new stick for about 4 days, zero issues so far. Performance is on par with my Roku 3. I’m recording everything at the max rez.

The problems I’m having are with live tv.