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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Level 7

Setup roku on old tv

I am having trouble setting up a roku express plus on an older TV.  I am using the home converter with the 3 colored plugs into back of TV and plugged the roku into that, but still cannot connect the roku.  What am I doing wrong?????

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11 Replies
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Level 19

Re: Setup roku on old tv

What color plugs? yellow, red, and white? Or Blue, Green, and red?

Edmund
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Level 7

Re: Setup roku on old tv

I am having same issue.  My colors are red, yellow and green

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Level 21

Re: Setup roku on old tv

OK, connections like that are called Analog. The plug is usually referred to as RCA plugs. 

Analog comes in two flavors: composite and component. Composite uses three cables: red/white/yellow. Red and white are the audio connections, while yellow is video. Component uses three cables just for video: red/green/blue. These must be connected to their matching colors on the display or colors will be badly off, if you see anything at all. Component also uses the red/white for audio, for a total of five connections.

No analog cable was ever green. Smiley Happy

No current Roku player supports analog outputs. The last player that did so was the Premiere+ (model 3910). No player at all has supported component since the very early Roku HD-XR (N1101). That player is 11 years old, no longer supported, and likely won't even work with virtually all available channels. 

Now here's the problem with using a modern Roku with a TV with analog connections. No Roku player supports a video resolution that is compatible with an older, non-digital TV. Even some of the early TVs with HDMI inputs did not support 1080p. Yes, the Premiere+ 3910 using the analog outputs should work on those sets, at standard definition only. And it doesn't require a converter box. But if you're using a converter that takes the 1080p HDMI signal and connects to the analog inputs of the TV, the converter has to be able to actually convert the signal from 1080p to analog SD video, as well as extract the digital audio signal and convert it to analog. Not all converters are succcessful doing so, unfortunately. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), 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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Level 7

Re: Setup roku on old tv

I am having the same set-up problems on an old Hitachi TV.  I am the composite cable with the red, white  and yellow plugs correctly.  I switch through Vid 1 and Vid 2 (both of which work with my DVD player) and the Roku makes noises like it is trying to connect then stops.  What else can I do?

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Level 19

Re: Setup roku on old tv

If you're using a non-roku breakout cable which has 3.5 minplug on one end and 3 rca's on the other, so what you're receiving over the yellow is audio and not video. You need a true roku cable because its wired differently then most breakout cables. 

Edmund
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Level 7

Re: Setup roku on old tv

I am using the cable which Roku included in the box with the device.

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Level 21

Re: Setup roku on old tv


@RickMV wrote:

I am using the cable which Roku included in the box with the device.


I suggest trying each cable separately connected to the yellow jack on the TV and see which one provides the video. Since you're hearing noise, that sounds like one of the connectors you have connected to the red or white is actually the video cable. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), 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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Level 7

Re: Setup roku on old tv

I have tried switching the connector cables in multiple combinations with only sound and no video results.  I tested the input connections with my DVD player and they are working.  Any other suggestions before I return the product.  This TV may simply be too old to accommodate Roku but I don't think that's the right answer.

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Level 21

Re: Setup roku on old tv


@RickMV wrote:

I have tried switching the connector cables in multiple combinations with only sound and no video results.  I tested the input connections with my DVD player and they are working.  Any other suggestions before I return the product.  This TV may simply be too old to accommodate Roku but I don't think that's the right answer.


Well, it was worth a shot. I went back through the specs, and every Roku with analog outputs supports 480i, which is the standard for pre-digital TVs. It should be working. I'm curious. Do you see the bouncing Roku logo when it's first powered on? If not, then most likely the Roku is defective, and I'd absolutely exchange it. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), 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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