Choppy/Pixelated Video

I have had my Tablo 4 tuner for almost 1 month. Over the last 1.5 weeks, I have noticed that when I watch live TV or a recorded show, that I am getting a choppy video. The weird thing is it is hit and miss. It is not constant. My original settings for Max Recording was the recommended HS720 - 5 Mbps. Last night I changed it to HD720 - 3 Mbps to see if that helps at all.

I am using a Roku Ultra with the Tablo App on it to view my OTA channels. I also have a WD Elements 4TB USB hard drive.

My roku is hard wired in and my Tablo is connecting to my home network over WiFi at the 2.4GHz band. I did notice on my router that my 2.4GHz band had the mode configured to be Up To 217 Mbps.

When I did my channel scan, all my channels came in with the green dot so I am assuming that means great signal strength.

So, my questions are:

  1. Does my HD play into the fact that I am getting a choppy video?
  2. Would I be better served with an SSD hard drive for better performance?
  3. Should I change my mode on my router for my 2.4GHz band to be up to 450 Mbps?

I am at a loss as to why my video is getting choppy after having it for 2 weeks.

One other thing to note is we are recording up to 3 channels every night but I do not watch the channel I am recording. We are either watching live TV on a non-recorded channel or watching a recorded show.

I have also opened up a support ticket with Tablo to try to get their perspective. I also figured I would post here to see what some of the long time cord cutters had to say.

Any insight would be greatly appreciated.



Try the 5ghz band on your router if you have one and see if the problem persists. If possible you try hardwiring it.

I’d look at the channel your router is broadcasting on. You may have some neighbourly interference.

[quote=“sjspencer43, post:1, topic:13141”]
When I did my channel scan, all my channels came in with the green dot so I am assuming that means great signal strength.[/quote]
Not necessarily… Tablo’s Green dot system is , well, not good… Not only does it show 5 green dots when the strength is just barely above cutoff, but your signal strength can vary by time of year, time of day, outside temperature, humidity, weather and much more.

For starters, try re-positioning your antenna. Take note of which channel is pixelating more and check an online antenna positioning map such as

  1. Yes it can, when it starts acting up, try running live TV without the HDD connected. You can only do ONE channel without a HDD but if the channel was pixelating before and then immediately is not after the HDD is disconnected. Then you may be heading down the right path.

Also may try a different HDD cable, we have seen a few bad right out of the box. (Also try the other USB port on the Tablo, just to eliminate that possibility as well).

  1. No, a SSD is overkill for the Tablo. The Tablo doesn’t even require USB3.0 as the highest bit rate it may transfer is relatively low.

  2. OK for testing purposes but again, really not needed. Only way I could see an issue here is if you are running high bandwidth transfers at the same time as the Tablo. The Tablo itself will not get anywhere near the max at your current setting. Can always try connecting the Tablo via wire to test it , even if its just temporary.

Honestly I really think its either the antenna or the HDD, though I myself have had weird Wifi interference issues I had to overcome so anything is possible.

I would also suspect your WiFi connection.

  1. There is a Roku sideload for speedtest

Get this and validate what speed your Roku get. Bear in mind that Roku has a filthy habit of trying to drown out your WiFi signal with the “WiFi Direct” signal they use to communicate between the remote and Roku box. More on this later.

Get a WiFi signal meter app on your phone. I have Android and I use WiFi analyzer

When you use this, you will notice a signal on exactly the same band as your Wifi channel. This is Roku, trying to drown out the WiFi signal.

Go to the Roku forums and figure find out how to access the Roku secret menus to mitigate this as best as you can.

I am having a similar issue with Pixelation and Stuttering

Tablo 2 Tuner
NETGEAR Nighthawk AC2300 dedicated on 5GHz channel
WD 1TB WD Elements Portable USB 3.0 Hard Drive Storage
Roku 4630x
Mohu Leaf 30 TV Antenna w. 10 ft Coax
All firmware updated

Excellent signal strength for OTA channels on Tablo
Excellent wireless signal strength on Roku Network
Preformed speed test lowest 7.6 Mbits/sec

I’m at a loss

@wljett Pixelation is almost always the result of a reception issue - and we’ve seen reception issues cause stutters during playback as well. Are you positive the OTA reception you’re receiving is solid?

I don’t know what else I’m supposed to do.

5 green circles on every station I’ve selected – not surprising, given that I’m a couple miles out of the city center.

Make sure your antenna is aimed properly. Use for the getting it pointed to the right location.

Do you have an amplifier attached to your antenna? It could be skewing the results of the scan.