Apple TV's pros and big CONS.

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Sparky9292, Nov 1, 2010.

  1. Sparky9292 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    #1
    I've owned the new AppleTV for a few weeks. I'm only keeping it because I know the jailbreak community will come through with apps that allow it to do what it is supposed to.

    PROS:

    1. $99 is cheap
    2. Looks good next to my black Sony Bravia
    3. Easy to configure
    4. Sees all of my iTunes shares
    5. Love the new metal remote compared to the crappy white flimsy one.
    6. Sees photos, music, movies* (not AVI though) from other iTunes collections.

    CONS:
    1. No Hulu (Steve Jobs will roll-over in his grave before he supports Hulu)
    2. No AVI support. -- Only supports .MOV and .MP4 formats.
    3. Have to transcode everything with VisualHub or VideoMonkey. Ugh.
    4. Not enough filters for shared movies. Genre, Viewed, Nonviewed are the ONLY filters. (see Plex or XBox Media Center to compare)
    5. Can't directly attach my Drobo to AppleTV
    6. Can't run bittorrent on AppleTV
     
  2. BoulderBum macrumors 6502a

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    Feb 3, 2008
    #2
    Why? iPhone OS has a Hulu+ app and Apple TV already has Netflix.
     
  3. GermanSuplex macrumors 6502a

    GermanSuplex

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    #3
    The biggest con for me is that Home Sharing doesn't support playcounts. How can something so integral to iTunes be left out? Utterly ridiculous and disappointing.
     
  4. Omne666 macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 16, 2010
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    Melbourne, Australia
    #4
    Really? Integral? Like for what? Not being disparaging but ive never seen the use of it.
     
  5. slipper macrumors 68000

    slipper

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    #5
    I was hoping for VLC for Apple TV but after seeing the news that the iPhone version might get pulled from the App Store its highly unlikely. That alone would've made it perfect for myself and many other users. For now, WD TV will be a much better option.
     
  6. dmn8 macrumors member

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    Sep 27, 2007
    #6
    Just my 2 cents...

    If you use iTunes for all of your media the product is great. If you have other formats that you need to support or different connectivity than look elsewhere.

    The integration with iTunes is great and the new AirPlay functionality makes this a no-brainer for me.
     
  7. NightStorm macrumors 68000

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    Whitehouse, OH
  8. newagemac macrumors 68020

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    #8
    VLC is pretty crappy on iOS because there is no hardware acceleration. Trying to play those other formats without transcoding does not work well at all without hardware acceleration. The streaming and transcoding on the fly solution implemented by Air Video works much better than VLC in my and most other's opinion.
     
  9. MacBoobsPro macrumors 603

    MacBoobsPro

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    Jan 10, 2006
    #9
    The biggest con is no hard drive! I dont want to wire my laptop up to an external and have 4 devices running just to see my entire library.

    1. ATV 2. Laptop 3. HD 4.TV

    Whats the point in having an energy efficient ATV if you have to run all the other stuff along with it?
     
  10. GermanSuplex macrumors 6502a

    GermanSuplex

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    #10
    Yes, playcounts are an integral part of the iTunes/i-Devices ecosystem, if you use smart playlists.

    I have an iPhone, and since it's not the 160GB iPod I was used to, I use smart playlists to sync a good portion of stuff. For instance, I have a smart playlist with Rating is in the range 3 stars to 5 stars that haven't been played in six months or longer. On the old Apple TV, I could listen to a song, then it would drop off the playlist, and when I was to sync my iPod, the playlist would be updated.

    Because the new ATV doesn't sync, this is not currently possible. I don't care about syncing content back and forth, but I do want the new ATV to sync metadata, i.e. ratings/playcounts/etc.

    There are a lot of other uses for playcounts in smart playlists.

    Plus, even if you don't use smart playlists, its nice to know when/how many times you listened to a track.
     
  11. From A Buick 8 macrumors 68040

    From A Buick 8

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Location:
    Ky Close to CinCinnati
    #11
    I wanted an inexpensive way to
    • Watch the hundreds of DVD’S and TV shows that I own at the push of a button
    • Stream Netflix.
    • Show family picture slide shows and home movies of our kids at family events.

    So for $200 i can now do this, (going to buy a 2nd one).
     
  12. NightStorm macrumors 68000

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    Jan 26, 2006
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    Whitehouse, OH
    #12
    My question was for the OP; from his list of cons, the AppleTV was nowhere near the device he should have purchased.

    As the owner of 2 AppleTV v2 boxes, I've been pretty happy. There are a few bugs that I'm sure will be worked out in subsequent software updates, but I also bought into using iTunes (and not downloading movies from bittorrent) a long time ago.
     
  13. Surf Monkey macrumors 68020

    Surf Monkey

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    Oct 3, 2010
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #13
    I agree that the lack of play count support over Home Sharing is a problem for many people. I rely on smart playlists, many of which are based on play count and play date. Losing that function over Home Sharing makes me much less likely to use it. Instead I tend to take a couple more steps and use the older AirTunes system, which is a bothersome work-around.
     
  14. EvilC5 macrumors 6502a

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    Hanover MD
    #14
    for what it is, it does an awesome job at it. I was n ever a big itunes fan until I got my MacBook Pro, then switched over to it, and now all of the cool things that it can do make it all very nice working together.

    I certainly would like to stream other formats, but its not a show stopper.
     
  15. brayhite macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 21, 2010
    Location:
    N. Kentucky
    #15
    Agreed to the fullest extent. Since my iPod Touch's headphone jack stopped working, I've been relying on my 32 GB iPhone for my portable music. I have several smart playlists synced that depend on play count, most obvious one being my "Most Spun" (play count of 10 or higher). Kinda disappointed that my Apple TV I'm waiting to arrive won't support that.

    I am curious though, as someone mentioned that iTunes is your portal for more or less all content from your computer, do I need to import all of my movies into iTunes? And if I do, am I able to not let it consolidate and save it to a new iTunes Movies folder and rather keep them on an external hard drive?
     
  16. newagemac macrumors 68020

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    Mar 31, 2010
    #16
    Yes you will need to add the movies to your iTunes Library and you can set up iTunes to not consolidate the files to one location. If you want to keep the files on an external hard drive you can certainly do that and they can be in multiple different hard drives and/or folders. iTunes will reference the files no matter where they are stored as long as it knows about them and they will still be able to stream to the Apple TV.

    Go to iTunes Preferences > Advanced and make sure "Copy files to iTunes Media Folder when adding to Library" is unchecked and that should take care of it.
     
  17. tallyho macrumors 6502a

    tallyho

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    Aug 15, 2004
    Location:
    UK
    #17
    No offence, but literally none of those is a con.

    The glaring con is that ATV2 will not output anything other than 60Hz. We use 50Hz: all my Handbrake encodes will not play without skipping, neither will home movies edited with iMovie. Until they update the firmware to allow 50Hz output, as the ATV1 could, it's really not much use.
     
  18. brayhite macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 21, 2010
    Location:
    N. Kentucky
    #18
    So in other words, when I'm adding my movies to iTunes, uncheck it, but since I consolidate all of my music when I add it, I'll have to remember to check it again? Bleh. But I'll deal I suppose.
     
  19. cavemonkey50 macrumors 6502

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    Aug 9, 2007
    Location:
    Allentown, PA
    #19
    I think the missing play counts is just a bug in the current version. It's probably related to the same issue as videos not being marked watched after viewing them (or partially watched) and rented content in iTunes being allowed unlimited access from the Apple TV. I suspect the next update to the Apple TV will restore play count functionality.
     
  20. trip1ex macrumors 68000

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    Jan 10, 2008
    #20
    Don't care about Hulu, AVI, transcoding, Drobo or bittorrent aka 1,2,3,5, and 6.

    So ATV is a massive winner for me. :D

    bigger con for me is Netflix reloads everytime you back out of a movie or tv show description screen as if it isn't cached. Also ATV puts you back to the beginning of your instant queue or other filter. Not in the spot you left off in.


    The My Computer media interface should be better as well. Should be like the renting movies/tv shows and Netflix interfaces.

    Also be nice to be able to customize the interface. Put your most used functions front and center.
     
  21. alFR macrumors 68020

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    Aug 10, 2006
    #21
    You sure?

    Also, not heard anyone else complaining about that: lots of people complaining about stuttering, yes, but nothing linking it to a 50Hz/60Hz incompatibility.
     
  22. JonHimself macrumors 68000

    JonHimself

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    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #22
    I know is generally the ****** response from people, but from the perspective of a company trying to appeal to studios in order to get them to provide content (ie those 99c rentals, movie rentals/terms, Netflix, etc) a bunch of those restrictions are generally things that affect people that download content.
    If you are watching your OWN DVDs/TV sets that you want to digitize, you have to convert them anyways, so instead of making them AVIs, you would just make the MP4s. Similarly, if you own the content and are ripping it yourself, the need to transcode would mostly apply if you were downloading xvids or mkvs (or, I suppose, if you have previously ripped your content as AVIs).
    I don't say that from my high horse as I may/may not download the 720p mkvs and deal with having to transcode them to get them into iTunes so that they'll be organized/play on all my iOS devices but that's because, at least to me, the benefit of iTunes organization, seemless syncing across multiple devices and the UI of it all is worth the hassle of transcoding.
    If you just want to play any type of file, there are definitely options out there.
     
  23. From A Buick 8 macrumors 68040

    From A Buick 8

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    Sep 16, 2010
    Location:
    Ky Close to CinCinnati
    #23
    Sorry, I should have caught that.
     
  24. Sparky9292 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    #24
    Jailbreak + AppleTV = FTW

    So I didn't have to buy another $700 Mac Mini. As soon as I heard that the AppleTV has a jailbreak, I shelled out my $99.:D It's ridiculous that all I do with my Mac Mini is play VLC/XBMC/PLEX and download torrents.

    Yeah yeah, Jobs is probably selling the AppleTV at a loss and hoping people like me starting paying 7.99 to rent a movie.

    It really looks like Apple begrudgingly slapped on the My Computer option. I imagine that Jobs probably wanted that option gone originally. Steve Job's wet dream is to you have ALWAYS buying and renting stuff through iTunes. Take a look at Plex to see how media management is done.

    I have over 300 avi-format movies on my Drobo. The AppleTV is going to force me to scroll through all of those without a way of filtering. That's after the 600 hours of transcoding with VideoMonkey... oh well.
     
  25. tallyho macrumors 6502a

    tallyho

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2004
    Location:
    UK
    #25
    Um, lots of people have pointed out the lack of 50Hz output. Here's what Google threw up in a quick search:

    http://themacscreencastguy.com/blog/2010/10/7/apple-tv-fail.html


    http://discussions.info.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=2612106&tstart=45

    http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=2602952&tstart=120

    http://discussions.info.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=2606089&tstart=30
    That enough for you?

    So, rather than complain about the fact that the AppleTV won't run bit-torrent or that it won't play AVIs (and why would you convert your own video to AVI...oh wait, you wouldn't...we're back to bit-torrent again :rolleyes:) why not complain about the fact that it doesn't work properly in the many parts of the world where video runs at 50Hz? I am hoping they can fix this with a firmware upgrade.
     

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