mp4 movie files play in quicktime and itunes but will not copy to apple tv

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by shellburnham, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Jan 6, 2010
    I never had this issue until recently but now when i copy a movie mp4 file to itunes then try to sync it i get the error message

    'movie' cannot be copied to this apple tv as it cannot be played on this apple tv.

    I have tried running it through handbrake which occasionally works but most of the time i am losing the audio when i use the apple tv settings which is really odd.

    Can anyone help?
  2. macrumors newbie

    Oct 28, 2008
    I'v got exactly the same problem. Ended up converting them to .mov files using Videomonkey or the Quicktime X save as function. Still very odd that AppleTV wont play them?
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 6, 2010
    Does converting them to .mov work and is the quality the same?
  4. macrumors 6502

    Jun 12, 2007
    Are they labeled with the extension .mp4 or .m4v?
    iTunes seems to prefer .m4v, so I assume the aTV does as well.
  5. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 23, 2003
    Play the offending movie file in QuickTime, then use the 'Movie Inspector' to see the movie's details: resolution, bitrate, fps, etc. It's likely that one of those properties exceeds the limits of the :apple:TV's capabilities, given under 'Video formats supported' on the :apple:TV's Tech Specs page.

    Pay particular attention to the framerate (fps). This is something that often gives people trouble.
  6. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 6, 2010
    i have tried both file extensions with the same result, the fps goes up to 24 at points so will try encoding with that set just under but why would the sound be funny on the conversion?
    I shouldnt have to even convert it though.
  7. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 6, 2010
    just tried that and the sound is all wrong again but picture fine - its like the soundtrack is in super slow motion yet i have tried all the presets for apple tv and they turn a perfectly good mp4 into this its very strange, the solution is to just get these to copy to the apple tv without any converting but it just wont even with the file extension changed to m4v.
  8. macrumors newbie

    Oct 28, 2008
    Converting to .mov definitely worked. The quality looks the same, but I am no expert. However, it looked good on my 42" TV.
  9. macrumors newbie

    Jan 28, 2010
    Regardless of what I try what used to be an avi file simply refuses to play on the AppleTV. It plays fine on the PC, on both of my Macs in Quicktime AND in iTunes yet AppleTV simply will not accept it.

    It is getting to the point where I am just going to bail on this thing and hook a PC up to my home theater system. All movie files, including those where I own the DVDs and have ripped them on my Mac will play on the PC will little futzing about. So if anyone from Apple is reading this.. get your **** together.
  10. macrumors 6502a


    Jun 21, 2007
    Colchester, UK.
    It really is a little bit late in the day for moaning about what the appletv can and can't do. The thing has been around a few years now, certainly long enough for people to do some homework before buying it.

    Nobody at apple really cares whether people can get their particular flavour of movie file to play on appletv. All apple care about is whether it will play content bought from the itunes store - which it does admirably. Just don't expect it to play anything else without at least some headaches and maybe a little hacking.

    If you really want a machine that plays anything you throw at it get a newish mac mini, or a decent pc, put xbmc on it and enjoy. :cool:

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