View Full Version : new home theater setup wanna add atv or ps3
Sep 8, 2009, 09:17 AM
I know they are tons of threads on this topic but i have some dilemnas. I have three computers on my home network I have 2 seperate itunes libraries that i would like to be able to stream from and avi movies that i would like to be able to watch on the new 52 inch samsung i just bought for the living room. Im leaning on the ps3 because it's a cheaper option right now, has blue ray and i know i can play avi and movs on it . Sometimes i like to purchase movies and concerts from itunes too and watch HD wise.
Help ???? enclosed are pics of the setup I took them from my iphone they are not the best but you can get the idea.
Sep 8, 2009, 09:24 AM
PS3, IMO. I have one and it works flawlessly for gaming and videos (streamed from my Acer). Furthermore, if you live in country where VidZone or other movie/TV show app is available, you can use that for renting and buying movies straight for your PS3.
Mini would be great too but it may be too expensive (499$ @ refurb store) unless you buy used one.
Sep 8, 2009, 09:56 AM
I have both a PS3 and an ATV and while the PS3 is a great games console and Blu-Ray player it sucks as a media player. For a start the interface is rubbish and I`ve never been able to find a media streaming program that will stream 100% of my movies reliably. I know people will say oh its a problem with your setup or its your network but I've never had a single problem streaming from iTunes to my AppleTV. Plus if you already have a large iTunes video library that was purchased from the iTunes store then it's not gonna play on a PS3 due to DRM. I dont want to start a flame war (there's already a large thread about the PS3 as a media player) but for me the PS3 just isn't as good as the ATV as a media player (I like a nice interface and 100% reliable streaming).
Sep 8, 2009, 08:06 PM
I'll second Roidy's opinion. I also have both and definitely prefer the streaming experience with the :apple:tv vs. the PS3 (video more pixelated and choppy, even on wireless N or wired network) though your situation may dictate otherwise. If you have a lot of iTunes purchased media, as previously stated, the PS3 isn't an option due to DRM. Either way you go, unfortunately there wl be trade-offs. PS3 offers cheapest way to get blu-ray and some streaming options but will limit access to your iTunes purchased media while :apple:TV is IMO, better media streaming experience but I believe you would need to re-encode any .avi or .mov files to be able to watch on :apple:TV. If you can live without blu-ray, I'd recommend the :apple:TV.
I have both and personally the only one that really gets any use around here is the PS3. iTunes movie content has really been lacking lately. Most of the new Blu-Ray's come with digital copies in SD with iTunes copies so buying them from iTunes just doesn't make sense for us.
I would love to use the ATV more often, but the availability of movies and rental materials just never seems to be adequate.
I am a torrenter, but I don't download movies or other material that requires purchase. I download television programs mostly aired on the BBC (BBC America channel stinks). I use a program called PS3 Media Server which flawlessly converts and streams the shows from my Mini to my PS3. I have also converted a few of our legally purchased DVD's via Handbrake and they play well over the PS3.
I don't think you should rule out the ATV, but if you're looking to buy right now, get the PS3. If you can wait a few months (maybe even 24 hours after the keynote tomorrow) you may find a new bundle of ATV's with updated features and a renewed focus on the platform from Apple.
Sep 8, 2009, 10:25 PM
I too am having the exact same dilemma as the OP. I'm trying to setup a HT system that will allow me to watch my video collection (mostly MKVs) on my LCD TV in the living room. I know the PS3 doesn't support MKV natively, so I would need to transcode my MKVs and stream it using PS3 Media server. The Apple TV doesn't support MKV either but I believe there are hacks and patches out there that will enable MKV playback on the ATV. However, based on various posts I've seen, the Apple TV doesn't handle 720p MKVs that well due to its lack of horsepower. So the question is, which is the better option when it comes to streaming 720p MKVs?? I'm on a wireless N network if that matters..
Sep 9, 2009, 03:59 AM
I have both but use the PS3 almost exclusively these days especially after the latest software update and the addition of the BBC iPlayer (in the UK) which I use almost everyday. I have all my movies stored on an external portable hdd attached to the PS3 and stream music and photos from my Mac using Playback. Never had any streaming issues over gigabit ethernet even with movies.
While the PS3 media interface isn't as pretty as the ATV I find it far quicker and easier to use mainly because of the PS3 controller - once you have the hang of it you can scroll through your collection in seconds. If only Sony could get to grips with meta data they would clean up in the media extender wars IMO!
Basically if all you have/want is iTunes content go with the ATV.
If you have varied content from different sources then go with the PS3.
If you have a mixture of the two then it's your call.
From a value for money perspective though I think the PS3 wins hands down especially with the new price drop. Games Console, Media Player, iPlayer & Bluray/DVD player all in one = Bargain.
Sep 9, 2009, 08:09 AM
I have all my movies stored on an external portable hdd attached to the PS3
Interested in doing this myself but have heard there are some limitations on file size etc - can you give some more details on your setup please - file type, maximum size of files etc? I have some large 1080 mkv files (>20GB) that I would like to play on the PS3 - would this be possible using an external HD?
Sep 9, 2009, 01:33 PM
Never tried the ATV, but have tried:
Xbox 360: LOUD. Streams pretty well, even on a G network. Not enough formats supported. Interface isn't great.
PS3: Quiet. Playback is very poor on G network, performance improved when I switched to a Belkin N router (even though the PS3 doesn't have N?!?) Not enough formats supported. Interface isn't great.
When I have time (& money) I'm going to go with a Mac mini, and either Plex or build a custom media library app to suit my needs. Should play just about anything. I'm worried about the lack of upgradability of any of the above, using a mini (or a miniature PC) is a much safer choice, budget permitting.
Sep 9, 2009, 02:27 PM
I have both.
PS3 is great for games and Blu Ray, which is definitely higher quality than anything you'll be able to buy on Apple TV (though at twice the price).
Apple TV is much, MUCH better at on-demand and streaming media, however.
The movie purchase/rentals store is far more usable, the menu system is much easier to navigate, the direct, easy-to-use portal into Video Podcasts, YouTube and Flickr are great for free content (I no longer have cable TV and get my news from free CNN and MSNBC podcasts and much of my entertainment from shows like the Digg Reel, Rotten Tomatoes Show, Apple Byte, etc.).
The streaming from your computer hard drive couldn't be simpler (you just have to have iTunes open and your computer's movies show up in the Apple TV menus along with its locally stored content).
If you have an iPhone or iPod Touch, you can download Apple's "Remote" app for free and have a touch-screen remote to select movies, perform searches via the virtual keyboard (much quicker than using a PS3 control to select letters one at a time), etc.
Also, all the content you buy can be synced to your iPhone or iPod and you can, say, watch part of a movie on a plane trip, dock your iPhone when you get home, then the Apple TV will start playing where you left off the next time you turn it on.
In short, go PS3 if games and Blu Ray are your priority. Go Apple TV if you want on-demand online content, movie rentals, portability with devices, easy streaming from iTunes and easy-to-use interface.
Forgot to mention that content downloading from playstation store for movie purchases and rentals is glacial slow. ATV is certainly the winner for purchased content.
Sep 11, 2009, 01:23 PM
man everybody made such great points . I saw the negs and pos of both devices. I think im definately gonna get the ps3 first and then eventually go atv considering i already own a mac mini with a bit torrents on it. but seriously everybody made great points...