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Old Jul 2, 2009, 07:35 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2005
ATV in Canada...help w/ purchase decision (boxee, patchstick)

Hi Folks
Looking for a little guidance before I pull the trigger on purchasing an Apple TV.

1. Does anybody know how many movies are available for rental through iTunes in Canada? I couldn't find it anywhere through the iTunes interface but I must admit I am not that familiar with it. We currently use zip.ca for movie rentals (similar to Netflix but in Canada) and I wanted to get a sense of how the library size compares (I think zip has 7K movies).

2. I have two mac laptops and an imac networked through a Time Capsule at home. I want to be able to stream content from the network through the ATV to our tv (for example avi files..). It is my understanding that to do this I need a third party program like Boxee. Just looking for confirmation here. Is there other ways of doing this?

3. Also, I understand that b/c I am in Canada even though I load boxee I will still have content blocked (for example, hulu). I have also read that even if I use a program like Hotspot Shield, Hulu will still not stream. However, if I load patchstick before I load boxee then I can purchase a private vpn and then hulu, cbs and all previously blocked content should stream okay? Can someone confirm this

4. Do I need patchstick to use boxee on the ATV? If not, what are some of the advantages of purchasing Patchstick (beyond getting access to an integrated private vpn (additional cost)).

Thanks everyone.
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Old Jul 3, 2009, 05:56 AM   #2
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: New Zealand

I have just purchased an ATV a week ago and actually made use of the Patchstick.ca product to get my unit to a point I was happy with.

Like you, I wanted to stream all kinds of movie files that were stored on my Apple iMac and the patchstick product absolutely enabled me to do that very very easily. It also enabled me to use RSS Feeds, web browsing from the couch (CouchSurfer), FTP and SSH into my AppleTV etc etc. Sapphire is also a lovely piece of software if you're into TV series and want to have them appear on nice menus etc etc.

With regards to enabling content intended for only the US audience, I have not as yet attempted this, but I believe that Hotspot Shield can 'hide' your real physical location.

All things I've mentioned above come on the Patchstick product and are also possibly available with other alternatives including doing it all yourself.

By nature, I'm lazy and given that I work in IT all day, I don't want to come home and have to do it - so for me the Patchstick solution was ideal. The support I got from the guy was superb.


mid-2010 13"MBP 2.4Ghz / 4Gb / 250Gb; 24" Cinema Display
2007 iMac 24" 2.4Ghz 4Gb RAM / 320Gb HD
iPhone 3G; TV (ATVFlash)
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Old Jul 3, 2009, 08:46 AM   #3
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Torontoland
I use my TV pretty much exclusively for renting movies (I also stream music from my TV to speakers in another room from time to time).

The HD movie rental offering is pretty much identical to what's available on the US store. My only gripe is that some movies take a few weeks to go from for sale to for rent on iTunes (Canada and US). This isn't a huge deal for me because I have the patience to wait. If I really want to see a movie that's not yet out on iTunes, I'll go grab the blu-ray at Rogers or Blockbuster.

I don't illegally download movies, nor do I rip my own DVDs, so I don't see the need to hack my TV. And I'm not interested in streaming other internet video to my TV so the TV does exactly what I want.
Words for sale at LewinCreative.com.
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Old Jan 17, 2011, 06:33 AM   #4
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Join Date: Jan 2011
I would suggest you to go for dvdlink.ca. They have a collection of more than 22000 titles to choose from. The best thing about it being that they offer both movies and games at the same price.
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Old Jan 17, 2011, 11:29 AM   #5
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada
Live in Canada.

Hacked my 1st gen Apple TV with the free utility. Bought RemoteHD to use with my iPhone for keyboard input. Works like a charm.

I would not bother paying for the hack it is very easy to do with a google search.

I can stream all kinds of files wirelessly but do find some of my MKV rips do not play. For .avi files you should have no problem.

I gave up on using a vpn service because it was too slow for watching things when I have the time. I do not want to wait for things to buffer or have it stop in the middle of a video.
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Old Jan 17, 2011, 11:30 AM   #6
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Location: Nova Scotia, Canada
Wow old thread....sorry
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