Remotes & Accessories

Help with Roku remotes and accessories, including pairing a remote, setting up TV power & volume control, using voice commands, power adapters, cables, headphones, and wireless speaker accessories.
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shmelvin
Level 7

Ultra headphone issues

 My GF purchased an Ultra in January that when any headphone or ear bud is plugged in has choppy playback, the unit is about 8 feet away, hard wired, with an unobstructed view. On regular sound there is no problem, Is this a known issue?

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16 Replies
Emissary35
Level 9

Re: Ultra headphone issues

I've been using the headphones every day since I got my Ultra in December and never have any issues, the sound is great. But I don't plug the earbuds directly into the Roku remote I plug it directly into my TV's audio out jack using a headphone extension cord so I don't run down the remote batteries quicker. If your TV has an audio jack for headphones try that and see if the sound is clear or not and if it's clear you'll know it's an issue going through the Roku itself through the remote.
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fhaab67
Level 7

Re: Ultra headphone issues

It seems like your problem has not been addressed.  That's extremely frustrating.  The solution to use your TV jack is honestly ridiculous - one of the selling points of the Roku is the headphone use from the remote.  That you may be able to do something else has no bearing on the advertised functionality and, actually, my TV doesn't have a headphone jack anyway, so no work around there for me.

I am having the same issue, same setup - the unit is wired to internet, I tried both the ear buds that came with it, and my own.  I'm about 10 feet away right now, but when I'm sitting on my couch I'm only about six feet away, and it's the same problem.  I read Roku's page on the issue, unplugged and restarted the device (gave it about 30 seconds).  There's really no other options - tried multiple headphones, followed their instructions - it just doesn't work well.

And I don't know how this could be using my wifi network, since I'm hard wired.  I assume it must be bluetooth, and I've experienced these issues with bluetooth in the past with low quality components and at longer distances.  This is very poor.  It's one of the reasons I wanted to upgrade my gen 1 FireTV - I have a loud window unit air conditioner and don't want to blast the speakers.
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renojim
Level 10

Re: Ultra headphone issues

It uses WiFi Direct, not Bluetooth.
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fhaab67
Level 7

Re: Ultra headphone issues

Interesting.  So why can't it work from less than 10 feet away with no obstructions?

Other people don't seem to have a problem, so is it hardware failure?
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atc98092
Level 16

Re: Ultra headphone issues

Very possibly a hardware issue. While it's been some time since I've used the headphone jack with my Ultra, the times I have used it I had no issues. Of course, there has been numerous issues with firmware 8.1 and audio, so it's possible there is something else going on. But I don't recall anyone else reporting the issue starting with 8.1. Did yours work well before, and the problem has just appeared, or has it been an issue from the beginning?
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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renojim
Level 10

Re: Ultra headphone issues

"fhaab67" wrote:
Interesting.  So why can't it work from less than 10 feet away with no obstructions?

Other than what atc98092 said, my only guess would be RF interference. I think if you're using a wired connection then the remote defaults to using a 5GHz WiFi channel. You can check what channel yours is using by going into the "Platform Secret Screen" (Press Home 5 times, then FF, Play/Pause, Rewind, Play/Pause, FF as quickly as you can) and then check the channel in the "Wireless Secret Screen". Mine is wired and using channel 165 for the remote. I don't think there's a way to get it to use a 2.4GHz channel other than using a wireless connection to a 2.4GHz AP. You might want to try a wireless connection (to a 2.4GHz AP) to get the remote to use that frequency band just to see if it makes any difference to your headphone issue.

-JT
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Emissary35
Level 9

Re: Ultra headphone issues

"fhaab67" wrote:
It seems like your problem has not been addressed.  That's extremely frustrating.  The solution to use your TV jack is honestly ridiculous - one of the selling points of the Roku is the headphone use from the remote. 

I never said the solution was to use the TV jack I simply stated that's how I use the headphones when I listen, and using the TV jack to test the headphones to see if the sound is clear well there is nothing ridiculous about that. What IS ridiculous is killing the Roku remote batteries when having the headphones plugged into them, also if you use the headphone jack on the TV then ALL inputs on the TV you'll be able to listen with the headphones including cable, blu ray and DVD players as well as apps on the TV itself. If you plug headphones into the Roku remote you only get the headphone audio from the Roku itself and nothing else.
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fhaab67
Level 7

Re: Ultra headphone issues

"Emissary35" wrote:
I never said the solution was to use the TV jack I simply stated that's how I use the headphones when I listen, and using the TV jack to test the headphones to see if the sound is clear well there is nothing ridiculous about that. What IS ridiculous is killing the Roku remote batteries when having the headphones plugged into them, also if you use the headphone jack on the TV then ALL inputs on the TV you'll be able to listen with the headphones including cable, blu ray and DVD players as well as apps on the TV itself. If you plug headphones into the Roku remote you only get the headphone audio from the Roku itself and nothing else.

Sorry if I sounded harsh.  Certainly your solution has merit and, if my TV had a headphone jack, it's what I'd be doing.  But posting what you do to avoid the problem is not helpful to someone that's trying to use a feature of the Roku that was a selling point (for me).  It's like the doctor joke: "Doc, it hurts when I do this."  Doc: "So don't do that."
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beq
Level 8

Re: Ultra headphone issues

Might be unrelated, but I had to adjust some router settings at one house in order to stop the Roku remote headphone jack from getting choppy/stuttering audio every few seconds, but only when on the 5GHz band.

Sorry I don't recall exactly what, I think I disabled 80MHz channel bonding (possible co-channel interference).


P.S.  Speaking of alternative headphone connections, what do you guys think about Bluetooth:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/39 ... me-enterta

Supposedly the smallest (3" x 0.7" x 0.7") BT transmitter with the featureset (dual aptx headphones, 3-4 inputs, magnet or stick anywhere).  Heck you could try sticking it to the side of the Roku remote (so you could enjoy the double goodness of Wi-Fi plus Bluetooth to route your audio).  Except it needs a USB power source...
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