Setting up external HDD with Apple TV question

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by dporter15, Feb 5, 2013.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2013
    #1
    Hey everyone. Currently I have an iMac with an external HDD streaming my movies to my Apple TV3 which works great. Unfortunately my iMac is collecting dust so I am giving it to my father. So anyways I was curious since my now primary computer is my rMBP if there was a way I could stream the movies to my Apple TV without having to keep my laptop connected to my external all the time.

    I'm not sure if this would work or the performance of it but what if I connect my hdd to my airport extreme's usb, then set up home sharing through my macbook and connect my apple tv via ethernet directly to my airport extreme.

    If it doesn't work or has poor performance, would I be better off replacing my Apple Tv with a Mac Mini and just running the HDD off of that?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2012
    Location:
    Great White North
    #2
    i haven't tried exactly what you are asking for. but when i had an externall HDD plugged into my APE i couldn't get watchable video straight to my macbook, let alone trying to pass that along through to the ATV. your best bet is to either have a permanent computer running itunes with the hdd, or the mini at the tv instead of an tav
     
  3. macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #3
    A USB drive on the AEBS will work fine, or consider getting a NAS.
     
  4. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2012
    #4
    This is what I'm doing. Works great.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2013
    #5
    Ok, so now I'm starting to consider setting up a NAS. I wasn't to familiar on what exactly it was so I did a quick search on google to find out more but I'm still a little confused. From the sounds of it connects via ethernet to the back of my APE?

    Also, any recommendations as a good NAS thats full OS X compatible. Thanks Again
     
  6. macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #6
    Easy, Synology NAS. I've got a DS212j

    They're really nice devices and I highly recommend them.

    Yes, it connects via Ethernet. The blog link in my signature is Wordpress running on mine.
     
  7. macrumors 601

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    #7
    Doesn't iTunes have to running on his laptop ?
     
  8. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2013
    #8
    I was wondering this as well.
     
  9. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2012
    #9
    Another option would be to buy a netbook and use it to strictly run iTunes so that it serves the AppleTV. I got a netbook off eBay for about $80 and plugged my HDD into that and all it does is run iTunes homesharing so that my AppleTVs have access to my movies. They aren't very powerful so don't plan on doing too much with it but mine is out of the way and with Windows task schedular it turns off at about 2am and back on at noon so that it saves even more power. It is plugged into the router through Ethernet so in a way is like a NAS, only I can easily add more HDD without reformatting and if the netbook takes a crap it's much cheaper to replace than a NAS.
     
  10. macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #10
    Yes

    Yes, it does.
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Location:
    uk
    #11
    im not sure what u mean. but my synology NAS has an itunes server. i am yet to get an apple tv but i am hoping it will work. also, the new system in synology (DSM 4.2) is supporting airplay streaming (http://www.synology.com/dsm/dsm4.2_beta.php?lang=us).

    p.s. the videostation is fantastic for ipad and iphone. it seems i need an atv to run videos in my 4 year old tv.
     
  12. macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2012
    #12
    It will work...for audio only.
     
  13. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    Location:
    uk
    #13
    have u tried videostion? it works with full video streaming..and they claim it will work for video too in tv with atv
     
  14. macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #14
    I've tried VideoStation with files encoded via Handbrake for both ATV2 & 3. So far it fails to work. Interesting idea once they get the bugs worked out as it means you can start playback from a browser.
     
  15. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2013
    #15
    Basically if possible I want a solution that doesn't require my laptop running all the time or not even use my laptop at all.
     
  16. macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #16
    Okay...

    Buy a Mac Mini.

    Stream from your iPhone or iPad.

    Stream from iTunes via the iTunes Store.

    But you need to have a computer on to do this locally. How else would the AppleTV access the content you've already downloaded?
     
  17. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2013
    #17
    Update

    Hey guys just to give you an update.

    I decided to wire my AppleTV directly to my Airport Extreme which definitely helps with lag I had when it was wireless. I then connected my external HDD directly to the APE. My mac is still connected wirelessly but I have it running on the 5GHz network so I really don't notice any delay.

    The only downside I have found thus far was my laptop has to stay running but I am eventually going to buy a Mac Mini to replace the rMBP as the iTunes server. Thanks again for everyones help!
     
  18. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2011
    #18
    I have the ATV1 so excuse my ignorance.

    To be clear, no matter how many external drives, NAS drives etc, is there no way to watch films on your apple TV without having a computer running iTunes? Why can't Apple make it work without going via a computer?
     
  19. macrumors 65816

    shyam09

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2010
    #19
    Hey, I just got an ATV 3 and I have a ext HDD connected to my PC, but could you explain how you got the setup working (in the OP)? And I assume the videos have to be on.mp4

    Thanks
     
  20. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2013
    #20
    It was pretty easy to set up. Basically, I converted all my movies using Handbrake. There's a preset for Apple TV 3 so it's pretty easy. After all my movies had finished, I opened iTunes and unchecked, "Copy files to iTunes Media folder when adding to library' Then just add your movies. After thats finished all you should have to do is make sure home sharing is enabled in iTunes and your Apple TV should automatically find it as long as there on the same network.

    ----------

    So far, I haven't found a way for it to work without some version of iTunes running.
     
  21. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2008
    Location:
    Boon Docks USA
    #21
    Cheaper to buy a roku, WD Live, or OUYA and pull the movies from a disk on your AE and let these boxes do the work. Don't see why apple doesn't put iOS on an apple tv to do this. One of the reasons I am moving away from apple. Have 2 ATV but looking real hard at WD Live to replace them.
     
  22. macrumors 65816

    shyam09

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2010
    #22
    kk i got the ATV today (the A1469 one :D) and i set up air video on my PC (win 8) ... it's asking me to download java... and with all the zero-day vulnerabilities going on with Java, is it safe to install java or should i wait a bit longer?
     

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