Different lags for different devices on same network, same channel?

As an experiment today, I tuned to the same channel on both Roku and Linux Chrome. (Both devices are connected wirelessly to my network while my Tablo is hard-wired to my router.)

In today’s test, Linux Chrome was about 10 seconds ahead of Roku. Is this normal?

Following up to my earlier question about “One-touch Live TV”, I kept trying to fast forward my Roku to catch-up to Linux Chrome, but the lag was always there. I was never sure I had gotten the Roku to Live TV…

Did you tune the channel on the Roku first, then within a few minutes try tuning the same channel on the Chrome?

Yes, that is exactly what I did first. Then I changed channels on the webapp and then changed to the same channel on Roku. Same result: webapp ahead of Roku by 10 seconds.

Well if you tuned the channel on the Roku first then the Tablo has already 1, tuned the channel, 2, encoded the MPEG-2 video to h.264 video, 3, created a 10 second buffer long enough to stream to a device.

Then when you tune to the same channel on another device since the Tablo continues buffering the Live TV stream for an hour in the background on said channel, it will load a lot faster on the 2nd device because it doesn’t have to do 1, 2 and 3 above. It literally just starts playback at the live time.

Make sense?

Do both devices have the same wireless card? My Roku 4 is wireless AC, which my router supports and my Roku 3 is only Wireless N. Still 5 GHz but it shows a difference now that you mention it.

All I can say is that I started out watching Fox on Roku 3, then tuned in Fox on Chrome, and Chrome was ahead by 10 seconds.

Then I tuned Chrome to CBS, and then I tuned Roku 3 to CBS, and Chrome was again ahead by 10 seconds.

Update from the last 10 minutes:
After Tablo/Roku crapped out on me during the World Series, I rebooted Tablo. Upon rebooting, I then tuned Chrome to Fox and then tuned Roku 3 to Fox, and Chrome was ahead by about 3 seconds. So Chrome is always ahead, but the lag was reduced tonight during the baseball game.

Now, it is true that my laptop Chrome has ac wireless, while my Roku 3 only has N wireless. My router is an TP-Link Archer C8, which supports ac.

If you start watching on the Roku 3 first, and then Chrome, is the Roku ahead? The only real way of testing is if you and another person both start watching at the same time, each on a different device.

This would be the expected normal behaviour. When you tune to the channel the first time, the Tablo has to make a 10 second buffer so it has something to stream. So the Roku will be 10 seconds behind the ‘live TV’. When you request the same channel on Chrome, as the Tablo does not need to create this 10 second buffer it will ‘skip’ ahead to live TV which will approximately 10 seconds ahead.

Yes, but that does not explain Chrome being 10 seconds ahead when I tune Chrome to the station before I tune Roku to the same station. (Note from my comments here that I have tried both sequences, and Chrome is always ahead.)

I reread what I wrote below, and feel it’s a snarky response, but can’t seem to reword it right now, so please know I mean no offense…

That 10 second buffer takes 20 seconds on my Rokus using the Tablo Preview app.
Is it really taking only 10 seconds on your Rokus?
The same 10 second buffer takes, guess what, about 10 seconds using the official Tablo app.