Can a NAS be managed by Apple TV, No computer?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by ferrarofilms, Dec 16, 2012.

  1. macrumors member

    Oct 27, 2008
    Have a friend that is looking for something like this, haven't found any help on Synology or others
  2. macrumors P6


    Jan 24, 2010
    No. A computer is required to playback your own content.
  3. macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    Nope. You need either a full x86 computer or, at least, an iOS device with AirPlay support (anything with an A4 or newer CPU: iPhone4+, iPod touch 4+, iPad 1+), which, then, can act as a proxy between a UPnP / SMB etc. NAS source and the ATV.
  4. macrumors 603


    Feb 6, 2006
    Aren't there NAS drives with embedded iTunes servers? I thought loads of NAS devices offered this.
  5. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 23, 2007
    they are pseudo itunes servers, but they do not support Home Sharing which is what AppleTV requires.
  6. macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    Nope, Home Sharing is proprietary, closed technology, unlike SMB / UPnP / FTP / HTTP. Absolutely nothing supports it.

    If you do have an iDevice to be used as a proxy between your NAS and ATV, let me know and I explain how it can be used. Then, you won't be forced to keep a full computer switched on while streaming.
  7. macrumors member

    Apr 16, 2010
    I'm curious what your method is.
  8. macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    Just use a third-party player with both UPnP and AirPlay support. They're, currently, as follows:

    nPlayer, PowerPlayer, 8player, AcePlayer, BUZZ Player, GoodPlayer, CineXPlayer, GPlayer by Ginkgo Tech

    Then, 1, connect to your ATV 2, just start playing back the video on your iDevice from your NAS. The video will be shown on the ATV - with full quality.

    (More info: )
  9. macrumors member

    Apr 16, 2010
    OK, that's what I was thinking. I haven't been to enamored with such apps. Do you have a specific recommendation for the app? Preferably one that browses with cover art and such, maybe even meta data?
  10. macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    Unfortunately, of all iOS multimedia players I've tested AirPlay proxying-wise (see the UPnP bible linked to above), only the following two support metadata display (I used the one created with Subler with all the tags filled in, including artwork; it's available at so that you can give it a test ride):

    - VM Player HD („i” icon in the top left corner; the „Metadata” section at the bottom lists everything textual)

    - partially, viPlay (Lite) (Genre / director / description are shown when tapping the file in the main file list)


    - VM Player HD, while it supports UPnP, doesn't support AirPlay proxying

    - viPlay doesn't even support UPnP, only SMB and FTP. (Note that I haven't tested its SBM → AirPlay proxying capabilities, if any.)

    All in all, (at least if you plan to stick with UPnP), there isn't a single player with the capabilities you're looking for.

    When it comes to UPnP-capable but, AirPlay proxying-wise,by me, still untested players,

    - Plex only displays the genre and the long description, nothing else
    - PlugPlayer and ArkMC only display the artwork associated with the title, no other info.

    Note that,

    1, again, I haven't tested these three players, ATV AirPlay-wise. They may work. Or not.

    2, Plex isn't a fully configurable UPnP client (that is, it won't work with a NAS UPnP server, only with its own); I still list it here as its server component is also a UPnP server.
  11. macrumors 68020

    Feb 28, 2011
    Jailbreak and XBMC for the win.

    No jailbreak for the ATV3 unfortunately, which is why ATV2's are higher than a giraffe on eBay and the like.

    I have an ATV2 talking to a Synology and three separate WD Live NAS devices for a total of 15tb accessible.
  12. macrumors member

    Feb 24, 2011
    Just use Plex and enjoy your media via Airplay:
  13. macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    The OP asked for a computer-less solution ;)
  14. macrumors newbie

    Dec 18, 2012
    Check out the Qnap TS-410. It is a network storage device which has a built in itunes server. You can optionally install the Twonky Media Server (on the NAS computer required). These work very well with my Apple TV. As another poster mentioned...jailbreak (ATV2 only) and use XBMC. You'll be happy you did.
  15. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 23, 2007
    they won't work very well at all with an AppleTV unless you jailbreak it.
    the NAS won't support Home Sharing, and that is what Apple TV needs.
  16. macrumors newbie

    Sep 15, 2003
    While XBMC is much more powerful, if you're looking for a simple solution to connect to your NAS with you ATV ... I highly recommend ATV Flash Black from FireCore.

    aTV Flash (black) | FireCore

    Again, you would be limited to the ATV2, but the Firecore Media Player even plays back my MPEG4 based Blu-Ray rips ... as in bit-for-bit 1080p MKVs (albeit at 720p). Great for making an on-demand library of your movies/shows.

    The "Library" feature with automatic organization and metadata makes the whole experience feel like you're navigating a premium monthly video service too.

    And I haven't personally enabled the File Management option to see what it allows me to do, but thought I'd mention it nonetheless.
  17. macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    Exactly. No point in getting it if you don't jailbreak - as I've pointed out above, absolutely no NAS'es support Home Sharing, the only protocol ATV supports for local media streaming.
  18. macrumors member

    Feb 24, 2011
    Plex can now be installed on both ARM and Intel CPU based NAS. Powerful NAS can transcode on the fly whereas ARM NAS has to have m4v ready to play files.

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