ATV 2 to replace Mini?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Transporteur, May 14, 2011.

  1. Transporteur macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    Hi guys,

    I'm currently using a 2009 Mini running Plex. The files are streamed from my fileserver via AFP.
    Nice setup so far, but expensive and using the Mini only to run Plex seems a little overkill.

    Anyhow, I just saw a video on youtube from a guy running the ATV2 with XBMC (which is basically the exact same interface as Plex) and a direct attached WD hard drive.

    Is this kind of setup possible with a fileserver as well?
    Basically I'd like to replace the Mini with the ATV without having to lower my sights, so direct streaming of files from the server without the need for a computer.

    Possible?
     
  2. waw74 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 27, 2008
    #2
    the appleTV has no onboard storage, so it's the only way to use it.

    depending on the types of your files you may have problems playing some higher resolution stuff.

    plex is also available for the appletv, you will still need to run the server on your mac (or windows, or as of yesterday linux), but it can run in the background, it will let the appleTV directly play the files it can, or the mini will transcode the files that are too much for it.
    you also will not loose your current library, and watched/unwatched status.
     
  3. KevinC867 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    Location:
    Saratoga, CA
    #3
    Do you have a link to that video? I'd love to see how he connected a hard drive to the ATV2 which has only a device side (mini-B) connector. I don't think the ATV2 can act as a host to control an external hard drive.
     
  4. BeachChair macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2008
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    #4
    First of all, you can't attach a hard drive directly to ATV2. It has to go through the network.

    I use XBMC on ATV2 and there's alot of good things to say about it. But if I were you I would stick with the mini at least until the ATV3. ATV2 and XBMC is not as perfect an experience as Plex/XBMC on a Mini. There are small nuisances like no 1080p, XVID HD playback is choppy, menu's aren't as fluid.

    With a few more months of iOS development from the talented guys at XBMC and an ATV3 with A5, by then it will be an easy decision.
     
  5. newagemac macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2010
    #5
    The ATV2 has the A4 processor just like the original iPad and the iPhone 4. The A4 processor isn't quite able to handle 1080p video at higher bitrates. The A5 processor that the iPad 2 recently came out with can handle 1080p with ease. It is assumed that the next iPhone and Apple TV will use the A5 processor as well.
     
  6. CAWjr macrumors 6502

    CAWjr

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2010
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    #6
    I'm using a mini as my Media Center right now, but I'm just using Front Row. Tried Plex & XBMC & could never get them to work right, so I just gave up. I'm considering leaving the Mini on my big screen & adding an ATV2 to a second TV in the house & just streaming off of the Mini. Basically making my mini both my Media Center and my media server.
     
  7. BeachChair macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2008
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    #7
    I'm pretty sure that ATV3 will have 1080p.

    - Apple likes high res.
    - Menu's will look better.
    - Before they open up the ATV app store they need to settle on a futureproof resolution for developers sake
    - 720p content plays back just fine on 1080p.
    - Going 1080p doesn't mean that movies and TV rentals have to be 1080p. Just like the current 720p ATV2 can play 480p content just fine.
     
  8. Transporteur thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #8
    The WD drive the bloke on youtube used could well be a network drive, well has to be considering that the ATV doesn't have a USB port.

    So am I right thinking that XBMC on the ATV scans the folders on the attached network storage just as Plex does on a computer, without the need for a XBMC server running on a computer? I really want this to be standalone so save energy.

    But good advice to wait for the ATV3. I wasn't aware that the current generation can't play 1080p. My movies and TV Shows are all uncompressed (except for audio) BluRay rips, in the dimension of 20 to 40GB per movie. I hope the ATV3 can handle that.
    Definitely going to wait for the new generation.

    Thank you very much guys!
     
  9. KevinC867 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    Location:
    Saratoga, CA
    #9
    While you're waiting for the ATV3, you might consider picking up A WDTV Live. I use one to play my 1080P Blu-Ray rips (direct from MakeMKV, no recoding). The WDTV's user interface isn't as pretty as the AppleTV, but it plays just about anything.
     
  10. blevins321 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2010
    Location:
    Winnipeg, MB
    #10
    Good idea on the energy saving. Yes, XBMC directly scans your network shares. If they are extremely high quality, the ATV2 has some trouble keeping up with the live transcoding. Plex is seamless, but that's because of a running server.
     
  11. JoeShades macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 1, 2010
    Location:
    Williamstown, NJ
    #11
    i just bought the appletv2, i really hope they don't release a 3rd version soon
     
  12. Transporteur thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    Nah, it's all about the interface, especially if you come from Plex/XBMC. ;)


    Cheers mate, that's what I was hoping. My rips are in fact high quality as they are uncompressed BluRay rips. I hope the ATV3 (c'mon Apple ;)) can handle these.
     

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