TCL Roku tales (and, how much is my old TV worth?)

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by head_unit, Jul 12, 2020.

  1. head_unit

    head_unit Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles CA USA
    My kid wanted a TV to exercise outside with YouTubby videos, so on a big sale at Target (-5% using RedCard) I got a TCL 43S425. Nice! The Roku TV part is a very different OS from the old TV* so I can see there will be a learning curve however it seems very flexible. Any hints/comments about the Roku OS, let fly!

    (*Vizio M60-C3. How much is this thing worth?!? I tried looking on Craigslist to compare, but people are wanting ridiculous money for their TVs, more than new ones, they are on crack. The Vizio works fine, cosmetically fine. I'm gonna Craigslist it ($300?!?!?) or sell to in-laws ($200?!?!?)).

    One nice feature is a 2 month free subscription to Philo TV which is internet based, no cable or satellite. This was recommended by @MilMascaras @leemelone @stanley00, so thanks folks. I finally hooked that up and VOILÁ pretty much the channels we watch. After the 2 months, $20 up to 3 streams, instead of the $130 I've been forking out to DIRECT$$TV.

    So to save the money, I replaced the main TV with a 55S525. So far, so good, though I just unboxed it, screwed the feet in, and connected a crummy little (I do mean LITTLE, like 9" long) rabbit ears. I think it needs a better antenna**-at least some channels are visible. I haven't put my contact lenses in, and the 43" is outside under a tree but still with glare, so I can't comment about the picture yet.

    **I need something indoor, ideally with a stand, to stick behind the TV. No outdoor or attic antenna for now-probably later but that is a long story I won't get into now.
     
  2. head_unit

    head_unit Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles CA USA
    Hmmm...isn't there some kind of a Roku-compatible remote that has a full keyboard? I hate poking left/right/up/down
     
  3. Stereosound

    Stereosound Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Get the app for your phone(if you have one) to control Roku at least it’ll give you a keyboard to make searching easier.
     
    unclefred, Chris DeVoe and head_unit like this.
  4. MilMascaras

    MilMascaras Musicologist

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Hi. And welcome to the RokuTV world.

    As for the remote, well I just ended up preferring the Roku minimalism compared to cable/satellite remotes with 60 little buttons… as an old song once mentioned: “500 channels and nothing on…” And the Roku app for smartphone is pretty great 'Remote' too ...

    I’m glad Philo had the main channels you most wanted. As for Rabbit ears. thats a tough one, as most of the reviews are based on their individual geography, and a persons review from Phoenix or Idaho is meaningless in LA…Too many people opine: “the one I got is great!” Many of LAs OTA (over the air) channels reside at/near the Low VHF bands, and most modern indoor antennas don’t cover the Low VHF frequencies anymore. The old adage is “as many elements as possible on the antenna, with the widest Low VHF, VHF and UHF bandwidth as possible, mounted as highly as possible, and pointed as accurately as possible”

    And finally, after 9 years of Roku usage, I have made a master list of the best Free channels based on my trials and errors. Now when I set up friends and family, I have expertly narrowed down my recommendations for a full channel lineup of FREE channels. I hate paying for anything *other than* our family-wide shared subscriptions to AmznPrime Video, Hulu and Netflix (and in your case Philo)

    I set up my home screen so that my top dozen or so choices are prominently arranged at the top of the home page, and all the other channels sectionalized and arranged below them in alphabetical A-Z order. (too many crappy channels are monthly subscription after free trial, and I advise against them... the whole purpose of the Roku is to see how much you can get free)...

    Here are my well researched recommendations for the top choices:

    Roku Player Setup Optimized

    {- - - Main Channels at Top of Home Screen - - - }
    Amazon Prime Video
    Hulu
    Netflix

    *Philo (cuz you mention you got it)
    PlutoTV
    Roku Channel
    Stirr
    Xumo
    YouTube

    {- - - Music Channels at Middle of Home Screen - - - }
    Pandora
    SomaFM
    Spotify
    TuneIn (allows you to tune internet radio channels as 'guest', without creating an account)

    {- - - All Other Channels at Bottom'ish of Home Screen, A-Z'ish - - - }

    ABCNews CBSNews NBCNews
    Comedy Central
    Cnet
    Crackle
    Crunchyroll
    CW
    Filmrise
    Google Play ?
    HayStack
    HGTV
    History

    Hoopla (uses LA Public Library card as membership)
    Kanopy(uses LA Public Library card as membership)
    KCET
    Locast (Local OTA Channels!) [nags every 15 minutes though]
    LocalBTV (?)[beta rollout]
    Midnight Pulp
    Nat Geo TV
    NewsOn
    PBS
    Popcornflix
    RedBullTV
    Rolling Stone
    Shout
    SnagFilms
    TED
    Tubi
    Vevo
    VRV
    VUDU (best free with Ads choices, and 'Rental Store' for Blockbusters)
    Whisky A Go Go
    Wired
    WSJ

    {Free Customized Theme and Free Classic Aquarium Screensaver}
    Fireworks Theme
    Aquatic Life Screensaver (free)

    ** this list is a text file I carry on my Notes app on my phone, cut and pasted **
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2020
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  5. Brenald79

    Brenald79 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Canada
    I have 2 Hi Sense TVs which also use the Roku interface. Roku is awesome. The AppleTV app now works on Roku which opens up a lot of options for tv and movies.
     
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  6. Mirrorblade.1

    Mirrorblade.1 Forum Resident

    This main reason I won't buy roku their remote sucks..
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 13, 2020
  7. Brenald79

    Brenald79 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Canada
    I have no issue using the Roku remote. I fight it works better than the Amazon Fire Stick remote and my Samsung TV remote.
     
    905 likes this.
  8. Stereosound

    Stereosound Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    The physical remote or the app remote?
     
  9. Bender Rodriguez

    Bender Rodriguez RIP Exene, best dog ever. 2005-2016

    Location:
    New Jersey
    Welcome to the world of Roku. I hope you don't expect to be able to stream HBO.
     
    head_unit likes this.
  10. Stereosound

    Stereosound Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Or Peacock currently. Although negotiations are still ongoing for both apparently.
     
  11. head_unit

    head_unit Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles CA USA
    I don't give a rat's bottom about HBO, but why do you say that?
     
  12. head_unit

    head_unit Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles CA USA
    The one Roku negatives so far is:
    - You cannot store your favorite antenna channels to the home page
    - Nor to the top of the antenna program guide
    - ...which is supposed to happen "automatically" but does not seem to be (and I much prefer to control it myself)
    So far I am going in and "hiding" most of the 120-some channels here
     
  13. Stereosound

    Stereosound Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
  14. Leviethan

    Leviethan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Portland, OR
    I just bought a TCL 8 Series with Roku. I’m getting HBOMax through Hulu until the Max app is available.
     
  15. Chris DeVoe

    Chris DeVoe Should really take better care of himself

  16. Leviethan

    Leviethan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Chris DeVoe likes this.

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