atv3 + xbmc imac + surround sound

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by passey, May 9, 2013.

  1. passey macrumors member

    Mar 28, 2013
    I've been looking at an apple tv 3 (currently no jailbreak I know).

    I have a 2012 imac with xbmc installed on already.

    I know you can do mirroring from the imac to the apple tv but now here are my questions.

    1) Will it go to the same resolution as the imac / TV both are 1080p?

    2) Will the picture look as good as it does on the imac?

    3) I have a surround sound system that only has optical in. Wll the optical out from the apple TV send surround sound audio to the amp whilst mirroring or will that only work when its jailbroken?

    Thanks for any replies
  2. technowar macrumors 6502

    Apr 1, 2011
    Cebu, Philippines
    1. If the movie you are watching is 1080p, then it should be 1080p. I am curious what app you are going to use.
    2. You can let AppleTV handle the pictures for slideshow (this is what I am doing).
    3. If you hook your AppleTV to a 5.1 receiver, you can have a surround sound.

    Sorry not much of a help. Just my 3 cents, 1 for each number.
  3. sixteen12 macrumors regular

    Nov 14, 2011
    1) should be the same resolution (up to the resolution of your TV).
    2)If it looks as good depends on how nice your TV is.
    3) AirServer will send 5.1 if that's what you're using. It should be fine.
  4. passey thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 28, 2013
    cool thanks.

    Yeh its a sony 3D 46" so it should look nice i'm hoping migh pick up an apple tv after work tommorow them :)
  5. waw74 macrumors 68030

    May 27, 2008
    the previous 2 posters, pretty much just answered about using an aTV3, and not what you asked
    If you're planning on running XBMC on your imac and using airplay mirroring to get it to the TV, the answers to your questions are... will be 1080, but see #2

    2. the image will be compressed, so it's likely to contain artifacts. it will probably also be a bit jerky. a lot of this depends on your network connection. But... it will never look as good as directly plugging an HDMI cable in.

    3. the audio using mirroring is stereo only.

    not sure why airserver got in here, it's designed to be an airplay receiver, so you would use it to send video from your iOS device to your mac's screen. instead of sending to an aTV. It does send 5.1 if you're playing back a video with 5.1, but airplaying a video and airplay mirroring are 2 different things.

    if you want good quality video, and 5.1 sound
    you have a few options besides the aTV, and your choice depends on your technical expertise.

    1. roku, little technical knowledge.
    you will have to use Plex, it's based on XBMC and has a lot of the same features, but it runs in a client/server model. so you would run the server on your iMac. The iMac will then convert (if needed) the file to something that can play on your client.
    it will even convert DTS and AAC 5.1 to Dolby 5.1 since that's what the roku supports.

    there are also plex clients for windows, mac,s linux, iOS, and android, so you can watch on different players. you can start a video on the TV, stop it, and pick up in the same place on a different player.
    (there's also a client for a jailbroken aTV2)

    2. raspberry pi, you'll need to be comfortable with a linux command line.
    people have built versions of both xbmc and the plex client that will run on it.

    3. Plex and DLNA
    Plex will also serve to DLNA clients. so you may already have the hardware you need. Check your TV, Blu-ray player, or game console to see if it's got DLNA built in.
    I was even able to get DTS-MA 7.1 using DLNA and my samsung blu-ray player. (my panasonic plasma only gives me stereo sound though)
    this version is a bit funky, but it does work. You'll also need to look at the video quality preferences as the default is pretty low. look at the bottom of the menus where you select your different library sections for preferences. (this setting also will re-set itself, you may have to re-select the option you want every time you power down what you're using as the player)

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