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With cord-cutting quickly becoming popular, it is not surprising that televisions are now coming with integrated streaming capabilities. This feature saves the cost of purchasing a streaming stick separately. The Insignia 43” Roku TV that I am reviewing here has many likable features. It not only includes an integrated Roku, a software which connects your TV to the Internet – but is also a 4K ultra-HD set for under a few hundred bucks and is sometimes on sale for even cheaper (I recently purchased one recently for half the normal price). Throughout this article, I’ll share an honest Insignia 4k Roku TV review and talk in detail about this TV’s specifications.

Insignia is Best Buy’s in-house brand. Most of its components currently seem to be manufactured by LG. However, as you know, when creating in-house-labeled products, the manufacturer can change suppliers at any time. The good news is that over the years, Insignia brand televisions have consistently been of good quality.

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The Insignia 4k Roku TV Features and Benefits

Design

The design of this device is unspectacular. The television is 2.5-inches thick. A thin black bezel surrounds the screen which measures 42.5″ diagonally from corner to corner. The TV lacks features such as Chrome detailing around the edge or a solid, unbreakable frame. The set comes with two sturdy curved legs that allow for a Blu-ray player or sound bar below the television.  You can purchase a Wall-mount, although consider that the TV’s thickness will show even more this way than it will on a table.

Connections include an audio output, headphone jack, composite video input, USB port, analog audio inputs, and an antenna/cable input. There are also three HDMI inputs and an Ethernet port as well as built-in 802.11ac wireless support. These connections enable gamers to attach a PlayStation and other devices alike.

Remote

This television comes with a dedicated Roku remote. As you can see from this side-by-side comparison, it’s similar to the Roku Ultra remote. This one does not have the voice search, remote finder, A-B buttons, or headphone jack for private listening like the Ultra remote does. Although it doesn’t offer any extras, it’s a standard remote that has all the buttons you need to watch your TV. You can download a Roku app on your phone to use the app as a remote instead, too. There are slight variations in the dedicated keys for the Roku TV remote as well as an on/off button and sleep timer button. The Insignia Roku TV remote is slightly smaller and has a shiny black finish compared to the flat black of the Roku Ultra remote.

You cannot see any numbered buttons on any Roku remote. You can use a universal remote, but I found that using both the numbered remote from my cable provider and the Roku remote worked quite well. Remember that once you connect the cable, disc player, or other devices to this TV, the Roku interface automatically adjusts according to the proper input. Also, the volume buttons are on the right side of the remote. A mute button is under the volume buttons.

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Picture Quality

Picture quality is amazingly good for a 4K television in this price bracket. The only things missing are high dynamic range (HDR) and dolby vision. Dolby vision optimizes the colors on your screen and creates a dramatic contrast range. This is a type of HDR that first became popular with HD blu-rays. This whole new world of color provides more color accuracy and displays an array of tones you never thought were possible on a TV. However, if you don’t watch HDR movies, you won’t be able to take advantage of this feature anyway, so for some, it isn’t the end of the world that this TV doesn’t have it.

Fast Loading Speed and More Channels

This Roku TV is a basic 60-Hz panel. It has snappy load and response times. There can be a slight blur in fast-moving sports, but not enough to detract from the picture quality. If you watch many still shots, 60-Hz is an adequate loading speed and won’t massively affect the TV’s performance. Roku recently announced Roku OS (Operating System) which comes pre-installed with all Insignia Roku TVs. Roku OS broadens the number of streaming channels you can access on your TV – many of which are in 4K. With access to over 3,000 Roku channels, you’ll never be stuck with nothing to watch again.

Superb Sound Quality

Sound quality is also good. Even if you turn up the volume to maximum, there’s virtually no speech distortion. It has DTS TruSurround with two main channel speakers. This insignia TV features a built-in sound system, but its sound is relatively small. You can adjust the treble and bass and alter the settings to a Theatre performance, but this doesn’t always make a huge difference. In Theatre mode, the sound is flat and unenergetic, so I recommend switching to the Big Bass setting for clearer quality with more impact. To really enhance the TV’s sound, you can connect a soundbar and connect via the input ports.

Great Picture Upscaling

Picture upscaling is very good. Overall, there is no pixelation and no blurring or flickering of objects. Viewing angles are pretty good at 178° horizontal and vertical, providing a clear picture for viewers seated near the side of the screen. That being said, the Insignia Roku won’t respond to 3D channels, but it does compensate with an HD 1080p picture. The TV’s picture isn’t as sharp as other smart TVs, but this is mainly down to the basic 60 Hz. If its refresh rate was 120 Hz, you’d notice a sharper picture quality and wouldn’t miss any darkened images on the screen. Still, this lesser picture quality shouldn’t impede your viewing experience too much. You just might miss some details on clothing or the pores on people’s faces, for example.

The Interface

You may be surprised to find that when you turn on the TV, you don’t immediately get to the cable channels or the over-the-air channels, even if you have set these up on the Roku TV. Instead, you will see the large colorful squares of the Roku interface. Roku’s interface is straightforward to use. With more than 3,000 online channels, Roku offers more choices than any other streamer.

If you added your cable, OTA television, Blu-ray player, or any other device to the TV, you would see an icon square dedicated to that device, as shown below. The interface is customizable, allowing you to move the icons around to suit your needs

Roku’s built-in 4K Spotlight is very useful in helping you find 4K content across all of your apps. There is also a My Feed feature that allows you to follow an actor, movie, or series, and will notify you when something new is available.

The Roku interface has a lot of adjustable settings. You can quickly boost color saturation, change the contrast, and choose from presets for brightness. If these don’t fulfill your needs, you can also dig a little deeper into the Advanced Settings to initiate even more adjustments.

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Additional Features

A Versatile USB Drive Compatibility

This Insignia 4k Roku TV also accepts a USB drive. It allows you to play audio and video that you may have stored on the drive. The USB drive also allows you to pause live television, but I could only get this to work with the TV’s antenna input, not the cable input.

The Experience-Enhancing Roku App

Roku has a handy app that essentially turns your phone into a remote for the television or a second screen. The app also allows you to search using voice commands. To take your Roku experience even further, a Roku player allows you to listen to music, play games, and watch videos from the Internet on your TV. This Roku streaming stick is a great way to display content from the Internet onto your TV. The player comes with a remote for shortcut buttons such as Netflix, Hulu, and more streaming channels. It even gives you the ability to use the app in locations outside of your home such as hotel rooms, dorm rooms, your friend’s house. etc. And with screen mirroring from Windows and Android laptops, the Roku player is perfect for meetings in the office, too.

How to Change Insignia Roku TV 4K From Portrait to Landscape


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How to Enable 4K on an Insignia Roku TV

Setting up 4K on your Insignia 4K UHD Roku TV is straightforward.

First, visit the settings on the remote control and select Picture. Scroll through until you find Expert Settings.

You can then navigate to the HDMI UHD Color section to turn on the UHD and 4K color on your screen.

It’s undoubtedly worth enabling 4K on your Insignia Roku TV, as this will provide high-quality, defined images and offer more profound color contrasts for enhanced viewing.

All recent Insignia Roku TVs feature a high-performing quad-core processor. This feature provides a smoother 4K streaming experience than ever before. The main advantage of this quad-core processor is that it makes multitasking between browsing and using a Roku streaming player much smoother than before. You can even Skype call while watching your favorite channels as well as load shows quickly. Without this feature, your 4K pictures wouldn’t be as clear.

How Much Does the Insignia Roku TV Cost?

Given that this is a smart TV with built-in apps, the Insignia Roku comes at an excellent price. A 43-inch model costs just a few hundred bucks and is an excellent size for small living spaces or even in the bedroom.

For not much more, you can upgrade your viewing experience with the 50-inch Roku device. This size is ideal for a medium-sized room, and although this TV isn’t curved, you can see the screen from almost every angle in the room.

Finally, an Insignia 55-inch 4K Roku TV is the most expensive, normally almost double the price of the 43-inch model. This size is large enough for an intimate evening in the living room and the screen helps to bring the picture to life.

Final Thoughts on the Insignia Roku TV 4K

The 43” size is great for a small living room or bedroom. The picture quality and upscaling are exceptional for the price. The built-in Roku is both simple and fun to use and only of the main highlights of this TV, which offers numerous additional streaming channels. The lack of high dynamic range (HDR) is the TV’s major drawback, although it makes up for this with Roku, a large screen, and the 4K option. All in all, this TV is a bargain that will suit many needs and make average television viewers happy.

Sandy Berger, respected computer authority, journalist, media guest, speaker, and author, has more than three decades of experience as a computer and technology expert. Her eight books include: How to Have a Meaningful Relationship with Your Computer, Your Official Grown-up's Guide to AOL and the Internet, Cyber Savers –Tips & Tricks for Today’s Drowning Computer Users, Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to Better Living through Technology, Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to the Internet, Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to Gadgets & Gizmos, Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to Online Health & Wellness, and Sandy Berger’s Great Age Guide to Online Travel. Sandy’s newspaper column, magazine articles, feature stories, product reviews, and computer tips can be found at her website, Compu-KISS.