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anyone use netflix streaming?
Old 06-20-2011, 07:57 AM   #1
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anyone use netflix streaming?

pros and cons? was thinking of signing up for it but undecided. movies and tv episodes streamed all the time for 8 dollars a month.
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Old 06-20-2011, 08:07 AM   #2
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I use Netflix streaming. Overall I enjoy it. I've had the subscription for a year now. When I first got it, I would use it all the time. Then I took a break from it for awhile because I could not find many of my favorite films, but I've recently gotten back into it because I'm noticing that they are improving their library.

Pros - it's really convenient, and you can use it either on your PC/Mobile Device or on your TV if you have an Apple TV, XBox, or some sort of other device that is compatible. They also have been improving their film library. Their TV Series library is also very good. Absolutely excellent selection of documentaries and independent films. If you're into those, then Netflix will pay for itself in the first month.

Cons - The streaming service (not the DVDs, which are a different story) may not have all the stuff you're looking for. It seems that they get some movies quickly, while others take awhile. There are some very popular classics that are clearly missing from their streaming library, so that might be frustrating. Try watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy via streaming...not gonna happen. I think they only have Part 2 or something like that.
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Old 06-20-2011, 08:13 AM   #3
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I am looking at a steaming only device at walmart, instead of buying a dvd player with netflix, I can get several different streaming channels is that a good idea? or should I buy just the streaming device?
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Old 06-20-2011, 08:19 AM   #4
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that's a good question. I'm not 100% sure, however I would probably say it's best to cover all bases. Especially if you already have an HDTV, it probably wouldn't make much sense to buy a new one with the streaming built-in.

Also as an alternative I would recommend Apple TV. For about $100, you can stream Netflix, iTunes, YouTube, and some others and connect to your network via a cat-5 cable and your HDTV with an HDMI input. Plus, if you own any other Apple devices on your network, you can stream your iTunes audio and video libraries through your TV as well from any other room in the house.
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Old 06-20-2011, 08:47 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frank
pros and cons? was thinking of signing up for it but undecided. movies and tv episodes streamed all the time for 8 dollars a month.
Just to add a few points,Frank. I stream Netflix on my iPad and it performs great. Havent done it with the tv, as I still also get the discs through the mail. They appear to be released quicker than the streaming though that costs more. If you are planning on using it a lot or dropping your cable, be advised that streaming will use up a lot of bandwidth especially if you download in hd. Many companies are starting to charge for "excessive" use. In other words they are going to get their money one way or the other.
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Old 06-20-2011, 08:58 AM   #6
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You need good bandwidth for HD. I did a quick google and saw 7-10Mbs. You can do SD for a lot less. Netflix adjusts the quality based on your bandwidth, so at 1Mb you get only fair quality. And if you've got a computer also using your bandwidth, it'll get worse.
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:05 AM   #7
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I stream through a desktop computer that I have sitting next to my tv. As another poster said, I used it a lot when I first connected to it, but have taken a break. I think it's a good deal for the money, which I believe is nothing besides the Netflix subscription I already pay for (DVD service). I reccommend it, as long as you're not expecting to get the newest releases streamed. It takes awhile before those are available, if ever.
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:08 AM   #8
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Just ordered a Roku box for $99 from Amazon last night. In reading about it I came across mention of this site which has other channels (each channel may include several dozen items) you can add to the Roku box. http://thenowhereman.com/roku/

Went with Roku because of the number of satisfied reviews, no need to have a computer on or hooked up, my friend has one, it receives via wireless, and one isn't locked in to Apple - it's also tiny, as is the Apple2TV. We cut our Dish network from almost $90 down to $45 or so a week ago and aren't feeling the loss and are hoping to dump it. Thought is to bump up our internet speed if needed - we are already running Ooma phone on internet, why not add tv viewing and have the internet bill cover computer, phone, and entertainment. Fingers crossed...
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:15 AM   #9
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they have the roku at walmart for 78., just came out the other day and that is what I am looking at. I know a guy that has one and you can get a lot of channels, including news through them. looks like a heck of a deal. also I have qwest hi-speed at 1.5 and do not have any trouble streaming to my computer.
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:28 AM   #10
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We'd like to switch to Netflex streaming because lately, their DVDs have been coming to us scratched and damaged.

According to Roku.com:
No PC needed.
Roku connects to your high-speed Internet connection wirelessly.

So, my high-speed Internet connection (Verizon FIOS) is via ethernet cable to my PC. The PC is on the first floor, and the HDTV is in the basement (cable connection to Verizon FIOS). We don't use the Verizon router wirelessly (although I'd like to), because the distance/barriers between the router and the TV are too great. We also don't want to drill holes/fish more cables.

So, what would the Roku box "connect wirelessly" to??

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Old 06-20-2011, 09:38 AM   #11
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buy a linksys router and connect with hardwire where convenient and wirelessly otherwise. you can buy a used router if you can find one, but they don't wear out and last for years, very convenient to have when you have numerous computers and streaming devices. look for sales and you can buy them cheap.
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:42 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Amethyst View Post
We'd like to switch to Netflex streaming because lately, their DVDs have been coming to us scratched and damaged.

According to Roku.com:
No PC needed.
Roku connects to your high-speed Internet connection wirelessly.

So, my high-speed Internet connection (Verizon FIOS) is via ethernet cable to my PC. The PC is on the first floor, and the HDTV is in the basement (cable connection to Verizon FIOS). We don't use the Verizon router wirelessly (although I'd like to), because the distance/barriers between the router and the TV are too great. We also don't want to drill holes/fish more cables.

So, what would the Roku box "connect wirelessly" to??

Amethyst
It hooks up to the wireless router you don't have (enabled?). Desire to avoid running wires was high on my list as well. Went with the latest Roku here, the 2100X SDX. Roku also trumpets it's ability to jump back 10 seconds, important for those with less-than acute hearing and the current generation of mumbling actors.
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:43 AM   #13
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My FIOS internet came with a router and WiFi. If you got the same setup, all you have to do is configure the WiFi in that box. Then set the Roku to that address.
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:55 AM   #14
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We got a roku last xmas - easy to set up. The netflix stream has LIMITED movies. The newer releases are mail only, but you can also stream content from other providers with a roku. On balance it was a good purchase.
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Old 06-20-2011, 10:49 AM   #15
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Just a few points I'll add:
  • In the months since we started streaming via Netflix (7Mbs, in our case), the quality has improved. Initially, it was a couple of notches below HD broadcasts, but now it's sometimes nearly the same -- except you'll notice a lot of blurring when the camera moves.
  • A lot depends on what time you're streaming. Sunday nights tend to be popular, so the quality gets a lot worse then. The streaming has even stopped occasionally, but we haven't encountered that in weeks.
  • As has been mentioned, the limited selection is the biggest issue. There are hardly any recent movies at all, and by recent I mean from the last decade. But if you like documentaries, independent movies, older foreign films and TCM fare from the 1960s, you'll find plenty to watch. In fact, if you browse through their list you'll find some rarities that are not available on DVD.

I'm not familiar with Roku. I stream through my $99 Blu-ray player. If you don't have a Blu-ray player, I'd strongly recommend getting one. Blu-ray quality is amazing (sound as well as picture, even with the cheapest surround sound speaker setup) and the player even "upscales" your DVDs so they look subtly better than before.

I know there's a lot of talk about streaming eventually eliminating the need for physical media like discs, and the technology is improving rapidly. I just hope the quality we've finally achieved with Blu-ray isn't sacrificed for the sake of convenience (as happened with music after the introduction of the iPod).
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Old 06-20-2011, 11:13 AM   #16
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Regarding streaming Netflix - this site supposedly makes for improved searching for content on Netflix:

instantwatcher.com - Streaming Movies and TV to watch instantly on Netflix
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Old 06-20-2011, 01:25 PM   #17
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We use our Wii to stream Netflix. It works great and their selection of movies and TV shows is pretty good.
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:07 PM   #18
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I use it as well, thru my HDTV interface. I also have a computer hooked up to the TV, so can watch it via that if I wanted to.

Its great for the kid. There are a ton of kids shows (Classic 60s Pink Panther!) and movies.

Some new stuff, but mostly reruns.
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:27 PM   #19
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Regarding streaming Netflix - this site supposedly makes for improved searching for content on Netflix:

instantwatcher.com - Streaming Movies and TV to watch instantly on Netflix
I took a look at that site. It looks like a good list.

It's too bad that NETFLIX doesn't do a better job on the interface they provide.
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:37 PM   #20
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I stream Netflix through my Tivo. That lets me use my laptop while watching movies. I watch 2-3 movies weekday mornings while DW is away on non-retirement. Not as many new popular movies as you'd like, the DVD service is much better for that, but a very large selection of good to bad movies and TV shows. I still have 200+ movies waiting in my instant queue. Worth the money for me, though I get it "free" with my normal DVD subscription. Even better. I have cable internet, no speed problems, just a few drop-outs maybe every third movie or so. It'll pick up right where you left off, so no big deal. Mostly very good quality, though the aspect ratio is wrong more often than it should be.

They just changed the website user interface in the last few days and made it much harder to select and queue movies. Hopefully they'll see the light and make things better instead of worse.
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