Apple Entertainment for Whole House

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by dhards16, Apr 16, 2013.

  1. dhards16 macrumors newbie

    Apr 16, 2013
    I have been searching thread for same topic, but couldn't find the exact needs. I'm looking to keep Apple products as the main solution, but understand that others may be needed to complete system.

    What I have:
    iMac - Main computer with the majority of my data (1TB - Movies/Music/TV)
    Mac Mini - Secondary computer used for some additional music
    ATV 1 - Living room
    ATV 2 - Bedroom
    Airport Extreme - I don't think I'm using this to its full capability
    Airport Express - Hook up speakers to play music around house/outside
    iPad - Would like to incorporate more (use the Remote App)
    iPhone - Would like to incorporate more (use the Remote App)

    My main iMac is slowing down due to the data on the computer. I want to set up a network hard drive that can be accessed by all my apple tvs at any time. I want to buy a larger external hd (2-4TB) to hold me over for the foreseeable future. Looking for ease of use with streaming music and movies.

    What would be the best set up considering the resources I already have (with the exception of new external hard drive)?

    If you know a thread that has tackled this issue, please feel free to point me in that direction.
  2. whoiare macrumors regular

    Aug 30, 2011

    what kind of mac mini?

    if the mini is at least an intel version then my suggestion would be to buy an external firewire 800 3-4tb drive and use that as your itunes server. Since you dont have a ton of files now and networked storage running itunes is quite expensive id go this route. Sounds like youre doing everything else properly though. The only other suggestion id have is to replace the ATV1 with an ATV 3. Not only will this give you netflix and hulu, but it will allow the remote app to control it and you can take advantage of airplay. This way you can use airplay and itunes to send music throughout both apple tvs and the express via your mac/iphone or ipad. All the extreme needs to do is give you wireless internet so your ipad and iphone can use airplay. Id also suggest hard wiring the mini and both apple tvs if you havent done so. It doesnt need to much more than that...and you dont need it to share a printer or a harddrive because you need itunes in order to share your media.
  3. cxc273 macrumors regular

    Dec 12, 2012

    If you can configure your Mac Mini to work as your iTunes server and use an external with that, you should be good to go. All you need is a version of iTunes running home share to make it happen.

    I also agree the ATV1 should be replaced with an ATV3. You can snag either a refurbed one from Apple for $85 or other websites for less than $100.
  4. dhards16 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 16, 2013
    Mac Mini
    Software: 10.6.8
    Processor: 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    Memory: 2GB 1067 MHz DDR3

    Bought it from a friend's company last year for $200. I didn't know what I was going to do with it, but couldn't pass up the price. I'm assuming it is very under used right now.

    I've been thinking of upgrading to ATV 3, but finding it hard to part with the $250 I spent on the ATV when it first came out.

    My basement is unfinished and the ceiling is open. I have been considering hardwiring the ATVs due to some streaming issues from time to time.

    Thanks for the ideas and help! New to the board and trying to take my Apple entertainment to the next level. Everything done up until now has been pretty elementary.
  5. linds15 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 16, 2012
    Great White North
    that mini should be able to handle streaming for you, i'd have that running itunes with an external attached to it for media
  6. FreakinEurekan macrumors 68040


    Sep 8, 2011
    Eureka Springs, Arkansas
    I'll echo the recommendation of turning your existing Mini into a media server. You can stream content to all your devices (and ATV3's if you choose to add them) through home sharing. If you have a lot of simultaneous users streaming content you might want to bump up the RAM in that box, but it's a tricky job to DIY so I would suggest you use it as-is unless and until you experience lags.

    Personally, I'd put two external drives on it and OS X Server ($20 from the App Store). Use one drive for your media, and use the other as a Time Machine disk. With OS X Server, you can back up your iMac as well as the media on the Mini. You'd want your Time Machine drive to be large enough to accommodate both, so for example a 2TB for media and 4TB for Time Machine.
  7. EvilC5 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 22, 2010
    Hanover MD
    I had my CD2 Mini running as my itunes server for a long time, then upgraded to a 2012 mini i5. im serving media to 4 ATV3's, 2 ATV1's, 2 Airport Expresses. also 2 onkyo networked receivers and 2 samsung tv's (Twonky DLNA).

    eyetv is running on my mini, so I can stream recorded shows outside my home, and also running air video server to watch movies when away.
  8. dhards16 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 16, 2013
    What exactly is the air video server? Would that be part of the OS X Server or something additional I would have to purchase to watch/listen to media while away.
  9. EvilC5 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 22, 2010
    Hanover MD
    its just an application running on the mini. the app for the iPhone/ipad is like 99 cents i think. you can play MKV's and other formats with it as well.

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