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MacRumors
Feb 9, 2007, 11:08 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com)

ThinkSecret posts (http://notes.thinksecret.com/secretnotes/0702appletv.shtml) a brief blurb that the Apple TV's ship date has been pushed back to the beginning of March.

The original internal ship date for the Apple TV was said to be on February 20th, 2007 (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/01/31/airport-extreme-802-11n-and-apple-tv-ship-dates/), but internal targets have been reportedly been moved to the beginning of March.

Customers report that early Apple TV orders have not changed and still reflect a February 28th shipping date.



Telp
Feb 9, 2007, 11:10 PM
i dont get why they would have to push back a release date for that?

Texas04
Feb 9, 2007, 11:13 PM
Well seeing as February 28th is the last day in February a few days should not be to long for them to push it back. That is assuming that the dates on their early shipping are correct. Or at least near correct.

zblaxberg
Feb 9, 2007, 11:13 PM
this better not mean that leopard is being pushed back...i need it...it's no longer a want, I can't live without it!!!:D

andyh2
Feb 9, 2007, 11:14 PM
That sucks. Well, maybe something turned up that needed to be fixed immediately.

spicyapple
Feb 9, 2007, 11:15 PM
With the previous news item (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/02/09/mac-os-x-10-5-leopard-ilife-07-and-iwork-07-in-march/), AppleTV might have been pushed back so Leopard's hidden secrets don't get released into the wild, considering Leopard is now only weeks away from being released?

Telp
Feb 9, 2007, 11:19 PM
Well seeing as February 28th is the last day in February a few days should not be to long for them to push it back. That is assuming that the dates on their early shipping are correct. Or at least near correct.

Being pushed back one day isnt a big deal, but if they are saying end of march that can sorta be a big deal.

With the previous news item (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/02/09/mac-os-x-10-5-leopard-ilife-07-and-iwork-07-in-march/), AppleTV might have been pushed back so Leopard's hidden secrets don't get released into the wild, considering Leopard is now only weeks away from being released?

They would have thought about that before. They knew they wouldnt have leopard out by feb. 28th or whenever so they wouldnt have it have anything to do with some special feature with leopard, atleast not one that we would be able to figure out just from halfing 1/2 of the two (leopard and :apple:TV)

nagromme
Feb 9, 2007, 11:21 PM
They would have thought about that before. They knew they wouldnt have leopard out by feb. 28th or whenever so they wouldnt have it have anything to do with some special feature with leopard, atleast not one that we would be able to figure out just from halfing 1/2 of the two (leopard and ?TV)

I suppose this could mean some certain Leopard-related features for :apple:TV will be rolled out from the start, when they might originally have been planned to wait for an update.

Telp
Feb 9, 2007, 11:22 PM
I suppose this could mean some certain Leopard-related features for :apple:TV will be rolled out from the start, when they might originally have been planned to wait for an update.

what kind of update?

biturbomunkie
Feb 9, 2007, 11:22 PM
no biggie, but where's leopard?

Telp
Feb 9, 2007, 11:23 PM
no biggie, but where's leopard?

i think we all want to know the same thing mon

Curtis72
Feb 9, 2007, 11:24 PM
The ship date for my Apple TV has always been Feb. 28th, and its delivery date has always been March 6th. If Apple TV is shipping slips to April, then there is reason for concern.

Telp
Feb 9, 2007, 11:25 PM
The ship date for my Apple TV has always been Feb. 28th, and its delivery date has always been March 6th. If Apple TV is shipping slips to April, then there is reason for concern.

See there we go, no biggie problem solved

Will_reed
Feb 9, 2007, 11:36 PM
Get on the ball apple we want our :apple: TVs now :p

Some_Big_Spoon
Feb 9, 2007, 11:56 PM
I ordered :apple: TV first day... then cancelled it when I realised that I get more functionality from my networked TiVo and TiVo DeCode Manager.

I'll wait to see updates and upgrades, but for now, I think I'm too geeked out for it to be useful.

mduser63
Feb 10, 2007, 12:00 AM
Well that's annoying. I'm getting a little impatient. I ordered my :apple:TV within about 5 minutes of the store going up after the keynote, so I'm hoping I'm one of the earlier shipments. That said, I'm going to be disappointed if they're not shipping until March. My order status still currently says Feb. 28 with delivery on March 6 (just like it always has).

mi5moav
Feb 10, 2007, 12:34 AM
For all the hype that was generated by this product months ago, I think this is gonna be a flop like the hifi. If it had more useful features like the slingboxes I would pick one up. But, with the itunes movie library being so small I just don't get it. I am not gonna stream music from itunes and I hell am not gonna stick a dvd in my imac to stream to my tv. So, if this could record my cable shows or I could access my dvd collection on the road and stream it to my laptop while i'm away from the computer then ok, but I think this thing is gonna be DOA if it even gets out the DOOR.

iW00t
Feb 10, 2007, 12:41 AM
So, if this could record my cable shows or I could access my dvd collection on the road and stream it to my laptop while i'm away from the computer then ok, but I think this thing is gonna be DOA if it even gets out the DOOR.

Thank American capitalism for it, but it is really unlikely that you can get a device that'd (cue some random MPAA exec) "... be a license for thieves to steal America's intellectual property ..."

Format shifting of DVDs currently violates the DMCA. It is as bad as running OS X on a PC!

TheBobcat
Feb 10, 2007, 12:50 AM
As long as Apple remains mum and the ship dates are the same for the people that bought them, how does this get credence again? :rolleyes:

sblasl
Feb 10, 2007, 01:04 AM
I wonder if they are delaying this to include the latest Draft "n" update?

As much as I like Apple technology, I can not for the life of me see how this has any useful value. I would not mind having a dedicated iTunes music server, but due to the very limited storage space this thing has, it's a non-starter in my book.:confused:

stew278
Feb 10, 2007, 01:11 AM
... but I think this thing is gonna be DOA if it even gets out the DOOR.

I'm in agreement ... this just keeps looking like a waste of $300. That much to stream (limited) content to HD TV? It's just not that compelling.

Philberttheduck
Feb 10, 2007, 01:15 AM
Take it for a grain of salt. It is, need i remind you, ThinkSecret - the omniscient of all rumor websites.

Nonetheless, I'm growing a little antsy. I can't say I was disappointed because the date has not changed. Feb. 28, ships March.

Next song.

Padriac
Feb 10, 2007, 03:40 AM
There always seems to be a few people who claim that the Apple TV has absolutely no value. I think the Apple TV is a great device that will offer me quite a bit. Allow me to demonstrate:

Music
- I can eradicate all physical CDs and CD players and instead deal with digital files (all my music is ripped as high bit-rate AAC or Apple Lossless). Loading and unloading a CD is simply barbaric in this day and age and having to plug in your iPod has several shortcomings in terms of storage and interface.
- I have access to *all* my music from my nice home theater set-up via a very simple and clean interface. Pure digital files via pure digital connection (HDMI) = high sound quality.
- All my music is already in iTunes and this works seamlessly with that library.

Video
- I can rip all my DVDs to disc and not have to deal with physical DVDs or DVD players but instead can browse and watch my entire movie collection without having to leave my chair (Thank you, Handbrake).
- Should I be so inclined, I can purchase and view iTunes TV shows and movies form my living room (probably won't do this much, but the ability makes iTunes purchases much more tempting).

vs. "mac mini"
- I don't have to set-up, configure, or maintain a separate, dedicated computer.
- I can keep all my media on my main computer as always (nice and simple). No dealing with synchronizing content, dedicated media networked drives, and other complications.
- Save $300 vs. the Mac Mini alternative (I don't really need a full computer in the living room... the web browsing provided by the Wii/PS3 already fills my limited needs there).

And the hard drive in the Apple TV is a fancy cache useful if you have a slow wireless connection. draft-N and even G should be fine for streaming pretty much all but high bit-rate 720p content without the need for any local (to the Apple TV) storage. The Apple TV essentially has unlimited storage (as it just grabs content from your computer and you can add as much storage as you want there).

My entire CD and DVD collection at my fingertips in my living room via a nice Apple interface? $300 seems like a fair price for that. Is there something I'm missing here?

vkxonline
Feb 10, 2007, 05:02 AM
Padriac, good points. I've never understood the "so useless" and "no point" arguments. While I still think 300 dollars is a lot to pay for such a device, not having to hook up your computer to your TV seems worth atleast the concept here - not to mention the new interface. Not everyone wants to to buy a new computer to hook to a TV, and anyone who has tried that setup knows it has it's fair share of problems - overscan, for one. We can't really weigh in until we have the device in our homes to try out, but I think conceptually there's at least a market for it.

curmi
Feb 10, 2007, 05:48 AM
I certainly don't consider it useless - but having no divX, and having to have everything in iTunes (ie, it doesn't even see your Movies folder on your remote machine) certainly limits the usefulness to many.

The 720p isn't a bit deal, but certainly limits the bragging rights when others (including Xboxs and PS3s) can do 1080p - unusual because you expect Apple stuff to be leading edge, which this device isn't in many ways (apart from the UI perhaps).

twoodcc
Feb 10, 2007, 06:56 AM
well this isn't good, especially for those that were looking forward to picking one up.

but hey, good things come to those who wait

zap2
Feb 10, 2007, 06:56 AM
My shipping date is still Feb 28, but now my date for me to get it is March 1(up from March 6th)


I think its because Apple gave me a HDMI-DVI cable, they let me keep it and overnighed the Component ones I ordered, plus the update all the other item to overnight shipping(or so it seems)


I Love Apple!!

Photek
Feb 10, 2007, 07:05 AM
They probiably pushed the shipping date back in the hope they could get a few more orders and then ship the whole AppleTV consignment in one transit van. :D

Seriously.. AppleTV is weak.. push it back to March 2017, no one is gonna care!

OllyW
Feb 10, 2007, 07:25 AM
I certainly don't consider it useless - but having no divX, and having to have everything in iTunes (ie, it doesn't even see your Movies folder on your remote machine) certainly limits the usefulness to many.

The 720p isn't a bit deal, but certainly limits the bragging rights when others (including Xboxs and PS3s) can do 1080p - unusual because you expect Apple stuff to be leading edge, which this device isn't in many ways (apart from the UI perhaps).

Don't forget, it doesn't support surround sound either :(

Rocketman
Feb 10, 2007, 07:33 AM
i dont get why they would have to push back a release date for that?

The 2-20 date was a rumor.

The stated date for FIRST shipments was always 2-28.

As for your sig, the saying is

There are 10 KINDS of people in this world . . . .

Rocketman

dkrieb
Feb 10, 2007, 07:59 AM
I recently received my new airport extreme and after seamlessly setting it up I began to realize the impact that Apple TV will have once it's installed. First of all you can connect up to 3 USB devices to even include a USB hub - imagine the possibilites for storage. Secondly it's fast - as soon as I wake my iMac G5 from sleep the drive is mounted on the desktop. I played a video TS folder from one of my DVD's on the external hard drive and it played smoothly. Now consider using Apple TV from your living room's HDTV using your Apple Remote. The possibilities are limitless - movie storage without DVD's, music, GAMES (from iTunes Store) photo slide shows, whatever.

This is going to be big - now all that needs to be done is to incorporate some sort of TiVO funtionality. Perhaps some solution using an interface such as Elgato TV would work well. Keep in mind that they'll probaly be software upgrades as well as hardware add on's for this device.

This is only the beginning. I believe that Apple TV will be bigger than the iPod but maybe not as big as the iPhone.

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 08:24 AM
There always seems to be a few people who claim that the Apple TV has absolutely no value. I think the Apple TV is a great device that will offer me quite a bit. Allow me to demonstrate:

Music
- I can eradicate all physical CDs and CD players and instead deal with digital files (all my music is ripped as high bit-rate AAC or Apple Lossless). Loading and unloading a CD is simply barbaric in this day and age and having to plug in your iPod has several shortcomings in terms of storage and interface.
- I have access to *all* my music from my nice home theater set-up via a very simple and clean interface. Pure digital files via pure digital connection (HDMI) = high sound quality.
- All my music is already in iTunes and this works seamlessly with that library.

Video
- I can rip all my DVDs to disc and not have to deal with physical DVDs or DVD players but instead can browse and watch my entire movie collection without having to leave my chair (Thank you, Handbrake).
- Should I be so inclined, I can purchase and view iTunes TV shows and movies form my living room (probably won't do this much, but the ability makes iTunes purchases much more tempting).

vs. "mac mini"
- I don't have to set-up, configure, or maintain a separate, dedicated computer.
- I can keep all my media on my main computer as always (nice and simple). No dealing with synchronizing content, dedicated media networked drives, and other complications.
- Save $300 vs. the Mac Mini alternative (I don't really need a full computer in the living room... the web browsing provided by the Wii/PS3 already fills my limited needs there).

And the hard drive in the Apple TV is a fancy cache useful if you have a slow wireless connection. draft-N and even G should be fine for streaming pretty much all but high bit-rate 720p content without the need for any local (to the Apple TV) storage. The Apple TV essentially has unlimited storage (as it just grabs content from your computer and you can add as much storage as you want there).

My entire CD and DVD collection at my fingertips in my living room via a nice Apple interface? $300 seems like a fair price for that. Is there something I'm missing here?

No arguments on anything you say here ... Do you think the current Handbrake DVD rips (I use double pass H264 at high bit rate now) will do justice to Apple TV and a large HD screen? I wonder if we will need a better solution, something able to create 720p maybe? Any thoughts?

I have the same design plans as yourself but I am trying to figure out how to keep my new Apple Extreme and Apple TV (when they arrive) seperate from my existing 802.11g network yet be able to have the two networks talk to each other. We have too much equipment with 11g to stop using (MacBook, iBook, FiOS router etc) but I have read enough to now realize I have to isolate the 11n network or it is dragged down to 11g speeds. Have you though this one through yet?

Re Push back date ... Maybe to coincide with one big roll out of Leopard too :)

VaMacbook
Feb 10, 2007, 08:25 AM
Video
- I can rip all my DVDs to disc and not have to deal with physical DVDs or DVD players but instead can browse and watch my entire movie collection without having to leave my chair (Thank you, Handbrake).
I have used Handbrake before... but how to get past the encoding once Handbrake his finished doing its thing?

Stella
Feb 10, 2007, 08:28 AM
Good points, shame iTV only supports Apple media / content.

Had Apple supported other media types then iTV would have been far far more useful.



There always seems to be a few people who claim that the Apple TV has absolutely no value. I think the Apple TV is a great device that will offer me quite a bit. Allow me to demonstrate:
<Snip />

210
Feb 10, 2007, 08:38 AM
Don't forget, it doesn't support surround sound either :(

Exactly. That's the main reason I'm not buying it just now. There's no way of transferring the surround sound track from you DVDs to you computer. I wouldn't mind this either if there was a rental model for movies and TV shows on the iTunes Store. Of course, those of us outside the US have to wait until movies and TV shows are even available first.

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 08:39 AM
Video
- I can rip all my DVDs to disc and not have to deal with physical DVDs or DVD players but instead can browse and watch my entire movie collection without having to leave my chair (Thank you, Handbrake).



I have used Handbrake before... but how to get past the encoding once Handbrake his finished doing its thing?

Not sure what you mean ... ? When Handbrake is finished you have a movie on your desktop or where ever you chose to save it and it plays.

Texas04
Feb 10, 2007, 08:43 AM
Being pushed back one day isnt a big deal, but if they are saying end of march that can sorta be a big deal.

If it was the end of march, but it is saying the beginning of March. Not the end..

mi5moav
Feb 10, 2007, 09:15 AM
Last month I got 27 movies through Netflix for $18 and 59 through blockbuster for $18 (love there exchange program) both seem to be making money, just checked there EPS. What does not allow Apple to stream these to us as unlimited rentals for $14.99 or $19.99 a month? The only thing missing is the DVD and the cost of mailing and the distribution centers. Certainly the cost of bandwidth is less expense then the cost of physically mailing a DVD out!?!? I would change my mind and buy this Apple TV if this was a possibillity.

outlyer
Feb 10, 2007, 09:18 AM
Exactly. That's the main reason I'm not buying it just now. There's no way of transferring the surround sound track from you DVDs to you computer. I wouldn't mind this either if there was a rental model for movies and TV shows on the iTunes Store. Of course, those of us outside the US have to wait until movies and TV shows are even available first.

I think it's far too early to say that. AAC is perfectly capable of handling multi-channel streams and the box could encode to AC3 on the fly without much trouble. Even the original XBOX did that, and many consumer sound cards do it as well.

caccamolle
Feb 10, 2007, 09:20 AM
while conceptually I don't disagree with Padriac and those others who view the ATV as useful, I do have some questions.

As to music, I am not sure what the ATV adds to anything here. I already have it entirely available from iTunes and on my main hifi system via A/X. What would the ATV add to that, apart from having to have to TV on to access it ? pretty uninteresting to me, I don't want my tv on when listening to music.

As to DVDs, are you sure we can ripp them and have them accessible from our iTunes library ? How painful is the process anyway ? I personally find this very little interesting because: unlike music, I only view a movie once (99% of the times, there are exceptions obviously), so having movies on my hard drives adds close to nothing. Kids' DVD are another exception yes. Nonetheless, uncomparable to music where we may access the same songs many many times within short/long periods of time. And again, ripping DVDs seems quite a nightmare to me (but please let me know otherwise !!!! this could be just my ignorance). Lastly if we wanted to do the same with DVDs as we do with music we'd need huge storage space (I know, it is fairly unexpensive these days) which is not entirely practical.

Also, are we sure that we can rip a DVD and then access it via ATV ?

Now, having said all of the above, I can't wait to have this ATV thing. The reason is mostly the ability to watch straight and simply material from the iTunes store as I believe that more and more of it will be available there and, as importantly, I cannot stand regular TV (cable crap..).

I do consider the ability to watch HD stuff very very important. And that is a significan limitation for now, obvioulsy linked to the fact that the ITS does not offer any of that. Yet. I am convinced that that will come, just a matter of time. For now I will be watching HD material with my HD DVD player.

Yvan256
Feb 10, 2007, 09:21 AM
Ships by: Feb 28
Delivers by: Mar 7

That's what my order said since day 1 (ordered about 3 minutes after the store went back online).

I can't wait to have access to TV shows in Canada so I can drop my digital cable (35$CAD/month and I only follow about 4-5 shows at most, that is if the channels don't move them around).

mrowl
Feb 10, 2007, 09:30 AM
For all the hype that was generated by this product months ago, I think this is gonna be a flop like the hifi. If it had more useful features like the slingboxes I would pick one up. But, with the itunes movie library being so small I just don't get it. I am not gonna stream music from itunes and I hell am not gonna stick a dvd in my imac to stream to my tv. So, if this could record my cable shows or I could access my dvd collection on the road and stream it to my laptop while i'm away from the computer then ok, but I think this thing is gonna be DOA if it even gets out the DOOR.

the hifi is a hit in my book. I have had great success with it. (and GREAT sound)

macpro2000
Feb 10, 2007, 10:06 AM
I'm not quite sure why anyone is surprised at this...how often has Apple hardware actually made it into the hands of people on time. Software they are good at making dates, hardware...hardly.

vkxonline
Feb 10, 2007, 10:15 AM
I think you'll eventually see surround sound on the unit. The iTunes store will eventually go HD (the 720p ability of the unit is just begging for it) and I can't see them doing 720p in stereo. That's just weird to me.

As far as the Divx/Xvid thing . . . I don't know, I convert every video I have on my mac to mp4. It just makes more sense. It works right in quicktime, h.264 provides amazing quality, and it smoothly integrates itself into my ipod and itunes. As far as I'm concerned, divx (and more so xvid) are big only because of the piracy community. They're a bit buggy, and they certainly don't work "out of the box." If you're legit-ly ripping stuff from your own dvds, there's a ton of mac tools that use mp4. I'm not sure why you'd bothering using anything else.

Avatar74
Feb 10, 2007, 10:33 AM
I think it's far too early to say that. AAC is perfectly capable of handling multi-channel streams and the box could encode to AC3 on the fly without much trouble. Even the original XBOX did that, and many consumer sound cards do it as well.

I think you actually mean H.264 (MPEG-4, Part 10), but H.264 also supports multiple channels of audio and the right hardware could transcode the output to AC-3 on the fly... though that depends.

The Dolby DP-569 Multichannel Encoder is used for broadcast transcoding of AC-3 on the fly but it costs about $3000. I don't know of any software transcoders short of that work without bouncing to disk first... except perhaps Dolby Media Producer (an $11,000 bundle). But who knows... the point is, in principle, the hardware and software being used CAN support AC-3.

As for the folks who keep pissing and moaning about no DivX. DivX is inferior to H.264 in every conceivable way. It's not a near-lossless codec with extremely high compression. At 20mbps 1280x720, 30fps, it's pretty much maxed out... and doesn't actually support true 720p/60. H.264 does support 720p/60 at a 20mbps bitstream in its baseline, extended and main profiles. But that's just getting started. H.264's highest level supports 4:4:4 lossless HD compression at 2k theatrical exhibition resolution (4096x2048 @ 30fps) at 240mbps bitstream.

The overwhelming reason people are begging for DivX is because that's widely supported by the P2P (i.e. piracy) community. I refuse to support piracy not on any legal or ethical grounds, but rather on the grounds that support of piracy gives RIAA/MPAA armament to lobby congress to pass stupid legislation like the DMCA (passed into law as 17 USC 12) and the PERFORM Act.... both of which are aimed squarely at protecting the distro monopolies of RIAA/MPAA and effectively killing internet distribution. I normally am not a first mover on most technologies, but AppleTV is one I will support because I think it's critical to show independent film makers and recording artists that the internet is their ticket to commercially-viable distribution without ascribing to indentured servitude of the record industry and motion picture industry's collective fiefdom.

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 10:36 AM
Also, are we sure that we can rip a DVD and then access it via ATV ?


99% sure. Handbrake ripped as H264 should do the trick. I am just hoping for 720p and suround sound abilities added to the likes of Handbrake in the near future.

caccamolle
Feb 10, 2007, 10:38 AM
and yes, obviously as many have pointed out, there's nothing whatsoever relevant about this "rumor" on shipping dates. Fortunately most of discussion indeed has been about the product rather than shipping dates :)


Ships when ? who cares .... nothing has changed since the very announcement. And even if it did, big deal.

sokrates
Feb 10, 2007, 10:40 AM
I think you'll eventually see surround sound on the unit. The iTunes store will eventually go HD (the 720p ability of the unit is just begging for it) and I can't see them doing 720p in stereo. That's just weird to me.

As far as the Divx/Xvid thing . . . I don't know, I convert every video I have on my mac to mp4. It just makes more sense. It works right in quicktime, h.264 provides amazing quality, and it smoothly integrates itself into my ipod and itunes. As far as I'm concerned, divx (and more so xvid) are big only because of the piracy community. They're a bit buggy, and they certainly don't work "out of the box." If you're legit-ly ripping stuff from your own dvds, there's a ton of mac tools that use mp4. I'm not sure why you'd bothering using anything else.

just to clarify: there is not thing such as legitly ripping stuff.... ripping a dvd is illegal, no matter if you own the original copy or not, circumventing the copy protection is illegal all by itself, same thing goes for cds if they are copy protected. And besides that, divx works perfectly on windows, it's only a bit buggy on mac os. And also I don't feel like having to convert every file into another format, it's just work, apple tv should be able to stream any media mac os x can playback, and leaving divx out of the game is one more reason for me not to buy it (besides the facts that it has no surround sound capabilities and no movie downloads outside the us) which is really a shame because I would like being able to stream everything into my living room, well who knows maybe in a later revision.

bdj21ya
Feb 10, 2007, 10:41 AM
I can't wait to have access to TV shows in Canada so I can drop my digital cable (35$CAD/month and I only follow about 4-5 shows at most, that is if the channels don't move them around).

Just get a credit card with a U.S. billing address! Surely you have a friend or relative's address you could use to get the card, then set up online only statemente.

I'd be closer to buying into the dump cable for iTunes idea if iTunes had 1. My Name is Earl, 2. Sports events, and 3. not such a long delay to get the content after it airs.

caccamolle
Feb 10, 2007, 10:44 AM
Digitalclips, thanks for the info. I had read in this thread for the first time about this app, handbrake. I will check it out.

Now, even if you have the ability to encode at 720p, it won't be very useful with ATV though, at least for now. Are you thinking of ripping, whenever the app will be capable of, HD material ? what sources ? i am afraid (but do not know it) that it may be a very cumbersome, time consuming operation.

shawnce
Feb 10, 2007, 10:45 AM
I'm not quite sure why anyone is surprised at this...how often has Apple hardware actually made it into the hands of people on time. Fairly often for me... and in fact most recently I got my new Airport basestation (802.11n) two weeks earlier then the original quoted shipping date.

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 10:46 AM
Good points, shame iTV only supports Apple media / content.

Had Apple supported other media types then iTV would have been far far more useful.

I am hoping with Leopard, ATV will (as rumored) support any output from Mac. I would love to be able to run my Final Cut HD editing out to my 50" Sony when editing 1080i footage.

If it does your point will be covered pretty well since then any media your Mac can play should got through ATV I would assume. It will be only the iTunes via ATV that will be pretty well locked to Apple's media / content if this rumor is true. If we can output a Keynote presentation why not a Real Media video?

All speculation I know but I suspect Steve is going to allow this beast to do far more than iTunes, albeit that will be great too I am sure with new offerings for HD coming soon.

Avatar74
Feb 10, 2007, 10:53 AM
Digitalclips, thanks for the info. I had read in this thread for the first time about this app, handbrake. I will check it out.

Now, even if you have the ability to encode at 720p, it won't be very useful with ATV though, at least for now. Are you thinking of ripping, whenever the app will be capable of, HD material ? what sources ? i am afraid (but do not know it) that it may be a very cumbersome, time consuming operation.

Wont be useful? Why not? The Progressive Main Profile is 720p/24. That IS High Definition.

Or are you referring to the limitation of available HD source material (e.g. HD-DVD, Blu-Ray, ATSC cable/dish programming, etc.)? I agree the material is limited... but then again, as I stated in a previous post, I'm more interested in supporting the purchasing model even with initially-limited selections because I want to help drive home the point that internet distribution is profitable for the distributors, the artists, and better for consumers in the end.

I am hoping with Leopard, ATV will (as rumored) support any output from Mac. I would love to be able to run my Final Cut HD editing out to my 50" Sony when editing 1080i footage.

If it does your point will be covered pretty well since then any media your Mac can play should got through ATV I would assume. It will be only the iTunes via ATV that will be pretty well locked to Apple's media / content if this rumor is true. If we can output a Keynote presentation why not a Real Media video?

All speculation I know but I suspect Steve is going to allow this beast to do far more than iTunes, albeit that will be great too I am sure with new offerings for HD coming soon.

What? H.264 is not "Apple media/content"... it's MPEG-4 which is not Apple Proprietary.

As for being "locked" into iTunes... Why don't users complain nearly as much about being "locked" into Windows when operating anything on Windows? or "locked" into Ford's fuel management system when driving any Ford car? or "locked" into 35mm when going to the movies?

iTunes supports Mp3, AAC, H.264, AIFF (16 and 24-bit integer, and 32 and 64-bit floating)... So the choices are limited, but I submit to you that a handful of the best choices are better than a plethora of crappy choices. And supporting quality-controlled media reliably is far better than supporting a lot of P2P downloads of unpredictable quality unreliably.

Who complains to a luxury car dealer because their Porsche seatcovers don't fit Chevys?

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 10:59 AM
Digitalclips, thanks for the info. I had read in this thread for the first time about this app, handbrake. I will check it out.

Now, even if you have the ability to encode at 720p, it won't be very useful with ATV though, at least for now. Are you thinking of ripping, whenever the app will be capable of, HD material ? what sources ? i am afraid (but do not know it) that it may be a very cumbersome, time consuming operation.

Get it at Vesion Tracker. Great app. In H.264 and double pass and 1200 bit rate it is a long process (I leave when going to bed) but the quality is way better than the default and given we are hoping to show on large screen obviously the higher the quality the better.

Re 720p: Accoring to Apple specs I read it as having that ability, perhaps I am wrong? :
[Video formats supported: H.264 and protected H.264 (from iTunes Store): 640 by 480, 30 fps, LC version of Baseline Profile; 320 by 240, 30 fps, Baseline profile up to Level 1.3; 1280 by 720, 24 fps, Progressive Main Profile. MPEG-4: 640 by 480, 30 fps, Simple Profile]

What? H.264 is not "Apple media/content"... it's MPEG-4 which is not Apple Proprietary.

As for being "locked" into iTunes... Why don't users complain nearly as much about being "locked" into Windows when operating anything on Windows? or "locked" into Ford's fuel management system when driving any Ford car? or "locked" into 35mm when going to the movies?

iTunes supports Mp3, AAC, H.264, AIFF (16 and 24-bit integer, and 32 and 64-bit floating)... So the choices are limited, but I submit to you that a handful of the best choices are better than a plethora of crappy choices.

Who complains to a luxury car dealer because their Porsche seatcovers don't fit Chevy's?

Good point

(sorry if you read previous comment, I replied to the wrong comment ... doh!)

caccamolle
Feb 10, 2007, 11:08 AM
Wont be useful? Why not? The Progressive Main Profile is 720p/24. That IS High Definition.

Or are you referring to the limitation of available HD source material (e.g. HD-DVD, Blu-Ray, ATSC cable/dish programming, etc.)? I agree the material is limited... but then again, as I stated in a previous post, I'm more interested in supporting the purchasing model even with initially-limited selections because I want to help drive home the point that internet distribution is profitable for the distributors, the artists, and better for consumers in the end.

I was thinking that if ATV cannot output higher than 480p than why ... hmmm, am I missing something ? What I had understood is that you may send 720p to the ATV but the latter will downcovert to 480p (at least for now, I am a believer here and do expect this limation to go away soon).

And I agree 1000% with the rest of your comment. What I referred to wrt to HD material is that it sounds like a nightmare to me to ripp that stuff (but I do not know really). All I know is that ripping DVD now is a pita, but I have not tried many apps (particularly this hadnbrake mentioned here several times).

em500
Feb 10, 2007, 11:08 AM
For those who already think the ATV is kinda useless, you should see what the situation is like outside the US, where no iTunes Store has movies and TV show yet. So that's $300 to play movie ... trailers on your TV. That thing is really going to bomb outside the US if they don't get their content deals fast!

caccamolle
Feb 10, 2007, 11:10 AM
Get it at Vesion Tracker. Great app. In H.264 and double pass and 1200 bit rate it is a long process (I leave when going to bed) but the quality is way better than the default and given we are hoping to show on large screen obviously the higher the quality the better.

Re 720p: Accoring to Apple specs I read it as having that ability, perhaps I am wrong? :
[Video formats supported: H.264 and protected H.264 (from iTunes Store): 640 by 480, 30 fps, LC version of Baseline Profile; 320 by 240, 30 fps, Baseline profile up to Level 1.3; 1280 by 720, 24 fps, Progressive Main Profile. MPEG-4: 640 by 480, 30 fps, Simple Profile]

that's interesting news. We'll execute !!

mashinhead
Feb 10, 2007, 11:19 AM
I ordered :apple: TV first day... then cancelled it when I realised that I get more functionality from my networked TiVo and TiVo DeCode Manager.

I'll wait to see updates and upgrades, but for now, I think I'm too geeked out for it to be useful.

i don't know why everyone bags on :apple: tv so much. I'm not really defending the functionality, but i think the logic behind it is, that they don't want you to have cable. They want your content to come from itunes, and that's why it works the way it works. I'm not saying that's right or wrong, but i think that's the idea behind it.

Stella
Feb 10, 2007, 12:09 PM
I think *you* know *exactly* what we mean. You either have to rip DVD into a supported format, or download content from iTunes - i.e., no DivX, RealMedia, Windows Media ( non drm ) etc. If your not in the states you can't download movie / tv content - so that renders the iTV almost useless.

em500 - above - has it spot on.


Why people don't complain about lockin regarding other vendors? Because other vendors aren't nearly as restrictive as Apple.

Since when are you 'locked into Windows'? There are far far more choices on a windows platform than Apple - software, hardware etc. You don't have to use word - use can use Star/Open Office etc.


What? H.264 is not "Apple media/content"... it's MPEG-4 which is not Apple Proprietary.

As for being "locked" into iTunes... Why don't users complain nearly as much about being "locked" into Windows when operating anything on Windows? or "locked" into Ford's fuel management system when driving any Ford car? or "locked" into 35mm when going to the movies?

iTunes supports Mp3, AAC, H.264, AIFF (16 and 24-bit integer, and 32 and 64-bit floating)... So the choices are limited, but I submit to you that a handful of the best choices are better than a plethora of crappy choices. And supporting quality-controlled media reliably is far better than supporting a lot of P2P downloads of unpredictable quality unreliably.

Who complains to a luxury car dealer because their Porsche seatcovers don't fit Chevys?

Some_Big_Spoon
Feb 10, 2007, 12:09 PM
Not ragging on it at all, I'm just saying that it's for newbs and "right out of the box" peeps, which I think most people are. My point was that I'm rockin' the TiVo / iTS / DVD / Network and it's got more going on than :apple: TV, but that probably won't be the case for long.

If they threw a TiVo in there, I wouldn't even be writing this post cause I'd be doing my happy dance. The dancin' will just have to wit a revision or two.


i don't know why everyone bags on :apple: tv so much. I'm not really defending the functionality, but i think the logic behind it is, that they don't want you to have cable. They want your content to come from itunes, and that's why it works the way it works. I'm not saying that's right or wrong, but i think that's the idea behind it.

s10
Feb 10, 2007, 12:09 PM
thinkSecret needs webhits. Their predictions and info are almost always off.

Peace
Feb 10, 2007, 12:14 PM
Not only is this rumor of a delay untrue, the opposite is the case. Mine, always slated to mail on 28 Feb, shipped yesterday and I'll have it NLT 12 Feb at 3:00PM

I think it's worth it for music alone. Right now I use an Airport Express to send music to my HT and control via a laptop. I like the idea of looking through my cover art on TV and selecting music that way. Movies and TV will be a plus.

Are you talking about the Airport Extreme or the :apple: TV ?

outlyer
Feb 10, 2007, 12:15 PM
I think you actually mean H.264 (MPEG-4, Part 10), but H.264 also supports multiple channels of audio and the right hardware could transcode the output to AC-3 on the fly... though that depends.


Not that I'm trying to be argumentative, but I did mean AAC, I was strictly referring to the sound part of the stream. Currently my iPod videos use 2-channel AAC audio muxed with h.264 video. If Apple wanted to support surround, they could shift 2-channel AAC to 5-channel AAC. h.264 is strictly a video codec.


The Dolby DP-569 Multichannel Encoder is used for broadcast transcoding of AC-3 on the fly but it costs about $3000. I don't know of any software transcoders short of that work without bouncing to disk first... except perhaps Dolby Media Producer (an $11,000 bundle). But who knows... the point is, in principle, the hardware and software being used CAN support AC-3.


The free AC3 Filter (http://ac3filter.sourceforge.net/) can, for example, transcode Windows Media Audio 5.1 into Dolby Digital 5.1 on the fly, for free. Dolby itself supports something called Dolby Digital Live (http://www.dolby.com/consumer/technology/dolby_live.html) which, according to them, is a: "real-time encoding technology." According to their materials, "Dolby Digital Live converts any audio signal into a Dolby Digital bitstream for transport and playback through a home theater system." It's consumer-level, and cheap enough to be included with some motherboards.

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 12:31 PM
I think *you* know *exactly* what we mean. You either have to rip DVD into a supported format, or download content from iTunes - i.e., no DivX, RealMedia, Windows Media ( non drm ) etc. If your not in the states you can't download movie / tv content - so that renders the iTV almost useless.

em500 - above - has it spot on.


Why people don't complain about lockin regarding other vendors? Because other vendors aren't nearly as restrictive as Apple.

Since when are you 'locked into Windows'? There are far far more choices on a windows platform than Apple - software, hardware etc. You don't have to use word - use can use Star/Open Office etc.


Hey don't buy one then OK. :)

Wouldn't it be nice to have a friendly discussion about what we can do with these new Apple toys amongst those of us that do want them and not have to hear the ranting of Trolls telling us how much better their Windows Media experience is?

The Talking Mac
Feb 10, 2007, 12:35 PM
i dont get why they would have to push back a release date for that?

It is kind of obvious. Apple knows that every analyst would be paying attention to Macworld and that if they didn't show the Apple TV it would fade out in the buzz over the iPhone. They were not finished with it but the knew they would need to show it at Macworld. That is why they showed it before the iPhone. Because they knew it wouldn't cmpare to the iPhone in terms of publicity. GO APPLE:apple: :apple:

Avatar74
Feb 10, 2007, 12:43 PM
Not that I'm trying to be argumentative, but I did mean AAC, I was strictly referring to the sound part of the stream. Currently my iPod videos use 2-channel AAC audio muxed with h.264 video. If Apple wanted to support surround, they could shift 2-channel AAC to 5-channel AAC. h.264 is strictly a video codec.

You're absolutely right... that's correct. My error. AAC is, in fact, arguably superior to its predecessor, AC-3, at every bitrate.

The free AC3 Filter (http://ac3filter.sourceforge.net/) can, for example, transcode Windows Media Audio 5.1 into Dolby Digital 5.1 on the fly, for free. Dolby itself supports something called Dolby Digital Live (http://www.dolby.com/consumer/technology/dolby_live.html) which, according to them, is a: "real-time encoding technology." According to their materials, "Dolby Digital Live converts any audio signal into a Dolby Digital bitstream for transport and playback through a home theater system." It's consumer-level, and cheap enough to be included with some motherboards.

Good points... I'm mostly familiar with the professional encoding hardware/software which is why I said "who knows"... I'm not as familiar with what they market to consumers for multimedia solutions, but that's only because I don't have to be. As long as I follow their encoding guidelines, I can trust that Dolby's licensed hardware/software decoders will play back the content I create. I don't know if AC3 Filter is a licensed decoder, but if it isn't I'd expect to see Apple use Dolby Digital Live as unlicensed encoders would compromise their relationship with Dolby (one of the key partners in the development of iTunes AAC) and, more importantly, would be unable to guarantee the fidelity standards for AC-3 as defined by Dolby Laboratories.

I'm on board with :apple:TV no matter what... not because I believe it's fundamentally perfect. I know at first there will be issues and it'll get better... but despite whatever initial shortcomings it may have, I believe in the concept of pushing internet distribution of a-la carte programming as a dynamic alternative to bundled channels and fixed removable media (e.g. DVD, HD-DVD). Someone's got to get behind it to evangelize it to the second movers so it can survive and various competitive alternatives can emerge within the fold to increase supply and decrease cost.

My main curiosity right now is what type of multichannel support will emerge and whether or not the metadata parameters of AC-3 (e.g. dialnorm, DRC profiles, etc.) will be preserved in the bitstream for use by the receiving decoder connected to the optical out on the :apple:TV. If not, that would be unfortunate, as these parameters, combined with the higher bitrate of Dolby Digital in the home (448kbps) versus its theatrical implementation (320kbs), facilitates a surround experience superior in the home to that in the theater.

BigHat
Feb 10, 2007, 12:50 PM
Are you talking about the Airport Extreme or the :apple: TV ?

Apple TV. The Airport Extreme I ordered the same day arrived last week.

Qty.
APPLE TV-USA
Ships by: Feb 28
Delivers by: Mar 1
1

Shipped on: Feb 9, 2007 via FEDERAL EXPRESS
Tracking #: 752253xxxxxx (Pre-sign for this shipment)

pdpfilms
Feb 10, 2007, 12:51 PM
My ship date hasn't changed, and as far as I can tell (and I've been looking), no one else's has. Where'd they get this info?

mduser63
Feb 10, 2007, 12:51 PM
Not only is this rumor of a delay untrue, the opposite is the case. Mine, always slated to mail on 28 Feb, shipped yesterday and I'll have it NLT 12 Feb at 3:00PM

I think it's worth it for music alone. Right now I use an Airport Express to send music to my HT and control via a laptop. I like the idea of looking through my cover art on TV and selecting music that way. Movies and TV will be a plus.

That's good news if true. When did you order? Like I said, I ordered within about 5 minutes of the store coming back up after the keynote. Mine still says shipping on Feb. 28.

Peace
Feb 10, 2007, 01:10 PM
Don't remember when I ordered. Late on the day of the Keynote I think.

It's true. Why would I post otherwise? From the Apple website:

Qty.
APPLE TV-USA
Ships by: Feb 28
Delivers by: Mar 1
1

Shipped on: Feb 9, 2007 via FEDERAL EXPRESS
Tracking #: 752253xxxxxx (Pre-sign for this shipment)

Well if you do indeed get it by say Feb 13th.You will be one of the first to get it and also one of the the first to experience the updated Front Row if what Jobs showed at Macworld is any indication.

Macinposh
Feb 10, 2007, 01:21 PM
just to clarify: there is not thing such as legitly ripping stuff.... ripping a dvd is illegal, no matter if you own the original copy or not, circumventing the copy protection is illegal all by itself, same thing goes for cds if they are copy protected.


Actually not neccessary.

Depends where you live,and what the local laws are.

Around here (eastern scandihoovia) we are entitled to make copies for personal use,loan from libraries and make copies for personal use and even make copies and give/loan them to family members and friends.

So getting while getting all rewed up by the copyright issues, keep in mind that there are free,democratic countries in the world...


Theese copyright laws are allso the reason why theese countries have issues against DRM,apples foremost.

Hopefully the goverments force the Apple/media industry to take a bow on the matter,and we could get a bit more reasonable products for the consumers.

BigHat
Feb 10, 2007, 01:32 PM
Well if you do indeed get it by say Feb 13th.You will be one of the first to get it and also one of the the first to experience the updated Front Row if what Jobs showed at Macworld is any indication.

My mistake. I clicked on the shipping notice below the Apple TV but that notice is linked to the HDMI cable order. So I do not have shipping status on the Apple TV.

I'm sorry.

Padriac
Feb 10, 2007, 01:53 PM
Nice points, all.

Apple/iTunes Lock-in
For the record, I live in the US and have purchased ZERO content from the iTunes store, yet I still think the Apple TV will be pretty useful. The only necessity is that it IS an iTunes product. If you despise iTunes for whatever reason, this product is a non-starter for you. I think Apple figures they are okay here because of a little device called the iPod... plenty of people are happily using iTunes for their content already. Even video management is pretty solid now. I remember with iTunes 6.0 I swore it would be a cold day in hell when if I ever used iTunes for video management. Buy, in anticipation of the Apple TV I gave it a shot and I started using iTunes for video management and you know what? it works just fine. Leaps and bounds better than it was in the pre 7.0 era. And if I don't want to deal with iTunes I just drag the file to the desktop and I can use Quicktime proper.

Resolution
While maybe 720p is not quite as awesome as 1080p, getting ANY content in HD (anything above 480p) is near impossible at this point in time. Some random trailers and content recorded with HD Tivo, really. Fact is, the vast majority of content that even the most bleeding edge of us watch is 480p. Watching things in 720p would still be vast improvement for most things. People need to keep in mind that thing is limited by tech: as a *streaming* device, 1080p is just not feasible, even with draft N. Show me a device that can stream 1080p realtime without wires. By the time a new wireless spec comes around, I have no doubt the Apple TV goes 1080p. And, BTW, the Apple TV runs in 1080i for it's interface should you desire, it just can't handle content beyond 720p.

Music and TV Navigation
For those complaining that you "need" to use the TV for music with the Apple TV: how the hell else are you going to navigate thousands of songs? On a tiny LCD readout on you receiver? The TV navigation is a huge PLUS here! You can just turn off your TV once you've started playing your music if it bugs you (assuming your not using your TV's speakers...). There may be some negatives with video, but for music the Apple TV seems to be virtually flawless. Yes, other products do similar things but the interface is the key, as with all things Apple.

Surround Sound for DVD Rips
I will admit, the biggest puzzle/thorn has been the lack of surround for DVD rips. I am confident a solution will be found for this. That said, If I'm being really anal about video/sound quality I'm watching Blu-ray/HD-DVD anyway, not standard DVD, so no surround for standard DVD is not a deal breaker for me (but I understand it's probably a bigger issue for others). But aside from this: yes, Handbrake is awesome and dead simple and makes ripping DVD's a breeze and they work perfectly in iTunes.

Podcasting in the Living Room
One thing nobody has mentioned that I'm also very excited about is that this device will finally bring podcasting to the living room. I can integrate things like Rocketboom and TikiBar or whatever into my normal television programming rather than having the two segregated worlds of "things I watch on TV" and "things I watch huddled over my computer".

DivX/XviD and codec support.
Let's be real: these are the codecs of pirates. Yes, more legitimate uses have sprung up but by and large the mainstream world is ignoring these codecs. Apple supporting them would be akin to saying "we don't support pirated content" while winking and nodding. Yes, it would be a pain to have to re-encode the content you have, but think about how you got this content to begin with and you can see why Apple can get away with ignoring it. Technically, h264 is roughly as good (some say better, some say worse, I don't want to debate this particular point). Given that, and the fact you can't expect WMV support (Microsoft's fault more than Apples), what important codecs is the Apple TV really missing? Real? Real is a solution to a problem that doesn't exist anymore, so why even bother with it? I never even come across it anymore...

If I have component X and Y and Z, I can already do most of what the Apple TV can
Elegance and simplicity ARE features. I am very well capable of shoehorning some components together to mimic most of the Apple TV's features. But if the Apple TV exists, why bother? The interface and experience are more solid than anything else out there (save for Windows Media Center, but that's using a somewhat different philosophy and obviously doesn't work well if you want to stay with OS X).

So, if I got it right, the Apple TV is not useful to you if a) you hate iTunes; b) you have tons of Xvid/DivX files; c) you refuse to watch a DVD rip without surround sound d) your home-theater/lving-room set-up isn't really all that better than your Mac's screen and speakers. Otherwise, the Apple TV can offer all your computer media in your living room, with an interface superior to any alternative solutions, which is at least potentially useful to a lot of people. Is that fair?

cgfour
Feb 10, 2007, 02:01 PM
Not sure if this has been mentioned but do you think the Apple brand will be tainted by the Apple TV in their retail stores. They are going to have to bring TVs from other manufacturers in their stores. Unless they can conceal the casing, they will be be adding a Best Buy feel to the stores. I hope they release a TV line with the Apple TV interface and features built in. Hope they figure out something to not make the retail stores so riddled with brand confusion. Thoughts?

Chris

mduser63
Feb 10, 2007, 02:20 PM
Not sure if this has been mentioned but do you think the Apple brand will be tainted by the Apple TV in their retail stores. They are going to have to bring TVs from other manufacturers in their stores. Unless they can conceal the casing, they will be be adding a Best Buy feel to the stores. I hope they release a TV line with the Apple TV interface and features built in. Hope they figure out something to not make the retail stores so riddled with brand confusion. Thoughts?

Chris

Are you serious? They already have all kinds of peripherals by other companies including digital cameras, printers, camcorders, headphones, etc for sale in Apple Stores. I don't think people are going to be confused because they see an Apple TV hooked up to a Sony (or Samsung or Panasonic or whatever) TV.

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 02:20 PM
Nice points, all.


So, if I got it right, the Apple TV is not useful to you if a) you hate iTunes; b) you have tons of Xvid/DivX files; c) you refuse to watch a DVD rip without surround sound d) your home-theater/lving-room set-up isn't really all that better than your Mac's screen and speakers. Otherwise, the Apple TV can offer all your computer media in your living room, with an interface superior to any alternative solutions, which is at least potentially useful to a lot of people. Is that fair?

Right on :)

I just did an experiment out of pure interest. Fast DVD can RIP a DVD to a TS folder, MPEG Streamclip 1.8 can then join the VOB files (and fix time code) and out put 720p H.264 which loads and plays in iTunes and shows up on other iTunes on my network. Not fast nor elegant perhaps but it seems to point to the potential ahead.

cgfour
Feb 10, 2007, 02:39 PM
Are you serious? They already have all kinds of peripherals by other companies including digital cameras, printers, camcorders, headphones, etc for sale in Apple Stores. I don't think people are going to be confused because they see an Apple TV hooked up to a Sony (or Samsung or Panasonic or whatever) TV.

The shelf space of those devices are minial compared to putting out a few 42 inch televisions in the already small retail stores. I hardly recognize the other brands becuase they are usually tucked away in the back under the counters. These televisions depending on how much they choose to display, will take up a lot of realistate in the stores. Unless they have a small area for Apple TV, computer space would have to be sacrificed in order for it to be display. I'm just curious on how they are going to do it and how much it will take away from the initial view of the Apple devices.

vkxonline
Feb 10, 2007, 02:48 PM
How cool would that be if they lit a section of the store like the Apple TV promos?

mduser63
Feb 10, 2007, 03:13 PM
The shelf space of those devices are minial compared to putting out a few 42 inch televisions in the already small retail stores. I hardly recognize the other brands becuase they are usually tucked away in the back under the counters. These televisions depending on how much they choose to display, will take up a lot of realistate in the stores. Unless they have a small area for Apple TV, computer space would have to be sacrificed in order for it to be display. I'm just curious on how they are going to do it and how much it will take away from the initial view of the Apple devices.

My hunch is that they'll only dedicate a small space to the AppleTV, perhaps with only 2 or 3 actually out on display. A 42" TV is really not much bigger than the 30" displays, and they have several 30" displays at the Apple Store here.

xenotaku
Feb 10, 2007, 03:24 PM
Maybe they realized how stupid a product it is. Start supplying HD quality vids on iTunes, add DVR support, and then its a worthy product.

Evangelion
Feb 10, 2007, 03:32 PM
Video
- I can rip all my DVDs to disc and not have to deal with physical DVDs or DVD players but instead can browse and watch my entire movie collection without having to leave my chair (Thank you, Handbrake).

first of all, thats illegal. and while it might work for movies, what about tv-shows? when i put in one of my futurama-dvd's in my dvd-player, i get a nice menu where i can select the episode i want to watch. how would handbrake handle that? what about special features and subtitles? how long does the encoding take?

you say that mac mini would be too inconvenient. i say that handbraking my dvd-collection is too inconvenient. and with mac mini you would get a lot more functionality.

steve_hill4
Feb 10, 2007, 03:43 PM
What? H.264 is not "Apple media/content"... it's MPEG-4 which is not Apple Proprietary.

As for being "locked" into iTunes... Why don't users complain nearly as much about being "locked" into Windows when operating anything on Windows? or "locked" into Ford's fuel management system when driving any Ford car? or "locked" into 35mm when going to the movies?


I was with you all the way up to the end there. What about digital movie projection and recording?

MacFan25863
Feb 10, 2007, 03:50 PM
Not sure if this has been mentioned but do you think the Apple brand will be tainted by the Apple TV in their retail stores. They are going to have to bring TVs from other manufacturers in their stores. Unless they can conceal the casing, they will be be adding a Best Buy feel to the stores. I hope they release a TV line with the Apple TV interface and features built in. Hope they figure out something to not make the retail stores so riddled with brand confusion. Thoughts?

Chris

They could do what they do with the Genius Bar plasmas now...conceal them behind a plastic case.

Here (http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://images.appleinsider.com/images/regent-street-shot2.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.appleinsider.com/article.php%3Fid%3D750&h=532&w=800&sz=71&hl=en&start=1&tbnid=h1t36tUr4iTEvM:&tbnh=95&tbnw=143&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dgenius%2Bbar%26svnum%3D10%26hl%3Den%26client%3Dsafari%26rls%3Den%26sa%3DN) is an example of what I am talking about.

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 03:53 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Padriac
Video
- I can rip all my DVDs to disc and not have to deal with physical DVDs or DVD players but instead can browse and watch my entire movie collection without having to leave my chair (Thank you, Handbrake).


first of all, thats illegal. and while it might work for movies, what about tv-shows? when i put in one of my futurama-dvd's in my dvd-player, i get a nice menu where i can select the episode i want to watch. how would handbrake handle that? what about special features and subtitles? how long does the encoding take?

you say that mac mini would be too inconvenient. i say that handbraking my dvd-collection is too inconvenient. and with mac mini you would get a lot more functionality..

OK I know this is going to start a storm.

In my humble opinion, if you buy a DVD you should have the right to make a copy to watch on your own laptop or whatever. Who never taped an LP (well those around when there were LPs lol) to save it getting scratched and so they could listen in their car, or ripped their own CDs into iTunes? Why is it a DVD movie you own is legally different from a CD or LP?

While owning a DVD means I can watch it on TV anyway, the idea of ripping at 720p and having on a hard drive for access from ATV is interesting. That can be done now from the VOBs to H.264 with Fast DVD and MPEG Streamclip - 1.8.

Yes it is illegal but why? If it is for your own use only and you purchased the DVD. I just cannot see the difference between CDs and DVDs legally.

What happened to 'Fair Use'?

tronic72
Feb 10, 2007, 04:03 PM
There always seems to be a few people who claim that the Apple TV has absolutely no value. I think the Apple TV is a great device that will offer me quite a bit. Allow me to demonstrate:

Music
- I can eradicate all physical CDs and CD players and instead deal with digital files (all my music is ripped as high bit-rate AAC or Apple Lossless). Loading and unloading a CD is simply barbaric in this day and age and having to plug in your iPod has several shortcomings in terms of storage and interface.
- I have access to *all* my music from my nice home theater set-up via a very simple and clean interface. Pure digital files via pure digital connection (HDMI) = high sound quality.
- All my music is already in iTunes and this works seamlessly with that library.

Video
- I can rip all my DVDs to disc and not have to deal with physical DVDs or DVD players but instead can browse and watch my entire movie collection without having to leave my chair (Thank you, Handbrake).
- Should I be so inclined, I can purchase and view iTunes TV shows and movies form my living room (probably won't do this much, but the ability makes iTunes purchases much more tempting).

vs. "mac mini"
- I don't have to set-up, configure, or maintain a separate, dedicated computer.
- I can keep all my media on my main computer as always (nice and simple). No dealing with synchronizing content, dedicated media networked drives, and other complications.
- Save $300 vs. the Mac Mini alternative (I don't really need a full computer in the living room... the web browsing provided by the Wii/PS3 already fills my limited needs there).

And the hard drive in the Apple TV is a fancy cache useful if you have a slow wireless connection. draft-N and even G should be fine for streaming pretty much all but high bit-rate 720p content without the need for any local (to the Apple TV) storage. The Apple TV essentially has unlimited storage (as it just grabs content from your computer and you can add as much storage as you want there).

My entire CD and DVD collection at my fingertips in my living room via a nice Apple interface? $300 seems like a fair price for that. Is there something I'm missing here?


I've never been a member of this site but apon reading your post I had to join. You are dreaming!

First and foremost the Apple iTune does nothing new.

I've got all my Music on my computer already, why would I want to play it through my TV?????????

In regards to DVDs. I wasn't aware you could rip your movies and use it with iTV but lets assume you are right.

If you rip a single DVD that's anywhere from 4.5 - 9 GIG. (takes approx 30 - 60 mins). Even if you encode it again, it's still going to take up 2-6 Gig. Assuming you don't want to compromise on quality. And remember this device is a HD device so compressing the file at would mean loss of quality which defeats the whole purpose of HD!

But lets assume you are happy to encode at the best quality. Then you've got an average DVD size of around 5 GIG. No, remember you won't be able to rip all your DVDs due to copy contraints. Then there's all the "addtional content" those extra DVDs you wont be able to access.

We'll assume you have a 750 GB HD which is about the biggest on the market. That's 150 DVDs but if you want "the additional content discs then it's half that. If you have any multi layer disks then it's half that again.

That's just under 40 Multi layer DVDs and their extras! Sure you can compress them more but then you may as well watch .AVI files or worse still. .WMV files.

By the way this doesn't allow for your OS, Music, Apps or any other data. Sure you "may" have a Mac Pro with 4 x 750 Drives but I doubt it.

Then there's the time taken to rip all your content. Even if you only want to put those 40 DVDs on your looking at 40 hours of time spent simply ripping the DVDs.

Make no mistake. This product was developed for one simple reason. To encourage people to download movies from the iTunes site.

Mark my words, in it's current state Apple TV will be a massive flop. That said, it may, like the ill-fated original Xbox be saved if hackers take it on board and find ways to squeeze a lot more data and other content such and Games on it.

PS I've typed this is hast, so apologies for Gramma & Spelling mistakes

steve_hill4
Feb 10, 2007, 04:09 PM
OK I know this is going to start a storm.

In my humble opinion, if you buy a DVD you should have the right to make a copy to watch on your own laptop or whatever. Who never taped an LP (well those around when there were LPs lol) to save it getting scratched and so they could listen in their car, or ripped their own CDs into iTunes? Why is it a DVD movie you own is legally different from a CD or LP?

While owning a DVD means I can watch it on TV anyway, the idea of ripping at 720p and having on a hard drive for access from ATV is interesting. That can be done now from the VOBs to H.264 with Fast DVD and MPEG Streamclip - 1.8.

Yes it is illegal but why? If it is for your own use only and you purchased the DVD. I just cannot see the difference between CDs and DVDs legally.

What happened to 'Fair Use'?

Legally, the difference is that DVDs have copy protection built into them. They actually encrypt the data in order to prevent copying of it. It doesn't work.

I'm completely with you, and so it appears is the UK government who are thinking of changing laws making it legal to make backup copies of CDs and DVDs for personal use onto blank media, computers and other portable devices. It's absurd to expect people to pay for content 3 or 4 times, especially in the case of music where you may have owned the LP, tape, CD, minidisc and now have to pay for the digital file. Even then, on more than 5 machines and you have to have another account for another 5 computers.

That's why Steve Jobs manifesto the other day was brilliant. He was basically advocating non-DRMd music downloads. Extend this to video too and it's really a winner. You'll always have people beating the DRM, cracking the encryption of discs, lending to friends and family, so why punish those who pay for it? Brand your customers as potential criminals wanting to share their purchases with the world and you may turn them into people not wanting to pay in the first place.

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 04:13 PM
I've never been a member of this site but apon reading your post I had to join. You are dreaming!

First and foremost the Apple iTune does nothing new.

I've got all my Music on my computer already, why would I want to play it through my TV?????????

In regards to DVDs. I wasn't aware you could rip your movies and use it with iTV but lets assume you are right.

If you rip a single DVD that's anywhere from 4.5 - 9 GIG. (takes approx 30 - 60 mins). Even if you encode it again, it's still going to take up 2-6 Gig. Assuming you don't want to compromise on quality. And remember this device is a HD device so compressing the file at would mean loss of quality which defeats the whole purpose of HD!

But lets assume you are happy to encode at the best quality. Then you've got an average DVD size of around 5 GIG. No, remember you won't be able to rip all your DVDs due to copy contraints. Then there's all the "addtional content" those extra DVDs you wont be able to access.

We'll assume you have a 750 GB HD which is about the biggest on the market. That's 150 DVDs but if you want "the additional content discs then it's half that. If you have any multi layer disks then it's half that again.

That's just under 40 Multi layer DVDs and their extras! Sure you can compress them more but then you may as well watch .AVI files or worse still. .WMV files.

By the way this doesn't allow for your OS, Music, Apps or any other data. Sure you "may" have a Mac Pro with 4 x 750 Drives but I doubt it.

Then there's the time taken to rip all your content. Even if you only want to put those 40 DVDs on your looking at 40 hours of time spent simply ripping the DVDs.

Make no mistake. This product was developed for one simple reason. To encourage people to download movies from the iTunes site.

Mark my words, in it's current state Apple TV will be a massive flop. That said, it may, like the ill-fated original Xbox be saved if hackers take it on board and find ways to squeeze a lot more data and other content such and Games on it.

PS I've typed this is hast, so apologies for Gramma & Spelling mistakes

Not rising to the bait Mr. Troll. ;)

Bonte
Feb 10, 2007, 04:19 PM
To end it all, its totally legal to rip CD's and DVD's but you may not trade, sell or give away the copy's. In most country's its also perfectly legal to download content as long as you don't upload. Same go's for taping radio and tv broadcastings, this is how it is but 'they' are trying hard to spread fud around.

scu
Feb 10, 2007, 04:20 PM
I recently received my new airport extreme and after seamlessly setting it up I began to realize the impact that Apple TV will have once it's installed. First of all you can connect up to 3 USB devices to even include a USB hub - imagine the possibilites for storage. Secondly it's fast - as soon as I wake my iMac G5 from sleep the drive is mounted on the desktop. I played a video TS folder from one of my DVD's on the external hard drive and it played smoothly. Now consider using Apple TV from your living room's HDTV using your Apple Remote. The possibilities are limitless - movie storage without DVD's, music, GAMES (from iTunes Store) photo slide shows, whatever.

This is going to be big - now all that needs to be done is to incorporate some sort of TiVO funtionality. Perhaps some solution using an interface such as Elgato TV would work well. Keep in mind that they'll probaly be software upgrades as well as hardware add on's for this device.

This is only the beginning. I believe that Apple TV will be bigger than the iPod but maybe not as big as the iPhone.


I could not agree more. I have over 8000 pictures and 100 Gigs of music. To access it all from my TV would be awesome. Apple TV will have a healthy start but it will pick up serious steam in about 2 years when there are more broadband customers and more videos available to buy via iTunes.

People must keep in mind that the iPod took at least 2 years to really take off.

vkxonline
Feb 10, 2007, 04:24 PM
Jaywalking is also illegal, and, like these laws forbidding you from doing anything you want with the movie you've paid for, is just as ridiculous. As far as I'm concerned, once I've purchased a DVD, I can rip it to my iTunes library and throw the disc out. I'm not sure I care what the law says. It really strikes me as odd that these people complaining about xvid are also very upset that they COULD copy their dvds to their computer, but that would be illegal!

uNext
Feb 10, 2007, 04:28 PM
I wish to acquire it but simulteneously i dont?

Its great that it can stream files stored on a computer to your t.v.
Which is a copy of media centers extender capability with the diffrence of
drm protected files on the :apple: T.V, and anything with the right codecs on media center. But overall the simple design is calling me plus is apple so
class and elegance comes into the picture.

But i think i will wait to see what hackers do with this baby,
i dont care how good and awesome the itunes store is
I WILL NOT PAY 9.99 FOR LOW QUALITY VIDEO. I rather buy the physical item
and rip it to my computer-but the 40gb built in is a serious limitation which i am sure will somehow be cracked.

I personally feel like this is the first Apple INC floP. Of course some wil lagree some wont but i just cant wait till any file can be streamed
is time consuming to download-encode to ps3 format to play movies
i want something that will just work right after i download it.

tronic72
Feb 10, 2007, 04:35 PM
OK I know this is going to start a storm.

In my humble opinion, if you buy a DVD you should have the right to make a copy to watch on your own laptop or whatever. Who never taped an LP (well those around when there were LPs lol) to save it getting scratched and so they could listen in their car, or ripped their own CDs into iTunes? Why is it a DVD movie you own is legally different from a CD or LP?

While owning a DVD means I can watch it on TV anyway, the idea of ripping at 720p and having on a hard drive for access from ATV is interesting. That can be done now from the VOBs to H.264 with Fast DVD and MPEG Streamclip - 1.8.

Yes it is illegal but why? If it is for your own use only and you purchased the DVD. I just cannot see the difference between CDs and DVDs legally.

What happened to 'Fair Use'?

I'm sick of this arrgument. IYHO counts for nothing. It's the LAW. Right or wrong. (By the way I agree with you). But why do people continualy this that IMHO counts for anything.

If, IMHO I think it's OK to inject custard into my eye balls then I can do it. But as soon as the Law says I can't. I can't (unless you are happy to break the law).

The interesting thing here is that "The System" that we all love to hate has a way of working things out. People didn't buy many DVDs when they cost $30-$40 AU. But now those same DVDs are appearing for $7 AU and people are buy them 10 fold. The silly, greedy distributors and resellers are finally figuring out that it's better to sell 10 DVDs and make $2 profit per DVD, than it is to sell 1 DVD AND MAKE $10 profit.

The same theory has worked when oil prices went through the roof. When fuel became to pricey, people started selling their SUVs and purchasing Hybrids. As a consiqence we consummed less so the oil companies lowered their prices.

Nukemkb
Feb 10, 2007, 04:43 PM
heck..I am still surprised the iTv will not accept a DvD...and I gotta walk to the mac mini to load the DVD
I feel "out of touch":o

vkxonline
Feb 10, 2007, 04:47 PM
I think the point we're missing here is that "legal" and "right" aren't always the same thing. A person has to create their own morality. Personally, breaking the law doesn't bother me as long as I'm doing something that falls within my own morality. Buying a DVD and putting it on my iPod doesn't bother me, and its essentially impossible to be legally punished for this. How would that be practical? These laws just haven't caught up with consumers. I'm not going to sit around and wait for the slow wheels of legislation to figure out how technology operates.

Let's be honest here. I think there's very few people in the industry who would sue their consumer for buying content and changing the file format. Even if they would, they'd have to find them first.

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 05:42 PM
I think the point we're missing here is that "legal" and "right" aren't always the same thing. A person has to create their own morality. Personally, breaking the law doesn't bother me as long as I'm doing something that falls within my own morality. Buying a DVD and putting it on my iPod doesn't bother me, and its essentially impossible to be legally punished for this. How would that be practical? These laws just haven't caught up with consumers. I'm not going to sit around and wait for the slow wheels of legislation to figure out how technology operates.

Let's be honest here. I think there's very few people in the industry who would sue their consumer for buying content and changing the file format. Even if they would, they'd have to find them first.


I agree 100%

Padriac
Feb 10, 2007, 05:44 PM
Storage limitations for DVD rips
Ripping a DVD with handbrake to h264 at a bitrate of 1000-1500 looks indistinguishable from the same movie playing through Apple's DVD player. The resulting files average below 2 GB. You can also rip the special features if you desire them, and it doesn't double the amount of space needed as they are often less numerous in length than the feature itself. Even a measly 100 GB of spare space will get you about 40 DVDs with extras. You can also use the Fast DVD -> Mpeg Streamclip method mentioned by Digitalclips, although I'm not familiar with that approach so I don't know what the resulting file sizes are like.

Encoding Time
Yeah, it takes time. But it takes about the same time to set-up and start the rip as it does to set up and start the movie in a physical DVD player. This is no different than the CD equivalent situation: It's a semi-pain to rip all the tracks, but you only have to do it once, ever, and then you have your digital files to do with as you like forever. I can't even imagine what a pain it would be to have to manage my collection of 1000 CDs physically vs. with iTunes.

iTunes isn't doing anything new
Nobody said it did. It's just a nice, elegant package for several features (again, like most things Apple).

You CAN rip DVDs and play them on the Apple TV. This is FACT.
I can currently rip DVDs and play them on my iPod. The Apple TV plays all iPod compatible files. Therefore, I can rip DVDs and play them on the Apple TV. Simple logic. And yes, the Apple TV allows for higher resolution than the iPod (as already stated: up to 720p).

Why would you want to play music through my TV?
You don't, you want to be able to play it through a nice receiver and speaker set.
Even a bottom of the barrel home theater/speaker set-up will sound better than your computer speakers. How do me and my friends cook in the kitchen while listening to a podcast from the living room if my computer is upstairs in my office? How do I play music at a party from my computer (even if its downstairs, it can't crank enough decibels)? etc. etc. etc. Centralized access to all your media is the name of the game. Even if you don't have a nice receiver/speaker set, having the option of playing music from your living room has several advantages "Hey, I got this great new CD. Want to hear it? Great, lets all go upstairs and huddle in my office" vs. just fire it up on your couch.

Legality of DVD ripping
While ripping your purchased DVDs may technically be illegal, this doesn't matter. Since the entire process is done without the use of the internet, how the hell would anybody other than me know that I've done this? It's probably more safe than Tivo-ing a football game and then replaying it when all your buddies come over (also illegal). And, as others have said, it may be illegal but it certainly isn't wrong in an ethical sense.

What is the source of all these Apple TV incompatible files?
What is the most mainstream source of downloadable content that you can find that won't play on the Apple TV without conversion (again, obviously WMV doesn't count since that's Micorsoft's problem)? This is a serious question: I'm trying to gauge if this is just an illegal Xvid/DivX thing or something joe average downloading legal files would also have trouble with.

Finally: The Apple TV has no storage limitations !!!
uNext: the 40GB works like a cache. You are not intended to store all media on the Apple TV. Quite the opposite in fact. Media is stored on your computer (or several different computers or attached hard-drives or whatever) and you use the Apple TV to *stream* those files to your TV. You can set-up the Apple TV to "pre-download" certain files directly the Apple TV hard drive if you desire (useful if you have a slow wireless network or particularly high bitrate movie files that may stutter when streaming).

Digitalclips
Feb 10, 2007, 05:47 PM
Storage limitations for DVD rips
Ripping a DVD with handbrake to h264 at a bitrate of 1000-1500 looks indistinguishable from the same movie playing through Apple's DVD player. The resulting files average below 2 GB. You can also rip the special features if you desire them, and it doesn't double the amount of space needed as they are often less numerous in length than the feature itself. Even a measly 100 GB of spare space will get you about 40 DVDs with extras. You can also use the Fast DVD -> Mpeg Streamclip method mentioned by Digitalclips, although I'm not familiar with that approach so I don't know what the resulting file sizes are like.

Encoding Time
Yeah, it takes time. But it takes about the same time to set-up and start the rip as it does to set up and start the movie in a physical DVD player. This is no different than the CD equivalent situation: It's a semi-pain to rip all the tracks, but you only have to do it once, ever, and then you have your digital files to do with as you like forever. I can't even imagine what a pain it would be to have to manage my collection of 1000 CDs physically vs. with iTunes.

iTunes isn't doing anything new
Nobody said it did. It's just a nice, elegant package for several features (again, like most things Apple).

You CAN rip DVDs and play them on the Apple TV. This is FACT.
I can currently rip DVDs and play them on my iPod. The Apple TV plays all iPod compatible files. Therefore, I can rip DVDs and play them on the Apple TV. Simple logic. And yes, the Apple TV allows for higher resolution than the iPod (as already stated: up to 720p).

Why would you want to play music through my TV?
You don't, you want to be able to play it through a nice receiver and speaker set.
Even a bottom of the barrel home theater/speaker set-up will sound better than your computer speakers. How do me and my friends cook in the kitchen while listening to a podcast from the living room if my computer is upstairs in my office? How do I play music at a party from my computer (even if its downstairs, it can't crank enough decibels)? etc. etc. etc. Centralized access to all your media is the name of the game. Even if you don't have a nice receiver/speaker set, having the option of playing music from your living room has several advantages "Hey, I got this great new CD. Want to hear it? Great, lets all go upstairs and huddle in my office" vs. just fire it up on your couch.

Legality of DVD ripping
While ripping your purchased DVDs may technically be illegal, this doesn't matter. Since the entire process is done without the use of the internet, how the hell would anybody other than me know that I've done this? It's probably more safe than Tivo-ing a football game and then replaying it when all your buddies come over (also illegal). And, as others have said, it may be illegal but it certainly isn't wrong in an ethical sense.

What is the source of all these Apple TV incompatible files?
What is the most mainstream source of downloadable content that you can find that won't play on the Apple TV without conversion (again, obviously WMV doesn't count since that's Micorsoft's problem)? This is a serious question: I'm trying to gauge if this is just an illegal Xvid/DivX thing or something joe average downloading legal files would also have trouble with.

Finally: The Apple TV has no storage limitations !!!
uNext: the 40GB works like a cache. You are not intended to store all media on the Apple TV. Quite the opposite in fact. Media is stored on your computer (or several different computers or attached hard-drives or whatever) and you use the Apple TV to *stream* those files to your TV. You can set-up the Apple TV to "pre-download" certain files directly the Apple TV hard drive if you desire (useful if you have a slow wireless network or particularly high bitrate movie files that may stutter when streaming).

Again 100% right :) Some smart people on tonight!

killr_b
Feb 10, 2007, 05:56 PM
just to clarify: there is not thing such as legitly ripping stuff.... ripping a dvd is illegal, no matter if you own the original copy or not, circumventing the copy protection is illegal all by itself, same thing goes for cds if they are copy protected. *Snip…*

Um, no.
This battle is still being fought in court.
The only copy protections that are currently legal only prevent format shifting. Like Macrovision.
Currently I have the right to make a copy of my DVD's for personal use as long as they stay DVD.
Currently I have the right to make a copy of a CD, and compress it for use in a Computer Music Library.
;)

mlspurr
Feb 10, 2007, 06:49 PM
Did anyone notice that the Think Secert post regarding delayed AppleTV shipments applied to the shipments destine for the RETAIL stores only. Does this mean that those of us that ordered on-line will receive our AppleTV‘s on the rumor date 2/19/07??

Digital Skunk
Feb 10, 2007, 07:45 PM
Don't know if anyone said this already...(I am not reading all of those posts:eek: ) but the shipping schedule could have been pushed back because of the overwhelming demand for it. I heard that it was selling pretty well when it was first announced.

I don't have much of a TV (or a home of my own for that matter:D ) so I don't have much of a need or want of an AppleTV. But I will love to have one once I get my own place and set up my 50" (or bigger) Sony Bravia HDTV. It would be nice to stream my iTunes music and TV shows from my Mac to my TV with sweet sound system. I would also be nice to have my photos playing on my screen when friends and family come over for whatever reason.... Okay... let me stop day dreaming and get my credit score ready for my home loan:D

curmi
Feb 10, 2007, 07:58 PM
Nice points, all.
DivX/XviD and codec support.
Let's be real: these are the codecs of pirates. Yes, more legitimate uses have sprung up but by and large the mainstream world is ignoring these codecs. Apple supporting them would be akin to saying "we don't support pirated content" while winking and nodding. Yes, it would be a pain to have to re-encode the content you have, but think about how you got this content to begin with and you can see why Apple can get away with ignoring it. Technically, h264 is roughly as good (some say better, some say worse, I don't want to debate this particular point). Given that, and the fact you can't expect WMV support (Microsoft's fault more than Apples), what important codecs is the Apple TV really missing? Real? Real is a solution to a problem that doesn't exist anymore, so why even bother with it? I never even come across it anymore...

...

So, if I got it right, the Apple TV is not useful to you if a) you hate iTunes; b) you have tons of Xvid/DivX files; c) you refuse to watch a DVD rip without surround sound d) your home-theater/lving-room set-up isn't really all that better than your Mac's screen and speakers. Otherwise, the Apple TV can offer all your computer media in your living room, with an interface superior to any alternative solutions, which is at least potentially useful to a lot of people. Is that fair?

No, this isn't really fair.

Sure, DivX is used a lot for piracy. However, I have a tonne of stuff I've recorded off the TV over the years that is in DivX - encoded before I'd heard of H.264. Should be great re-encoding that. Other people are in the same boat.

Outside of the US there is no iTunes movie store. The best we can legally get in H.264 format are some Pixar shorts and music videos. Not really compelling.

I have a kick-arse surround sound system - so yes, if I'm going to have to rip my DVDs to H.264, I want full surround sound! Why should I be restricted to stereo only?!

I don't hate iTunes. I use it for all my Music. Tunes = Music. I have all my movies in my Movies folder - that is what it is for. Or at least used to be before Apple decided to make iTunes do everything. So now I'm forced to put all my movies/TV shows in to H.264 format, and put them in to iTunes, so I can watch them on TV. There is something wrong here.

Imagine back in 2001 - Apple released the iPod. Steve got on stage and said "This is the best portable music player ever! It plays AAC format music only". Everyone's music back then was in MP3 format. No one would have been willing to re-encode all there music to AAC format. And yes, most people I know had a fair amount of pirated MP3s - and Apple knew that too. So Apple supported MP3s. Later it supported both MP3s and AACs.

All Apple had to do with Apple TV was have it play some more formats that are in common use (and play surround sound, which I can't believe Apple would be stupid enough to leave out, and hope that is an error). As I said earlier, the 720p only can be overlooked (though is poor from a marketing point of view). I had seriously been really looking forward to Apple TV.

In fact, the only thing that seems fair to say is that Apple TV has a great user interface. Everything else ties to you to H.264, iTunes and stereo sound. I wouldn't say Apple TV is the worst product ever from Apple - but it certainly is one of the weakest products released while on Steve's watch. I think Steve was too busy playing with his iPhone and didn't pay attention to what the Apple TV group were doing.

balamw
Feb 10, 2007, 08:16 PM
Sure, DivX is used a lot for piracy. However, I have a tonne of stuff I've recorded off the TV over the years that is in DivX - encoded before I'd heard of H.264.

Part of the negative associations of DivX ;-) as a "pirate codec" come from the fact that the first released versions were a hacked version of the Microsoft MPEG-4 codec to allow for AVI instead of ASF containers.

I too wish :apple:TV and iPod supported more codecs, at least MPEG-1 and MPEG-2, but I wouldn't expect DivX, WMV or OGG Theora since there are plenty of mutually incompatible content out there...

Stick with standards based codecs (and not de facto standards like DivX ;-)) and you'll have a better chance of having your media remain playable by the latest devices.

B

Digital Skunk
Feb 10, 2007, 08:28 PM
Stick with standards based codecs (and not de facto standards like DivX ;-)) and you'll have a better chance of having your media remain playable by the latest devices.
B

Yeah, I have learned that through my computing travels as well. I have over 60GB of movies and TV shows encoded in AVI format. Okay quality (on most LCD computer screens) but they can't play in iTunes or on iPods. So I want to encode them in QT or any format that QT can play so I can put them on my iPod 6G (when it comes out).

balamw
Feb 10, 2007, 08:31 PM
Yeah, I have learned that through my computing travels as well. I have over 60GB of movies and TV shows encoded in AVI format. Okay quality (on most LCD computer screens) but they can't play in iTunes or on iPods. So I want to encode them in QT or any format that QT can play so I can put them on my iPod 6G (when it comes out).

A small point, but AVI and QT(MOV) are just container formats which can contain lots of different codecs. QT plays plenty of AVIs out of the box and with Flip4Mac can play plenty of others. The iPod, less so.

B

Digital Skunk
Feb 10, 2007, 08:47 PM
A small point, but AVI and QT(MOV) are just container formats which can contain lots of different codecs. QT plays plenty of AVIs out of the box and with Flip4Mac can play plenty of others. The iPod, less so.

B

Thank you so much for that. A friend of mine told me that months ago but I forgot what he said about it. Now that you mention it, I will try to drag and drop my AVIs into iTunes and see if they work. Since I am a nerd.. I will have to go and learn what the heck a container file is...:rolleyes: And I am supposed to be a college student... there goes my tuition... wasted on useless books

Mr. Pippin
Feb 10, 2007, 09:12 PM
I certainly don't consider it useless - but having no divX, and having to have everything in iTunes (ie, it doesn't even see your Movies folder on your remote machine) certainly limits the usefulness to many.

The 720p isn't a bit deal, but certainly limits the bragging rights when others (including Xboxs and PS3s) can do 1080p - unusual because you expect Apple stuff to be leading edge, which this device isn't in many ways (apart from the UI perhaps).

The lack of Dolby Digital for movies is still one the bigger bummers. Then again, so is the lack of DVD quality (640x480 max for Apple movies). If the quality and sound matched the DVD's I buy, I'd be a LOT more inclined to get one.

Avatar74
Feb 10, 2007, 09:40 PM
I was with you all the way up to the end there. What about digital movie projection and recording?

See, you make an excellent point there. It's an alternative... but while you're IN a 35mm theater, what are your choices? Either watch what's on that screen at that moment or go to another screen... and possibly another theater if there are no digital projection systems there.

Sure if you use only :apple:TV your choices are limited. But you can choose to buy a different product, or buy several products... just like you can choose to see a digital projection movie. That's my entire point. Choice is still there, and it's not just up to Apple to facilitate choice.

It's easy to confuse a company's choice to support limited formats as being monopolistic but a monopoly requires more than that... it requires enforcing barriers to entry in the marketplace. Apple isn't preventing other companies from making their own competing solutions supporting however many formats they wish to support. The end result is that the consumer can choose to buy or not buy :apple:TV

Using :apple:TV doesn't actually prevent you from using other products alongside it... even connected to the same television. And you're no more "locked in" while you are using it any more than you are "locked in" while sitting in that 35mm theater or driving that Ford with Ford's proprietary fuel management. Furthermore, using :apple:TV doesn't preclude you from running other solutions from the same Mac computer or network.

The :apple:TV is a piece of hardware that runs a specific type of software and interfaces with a specific type of software on your computer (which runs on Macs and PC's). Compare this to a DVD player. Why don't people raise nearly as much of a fuss that DVD players play only DVD Forum compliant MPEG-2 VOB streams and don't play H.264 and every other codec under the sun?

Padriac
Feb 10, 2007, 09:44 PM
No, this isn't really fair.

Sure, DivX is used a lot for piracy. However, I have a tonne of stuff I've recorded off the TV over the years that is in DivX - encoded before I'd heard of H.264. Should be great re-encoding that. Other people are in the same boat.

Outside of the US there is no iTunes movie store. The best we can legally get in H.264 format are some Pixar shorts and music videos. Not really compelling.

I have a kick-arse surround sound system - so yes, if I'm going to have to rip my DVDs to H.264, I want full surround sound! Why should I be restricted to stereo only?!

I don't hate iTunes. I use it for all my Music. Tunes = Music. I have all my movies in my Movies folder - that is what it is for. Or at least used to be before Apple decided to make iTunes do everything. So now I'm forced to put all my movies/TV shows in to H.264 format, and put them in to iTunes, so I can watch them on TV. There is something wrong here.

Imagine back in 2001 - Apple released the iPod. Steve got on stage and said "This is the best portable music player ever! It plays AAC format music only". Everyone's music back then was in MP3 format. No one would have been willing to re-encode all there music to AAC format. And yes, most people I know had a fair amount of pirated MP3s - and Apple knew that too. So Apple supported MP3s. Later it supported both MP3s and AACs.

All Apple had to do with Apple TV was have it play some more formats that are in common use (and play surround sound, which I can't believe Apple would be stupid enough to leave out, and hope that is an error). As I said earlier, the 720p only can be overlooked (though is poor from a marketing point of view). I had seriously been really looking forward to Apple TV.

In fact, the only thing that seems fair to say is that Apple TV has a great user interface. Everything else ties to you to H.264, iTunes and stereo sound. I wouldn't say Apple TV is the worst product ever from Apple - but it certainly is one of the weakest products released while on Steve's watch. I think Steve was too busy playing with his iPhone and didn't pay attention to what the Apple TV group were doing.

Your problems are fine except for one thing: they hold absolutely true for the iPod as well. Obviously Apple has not had any problems there, so why are all these codec issues going to be huge problems for the Apple TV while they weren't for the iPod? And yes, plenty of people complain about the DivX on the iPod as well, but my point is that it hasn't had any real detriment on sales. And others have noticed... what codecs does the Zune support, for example?

I abandoned the DivX ship as soon as h264 came around. To claim that the Apple TV will fail based on codec support when it has the same exact codec support as the most successful consumer electronics product of the last decade seems a bit silly, no?

And Mr. Pippin: the Apple TV and iTunes Store are not the same thing. The Apple TV supports 720p, but Apple does not currently sell 720p content. You can add your own 720p content if you like.

The only issue I'm with you on is the surround sound thing, but I'm confident this will be addressed in one way or another (it's just a software issue).

I think it's very fair to say that the Apple TV is a wireless iPod meant for the living room. No more, no less. If you have problems with the iPod, you'll have problems with the Apple TV. If you enjoy your iPod and wouldn't mind having that same experience in the living room, then the Apple TV might be worth considering.

(Am I the only person noticing the eerie parallels between the Apple TV and 1st gen iPod, right down to the complaints?)

kalisphoenix
Feb 10, 2007, 10:08 PM
It tends to irritate me when people say "but you can't record your DVDs... that's illegal!"

Remember, folks: if an act is against the law, that doesn't mean that the act is inherently wrong or that you cannot perform that act. It simply means that if anyone finds out, and if they care, and if it's financially advantageous to pursue the issue, and if they can convince a court of law of your guilt, and if the court of law determines that you shall be punished... then you might be punished for performing that act.

I don't really care what any corrupt government or its fat cat fishmongers say I can or can't do. I will continue to do what benefits my wife and me the most in any given situation, so long as it does not conflict with our ethical principles. If that means I get hauled in front of a judge for copying my DVDs onto my Mac mini, that's fine. I'll pay whatever fee is asked of me, if the alternative is going to prison (and not working, and incurring a larger debt than the original settlement). And then I'll get out of the courtroom, pirate as many DVDs as possible, and feel avenged.

You can't play the appeasement game with these commercial swine. If they try to penetrate your tight consumer orifice, you just have to get 'em in a headlock and sodomize them with a nail-studded broomstick. It's better to be a pirate than join the Navy. :apple:

imacdaddy
Feb 10, 2007, 10:34 PM
What is the source of all these Apple TV incompatible files?
What is the most mainstream source of downloadable content that you can find that won't play on the Apple TV without conversion (again, obviously WMV doesn't count since that's Micorsoft's problem)? This is a serious question: I'm trying to gauge if this is just an illegal Xvid/DivX thing or something joe average downloading legal files would also have trouble with.


Yup agreed, it' joe average complaining.

I'm not the one complaining though. I think the :apple:tv is great! As mentioned in the iPod, iTunes, Apple TV Discussion forum, I'm ready to purchase one as soon as someone can confirm if I can play my slideshows created from iPhoto...and I'm not talking about the slideshow ability in the iPods. Though this is not a deal breaker for me. I'm just waiting for some extra cashflow...getting Leopard first! ;)

Regarding :apple:tv's USB port, there's more to it than what Apple claims it to be a port for servicing. That's just a crap answer to hide the real truth!!! Servicing is done via Serial or Ethernet port. The:apple:tv has an Ethernet port. I assure you something else is planned for it...casual gaming?

I'm sure there's going to be a tivo like add-on or 3rd party stuff like the Miglia TVMini HD (http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/wa/RSLID?mco=D8973CD4&nplm=TH587LL%2FA)
will eventually find a solution to work from the :apple:tv box.

Only time will tell. :cool:

Stella
Feb 10, 2007, 11:15 PM
Hey don't buy one then OK. :)

Wouldn't it be nice to have a friendly discussion about what we can do with these new Apple toys amongst those of us that do want them and not have to hear the ranting of Trolls telling us how much better their Windows Media experience is?

So, your definition of troll is anyone that says a bad thing about Apple? Windows Media centre is way better than iTV, far more flexible ( especially with Xbox )

As it stands, due to excess limitations, iTV is useless outside the states, and as far as I'm concerned its DOA and so I won't be spending my money on junk that is iTV - but should I be prevented from posting my views on the matter - nope, of course not!

If Apple were so concerned about piracy - i.e., supporting Divx then Apple shouldn't support MP3 - because that format is widely used for piracy as well.

Damned right Kalis.

DVD ripping is not illegal in all countries, so saying "thats illegal" isn't necessarily the case. These morality "police" out there who spout crap like this ( i.e, "but its illegal" ) are as pure as virgins then? Never pirated any music, never drunk underage etc. Yea right, get real.

It tends to irritate me when people say "but you can't record your DVDs... that's illegal!"

Remember, folks: if an act is against the law, that doesn't mean that the act is inherently wrong or that you cannot perform that act. It simply means that if anyone finds out, and if they care, and if it's financially advantageous to pursue the issue, and if they can convince a court of law of your guilt, and if the court of law determines that you shall be punished... then you might be punished for performing that act.

I don't really care what any corrupt government or its fat cat fishmongers say I can or can't do. I will continue to do what benefits my wife and me the most in any given situation, so long as it does not conflict with our ethical principles. If that means I get hauled in front of a judge for copying my DVDs onto my Mac mini, that's fine. I'll pay whatever fee is asked of me, if the alternative is going to prison (and not working, and incurring a larger debt than the original settlement). And then I'll get out of the courtroom, pirate as many DVDs as possible, and feel avenged.

You can't play the appeasement game with these commercial swine. If they try to penetrate your tight consumer orifice, you just have to get 'em in a headlock and sodomize them with a nail-studded broomstick. It's better to be a pirate than join the Navy. :apple:

Curtis72
Feb 11, 2007, 12:03 AM
Apple TV is an iTunes media client. Apple TV isn't a media center computer or DVR.

It would be nice for Apple to add web browsing, E-mail, Address Book/iCal integration to the Apple TV device. Casual gaming would be nice as well. But I knowing ordered a $299 device plus tax for what was "advertised". It solves a nagging problem I have with the Airport Express and AirTunes. Airport Express works great, but I'm lazy. I cannot stand having to go my Mac, launch iTunes, select a play list, select Airport Express as the remote speaker, and then press play. Apple TV solves that problem for "me". I won't be purchasing any movies from iTunes Store. My Sony upconverting DVD player works just fine :)

So what are the alternatives? Well... I didn't just jump up and order Apple TV because I'm a Mac fanboy. I looked at EyeConnect a couple of years ago, but UPnP capable media devices seemed "iffy". Naturally, I couldn't find one that supported playing AAC protected iTunes music.

caccamolle
Feb 11, 2007, 12:47 AM
Nice points, all.


Music and TV Navigation
For those complaining that you "need" to use the TV for music with the Apple TV: how the hell else are you going to navigate thousands of songs? On a tiny LCD readout on you receiver? The TV navigation is a huge PLUS here! You can just turn off your TV once you've started playing your music if it bugs you (assuming your not using your TV's speakers...). There may be some negatives with video, but for music the Apple TV seems to be virtually flawless. Yes, other products do similar things but the interface is the key, as with all things Apple.



from your computer screen dude !!!! you are going to have a computer running already anyway, right !?!? Certainly if you are using a mini with the tv as your only monitor, well then you've got no choice.

TV navigation for music is totally useless in my view. Obviously there will be no need for it. From a music standpoint, ATV adds nothing compared to the A/X, at least in terms of practicality.

After all, it is called ATV for a reason, right ?

That is how I view it anyways.

Not rising to the bait Mr. Troll. ;)

I think he's got some good points actually.

Not that I care, I indeed ordered ATV first and foremost to watch iTunes content on my TV. Something I already do by the way, but I have to use my laptop, very ugly next to my large TV and it risks burning up my whole house soon or later with the amount of heat it generates !!!!!.

PS: Apple should be selling these MacPro with a warning: after 10 minutes of use we advise resting the laptop due to fire hazard !!! :)

curmi
Feb 11, 2007, 01:26 AM
Your problems are fine except for one thing: they hold absolutely true for the iPod as well. Obviously Apple has not had any problems there, so why are all these codec issues going to be huge problems for the Apple TV while they weren't for the iPod?

An easy one. People are buying iPods as a music player first, video player second. Even Steve talks of the iPod in this way.

I have a video iPod. I watched quite a few things I recorded off TV while I was on holiday over Christmas and it was great. I did have to convert them to H.264, which wasn't so great. But it was only a small number compared to the stuff I watch every day - and the small screen meant less resolution so quicker encoding...I wouldn't play them on a HD TV set. And the screen is so small - I wouldn't want to be watching the iPod screen all the time anyway. Or encoding everything again to watch on it.

But primarily my iPod is a music player. With a bit of video playing thrown in. The Apple TV is a video player first.

Maccus Aurelius
Feb 11, 2007, 01:32 AM
I was really interested in this device, and I have a very large movie library in iTunes (almost all ripped via HandBrake). Music on my TV? Nah, I don't think I'll be doing that anytime soon. Television can't top my Klipsh system, not by a long shot. Viewing iTunes vids on my small widescreen TV sounds very attractive compared to the S-video connection, but at the same time I plan on getting a 23" Apple cinema display, so with a direct connection to the computer I may have no use whatsoever for a an ATV, especially since my macbook has the I/R port and remote setup already built in. Front Row is a very nice interface, and my mac already has that. Some people with 24" iMacs, macbook pros with 30" external display hookups and people with mac minis already being used as entertainment PC's will probably not find much use for ATV either, since people have already been finding ways to make their digital libraries into their central entertainment hubs.

The concept has tons of potential though. It's just that I don't know how many people are really concerned about ripping DVD's to stream to their television sets with HandBrake's assistance. I know lots of Mac users that are still unaware of this application. My uncle who has used nothing but macs his entire career is still unaware of the video and DVD conversion software we enjoy. Also, as mentioned before, the anemic content of the iTunes movie store is not enough to make this client really worthwhile.........yet. But with the lack of content overseas, it's even bleaker.

I personally don't get a rat's ass about DivX or Real. Hell, I can't remember the last time I used RealPlayer in all the years I used Windows systems. The only DivX content I've seen pirated videos, and the quality is generally unreliable. I have yet to see any legit content in Xvid.

But then again, this lack of support makes other hardware, in this case the Mac mini more attractive. Since it has OS X, it supports ALL codecs. I know I know that H.264 and so forth provide consistent reliable quality, but the fact that ATV basically supports the identical codec range to the iPod may be its undoing.

The main difference is the nature of the media device. iPods are able to get away with their tight codec support because they're small handheld portable extensions of iTunes. In the home, an extension of iTunes alone may sour the palette of many, since in the comfort of our homes an extension of our computer is expected to support all of the same content our computers do. But at the same time it relies on content copied directly into the iTunes library. So movies you don't copy into this list won't be seen by ATV. This isn't to say that the ATV is a poor product, but this puts more points on the side of the alternatives.

As much as I'd really like to support this ATV and purchase one, I'd much rather invest the $300 towards the 23" display since I'll be needing that for other things, but at the same time provides the high resolution that would be fantastic for watching movies in my living room (it's larger than my flat screen TV, and has better resolution). I have a small place, I don't require huge TV's to look at from afar.

MacinDoc
Feb 11, 2007, 01:41 AM
So, your definition of troll is anyone that says a bad thing about Apple? Windows Media centre is way better than iTV, far more flexible ( especially with Xbox )

As it stands, due to excess limitations, iTV is useless outside the states, and as far as I'm concerned its DOA and so I won't be spending my money on junk that is iTV - but should I be prevented from posting my views on the matter - nope, of course not!

If Apple were so concerned about piracy - i.e., supporting Divx then Apple shouldn't support MP3 - because that format is widely used for piracy as well.

Damned right Kalis.

DVD ripping is not illegal in all countries, so saying "thats illegal" isn't necessarily the case. These morality "police" out there who spout crap like this ( i.e, "but its illegal" ) are as pure as virgins then? Never pirated any music, never drunk underage etc. Yea right, get real.
As you correctly point out, some of the capabilities of ?TV cannot currently be used outside of the U.S., so one could argue that its current primary target is the U.S. Hence, not allowing activity that is illegal in ?TV's primary market would seem to make sense.

You are also correct that DVD ripping is not illegal in all countries. That does not mean that making copies for purposes other than backup is not immoral. I find it objectionable that in Canada we pay taxes on blank media because the government assumes that we will use it to make and distribute copies of copyrighted material. Instead of assuming that we will all steal intellectual material and taxing all of us to partially reimburse the industry for this theft, the government should make such theft illegal. Encouraging such theft only discourages artists from creating and distributing new material. If theft of music and video material was legal everywhere, what motivation would artists have to create new material, and what motivation would studios have to fund and produce it?

BTW, there actually are those of us who never pirated any music, never drank underage etc., and your comment assumes that everyone shares the same values as you, an assumption that is incorrect.

powermac_daddy
Feb 11, 2007, 02:37 AM
This is lame. They announced the products but they can't ship on time. $$$, people would die for that crap.

Padriac
Feb 11, 2007, 02:57 AM
Caccamolle
You either don't get it or you get it too well. If your TV and computer monitor are the same thing, then the Apple TV is completely pointless to you. Of course, just run front row on the mini. The Apple TV ONLY makes sense to people who who have a TV SEPARATE from their computer(s) (in their living room or wherever it is they want to watch stuff). Seriously, if you only have one "monitor" in your entire home then don't even waste your time on this thread... this product applies to you as much as horse feed applies to your car.

I'm not sure which product you are exactly referring to when you refer to the A/X (Armani Exchange?), but here is a typical Apple TV situation: your music is on your computer in your office upstairs. You are in your living room listening to Bob Dylan when you suddenly get the urge to listen to "Nevermind" by Nirvana. The Apple TV allows you to easily navigate from Dylan to that particular Nirvana album in a few seconds, all without having to move from the nice couch you are sitting on. If I had to get up to go to the computer, or even just the receiver to pop in the CD, to listen to this album than the Apple TV already wins. The Apple TV makes at least one electronics product completely useless: jukebox style CD players (you know, those 100-500 disc things). Using the TV to navigate my music collection seems perfect for me. I have no idea what you have against it... are you hoping for an AppleTV Shuffle or something?

If your argument is that everybody should have a computer hooked up in their living room, that's a separate issue (and I'll gladly do it if you give me the extra $300 and keep the content synchronized for me).

Curmi
The Apple TV may be more video centric than the iPod, true, but as much as the net seemed to predict failure, even the iTunes Movie Store is succeeding, and the TV shows seem to be a major hit. The iPod is transitioning from music + video to music/video. New video-centric iPods (think iPhone without the phone) will be hitting very soon. There is no mistaking that the iPod ecosystem is slowly assimilating video and that it will soon be just as crucial as the audio.

Video codec support can't be compared to the audio situation because there is no "mp3" in the video world, yet. If there was, MPEG-4 AVC (h264) would be a frontrunner along with VC-1. DivX is a drop in the bucket that applies to very very few. Yes, you happen to be one of those few and re-encoding will suck, but this isn't very different from switching from VHS to DVD or DVD to Blu-ray/HD-DVD. You start buying your new stuff in the new format (start encoding in h264) and you slowly replace the stuff you already have with the new format (re-encode your old DivX to h264). But, again, this whole surround sound thing needs to get sorted before this can truly work out.

Put more succinctly, DivX support is as necessaryy to the Apple TV as OGG/FLAC support is to the iPod. Not very.

And, for me, the Apple TV will be a music player first just like the iPod, so don't think the products are so dissimilar. However, just like the iPod did when it got video capabilities, I'm sure the Apple TV will lead me to more video use than I expect.

Maccus Aurelius
How exactly are you getting CONTENT to that Klipsh system? This is exactly what the Apple TV is for! I too have a nice set of Klipsh speakers and part of the reason I'm getting the Apple TV is to be able to funnel all my music through these speakers rather than the crappy computer speakers. Like a videogame system or DVD player, the Apple TV will pump sound to your receiver and video to your TV.

Obviously, the Apple TV is meant for those who do NOT (for whatever reason) have dedicated "media" computers. The Apple TV is the low-cost, easy-to-use alternative. Some people don't want the extra cost (the mini route still costs twice as much as the Apple TV) or complication (keeping content synced between computers, etc.). Obviously Front Row exists for a reason, so Apple is happy to give you both options.

I agree with your points about the Apple TV potentially being seen as an "extension of the computer" and thus expected to be more robust. But my original point still holds: where is all this supposed content that is not compatible with iTunes/AppleTV? Only a microscopic sliver of the population will ever know or care about "DivX". I have no proof, but I'm going to venture a guess that most legal, downloadable video content on the internet is iPod compatible (controlling for WMV).

vkxonline
Feb 11, 2007, 07:38 AM
Caccamolle
Put more succinctly, DivX support is as necessaryy to the Apple TV as OGG/FLAC support is to the iPod. Not very.

You put it perfectly.

210
Feb 11, 2007, 07:58 AM
As one person here already pointed out, I hope people realise that the law can be different from country to country. It may be illegal to rip a DVD in the US, but some country it may not be in which case there's nothing wrong in doing so and using AppleTV for it. As other people have pointed out, there are rules and regulations which don't make much sense and rather out of date. Because of this, people don't bother upholding them. Case in point would be the iTrip situation in England. It was actually illegal to use an iTrip here, but they changed the law so that now they are legal to use. Who is to say they will change other laws in the future too?

adamcz
Feb 11, 2007, 08:26 AM
The :apple: tv is uninteresting to me, because it does nothing to solve my problem of getting HD content onto my HD tv. I've never ripped a DVD in my life, and don't care to learn how (and even if I did, it still wouldn't be HD content).

Right now my xbox rents HD movies for around $5, and I don't have to walk over to my computer to initiate any of it. This is a vastly superior system to Apple's, and like millions of others, I already own it.

Apple is behind the curve at this point. Even if the xbox360 didn't play video games, it would still look like a better value to me.

360: $400, rents HD movies for $5 without getting up from the couch.
:apple: tv: $300, you can buy sub-dvd quality movies for $15 from your computer

:confused:

I'm not trolling either. 25% of my net worth is in Apple stock, and I desperately want them to win this "living room war." They aren't getting it done though. They need to sell HD content on itunes, and let me buy it from the living room. Actually renting it would be far preferable, since $5 is better than $15 for something I'll only watch once.

Stella
Feb 11, 2007, 08:49 AM
BTW, there actually are those of us who never pirated any music, never drank underage etc., and your comment assumes that everyone shares the same values as you, an assumption that is incorrect.

( Btw that list isn't exhaustive - I highly doubt that these morality police have ever not done anything illegal, no matter how small - but I think you get my point anyway )


As you point out, its irritating that the tax on CDs etc assumes that everyone is illegal. On Friday in the Toronto Star the Canadian music industry was talking about trying to put the pirate tax back on mp3 players etc. That could add as much as $70 on the price of such goods, once more.

Digitalclips
Feb 11, 2007, 09:10 AM
So, your definition of troll is anyone that says a bad thing about Apple? Windows Media centre is way better than iTV, far more flexible ( especially with Xbox )

As it stands, due to excess limitations, iTV is useless outside the states, and as far as I'm concerned its DOA and so I won't be spending my money on junk that is iTV - but should I be prevented from posting my views on the matter - nope, of course not!
.

Seeing as you asked, yeah I'd say you come pretty close the definition of a Troll judging by what you write. There is nothing constructive in what you say here. "DOA", "JUNK" "Windows Media Center is way better" and so on ad nauseam.

zblaxberg
Feb 11, 2007, 09:19 AM
For all the hype that was generated by this product months ago, I think this is gonna be a flop like the hifi. If it had more useful features like the slingboxes I would pick one up. But, with the itunes movie library being so small I just don't get it. I am not gonna stream music from itunes and I hell am not gonna stick a dvd in my imac to stream to my tv. So, if this could record my cable shows or I could access my dvd collection on the road and stream it to my laptop while i'm away from the computer then ok, but I think this thing is gonna be DOA if it even gets out the DOOR.

there isn't anything special about iTV....sorry guys but I wouldn't even bother to buy one of them

Stella
Feb 11, 2007, 09:23 AM
Seeing as you asked, yeah I'd say you come pretty close the definition of a Troll judging by what you write. There is nothing constructive in what you say here. "DOA", "JUNK" "Windows Media Center is way better" and so on ad nauseam.

Well, if you see me as a Troll, then thats your problem!

Well, Junk, DOA, "Windows Media centre" is way better - so thats my opinion. Not trolling. But, it is a negative comment against Apple - but so what - aren't we allowed to comment negatively on Apple?

Windows media player is far more flexible, if you have an XBox you can do most of what what iTV does ( and more, i.e., play games etc ) - store the media locally on the XBox and off you go, in HD too. WMC supports a lot more media types, thus, its automatically more useful, IMO. As the above poster correctly pointed out, its not that much more than the cost of iTV - so better value for money, if you can afford it.

Maybe I should explained a little more why I thought iTV is junk. But summing up "if your outside of the states", iTV is of little value because of its strong tie-in to iTunes content sums this up fairly well ( thus, lack of TV shows and movies ).

page3
Feb 11, 2007, 09:47 AM
Why would you want to play music through my TV?[/B]
You don't, you want to be able to play it through a nice receiver and speaker set.
Even a bottom of the barrel home theater/speaker set-up will sound better than your computer speakers. How do me and my friends cook in the kitchen while listening to a podcast from the living room if my computer is upstairs in my office? How do I play music at a party from my computer (even if its downstairs, it can't crank enough decibels)? etc. etc. etc. Centralized access to all your media is the name of the game. Even if you don't have a nice receiver/speaker set, having the option of playing music from your living room has several advantages "Hey, I got this great new CD. Want to hear it? Great, lets all go upstairs and huddle in my office" vs. just fire it up on your couch.But the Apple TV doesn't have a display, so you'd need to switch on your TV, select what you want to play, then switch off your TV. If they were serious about music it would have a built-in display - like many competing products.

Sorry, but its no use for movies (lack of codec support, low res and lack of proper 5.1 sound), and no good for music (lack of navigation without TV being on). I'll pass on this...

Rocketman
Feb 11, 2007, 09:51 AM
Having read many messages here I began to wonder something quite simple. Why hasn't someone written an "Xtunes" or OtherTunes" app for Mac to manage formats not supported by Apple? You can install any app on a Mac and the many media formats are already read by, written by and ripped by many applications.

Who's to say iTunes is the only environment for media on the Mac?

Rocketman

Digitalclips
Feb 11, 2007, 09:55 AM
Well, if you see me as a Troll, then thats your problem!

Well, Junk, DOA, "Windows Media centre" is way better - so thats my opinion. Not trolling. But, it is a negative comment against Apple - but so what - aren't we allowed to comment negatively on Apple?

Windows media player is far more flexible, if you have an XBox you can do most of what what iTV does ( and more, i.e., play games etc ) - store the media locally on the XBox and off you go, in HD too. WMC supports a lot more media types, thus, its automatically more useful, IMO. As the above poster correctly pointed out, its not that much more than the cost of iTV - so better value for money, if you can afford it.

Maybe I should explained a little more why I thought iTV is junk. But summing up "if your outside of the states", iTV is of little value because of its strong tie-in to iTunes content sums this up fairly well ( thus, lack of TV shows and movies ).

OK, if I credit your post with being serious and not Trolling I would say this: As written many times in this thread, for many of us, the :apple: TV hold huge promise and potential. It is not Junk and will not be DOA. The product you mention are of little relevance to many of us since we don't have or want Windows boxes. That's why we read and write in a Mac forum. We shall just have to wait and see who is correct won't we.

Stella
Feb 11, 2007, 10:47 AM
OK, if I credit your post with being serious and not Trolling I would say this: As written many times in this thread, for many of us, the :apple: TV hold huge promise and potential. It is not Junk and will not be DOA. The product you mention are of little relevance to many of us since we don't have or want Windows boxes. That's why we read and write in a Mac forum. We shall just have to wait and see who is correct won't we.


I did say "In My opinion", thus "For my uses" it is DOA, I'll be voting with my money and not buy it.

Overall, I'm sure it will be a success....

Windows Media Centre - well, that runs on XBox - and plenty of Mac owners have one - so its not irrelevant.

caccamolle
Feb 11, 2007, 01:15 PM
Caccamolle
You either don't get it or you get it too well. If your TV and computer monitor are the same thing, then the Apple TV is completely pointless to you. Of course, just run front row on the mini. The Apple TV ONLY makes sense to people who who have a TV SEPARATE from their computer(s) (in their living room or wherever it is they want to watch stuff). Seriously, if you only have one "monitor" in your entire home then don't even waste your time on this thread... this product applies to you as much as horse feed applies to your car.

I'm not sure which product you are exactly referring to when you refer to the A/X (Armani Exchange?), but here is a typical Apple TV situation: your music is on your computer in your office upstairs. You are in your living room listening to Bob Dylan when you suddenly get the urge to listen to "Nevermind" by Nirvana. The Apple TV allows you to easily navigate from Dylan to that particular Nirvana album in a few seconds, all without having to move from the nice couch you are sitting on. If I had to get up to go to the computer, or even just the receiver to pop in the CD, to listen to this album than the Apple TV already wins. The Apple TV makes at least one electronics product completely useless: jukebox style CD players (you know, those 100-500 disc things). Using the TV to navigate my music collection seems perfect for me. I have no idea what you have against it... are you hoping for an AppleTV Shuffle or something?

If your argument is that everybody should have a computer hooked up in their living room, that's a separate issue (and I'll gladly do it if you give me the extra $300 and keep the content synchronized for me).
.

Again, I view the added value (well confort, really) that you refer to, non existant for me, especially, I say it again, in my case where keeping my 42" flat TV on for music is just pointless. This obviously has to do with personal preferences as well as situations (set-ups) where evidently we differ. I do see your point, not saying it ain't good, it just does not apply to me. Video is a complete different story since the A/X can't do that and I have really been dreaming of having a device like that for video. And here it comes !!!! ATV.

Tha A/X is what is commonly used to refer to the Airport Express.

cbud
Feb 11, 2007, 01:51 PM
first of all, thats illegal. and while it might work for movies, what about tv-shows? when i put in one of my futurama-dvd's in my dvd-player, i get a nice menu where i can select the episode i want to watch. how would handbrake handle that? what about special features and subtitles? how long does the encoding take?

you say that mac mini would be too inconvenient. i say that handbraking my dvd-collection is too inconvenient. and with mac mini you would get a lot more functionality.

MP4 files can go on an iPod that is why I encode to MP4. But yes, it is very inconvenient and takes forever.

Anyway, soon Apple will offer movies and 5 star TV shows in 720p. This will allow people who are not ready to buy 1080p TV sets and Blu-Ray drives to watch on demand HD on their TV sets. Surround sound and subtitles will make it into Apple's content, hopefully with Leopard. Apple has been trying to find a closed captioning fix for awhile.

I wonder how Apple is going to handle 720p movies and the iPod? Does the customer download twice? Pick only one resolution? Or will the iPod handle 720p? But I wouldn’t want my entire i pod drive to be filled by a few 720p movies? Hmm...

Padriac
Feb 11, 2007, 01:59 PM
So, let me get this straight. You theoretically have your nice 40" display with an Apple TV right below it. With the Apple TV you can use this nice 40" display to navigate your music but you guys are saying no: you want to do this with some 3" LCD screen on the Apple TV itself so you don't have to turn on your TV.

I don't get it.

1) How do you "navigate" on this small LCD display from 10 feet away?

2) What is so offensive about having your TV on to listen to music? People who use DVD players to play CDs do this all the time.

3) If it really bugs you, you can turn your TV back off.

4) Really, why does this bug you so much? You get the album art up on the screen which looks pretty snazzy.

5) What competing products are you specifically referring to and how much do they cost?

6) If navigating your music on a small LCD readout is really what you want, then Apple already makes a product for you: it's called the iPod Dock. It comes with an Apple remote and is pretty damn cheap.

7) Caccamolle: Oh, you meant Airport Express (I should have figured that out). I have one of those too, but it is such a PAIN for me to walk to another room, pick my playlist, send the stream to the proper speakers, and then walk back to the living room. You can't argue the A/X experience is superior in any way here. But if you have the computer sitting right there next to the receiver (why bother with the Airport express at all in that case?), then I guess its a bit silly to fire up the TV.

Okay, enough on the "TV as a display: good or bad" thing

8) [Not being sarcastic]. What are the competing products that you naysayers keep referring to? I'm unaware of any product that can receive 720p video wirelessly without lag (aka draft N), can detect the laptops of visitors for content, etc. for $300.

9) Stella, I'm sure you'll bring up the Xbox 360 here, which is an interesting case since its price is subsidized by Microsoft making it fairly cheap. However there are rather large negatives: wireless costs an extra $100, it's only wireless G, have to pay an extra $100 for a measly 20 GB hard drive, Windows Media Video ties, and it requires a media center computer to be tied to. Apple TV works with any computer that has iTunes, which is free. Therefore, while "superior", the Microsoft solution is also much more expensive and dare I say a bit more complicated for joe average. Have you even tried to stream 1080 content to an Xbox 360? Doesn't work too well. What's the point in supporting higher resolutions if you can't even functionally use them? In this sense, the 360 is MORE limited in it's functional resolutions than the Apple TV (unless you are on a wired network, but that almost surely shuts the door on the general populace using it). The Xbox 360 hard drive is much too small to depend on local storage for all these High def files and defeats the whole idea behind Media Center/AppleTV, so that option is a non-starter.

Peace
Feb 11, 2007, 02:04 PM
You don't need your TV to be on to listen to music.One can turn the TV on.Navigate to an album or a stream.Play it through the Toslink-out to your stereo then turn the TV off.
When you want to change to a different album or a playlist simply turn the TV back on and the Front Row is there.Besides most newer common wide screen HDTV's have built-in screensavers.

Mgkwho
Feb 11, 2007, 02:09 PM
bbbut Gizmodo says it's shipping on the 27th!

-=|Mgkwho

MKT7@mac.com
Feb 11, 2007, 02:39 PM
OK guys, here's my question.

Money isn't the biggest problem for me re: :apple: TV. Here's how I see it.

With Handbreak you can encode content at 720p, and keep your dolby digital surround sound tracks intact. The only thing is that :apple: TV can't do Surround sound. That is a software issue, and I'm sure will eventually be rectified, (if not via a software update, atleast in the next incarnation of :apple: TV) As long as my content is encoded with all the surrounds intact I'm fine.

I'm also fine with 720p, i don't think most people can even tell the difference, they are just having a wank with the numbers/stats etc.

I want to know, is there any way that through Handbreak or anything like that we can keep the chapters intact. If I want to watch Scene 23 in a movie, I don't want to manually fast forward it with the dinky lil mac controller?

Anyone have any thoughts on this?

Peace
Feb 11, 2007, 02:51 PM
OK guys, here's my question.

Money isn't the biggest problem for me re: :apple: TV. Here's how I see it.

With Handbreak you can encode content at 720p, and keep your dolby digital surround sound tracks intact. The only thing is that :apple: TV can't do Surround sound. That is a software issue, and I'm sure will eventually be rectified, (if not via a software update, atleast in the next incarnation of :apple: TV) As long as my content is encoded with all the surrounds intact I'm fine.

I'm also fine with 720p, i don't think most people can even tell the difference, they are just having a wank with the numbers/stats etc.

I want to know, is there any way that through Handbreak or anything like that we can keep the chapters intact. If I want to watch Scene 23 in a movie, I don't want to manually fast forward it with the dinky lil mac controller?

Anyone have any thoughts on this?

I wasn't aware Handbrake can encode 720P video and Dolby Digital Surround Sound.

Where do you see that in handbrake?

cbud
Feb 11, 2007, 03:01 PM
I wasn't aware Handbrake can encode 720P video and Dolby Digital Surround Sound.

Where do you see that in handbrake?

Handbrake does not encode to 720p. No one knows the H.264 codec specifics Apple will use to encode this type of video until they sell one on iTunes.

Handbrake does not add chapters. Chapters are possible if the MP4 is wrapped in a .mov container. But, Apple can add chapters directly to MP4 but no one has implemented this into an encoder.

But the Apple TV doesn't have a display, so you'd need to switch on your TV, select what you want to play, then switch off your TV. If they were serious about music it would have a built-in display - like many competing products.

Sorry, but its no use for movies (lack of codec support, low res and lack of proper 5.1 sound), and no good for music (lack of navigation without TV being on). I'll pass on this...

As of now, I agree, it is not good for movies. But that will change. The Apple TV spec page says nothing about stereo, or 5.1. Perhaps when Apple releases 720p movies we will get 5.1 AAC and subtitles.

curmi
Feb 11, 2007, 03:29 PM
Reading posts here, I'm wondering if perhaps the US doesn't use DivX much, and that is why there are so many of you posting here that are not fazed by a lack of DivX in Apple TV?

Certainly in Australia DivX is the MP3 of the video world. DVD players these days also play DivX - so DivX is pretty much the de-facto standard here. I suspect it is the same in Europe. It is hard to find any media player or DVD player that plays H.264. In fact, most people have never heard of H.264 - certainly almost everyone who uses Windows.

So is the situation that DivX isn't used much in the US?

killr_b
Feb 11, 2007, 04:06 PM
Well, if you see me as a Troll, then thats your problem!

Well, Junk, DOA, "Windows Media centre" is way better - so thats my opinion. Not trolling. But, it is a negative comment against Apple - but so what - aren't we allowed to comment negatively on Apple?

Windows media player is far more flexible, if you have an XBox you can do most of what what iTV does ( and more, i.e., play games etc ) - store the media locally on the XBox and off you go, in HD too. WMC supports a lot more media types, thus, its automatically more useful, IMO. As the above poster correctly pointed out, its not that much more than the cost of iTV - so better value for money, if you can afford it.

Maybe I should explained a little more why I thought iTV is junk. But summing up "if your outside of the states", iTV is of little value because of its strong tie-in to iTunes content sums this up fairly well ( thus, lack of TV shows and movies ).

Five posts in one thread that all say "Windows is better…"
Not a troll huh? :rolleyes:

So, it sucks to hear that in Canada you are guilty until proven innocent. Except with a tax you pay and don't even get to prove your innocence.

So even if some people on this board never pirated anything (ya, right), there obviously wasn't point to your virtue because your government treats you as a criminal anyway. :rolleyes:

Don't get a Mac, get MAD! That's a ************ tax.

Peace

Digitalclips
Feb 11, 2007, 04:17 PM
I wasn't aware Handbrake can encode 720P video and Dolby Digital Surround Sound.

Where do you see that in handbrake?

Correct. As I earlier said I had used MPEG Streamclip 1.8 to do this not Handbrake perhaps I confused some folk. Snag is it cannot deal with commercial DVDs so FastDVD Copy is needed first and then MPEG Streamclip 1.8 (free app available at Version Tracker) can pick up the VOBs off your HD (no need to burn anything).

Stella; Five posts in one thread that all say "Windows is better…"
Not a troll huh? :rolleyes:



You are quite right and his posts are always the same, I wish he would simply move to a PC forum where I am sure he would get appreciation and agreement. Oh wait, perhaps he doesn't want that! :rolleyes: .

Reading posts here, I'm wondering if perhaps the US doesn't use DivX much, and that is why there are so many of you posting here that are not fazed by a lack of DivX in Apple TV?

Certainly in Australia DivX is the MP3 of the video world. DVD players these days also play DivX - so DivX is pretty much the de-facto standard here. I suspect it is the same in Europe. It is hard to find any media player or DVD player that plays H.264. In fact, most people have never heard of H.264 - certainly almost everyone who uses Windows.

So is the situation that DivX isn't used much in the US?

I am English but USA based; I admit as a Mac video guy (TV production and editing for ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC amongst many others using Media 100 and FCPro HD, now work 100% HD) I have not come across DivX... here is what I found in Google, is this even close?

"DIVX - This was supposed to be a standard that would offer competition to DVD movies, and allow people to purchase Divx discs that would only be enabled for a couple of days of viewing, eliminating the hassle of returning videotapes or DVD movies after you rent them. Divx ultimately failed due to consumer disinterest. More recently, the Divx name has also served as a slang term for a form of video compression based on MPEG-4."

Maccus Aurelius
Feb 11, 2007, 04:30 PM
Caccamolle
Maccus Aurelius
How exactly are you getting CONTENT to that Klipsh system? This is exactly what the Apple TV is for! I too have a nice set of Klipsh speakers and part of the reason I'm getting the Apple TV is to be able to funnel all my music through these speakers rather than the crappy computer speakers. Like a videogame system or DVD player, the Apple TV will pump sound to your receiver and video to your TV.

Obviously, the Apple TV is meant for those who do NOT (for whatever reason) have dedicated "media" computers. The Apple TV is the low-cost, easy-to-use alternative. Some people don't want the extra cost (the mini route still costs twice as much as the Apple TV) or complication (keeping content synced between computers, etc.). Obviously Front Row exists for a reason, so Apple is happy to give you both options.

I agree with your points about the Apple TV potentially being seen as an "extension of the computer" and thus expected to be more robust. But my original point still holds: where is all this supposed content that is not compatible with iTunes/AppleTV? Only a microscopic sliver of the population will ever know or care about "DivX". I have no proof, but I'm going to venture a guess that most legal, downloadable video content on the internet is iPod compatible (controlling for WMV).

That's possible, but I still see this as being more of a Mac user's type of device. I predict that sales will not be very good for a very long time for this device, and it's basically going to be found next to macs more than anything else.

Digitalclips
Feb 11, 2007, 04:31 PM
That's possible, but I still see this as being more of a Mac user's type of device. I predict that sales will not be very good for a very long time for this device, and it's basically going to be found next to macs more than anything else.

Just like iPods, right? ;)

Padriac
Feb 11, 2007, 04:35 PM
Curmi:

In the US at least, DVD players that support DivX are a niche at best. All this Media Center/Xbox/Apple TV stuff is hammering the nails in that coffin. In general, nobody really cares and the DVD players people are actually buying (sub $100 Sony/Samsung/Panasonic/no-name brand) don't usually support it it all.

h264 is fairly new so its no surprise that there aren't many products that support it yet. However, three fairly big products DO support it as standard: the iPod, the PSP, and the Playstation 3. Also, h264 is often referred to as AVC, and a great deal of high definition content (HD-DVD/Blu-ray) use it for encoding. I'd argue that the iPod, PSP, and PS3 are a much bigger deal than an army of chinese DVD players, and thus h264 is quickly becoming the most mainstream codec.

I'd say the situation in America is that DivX is primarily used to encode and distribute pirated content but in terms of mainstream penetration it is simply non-existant. A few do use it to "legitimately" encode content they own, but only a small fraction of us "nerds".

I maintain: I can't think of a single legal source of DivX files... it's a non-entity as far as the non-nerd, non-pirate population is concerned. How does one get DivX files without encoding them yourself (which you could do with h.264 anyway)? Nobody has offered me any real answers to this question, which only makes me think Apple may have been fine in completely ignoring DivX. However, maybe the situation is different in other countries, as you mentioned.

Digitalclips: would you care to do a quick step-by-step of your encoding workflow that will provide 720p surround content that is theoretically compatible with the Apple TV? I need to try this for myself.

Stella
Feb 11, 2007, 04:51 PM
No, In canada, the law states you are proven innocent until guilty.

Windows *is* better than somethings for Mac than others - hardly a revelation! The usefulness of Windows Media Centre v iTV -> WMC wins out, for me personally - but for you, that may not be the case.

Are you another person who is saying we can't speak out against Apple, even if it favours microsoft?

I'm not very sorry to all you Apple fan bois out there who don't have an open mind, that sometimes, Apple is not the solution to all problems, for everyone. Apple products generally are good, but some Apple products, stink ( imo ).

Windows Media Centre Software != Windows. Its a piece of software I'm talking about - not the windows 'media centre edition'.

p.s, If I was trolling, you'd know about it.

p.s.2 The reasons to why the iTV is not for me are perfectly valid ( better alternatives, lack of supported media formats, lack of downloadable iTunes content etc ), I'm glad the iTV is for you.

Five posts in one thread that all say "Windows is better…"
Not a troll huh? :rolleyes:

So, it sucks to hear that in Canada you are guilty until proven innocent.

Digitalclips
Feb 11, 2007, 04:55 PM
Curmi:

Digitalclips: would you care to do a quick step-by-step of your encoding workflow that will provide 720p surround content that is theoretically compatible with the Apple TV? I need to try this for myself.

Sure happy to.
1. Use FastDVD Copy and set to 'save data on disk' as you have no need to burn and will quit once DVD is read. If you don't it zaps working TS folder on quit.
2. Open VOB in MPEG Stream-clip 1.8. Trial and error needed for first few in list until one is found that produces the dialog asking if you wish to use all related files. The first few are trailers and intros. It is very fast and you can scrub to check you have everything from start to credits. It may offer to repair time code, I always accept.
3. Once open in MPEG Stream-clip 1.8 you can use a default output for H.264 / 720p or play with endless options and qualities. Many other wide screen options can be tried. I am trying endless combinations!
4. Drag 720p to iTunes Library and then play. It shows up in shared Library on other Macs on my network and plays.

Caveat - I can bet iTunes will be updated for ATV and for all I know what I have here won't stream to it but the fact it shows up in other Mac's iTunes that are using the shared Library gives me hope. If you try 1080i as I did it loads into iTunes no problem and plays but didn't show up in other Macs via shared library which kind of fits with ATV expectation for me at least..

curmi
Feb 11, 2007, 05:08 PM
Curmi:
I maintain: I can't think of a single legal source of DivX files... it's a non-entity as far as the non-nerd, non-pirate population is concerned. How does one get DivX files without encoding them yourself (which you could do with h.264 anyway)? Nobody has offered me any real answers to this question, which only makes me think Apple may have been fine in completely ignoring DivX. However, maybe the situation is different in other countries, as you mentioned.

I think the point is that in Australia I can't think of any legal downloadable source of H.264 files either - as we don't have an iTunes video store. With your own files you are left with encoding with DivX (which people have been doing for some time), or H.264 (which people have started doing, but mainly only Mac people from my limited samplings of friends who encode stuff. :) )

So I guess we'll see how it goes. I love the idea of Apple TV - I just think the product itself is underdone. Another point I should raise is that anything I record in EyeTV has to be encoded to H.264 first before I could view it on Apple TV (EyeTV records in MPEG-2 transport stream format). And exported to iTunes. EyeTV makes this easy, but it is actually a very slow process. It just would have been nice to have had a few extra codecs - and then I wouldn't be having this conversation and instead I'd be waiting for my Apple TV order to arrive. :)

Padriac
Feb 11, 2007, 05:22 PM
Curmi: yeah, it would be nice if Apple could do something to make the transition from other codecs smoother. Like a transition period where DivX is supported or something. But I guess if they supported a codec at all they could never stop because people would complain.

Re: legal h264 content I humbly disagree. Two words: video podcasts. But yeah, it's really a grey area as far as "standards" and video codecs are concerned.

Digitalclips: Thanks! Is there something necessary about Fast DVD or could another program possibly be used for this step (Toast or Mac the Ripper or something). $100 is a bit much for experimenting.

Digitalclips
Feb 11, 2007, 05:44 PM
Curmi:

Digitalclips: Thanks! Is there something necessary about Fast DVD or could another program possibly be used for this step (Toast or Mac the Ripper or something). $100 is a bit much for experimenting.

It's possible, the first part is simply a matter of getting a TS folder on your hard drive from the DVD. Non protected DVDs can be done with many programs no doubt, protected DVDs I only know of FastDVD Copy on a Mac, but there must be more.

I think FastDVD Copy lets you do a few without purchase so you can at least try it.

Note: I only try this with DVDs I have purchased. :)

I think the point is that in Australia I can't think of any legal downloadable source of H.264 files either - as we don't have an iTunes video store. With your own files you are left with encoding with DivX (which people have been doing for some time), or H.264 (which people have started doing, but mainly only Mac people from my limited samplings of friends who encode stuff. :) )

So I guess we'll see how it goes. I love the idea of Apple TV - I just think the product itself is underdone. Another point I should raise is that anything I record in EyeTV has to be encoded to H.264 first before I could view it on Apple TV (EyeTV records in MPEG-2 transport stream format). And exported to iTunes. EyeTV makes this easy, but it is actually a very slow process. It just would have been nice to have had a few extra codecs - and then I wouldn't be having this conversation and instead I'd be waiting for my Apple TV order to arrive. :)

As I mentioned I am not familiar with DivX but if it is another MP4 format as is H.264 (as I undersand it) they are CODECs of the same family at least so maybe there is hope for some suppoprt? As others have mentioned I believe H.264 is part of the high def standards for Blu-Ray and HD DVD so not something to take lightly.

I can tell you as I make output from original HD source material with H.264 it is an amazing CODEC.

in_my_head
Feb 11, 2007, 06:23 PM
Good points, shame iTV only supports Apple media / content.

Had Apple supported other media types then iTV would have been far far more useful.

...the main issue for me is why do I need to an iTv if the content is so limited?..answer is I don't.....i think the fact that WMT got the 6 major studios to sign on with them is part of the general trend for studio's to want to protect their distribution model....much the same way music studios did vs Naptser....note thatr WMT will preserve the DVD sales part while appl only wants to allow for digital distribution and management....this will change ventually i hope...but obviously not just yet...so as soon as I have access to more content (all content!) within iTunes much on the same way i do now for music, i will be interested in iTv..just an 'observation'...inmihead...and Stella the 'Goddess of Beer?'....btw, that beer is known as the 'Budwieser of Europe'....hardly a 'Goddess'.....pat.....

cbud
Feb 11, 2007, 06:24 PM
Sure happy to.
1. Use FastDVD Copy and set to 'save data on disk' as you have no need to burn and will quit once DVD is read. If you don't it zaps working TS folder on quit.
2. Open VOB in MPEG Stream-clip 1.8. Trial and error needed for first few in list until one is found that produces the dialog asking if you wish to use all related files. The first few are trailers and intros. It is very fast and you can scrub to check you have everything from start to credits. It may offer to repair time code, I always accept.
3. Once open in MPEG Stream-clip 1.8 you can use a default output for H.264 / 720p or play with endless options and qualities. Many other wide screen options can be tried. I am trying endless combinations!
4. Drag 720p to iTunes Library and then play. It shows up in shared Library on other Macs on my network and plays.

Caveat - I can bet iTunes will be updated for ATV and for all I know what I have here won't stream to it but the fact it shows up in other Mac's iTunes that are using the shared Library gives me hope. If you try 1080i as I did it loads into iTunes no problem and plays but didn't show up in other Macs via shared library which kind of fits with ATV expectation for me at least..

I would be wary of converting your video this way until we know for sure what codec specifics Apple's 720p will have. All video encoders had to be updated back in September to encode Apple's h.264 480p. Apple's site says the Apple TV will play 720p h.264 Progressive Main Profile. Nobody knows what that "Progressive" part means. MPEG Stream-clip 1.8 can encode with the Main Profile, which plays fine in QuickTime/iTunes, but will not play on the iPod no matter what resolution is used.

For now, it is safe to say that what plays on the iPod will play on Apple TV. I would wait before encoding anything over 480p.

Avatar74
Feb 11, 2007, 06:37 PM
I would be wary of converting your video this way until we know for sure what codec specifics Apple's 720p will have. All video encoders had to be updated back in September to encode Apple's h.264 480p. Apple's site says the Apple TV will play 720p h.264 Progressive Main Profile. Nobody knows what that "Progressive" part means.

Progressive... that would be what the "p" in "720p" stands for.

Progressive Main Profile refers to 720p... that is, 1280 x 720 in progressive frames as opposed to interlaced frames. Apple I believe chose 24 progressive fps but the format can support up to 720p/63 at 50Mbps. "Main Profile" is the mainstream consumer profile for broadcast and storage applications. It allows interlaced frame coding (e.g. 480i, 1080i) but doesn't feature flexible macroblock coding and is limited to 8-bit depth. It is a 4:2:0 chroma compression format, and doesn't support 4:2:2 or 4:4:4 chroma compression.

cbud
Feb 11, 2007, 06:40 PM
No, In canada, the law states you are proven innocent until guilty.

Windows *is* better than somethings for Mac than others - hardly a revelation! The usefulness of Windows Media Centre v iTV -> WMC wins out, for me personally - but for you, that may not be the case.

Are you another person who is saying we can't speak out against Apple, even if it favours microsoft?

I'm not very sorry to all you Apple fan bois out there who don't have an open mind, that sometimes, Apple is not the solution to all problems, for everyone. Apple products generally are good, but some Apple products, stink ( imo ).

Windows Media Centre Software != Windows. Its a piece of software I'm talking about - not the windows 'media centre edition'.

p.s, If I was trolling, you'd know about it.

p.s.2 The reasons to why the iTV is not for me are perfectly valid ( better alternatives, lack of supported media formats, lack of downloadable iTunes content etc ), I'm glad the iTV is for you.

The reason the Apple TV is not for you is because you have invested a lot of money in your current setup. A year ago I looked at the "Media Center", but said no way because A) Windows sucks B) can't play what my iPod plays. I'd rather wait for content to arrive from Apple then grab a Media Center computer now that will blow you know what in a year.

Progressive... that would be what the "p" in "720p" stands for.

Progressive Main Profile refers to 720p... that is, 1280 x 720 in progressive frames as opposed to interlaced frames. Apple I believe chose 24 progressive fps but the format can support up to 720p/63 at 50Mbps. "Main Profile" is the mainstream consumer profile for broadcast and storage applications. It allows interlaced frame coding (e.g. 480i, 1080i) but doesn't feature flexible macroblock coding and is limited to 8-bit depth. It is a 4:2:0 chroma compression format, and doesn't support 4:2:2 or 4:4:4 chroma compression.

I thought it had to do with the complexity of the codec, like Baseline Low Complexity h.264.

So is this 'Main Profile' that the encoders use the same that Apple TV will use?

Digitalclips
Feb 11, 2007, 07:46 PM
I would be wary of converting your video this way until we know for sure what codec specifics Apple's 720p will have. All video encoders had to be updated back in September to encode Apple's h.264 480p. Apple's site says the Apple TV will play 720p h.264 Progressive Main Profile. Nobody knows what that "Progressive" part means. MPEG Stream-clip 1.8 can encode with the Main Profile, which plays fine in QuickTime/iTunes, but will not play on the iPod no matter what resolution is used.

For now, it is safe to say that what plays on the iPod will play on Apple TV. I would wait before encoding anything over 480p.

Believe me I am just messing around for fun at the moment... :)

Avatar74
Feb 11, 2007, 08:07 PM
I thought it had to do with the complexity of the codec, like Baseline Low Complexity h.264.

No. Low Complexity and High Complexity are referring to the encoding algorithm. Progressive refers to the frame type regardless of whether or not the file is CAVLC (variable length coding) or CABAC (binary arithmetic coding).

So is this 'Main Profile' that the encoders use the same that Apple TV will use?

There are different levels of Baseline, Extended and Main Profile encoding that have different maximum bitrates, but in principle, the answer to your question is yes.

Main Profile simply refers to the fact that the file is encoded primarily for broadcast/storage, as opposed to mobile (Baseline Profile of which the low-complexity version is supported by AppleTV presumably for interoperability with the current iPod-compatible H.264).

High Profile is for optical media (HD-DVD, Blu-Ray) and is not supported by AppleTV. There's no need to, as the purpose of AppleTV is to replace optical removable storage-based media with internet-distributed, nonlinear drive-stored media.

However, as I mentioned before, Main Profile supports various resolutions, various frame rates, interlaced and progressive frames, and bitstreams of various bandwidth... 20Mbps, 50Mbps, as high as 240Mbps (in probably High 4:4:4 Profile, not supported by AppleTV).

Porchland
Feb 11, 2007, 08:16 PM
I'm in agreement ... this just keeps looking like a waste of $300. That much to stream (limited) content to HD TV? It's just not that compelling.

I'm convinced there's a cable-killer subscription plan waiting to be announced. Sports. Award shows. The works.

Peace
Feb 11, 2007, 09:15 PM
For those that don't think the :apple: TV will do 5.1 keep in mind it has an optical digital out built in.This tells me 5.1 will be playable because that's what the optical digital output was designed for.

BigHat
Feb 12, 2007, 07:35 AM
For those that don't think the :apple: TV will do 5.1 keep in mind it has an optical digital out built in.This tells me 5.1 will be playable because that's what the optical digital output was designed for.


Remember HDMI out too.

KingofAwesome
Feb 12, 2007, 09:21 AM
TV navigation for music is totally useless in my view. Obviously there will be no need for it. From a music standpoint, ATV adds nothing compared to the A/X, at least in terms of practicality.


"Obviously" there will be no need for it?

This is definitely not an "obvious" statement. Have you ever used a video interface for your audio? I think that if you were to honestly compare the A/X interface to the ATV interface (in a scenario where the computer is further away than the TV), you'd quickly realize the difference between walking to your computer to use a mouse/keyboard to select different songs and pointing a remote at your entertainment center and using a large-font interface to select different songs.

I used to do testing for a set-top HD-based mp3 player (it was later repositioned away from home use and towards restaurants, due to high price) because I knew that the product would make listening to music a better experience. Likewise, when I put an mp3 disc in my dvd player, I turn on the TV so I can navigate through that interface, rather than the small LCD screen below the TV.

APPLENEWBIE
Feb 12, 2007, 12:43 PM
Sure is quiet out there in Apple land.:apple: .. Too quiet. Sorta spooky quiet from Cupertino. Huge things cooking, but no chatter...

hayesk
Feb 12, 2007, 02:55 PM
Wow, this thread is hilarious. To paraphrase to anti Apple-TV people:

"I don't think it's useful for me, and since everyone is just like me, this thing will flop."

Get over yourselves.

The AppleTV is just a device to get your iTunes into your living room. That's all it is. Many people have a use for this. Deal with it. I see these Roku soundbridges for sale in stores and they are also quite expensive. Yet, they are selling, and only do unprotected music, and have a tiny interface. It seems to me that if there is a market for these, there is a market for something that plays the rest of your iTunes content with a nice big, easy to navigate interface.

NightStorm
Feb 12, 2007, 02:57 PM
Wow, this thread is hilarious. To paraphrase to anti Apple-TV people:

"I don't think it's useful for me, and since everyone is just like me, this thing will flop."

Get over yourselves.

The AppleTV is just a device to get your iTunes into your living room. That's all it is. Many people have a use for this. Deal with it. I see these Roku soundbridges for sale in stores and they are also quite expensive. Yet, they are selling, and only do unprotected music, and have a tiny interface. It seems to me that if there is a market for these, there is a market for something that plays the rest of your iTunes content with a nice big, easy to navigate interface.
Exactly! It's an iPod without any screen. Apple even sells it in the iPod section of their store... why would people expect it to play any other formats than the other iPods? If it did, they would then have complaints that some of the videos worked on the AppleTV but not the iPod.

AppleMan101
Feb 12, 2007, 03:24 PM
Apple TV shipments delayed?
Several sources indicate that shipping date for Apple's multimedia device has slipped.

Apple's new £199 living-room solution for streaming iTunes content (music, podcasts, TV shows, movies and image libraries) to a television set was originally expected to ship this month.

The shipping date now appears to have been delayed until the end of the month, or even March, according to multiple sources.

Macworld has been told not to expect review units of the product until next month. A report on ThinkSecret confirms the news.

ThinkSecret also claims that Apple may ship Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard along with iLife '07 and iWork '07 next month, but Apple has made no such announcement.

I suppose they really are delayed then.

Peace
Feb 12, 2007, 04:28 PM
I suppose they really are delayed then.

Where did you get that quote?

nevermind.You saw it on Macworld's UK site.This news is old news.I don't recall Apple EVER saying it would ship in the middle of February.

TheBobcat
Feb 12, 2007, 04:40 PM
Was it even a worldwide date?

And all I remember is that it will ship in Febuary, and so far, nothing (besides ThinkSecret :rolleyes: ) has really ever said anything different. Where's the news?

Peace
Feb 12, 2007, 04:55 PM
Was it even a worldwide date?

And all I remember is that it will ship in Febuary, and so far, nothing (besides ThinkSecret :rolleyes: ) has really ever said anything different. Where's the news?

There is none except the fact that Apple has said it's shipping when they said it would.

http://appleinsider.com/article.php?id=2488

willxm
Feb 12, 2007, 05:44 PM
Hopefully it will arrive on time. I'm looking forward to making my bigscreen a monitor. Is that even possible?

Maccus Aurelius
Feb 13, 2007, 01:02 PM
It doesn't make a direct connection mirroring your computer. It's a stand alone device that feeds off of your iTunes library, not become a wireless port that turns your set into a monitor. If that was the case there would be no issue with codec support since it would not be a player in itself but just a link to your computer's software, which plays all codecs through third-party plugins. Think of the ATV as an iPod that sort of plays the role of DVD player, but without the removable media.

If you want to mirror your computer to your television set, get the appropriate cable hookup, but it will take some calibration to get it to work for some systems.

page3
Feb 13, 2007, 01:18 PM
So, let me get this straight. You theoretically have your nice 40" display with an Apple TV right below it. With the Apple TV you can use this nice 40" display to navigate your music but you guys are saying no: you want to do this with some 3" LCD screen on the Apple TV itself so you don't have to turn on your TV.

I don't get it.
...When listening to music I don't want visual distractions. All I want is the music and my imagination. I'm probably in the minority these day, but my Television only goes on when I want to watch something specific.

I'm not anti Apple TV, its just not for me in its current form. I already have a Neuston device which streams video from my Mac - I was hoping the Apple TV would do everything the ageing Neuston does, whilst offering additional codecs and a better navigation menu. I'm therefore disappointed it does neither.