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Pikesville, MD

Roku device and receiver without HDMI port

I want to buy a Roku and watch Netflix through it. I also have a very nice top of the line speaker set up so I really want to get the surround sound. The problem is that the receiver is a little over ten years old and doesn't have an HDMI port. With the Roku at least, an HDMI port is required to be on the receiver if you want to get 5.1 surround sound. Most of the research I've done on this subject through reviewing other posts on other websites says that there's really no way to get surround sound using a Roku if you don't have an HDMI port on your receiver. Howver, I've also read that there are converter boxes you can buy that could allow you to get surround sound on a Roku. Can anyone help me?


Portland, OR
For my setup I do this:

Roku -> HDMI -> TV -> Toslink -> Receiver


Ronkonkoma, NY
The problem is that TV will not pass 5.1 to a receiver, it passes stereo. i am in same state. My receiver doesn't have HDMI.

Miles To Go
Far Rockaway, NY
·Verizon FiOS

1 edit
reply to oneworld255
I was thinking about this same situation a few months ago.
After some googling, I found some pretty expensive devices like this:

»www.octavainc.com/HDMI%201x1%20A ··· ter.html

Why not get a WD TV or something similar that has Netflix and an Optical out port?

Edit: also found this splitter, which is cheaper and has the audio out options: »www.monoprice.com/products/produ ··· format=2
"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin to slit throats." - H. L. Mencken


Montgomery, IL
·AT&T DSL Service
reply to oneworld255
said by csiemers:

For my setup I do this:

Roku -> HDMI -> TV -> Toslink -> Receiver

You could do this as csiemers has. However as TimCo correctly points out you will not get 5.1 at your receiver this way. TV sets do not pass 5.1 audio through them. You will only get a mixed down 2 channel stereo using this set up.

The newer ROKU units do not have toslink output. I find this to be a bad design. People in your situation are SOL for surround options.

You could look for an older model ROKU.

Mine is about two years old and has TOSLINK output. It also has HDMI, Composite and component video as well as red/white stereo outputs.

As a side note if you are looking for 5.1 from netflix on ROKU...

Even though I have my ROKU set up properly for 5.1 audio, I DO NOT get anything from netflix as 5.1. Even the titles that come across as HD. The sound I get from netflix is limited to simple pro-logic type surround and not actual 5.1 audio.

I know this is a netflix issue and not with my set up or equipment. I know this because titles I stream from the same ROKU over Amazon do in fact come across as 5.1 audio.

So either netflix is not sending a 5.1 audio stream or there is something else limiting it over the connection.


said by BoulderHill1:

As a side note if you are looking for 5.1 from netflix on ROKU...


So either netflix is not sending a 5.1 audio stream or there is something else limiting it over the connection.


Q. Can Netflix on Roku play audio in 5.1?

A. Yes. However, only Roku 2 series players support 5.1 audio streaming. Not all Netflix titles are available in 5.1 audio. If a movie or TV show title is available in 5.1 audio, a 5.1 icon will be displayed on that title’s details screen.

To turn on 5.1 audio, first select a title you wish to watch instantly. Next, select audio & subtitles to select the 5.1 audio option, if one is available. Once selected, press BACK on your Roku remote to exit the audio & subtitles selection screen.

Please note that you must have your Roku player connected directly to a receiver capable of decoding Dolby Digital Plus. Also, you must ensure your audio mode is set to 5.1 surround. From the Roku home screen, select Settings > Audio mode > 5.1 surround.

»support.roku.com/entries/2032267 ··· -in-5-1-


Montgomery, IL
·AT&T DSL Service
See, I knew it was something to do with netflix.

I have an older model ROKU. Model HD (N1100), one of the first generation units. It has all the connections such as component, HDMI and composite as well as red/white audio and optical. This if ind to be very desireable. Newer model lack this connectability.

It does support 5.1 audio, just not from netflix.

When I choose a title from netflix there is no "audio & subtitles" option to select.

I really think a firmware update could change this but I'm sure that won't happen.

Why give out a firmware update when you can sell a new unit?

Whats a Posting tag?

Bellingham, WA
·Comcast Formerl..
reply to oneworld255
You, might want to consider other devices that have the outputs you need, since they all play Netflix, Hulu+ and files stored locally on your network through DLNA.

I recently bought a Sony streaming media player. It has HDMI, Component video, Composite video outputs. Toslink and Coaxial digital audio and analog stereo outputs. Plus it was $20 less than the Roku.
Bellingham Scanner Kicks Ass! »bhamscanner.kicks-ass.org/


The Sony netbox (N100?) is a nice little player. The only problem I've found with it is once or twice Netflix has been unreachable because the Sony auth servers were down for maint or something (which I found to be weird and surprising in itself--Sony being involved in the auth at all). Still, I think its Netflix UI is the best one I've seen--far better than Roku's.