Network - Wireless & Wired Connections

Help & troubleshooting for network issues, including connecting your device to your home Wi-Fi network, connecting to public networks, troubleshooting wireless issues & ethernet connections, and optimizing streaming performance.
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b1wh2wq
Level 7

Buffering with excellent internet connection

I have a Roku Express. Internet download speed is 350 mbps. Roku keeps buffering. Roku shows Internet download speed as Good (37 Mbps) which is way below actual. Tried hard and soft restart. Suggestions please 

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9 REPLIES 9\
Visitor45763
Level 14

Re: Buffering with excellent internet connection

Are you sure your internet is actually mbps? At that moment? I remember last summer people with gigabit connections were getting 1/3 what they thought they had. Worse, latency/jitter too high to teleconference, and such.

There are online tests (like Fusion Connect). I've seen a free tool that will continuously test your connection so you can see transient problems that might occur.

Also, if your Roku Express box is connected wifi, then maybe that's where the slowdown is. If it's 2.4g band, and on a channel of that band that's congested with neighbors' devices. Or, 5g band but the wifi access point is too far away.

"People are often amazed at how much we’ve done with the number of engineers we’ve got." (Roku CEO Anthony Wood, Austin Statesman, Oct 4, 2019). "Amazed" is one way of putting it.
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b1wh2wq
Level 7

Re: Buffering with excellent internet connection

435.8

Mbps

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Visitor45763
Level 14

Re: Buffering with excellent internet connection

If you don't have sporadic speed slowdowns and/or jitter/latency, and your wireless connection isn't weak or interfered with by others, I'd be thinking it's further upstream. Maybe your ISP throttles certain content (some are, or have been known for that). Could be the provider themself is overburdened with traffic?

I wonder how much of streaming "apps" go through Roku, and whether Roku could be the bottleneck. For example, the new antenna tv experience is very dependent upon the internet connection to the "guide info." Mine has been very slow at times. The way the interface is written (now), it makes the entire experience slow (won't display the picture until the guide info arrives.). I have 300 down/30 up. I'm using 5g wireless. My laptop (connected similarly) gets great stats from the test sites. But, that guide is like I'm on a 9600 baud modem. Something more in that guide's domain is the slowdown.

Does your buffering happen with any Roku streaming app? I would test that out. And/or, do a factory reset. During the initial setup process, tell it you don't have internet access (I've gotten the impression it will load whatever version it came with. But, that might be the Roku TVs only.). What I would try to accomplish (with a Roku TV anyway, and I'm assuming you can do it with the external "Express" device) is to get back to a prior update, then configure the network for the device, and see if the streaming works better until the periodic update process runs. If it gets worse, then you'd know it was Roku's update. (It's hurt a lot of people in a lot of different ways.).

I'd be trying to narrow it down a few different ways.

"People are often amazed at how much we’ve done with the number of engineers we’ve got." (Roku CEO Anthony Wood, Austin Statesman, Oct 4, 2019). "Amazed" is one way of putting it.
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Strega
Level 15

Re: Buffering with excellent internet connection

My Roku Express reports around 20Mb/s which is plenty.  I never see any buffering. I'm also curious as to what/how many channels you see problems with.

b1wh2wq
Level 7

Re: Buffering with excellent internet connection

It is a streaming TV app - Spectrum that has buffering. Also my internet provider. 

I will try a factory reset. TY

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Visitor45763
Level 14

Re: Buffering with excellent internet connection


@b1wh2wq wrote:

It is a streaming TV app - Spectrum that has buffering. Also my internet provider. 

I will try a factory reset. TY


I'd assume it's Spectrum overselling their streaming infrastructure (if you don't see it with other apps like Pluto, Roku Channel, YouTube.). 

IMO, the factory reset would only be useful if you can tell it you don't have an internet connection, and get back to some preloaded version of the software, and then have a few hours before the latest version automatically installs (again) to see if things are better. The latest update has been remarkably bad, causing people strange problems. That would be something to rule out if you can. But, I don't know if the external Roku boxes let you setup that way (without a network connection). The Roku TVs do. (I haven't done it. But, seen people say it does. In the case of the external box, I wonder if it requires internet since all it does is stream. It wouldn't be able to do anything without internet. So, maybe it doesn't have that ability to setup without network.).

A factory reset (in that case) might be good anyway. But, if I were doing it just for that (just to reset, and see if it helps), I'd do a home>settings>system>advanced>network reset first. (Maybe also reboot your router.). If that didn't help, then a settings>system>power restart (but, if "fast start" is enabled, disable it first. Not sure if the external boxes have that. But, it seems to contribute to problems with Roku TVs). If that didn't help, then the factory reset. 

"People are often amazed at how much we’ve done with the number of engineers we’ve got." (Roku CEO Anthony Wood, Austin Statesman, Oct 4, 2019). "Amazed" is one way of putting it.
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Strega
Level 15

Re: Buffering with excellent internet connection

I have seen quite a few other complaints about the Spektrum App buffering.  Your LAN and equipment are probably fine.

b1wh2wq
Level 7

Re: Buffering with excellent internet connection

My concern is the disconnect between the Roku Express and the Spectrum router.

Roku Express shows a download speed as Good (48 Mbps).

All speed test show 300 to 400 Mbps. 

The Roku will not see 5G, only the 2G. 

Distance from the router is about 15 feet. 

I have the low end Roku Express. My TV is five years old and does not have Roku installed with HDMI connection.

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Strega
Level 15

Re: Buffering with excellent internet connection

An Express will probably use around 5Mb/s on average.  It's nice to have a little extra.  Roku definitely doesn't design their wi-fi systems to set speed records, in fact I believe they say they specifically optimize for a reliable rather than fast connection. 

Your last statement kind of throws me though… No HDMI?  My Roku is connected to my 10-year-old TV with HDMI.

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