Can/should apple tv be direct wired to computer?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Itogator, Jan 22, 2009.

  1. Itogator macrumors member

    Jul 16, 2008
    Hi all.

    I am installing an apple tv for a friend who is remodeling his house. All the walls will be bare so this is a good time to run a bunch of audio and video wires. He will be using a pc to stream to an apple tv. Since all the walls are open, should I just direct wire the apple tv to prevent any network problems?

    If so, what cable do I use to do this?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Mr Kram macrumors 68020

    Mr Kram

    Oct 1, 2008
    hardwired solutions are always better for speed and reliability.
  3. Itogator thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 16, 2008
    Thanks for the quick reply. I figured hardwiring would be better. What kind of cable do I use for this?
  4. itouch rulz macrumors regular

    Sep 3, 2008
    I've just done this and it works brilliantly.

    I was renovating my house so I got the electrician to run cat 6 network cable from the spare bedroom/home office to 8 points around the house. Well worth doing while you have no walls. I have a modem/router on a shelf in a built-in wardrobe in the home office and there is a patch panel there where all the cat 6 cable points come back to.

    My imac is in that room and the apple tv is in the lounge under the TV. Each has their own network point and a short lead from the wall to the device - very tidy (the other 6 internet points scattered around the house are currently unused - well actually I'm using the patch panel to redirect the phone line to one of the sockets/wall plates as a telephone point). Syncing of the apple tv with the imac and access to movie store/podcasts/youtube is fast, stable and secure. I don't stream from the imac and haven't tried it but presumably that would work ok as well.

    I say go for it. For the price of a roll of cat 6 and a few wall plates it is worthwhile.
  5. Mr Kram macrumors 68020

    Mr Kram

    Oct 1, 2008
    i'm not a wiring expert, but i use cat 5 connections. i don't know what the difference is between cat 5 and 6.
  6. itouch rulz macrumors regular

    Sep 3, 2008
    Speed. But really only future proofing.

    Cat 6 is the new standard and is capable of gigabit ethernet (which imacs and apple tvs are also capable of).

    Cat 5 is still perfectly fine and I don't think that an apple tv syncs at anywhere need gigabit speeds (or even at the top speed cat 5 can handle).

    It's just if you have the walls open (which presumably is not that often), for the little extra $$ between cat 5 and cat 6, I think it's worth putting in the cat 6 now - who knows, you might need the speed in a few years when you are streaming live sport from your computer to your 3D holographic projector apple tv.
  7. Itogator thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 16, 2008
    So, I guess I would hook up one end of the cat6 to the apple tv
    ethernet port and the other end to the ethernet port on the pc?
    Since his pc only has one Ethernet port, can I use an Ethernet port?
  8. d21mike macrumors 68040


    Jul 11, 2007
    Torrance, CA
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 2_2 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/525.18.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.1.1 Mobile/5G77 Safari/525.20)

    You should use a network switch (like your router) that the atv and mac plug into.
  9. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Feb 12, 2007
    Neander Valley, Germany; just outside Duesseldorf
    Apple TV is 100 mbps, not gigabit.
  10. deanfinder macrumors newbie

    Aug 19, 2007
    Just a suggestion, but you may want to suggest your friend run some pvc conduit to certain areas of the house for futureproofing. I don't have it, but wish I did. It seems like it makes running new/additional wires (speaker, cable, network) a lot easier without having to tear open the walls again.
  11. itouch rulz macrumors regular

    Sep 3, 2008
    Ok Caveman - thanks, you're right apple tv is only 100.

    I still think it's worth running cat 6.
  12. ftaok macrumors 603


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    I agree. In fact, short of running conduit, I would suggest running 2 lines of cat-6 to each potential TV location. As well as two sets of RG-6 coax.

    At the very least, do this at the main TV location. Looking back, I wished I had done this. With more and more devices using ethernet, I'm regretting not having done this. BD-Live can ethernet as well as aTV and Tivo.

    If you have a BD player, aTV and Tivo, you'd need three ethernet ports, or more expensive wifi adapters. I guess you could put a ethernet switch in the TV console ... but I digress.

  13. pprior macrumors 65816

    Aug 1, 2007

    While walls are open, do research and pull lots(!) of cable - it's dirt cheap now.

    I would pull at LEAST 3 cat5e (or cat6) cables to each location and 2 RG6 cables. That is a MINIMUM.

    Trust me, you won't regret it later.
  14. TheCheapGeek macrumors 6502

    Jul 10, 2008
    I agree once you have run wires without the walls down you will appreciate how easy it is without walls. I also definatly think cat 6 is the better choice because you want the end device to be the bottleneck not the cabling.
  15. Darth.Titan macrumors 68030


    Oct 31, 2007
    Austin, TX
    I'd run Cat 5e instead of 6. It's cheaper, easier to run around bends and turns, and is still gigabit capable.
  16. Itogator thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 16, 2008
    thanks for all the great info. I will definitely run a bunch of cat 6 to all tv rooms for future proofing. I too wish I would have done this in my house.

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