Apple TV, Boxee Box, SlingBox, PS3, or Roku?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by ellewoods2001, Sep 25, 2012.

  1. ellewoods2001 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2012
    #1
    Here's my deal:

    I have a beautiful 55 inch LED Samsung sitting in my bedroom. It's totally useless at the moment. I have the fastest internet Time Warner Cable offers, but no cable TV. I heard a rumor that if you have the premium internet, TWC will GIVE you a Slingbox for free. So I called and the guy had no idea what a Slingbox was. I told him I was looking at a NY Times article that says they give them to their customers with the fastest internet and sure enough, he did some digging and I have a brand new Slingbox on its way to me tomorrow.

    I have no idea what a Slingbox is.

    It's my understanding that you need to plug your Slingbox into your cable box/DVR so you can watch your TV anywhere you go via your internet.

    I want the opposite of that. I obviously don't have cable, so is that thing completely useless to me?

    So here's my dilemma. What hardware should I buy so that I can watch cable TV for free on my TV. And free movies from flash sites like motionempire or icefilms or whatever. I know Wii can't do this. And I've been told that the Apple TV 2 can if it's jailbroken... but I hate to spend double on a Apple TV 2 when I can buy the 3 for 1/2 the price! I heard that I can mirror my laptop onto the Apple TV 3 if I have Mountain Lion, is this true? Because for $99 I can buy a brand new Apple TV 3 and $20 Mountain Lion and get the full 1080p instead of spending $250 on a jailbroken Apple TV 2 with only 720p. Are there better alternatives? Can my free slingbox do anything cool with the Apple TV? Nerds, help me out here!
     
  2. nigelquest macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    #3
    I have all of those devices and have had a few others. The combination of apple tv, built in apps and airplay take care of my needs and works quite well if you have a robust network. This works well if you are invested in the Apple ecosystem (ios devices, macbooks, etc). If not a roku would be my second choice though I cant find a model that supports 5GHZ N wireless which is a must in a congested network area.

    IMO once you Apple TV allows 3 party apps it will be far and away better than anything else on the market.
     
  3. d21mike macrumors 68040

    d21mike

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2007
    Location:
    Torrance, CA
    #4
    I have a Slingbox and it allows you to "place shift" your TV Streams. You said you do not have Cable TV. Do you watch TV at all? I mean do you watch OTA TV? My understanding that you may be able to get basic channels via your CABLE in your home if you have Internet with TWC. In any case you plug in your TV source in the back of your Slingbox. Then you get a Slingbox App for your phone or tablet (check the Slingbox site) and then you can stream to that device no matter "where (place shift)" you are. Since I have the Slingbox and did not want to rent FIOS STB's for all of my rooms I also got the WD Live TV box (competes with Roku and Apple TV etc) but it has the Slingbox App which allows me to stream from one room to the other and also have the ability to stream to my iPhone and iPad.
     
  4. Zeke D macrumors 6502a

    Zeke D

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Location:
    Arizona
    #5
    I have a Roku and an :apple:TV. I went to an Antenna and I get about 20 channels. They are only the affiliates, but the non-affiliate shows I watch are available on Netflix or Amazon. If you are in a metropolitan area, a simple indoor antenna should get you quite a bit of programming.
     
  5. Gaidin43 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2012
    #6
    Build an HTPC. It will only cost 300 or less. Great home theater item that allows you to double as a NAS if you want. Super fast. Able to watch any kind of format using different programs. Able to be controlled by a remote with good tv interface using media center or something similar. Can watch Hulu, sling box, stream we pages, Netflix, amazon prime videos, and tons more. Best investment I ever made for home theater.
     
  6. zosobao5150 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2010
    #7
    Curious if you could share your build. I am trying to build something like this for this cost.

     
  7. solo118 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 16, 2011
    #8
    Regarding icefilms, it has not even been working (unless there is an update I do not know about) so if you only wanted that on an ATV you might be out of luck.
     
  8. warvanov macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2011
    #9
    If your plan is to get an AppleTV and use AirPlay streaming to play HD content on your TV from your Mac running Mountain Lion, you're going to be disappointed. It works, but the quality is poor and appears compressed. You're better off with your Mac and an HDMI cable.
     
  9. orestes1984, Sep 27, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2012

    orestes1984 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2005
    Location:
    Australia
    #10
    What do you watch on TV? Apple TV has a fairly extensive list of shows you can get a season pass for to download when they're released, then there's Netflix and Hulu. Then there's NBA.tv and NFL coverage as well. A terrestrial antenna will get you a few more digital stations. It depends really what it is you watch frequently as to whether you go with cable or see value in an Apple TV.

    Yes you can mirror your laptop onto your apple tv using airplay, or air parrot and there are some applications like HDtv viewer that will allow you to watch some cable tv channels for free over the internet, but again you lose quality. You can even stream web feeds using airplay, the question really is how much you can bare to put up with in terms of pixelation and artifacts.
     
  10. gouda272 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2010
    #11
    If you want to sell the slingbox shoot me a message :)
     
  11. hellonewman macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2012
    #12
    The Real Apple TV

    Does anyone know when apple will announce the television as described by the writer for the biography? When Steve said that he thought he had finally "figured out" the television?
     
  12. Richdmoore macrumors 65816

    Richdmoore

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Location:
    Troutdale, OR
    #14
    I own a boxee box, I am pretty much ready to take it out to the rifle range and put it out of it's misery.

    Big flaw is that it has an outdated version of Flash installed, so most web sites that use flash video won't play. Adobe refuses to develop flash for "devices" anymore, so as more web sites switch to requiring later versions of flash, it becomes even more useless.

    I also own an apple tv 3, works great with my iPhone/ipad/2011 iMac. I use it to play HD movies I encode using DVDFAB and Handbrake. I really wish it would get an app store at some point, but the airplay helps somewhat.
     
  13. Zeke D, Sep 28, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2012

    Zeke D macrumors 6502a

    Zeke D

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2011
    Location:
    Arizona
    #15
    I don't know about gainden, but here are my media centers:

    Living Room:
    40" Sony LCD
    AMD X2 2.8Ghz (dual core)
    2GB RAM (512 x4)
    250GB IDE Hdd (OS Win7)
    320GB sata HDD (main recording drivE)
    1TB sata HDD (storage for recordings, converted movies, music)
    ATI Radeon 9550 128MB
    600W PowerMax PSU
    2x Hauppauge HVR-1600 QAM/ATSC/NTSC
    Radioshack powered 60dB antenna amplifier with a powered splitter

    ----

    Bedroom:
    40" Sont LCD
    Intel 2.8Ghz P4 (prescott)
    2GB RAM (512 x4)
    40GB ide HDD (OS WIn Vista)
    160GB sata HDD (main recording drive)
    Geforce FX 5200 128MB
    480W cooler Max PSU
    1x Hauppauge HVR-1600 (non-QAM original version)
    1x Avermedia (A160 i think) QAM/ATSC

    -----

    Backup (i dont use this, its just around in case):
    Dual PIII 1Ghz (non-coppermine)
    1GB RAM
    20GB IDE HDD (OS windows XP MCE)
    2x 60GB HDD (recording, etc)
    Geforce 4 MX 4000 (128MB)
    2x MCE-2000 analog with hardware decoder/encoder (one of the best analog tuners I have ever owned)
    300W antec PSU

    I also have a few other analog tuners laying around in case of failure. With the exception of the tuners and large hard drive, these machines cost less than $100 each over the last 10 years.
     

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  14. scabioustona macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2012
    Location:
    Canada
    #16
    I recommend Boxee. It has Netflix, VUDU, Pandora, Spotify, iPlayer, HBOGO , and etc. It is especially cool if you have geo-unblock services like UnoDNS so you can get the apps that are not available to your country.:D
     

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