Hypothetical iTV question

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by nickd06, Dec 6, 2006.

  1. nickd06 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    #1
    So when the iTV comes out, and of course this is just speculation, will it be able to stream all mpeg4 videos and h.264 videos? The reason i ask is because i have multiple HD-DVD's on my hard drive and i would like to stream those to my HD Television...Will i be able to do this if the files (HD-DVD) are converted to a .mp4 (mpeg4 or h.264 with a VERY high bit rate). Any thoughts?
     
  2. livingfortoday macrumors 68030

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    The Msp
    #2
    Well, you're asking a hypothetical question about the capabilities of a device that no one knows anything about yet?

    *cracks fingers*

    Yeah, I think I can answer this.

    See, the problem is, you're thinking all wrong about this. The iTV doesn't actually connect to a television, it connects to your mind. The "i" stands for intelligent, you see. It senses what you want to watch and where, and will pipe steaming-hot content into your noggin' wirelessly, anywhere in the house!

    Now, the preferred format for this kind of D2B (Direct To Brain) content will no doubt be whatever D2B-Compatible videos you get off of iTunes (You'll have to rebuy all your old shows and movies, since it won't be compatible with standard video), but I'm sure that there'll be a workaround or a program that will convert h.264 to D2B video.

    Of course, then the nerds here will start whining that while yes, it is some high-quality D2B we're talking about, Apple should have REALLY gone with HD-D2B, since that's the future! And S-D2B is so oooold and outdated already!

    I hope that helps.

    PS - And no, you will not be able to burn D2B video to video discs, since there'd be too great of a chance of your random thoughts mixing with the video during the burn process... and we've all seen your thoughts, it's gross. Stop thinking that.
     
  3. nickd06 thread starter macrumors member

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    Oct 25, 2005
    #3
    thanks for the try...i guess.

    Now someone who really thinks they can give some sort of answer...I'm just asking if it's an mpeg4 and it plays in iTunes wouldn't it be logical that it could stream to the iTV? Or do you think they will have the same (or similar) reistriction the iPod video has...Final question do I sit here and use up 20 dvd's or so to burn all the HD movies i have (for future watching on thr iTV)
     
  4. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

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    #4
    Here's my take.

    If it plays in iTunes and Front Row, it will play on the iTV. As for mpeg-4 and h264, the TV shows and Movies from iTMS are encoded using h264.

    I would think that as long as the connection between the Mac and the iTV is fast enough to stream your h264 HD streams, then you're set.

    Incidentally, how do you have HD-DVDs on your hard drive? You're talking about HD-DVDs, as in HD-DVD vs. BluRay, right? I didn't think they had gotten HD-DVD drives working with Macs yet.

    ft
     
  5. Scarlet Fever macrumors 68040

    Scarlet Fever

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    #5
    livingfortoday put a lot of effort into being sarcastic, but the point of his post, is that no-one, apart from a few select people in the upper ranks of Apple, knows anything about the player's capabilities. we won't know what it can and can't play until it is released, which again, no-one knows when that may happen.
     
  6. nickd06 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    #6
    understood but nevertheless i wanted others opinions on the matter...would a wireless connection be fast enough? What if I hardwire it with a (possibly) usb, firewire or ethernet cables? Of course who knows what is going to be available for it...but for the sake of my question which would be the besy method to stream a HD movie...And if you would like to know how i got these HD movies on my computer PM and i will explain...
     
  7. Scarlet Fever macrumors 68040

    Scarlet Fever

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    #7
    hardwiring it will definately do it. i can stream 240*320 on wireless, but it has been known to jump on occasion. If the "n" standard comes through, with apparently 10 times the speed and much more bandwitdth than the "g" standard, streaming HD movies should be a walk in the park.
     
  8. simontarr macrumors 6502

    simontarr

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    England
    #8
    Well basically we need to know the bitrate of a 720p/1080p HD-DVD movie, then see if todays wireless standards can transmit the data quick enough. I havent a clue about the bitrate of various HD formats, but I'd be suprised if it were greater than current fast wireless standards.
     
  9. ftaok macrumors 601

    ftaok

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    #9
    Well, broadcast HDTV has a max spec of 19 Mbit/sec.

    The HD movies from XBox Live run about 6 GB (from what I've read). Let's say that the 6 GB movie runs about 1.75 hours (105 minutes). That translates to 7.8 Mbit/sec.

    802.11g has a theoretical speed of 54 Mbit/sec. Not sure what the actual sustained rate is.

    If you just look at those raw numbers, it suggests that 11g has enough bandwidth to stream HD sources. However, in practice, I think it would be right at the limit, especially if there are other uses of the network going on.

    100 Mbit ethernet should be sufficient and Gbit ethernet should be overkill.

    The next 802.11 standard should be sufficient.

    ft
     
  10. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

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    Jul 4, 2005
    #10
    11g has the bandwidth to do it but there's issues with signal interference and speed at moderate distances from the source. That's why the iTV has a hard drive built-in - to cache streamed video over 11g networks.

    The newest Core 2 Duo Macs have a wireless chipset in them with Draft 1.0 of the 11n protocol which should be capable of realtime streaming at greater distances. Next year's Santa Rosa chipset will include Draft 2.0 and finally the finished 11n protocol will be ratified in 2008.

    Up until then iTV isn't going to be exclusive to Core 2 Duo Macs so long as it has enough space to cache a decent amount of a streamed video before playing then apart from a bit of a delay to the start of a film we'll never know we were watching over an 11g network.
     
  11. psychofreak Retired

    psychofreak

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    #11
    Said a disney guy and rumor-mongerers, no actual official news.

    P.S. I am so happy to have corrected Chundles (one of the most knowledgeable people here), so make sure not to mock me if I made a mistake.
     
  12. rockstarjoe macrumors 6502a

    rockstarjoe

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    #12
    Place shifting

    Does anyone think the iTV will have Slingbox-like abilities? That would seal the deal for me, and the more I think about it the more it would make sense. Buy movies from iTunes, watch them on your iTV, or sling them to your iPhone / work computer / etc. Thoughts?
     
  13. psychofreak Retired

    psychofreak

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    #13
    Possible, but IMO not so likely. It would be cool though.
     
  14. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

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    #14
    *smacks psychofreak upside the head*

    You dare doubt me!!!! :D :D :p

    Ah well, I'm gonna side with the Disney guy (he's the boss of Disney, not just some Joe Bloggs who works at Disney). Doesn't need to be a huge 3.5" hard drive, a simple 4200rpm laptop drive would work fine. It's got a USB 2 port too so you can probably dock an iPod into it and play content off that using the iTV interface.
     
  15. iSee macrumors 68040

    iSee

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    Oct 25, 2004
    #15
    Apologies to livingfortoday, but here's how I see iTV:

    1. Start with a video iPod.
    ----
    2. Remove the screen (your TV is the display)
    3. Remove the click wheel (you are going to control it with a remote)
    4. Remove the battery (it's going to stay put, next to your TV.
    ----
    5. Build in everything you find on the universal iPod dock (an IR receiver for remote control, various A/V ports, power connector, USB connector.) And for Pete's sake, include the Apple remove and various cables to go with the various ports.

    At this point you've got a video iPod that you leave permanently docked, connected to your TV. You control it with the Apple remote, and it plays content to your TV, Stereo, etc.
    To get content on to the device, you could plug a USB cable from the iTV to your computer, and it would sync with iTunes. But of course:

    6. Add a wireless adapter. The iTV uses this to auto-sync with all nearby macs. As soon as a new movie, TV show, song or whatever is available on a Mac, it will start to sync over to the iTV.

    Hopefully they'll also allow video content to start playing before it is fully downloaded. That is, when you buy a movie in iTunes, you can start watching it (either on the Mac or the iTV) before it is fully downloaded.

    Back to the OP's question, now:
    In my scheme, the hardware to decode video is on the iTV, just like it is on a video iPod. And just like the video iPod, I think we can expect some limitations on this hardware. Obviously power is no longer a limitation, but cost, and to some degree size is (Apple will want this thing small and sleek). Apple will target the decoder to the content they expect to deliver. Currently that is 640x480, but I'm guessing the decoder will be capable of at least 720p to allow future expansion on Apple's part. And Apple is taking a real risk if they don't plan to support 1080p. However, you might have to wait for a firmware update before that capability is unlocked.

    Conclusion: will it play "mpeg4 or h.264 with a VERY high bit rate"? Answer: Initially, maybe. Eventually, probably. Worst case, you'll have to buy G2 iTv.
     
  16. iSee macrumors 68040

    iSee

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    Oct 25, 2004
    #16
    Nah, but there may be an iPhone with video (or is it a video iPod with phone?)

    I'm guessing the first iPhone either be an iPod Nano with a built-in phone or a phone with a built-in Nano. :D. A video version will come later if movies, TV shows and videos are selling well on iTunes.

    Regarding your work computer... Well, if you watched a lot of videos on your work computer, you probably wouldn't have one for long anyway.;)
     
  17. stryfe137 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2006
    #17
    i pray that it has features like a slingbox. apple will probably do nothing to disrupt its itunes service. the only reason im holding out hope is that apple is first and foremost a hardware company. itv ,as it is is mostly useful for desktops.

    if apple wanted to rule the world they should have a subscription service for itunes music (ie emusic) and subscribed cable channels with itv streaming to your tv, iphone, 6g ipod, and macbook. they would seriously make a dent in the profits of the cable and phone companies.
     

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