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Roku Ultra vs Roku Ultra LT: Which streaming box should you prefer?

They are very similar, but not the same!
By

Published onFebruary 23, 2024

Roku Ultra (2022)
MSRP: $99.99
Check price
Positives
Most powerful Roku
4K, HDR10+ formats
Improved connectivity
Rechargeable voice remote with headphone jack
Negatives
Pre-programmed shortcut buttons on remote
HDCP errors require you to reconnect cables
Roku Ultra LT
MSRP: $99.99
Check price
Positives
Great interface
Access to all major apps
MIMO Dual-Band Wi-Fi Voice Remote w/ TV Controls & Private Listening
Negatives
No USB port
Lots of chaff in channels and search

Roku makes a bunch of media streaming devices. If you want to buy a new Roku, you may have come across the Roku Ultra and the Roku Ultra LT. These two higher-end streaming devices are very similar, but there is a slight difference in price and features. So, which Roku Ultra version is a better fit for you, the regular Ultra or the LT variant? We explore the differences in these similarly-named media streaming boxes in this Roku Ultra vs Roku Ultra LT article.

Roku Ultra vs Roku Ultra LT: At a glance

  • Roku Ultra supports Dolby Atmos, while the Ultra LT does not.
  • Roku Ultra has a USB port, which the Ultra LT does not.
  • Roku Ultra comes with the rechargeable Voice Remote Pro, which has programmable buttons, a "Hey Roku" wake word, and the ability to find a lost remote, while the Ultra LT gets a standard Voice Remote.
  • Roku Ultra LT is a Walmart-exclusive product that is often cheaper but has fewer features.

Roku Ultra vs Roku Ultra LT: Specs

Roku Ultra (4802R)Roku Ultra LT (4801RW)
TV compatibility
Roku Ultra (4802R)
- HD TVs: Up to 1080p with upscaling from 720p
- 4K TVs: Up to 2160p (4K) at 60fps with upscaling from 720p and 1080p
- 4K HDR TVs: Supports Dolby Vision at 60fps, HDR10, HDR10+, HLG
Roku Ultra LT (4801RW)
- HD TVs: Up to 1080p with upscaling from 720p
- 4K TVs: Up to 2160p (4K) at 60fps with upscaling from 720p and 1080p
- 4K HDR TVs: Supports Dolby Vision, HDR10, HDR10+, and HLG at 60fps
Networking
Roku Ultra (4802R)
- 802.11ac dual-band MIMO Wi-Fi (2.4 GHz / 5 GHz)
- 10/100 Base-T Ethernet
Roku Ultra LT (4801RW)
- 802.11ac dual-band MIMO Wi-Fi (2.4 GHz / 5 GHz)
- 10/100 Base-T Ethernet
Ports
Roku Ultra (4802R)
- HDMI 2.0b
- Ethernet 10/100
- USB 3.0
Roku Ultra LT (4801RW)
- HDMI 2.0b
- Ethernet 10/100

Audio features
Roku Ultra (4802R)
- Digital stereo over HDMI
- DTS Digital Surround passthrough over HDMI
- Dolby Atmos decode via HDMI; requires Dolby Atmos-compatible speakers
Roku Ultra LT (4801RW)
- Digital stereo over HDMI
- DTS Digital Surround passthrough over HDMI
- Supports passthrough of Dolby-encoded audio over HDMI
Remote control
Roku Ultra (4802R)
Voice Remote Pro:
- "Hey Roku" wake word
- Headphone jack
- Rechargeable via USB-C
- Programmable buttons
- Plays beeping sounds to help find remote
Roku Ultra LT (4801RW)
Standard Voice Remote:
- Headphone jack
- Uses 2x AA batteries
Compatibility
Roku Ultra (4802R)
Works with:
- Apple AirPlay and HomeKit
- Google Home
- Alexa
Roku Ultra LT (4801RW)
Works with:
- Apple AirPlay and HomeKit
- Google Home
- Alexa
Dimensions and weight
Roku Ultra (4802R)
127 x 124.4 x 25.4mm
167.2g
Roku Ultra LT (4801RW)
127 x 124.4 x 25.4mm
167.2g

As you can see, the Roku Ultra and the Roku Ultra LT are very similar. The media streaming boxes look the same, with the Ultra LT missing out on the USB 3.0 port on the back.

Most of the differences between the two streaming boxes are in the remote. The remotes may look similar, but the Ultra LT’s remote skips out certain functions despite including buttons for the same.

The Roku Ultra comes with the Roku Voice Remote Pro, while the Roku Ultra LT gets the standard Roku Voice Remote. The Voice Remote Pro has many nice features, including the ability to charge via USB-C, two user-programmable buttons, “Hey Roku” wake word functionality, and the ability to have the remote beep when lost. The standard Voice Remote uses 2x AA batteries and also misses out on the other functions.

Further, the most significant difference in technical specifications is that the Roku Ultra supports Dolby Atmos, but the Ultra LT does not. Otherwise, you can find Dolby Vision, HDR10, HDR10+, and HLG support on both versions.

Beyond these differences, the two media streaming boxes are the same. Both can connect to Wi-Fi and ethernet to let you access online content. You can stream the best movies and the best TV shows on both of these boxes. Both boxes also support 4K HDR content.

Roku Ultra plugged into TV 3
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

Supported OTT apps on both boxes include Roku Channel, Netflix, Spectrum, Apple TV Plus, Hulu, Tubi, Disney Plus, Peacock, Max (formerly known as HBO Max), Paramount+, YouTube TV, and more. You can also stream music through Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, Pandora, SiriusXM, iHeart, and more, on both.

Roku Ultra vs Roku Ultra LT: Price

Roku Ultra: $100

Roku Ultra LT: $79

There is a price difference between the Roku Ultra and the Roku Ultra LT prices. However, since both devices are a few years old, you can frequently spot them at a discount. The Roku Ultra has decreased to as little as $67, while the Ultra LT has been spotted at $30. However, prices usually go back to normal after these deals disappear.

The Roku Ultra LT is a Walmart-exclusive product. There are listings for the Ultra LT on Amazon, but beware, as they are often the older generation, which has a blue box. The current-generation Ultra LT has a purple box, similar to the Ultra’s. If you want to purchase the Ultra LT, be sure to buy it from Walmart and match the model number to the ones we mention in the image descriptions.

Roku Ultra vs Roku Ultra LT: Which streaming box should you buy?

Roku Ultra Box on table
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

The Roku Ultra and Ultra LT are very similar products, with very few dollars separating them. We recommend the Roku Ultra to most people since it offers a complete experience. The Roku Ultra LT makes sense only if you are getting it at throwaway prices, and even then, an argument can be made about upgrading to the Ultra since the price difference is not that much. You should only consider the Roku Ultra LT if you want to save money. And if that’s the case, Roku has other much more affordable options you can consider.

Roku Ultra (2022)Roku Ultra (2022)
AA Recommended
Roku Ultra (2022)
Great performance • 4K streaming with HDR10+ • Improved connectivity
MSRP: $99.99
A streaming stick with excellent video quality and enhanced connectivity
The Roku Ultra (2022) packs an impressive amount of features in a slim entertainment stick. You get 4K streaming capabilities with Dolby Vision and HDR10+ support. Better Wi-Fi reception with a rechargable remote makes it one of the best affordable entertainment devices around.
Roku Ultra LTRoku Ultra LT
Roku Ultra LT
Get access to more than 500,000 movies and TV shows • microSD for extra storage • Enhanced voice remote
MSRP: $99.99
An excellent alternative to the Amazon Fire Stick or Apple TV.
With its quad-core processor, the Roku Ultra LT more than manages to hold its own against heavy hitters like Amazon and Apple. Support for HD, 4K, and HDR ensures that your streaming media requirements will always be met.