Getting Started - Setup & How-to

Help getting started with Roku devices, including setup, connecting your device to your TV, linking a Roku device to your account at my.roku.com/link, adding channels, subscribing to services, and more.
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NealW
Level 7

Getting Started/Switch from DirecTv

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I currently use DirecTv with 4 TVs. I have a DVR and 3 mini boxes. Any show can be watched (live or from DVR) and/or recorded from any of the 4 units simultaneously.

What do I need to replicate this setup with Roku?

Thanks!

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atc98092
Level 16

Re: Getting Started/Switch from DirecTv

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@NealW wrote:

I currently use DirecTv with 4 TVs. I have a DVR and 3 mini boxes. Any show can be watched (live or from DVR) and/or recorded from any of the 4 units simultaneously.

What do I need to replicate this setup with Roku?

Thanks!


First, it depends on what you want to watch. If any of your existing channels are available over the air (OTA), then the first thing you need is an antenna connected to each TV. You can use the same coaxial cable that the satellite receivers used to connect a single antenna to all of the TVs.

Next, for channels that are not available OTA but are available from an online source, you would need a Roku player on each TV. They can all be on the same Roku user account, but this also causes each Roku to have the same channels available, and removing a channel from one removes them from all. Most people are fine with that, but if you'd only like specific channels on each player that might not be the same, you need a different Roku user account for each. No cost, just a different email address for each account. 

Now, most likely the online sources you want to watch will require a subscription. Be aware that some of them are only available if you have a cable or satellite subscription. Others can be bundled within a specific channel (such as Sling TV, Hulu or YouTube TV) for a single price. Others will require a standalone subscription. Depending on the services you want to have, it can get costly. Also, depending the the subscription model, they may restrict the number of devices that can stream simultaneously. 

Don't let any of this discourage you. It's just that you need to decide exactly what you want to watch, and then do some research on the best way to accomplish your goals.

Also note that you cannot record with any Roku device. DVR functionality doesn't exist for the devices. However, some of the channels offer their own DVR service. The recordings are not stored locally on any device, but you stream it from their system. So bottom line is you can't completely replicate what you have available with any local streaming devices. But if you do some research about what you really need, you will likely find a way to mimic it fairly close. Just don't forget that it will all depend on a reliable Internet connection, since nothing mentioned here is stored within your own network.

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Premiere (3920), Insignia 720p Roku TV, Sharp 4K Roku TV, Nvidia Shield, Windows 10 Pro x64 running Serviio and Plex on a wired Gigabit network.

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2 Replies
atc98092
Level 16

Re: Getting Started/Switch from DirecTv

Jump to solution

@NealW wrote:

I currently use DirecTv with 4 TVs. I have a DVR and 3 mini boxes. Any show can be watched (live or from DVR) and/or recorded from any of the 4 units simultaneously.

What do I need to replicate this setup with Roku?

Thanks!


First, it depends on what you want to watch. If any of your existing channels are available over the air (OTA), then the first thing you need is an antenna connected to each TV. You can use the same coaxial cable that the satellite receivers used to connect a single antenna to all of the TVs.

Next, for channels that are not available OTA but are available from an online source, you would need a Roku player on each TV. They can all be on the same Roku user account, but this also causes each Roku to have the same channels available, and removing a channel from one removes them from all. Most people are fine with that, but if you'd only like specific channels on each player that might not be the same, you need a different Roku user account for each. No cost, just a different email address for each account. 

Now, most likely the online sources you want to watch will require a subscription. Be aware that some of them are only available if you have a cable or satellite subscription. Others can be bundled within a specific channel (such as Sling TV, Hulu or YouTube TV) for a single price. Others will require a standalone subscription. Depending on the services you want to have, it can get costly. Also, depending the the subscription model, they may restrict the number of devices that can stream simultaneously. 

Don't let any of this discourage you. It's just that you need to decide exactly what you want to watch, and then do some research on the best way to accomplish your goals.

Also note that you cannot record with any Roku device. DVR functionality doesn't exist for the devices. However, some of the channels offer their own DVR service. The recordings are not stored locally on any device, but you stream it from their system. So bottom line is you can't completely replicate what you have available with any local streaming devices. But if you do some research about what you really need, you will likely find a way to mimic it fairly close. Just don't forget that it will all depend on a reliable Internet connection, since nothing mentioned here is stored within your own network.

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Premiere (3920), Insignia 720p Roku TV, Sharp 4K Roku TV, Nvidia Shield, Windows 10 Pro x64 running Serviio and Plex on a wired Gigabit network.

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NealW
Level 7

Re: Getting Started/Switch from DirecTv

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Thanks for the info. You answered my basic question re: needing a roku box for each tv. I can take it from there.

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