Can Roku Devices Connect To 5 GHz Wi-Fi?

Roku streaming devices have become very popular with lots of internet users, but one common question is what type of Wi-Fi connectivity they support.

Modern routers now are mostly dual band, meaning they can broadcast two networks – a 2.4 GHz and a 5 GHz one – if the users wants. The older 2.4 GHz standard is commonplace and all devices, including Roku, support this. But what about 5 GHz Wi-Fi? Can Roku devices connect to this newer Wi-Fi band?

Some Roku devices support 5 GHz Wi-Fi, including the Streaming Sticks, most Ultra models and Express models from 2022 onwards, plus a few Roku TVs. Many older Roku devices only support 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi.

In other words, older or more basic Roku devices tend to only support 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi, with the newer and more top of the range ones support 5 GHz as well. But this isn’t usually a problem as 2.4 GHz is generally the standard to be on for wireless streaming anyway, especially at distance.

Let’s dive into the issue more to explain why.

Older Roku Devices Only Support 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi

Many entry level or older Roku devices only support 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi. This means they can only connect to the 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi band emitted by your router. They can’t “see” or connect to the 5 GHz band if you have one (dual band routers).

2.4 GHz only devices include:

  • Pre-2022 Roku Express devices.
  • Roku Premiere devices
  • Most Roku TV models

With these devices, you just need to connect them to your router’s 2.4 GHz network, and you’re good to go on a wireless connection (steps given further below).

Some Newer Roku Devices Support 5 GHz Wi-Fi

Despite most pre-2022 Roku devices only supporting 2.4 GHz single band Wi-Fi, there are a few newer and older Roku’s that do support 5 GHz Wi-Fi:

  • Roku Streaming Stick
  • Roku Streaming Stick+
  • Most Roku Ultra models
  • Roku 4
  • Newer Roku Express box models from 2022 onwards.
  • Some TCL Roku TVs (eg. 43S45)
  • Hisense Roku TV model 43R7E

The dual band Roku TV models seem to actually be older ones that are harder to get now. Not having 5 GHz Wi-Fi doesn’t always  matter that much for streaming, since 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi generally works better over distance and through walls anyway.

Nevertheless, finding out if a Roku device supports 5 GHz Wi-Fi is usually quite easy. As long as your router is already broadcasting it’s 5 GHz network, pull up the network settings on your Roku device, as if you were going to set up the connection again (Settings…Network…Set Up Connection).

Then on the list of nearby wireless networks, it should at least be able to find the 5 GHz network/SSID. If it can’t even find it even when it’s in range and broadcasting fine to other devices, it’s a sign it can’t “see” it and therefore isn’t compatible. Sometimes, it might find it but still won’t connect properly if you try if the device isn’t 5 GHz enabled.

If your Roku does find the 5 GHz network, you also need to make sure it’s broadcasting on the right channel to make sure it successfully connects (more on this below).

How To Connect Roku To 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi

Assuming you are on an older Roku that only supports 2.4 GHz, connecting it to your router is really easy. here are the steps:

  1. Plug in and turn on your Roku device
  2. Select wireless from the connection setup screen
  3. Find your router’s 2.4 GHz SSID/network on the list (eg. “Comcast45678 2.4 GHz”)
  4. Enter it’s wireless password/key (found on the router label) to connect to the new network
  5. You should now be set to go, streaming the same content you were before.

Connect Roku To Router with Wi-Fi (Quick Demo)


What If You Can’t Find The 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi Band?

If for some reason the 2.4 GHz band on your router isn’t visible to your Roku or other devices, it’s probably because it’s not broadcasting and needs to be turned on.

You can do this from your router settings as follows:

  • Check the router label for login details (admin URL/username/password)
  • Log into your router by typing the URL (eg. into any browser address bar of a connected device.
  • Enter the admin username/password to enter router settings
  • Find Wi-Fi/Dual Band/Network settings or similar.
  • Check the box/setting if needed to enable 2.4 GHz band broadcast if it’s turned off
  • Once enabled, find it with your Roku device and connect.

See here for more on how to access your router settings if stuck.

What If A Compatible Roku Device Won’t Connect To 5 GHz Wi-Fi?

If you know your Roku device is 5 GHz compatible, but it won’t find or connect to your router’s 5 GHz band, there are a few main reasons for this:

  • Your 5 GHz band isn’t enabled (turn it on from your router settings following the steps given above).
  • Roku devices cannot see or use Digital Frequency Selection (DFS) channels 52-140 on a Wi-Fi router
  • The nine compatible DFS 5 GHz channels supported by Roku devices are 36, 40, 44, 48, 149, 153, 157, 161, 165

Some ISPs/routers don’t enable DFS channels, but some such as Verizon do, and it can stop the Roku working if you’re on the wrong DFS channel.

Therefore if you’re trying to use 5 GHz Wi-Fi with a compatible Roku device, you need to change your Wi-Fi channel to one of the ones that does work.

You do this as follows:

  • Access your router settings as detailed above using the login URL/username/password
  • Find the Wireless Channel setting, often under Wi-Fi/Wireless/Security or similar.
  • Change the channel to one of the compatible ones
  • Save settings, exit router and reboot the Roku device.

If you were on an incompatible DFS channel before, switching to a usable one should allow your Roku to “see” the 5 GHz network as long as it’s compatible.


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