Help adding live tv to my ATV setup

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by irishv, May 31, 2010.

  1. irishv macrumors regular

    Oct 27, 2008
    Currently connected to my TV are an HD cable dvr and an AppleTV. I ripped all my DVDs and they now sit in my itunes library on a 1tb drive connected to my time capsule. I've spent a good amount of time tagging everything, and i enjoy the ease of moving media between my iphone/ipod/appletv through one program. I've had the ATV since it first came out, and it has been hacked since the initial USB hack came out. I only use xbmc if I end up with a video file I don't feel like encoding for itunes. We use the ATV weekly to watch movies and tv shows. I just bought an HDHomeRun and would like to drop cable and use the HDHR to record OTA HD.
    The main goal is to have a single interface to the tv that plays my itunes library, allows me to watch and record OTA tv with a gui that is easy enough for my wife. My dream scenario would be AppleTV with a menu option for live tv (with some type of guide to allow scheduling recordings). Easy integration with Hulu/ESPN3 would be a major plus, but not absolutely necessary. I want to avoid having to switch between programs for different sources.

    In terms of hardware, right now I have a unibody MacBook, AppleTV, Time Capsule, 23" cinema display, HDHomeRun, Airport Express connected to a second stereo, and a Harmony 880 controlling the ATV/stereo/dvr/tv.

    Can someone help me determine the best software solutions? Not playing iTunes rentals makes XBMC/Plex/Boxee a nonstarter unfortunately. I love the presentation that comes with Plex, and if it had better integration with eyetv or myth I would be willing to look into it more, but for now it's out of the picture.

    That being said, I think my best current options are:
    1) Set up a myth backend on my MacBook to record from the HDHR. It is almost always at my desk attached to my monitor and either on or in sleep mode. I've seen that the ATV can run as a myth frontend, but the only discussions I've read about it were fairly old and suggested poor HD quality. I would like to just launch the front end app when we want to watch live tv or schedule recordings and keep everything else in the standard interface.

    2) Break down and buy a mac mini, run frontrow with pyetv. Let eyetv handle all the recording and live tv playback. This is obviously a more powerful, but more expensive option. Pyetv looks promising, and switching between eyetv and frontrow works, even if it seems a little cumbersome. I've seen plugins for launching hulu desktop as well, which would be a big plus. One problem testing that on my mb was that closing hulu would not relaunch frontrow. Does anyone else have any experience with that? I love that eyetv can export to itunes, but I would then end up juggling two itunes libraries, one for my MB, and one for the mini.

    It seems that cons for option 1 are possible poor performance watching tv and the complexities of setting up myth. I also don't know if you can set myth to export to itunes like eyetv does. Cons for 2 are the major additional expense and possible limitations of frontrow.

    Other items
    - I know running xbmc on the Appletv will let me view streams from the hdhr, but you have to select each channel individually and there is no program guide or recoding options.
    - is there any way to have eyetv run a client/server mode? I would love to just run eyetv on the appletv, but I can't imagine it could handle recording.
    - I haven't looked much into SageTV, although I know they now have Mac software. Is there any possibility of integrating the Sage client into AppleTV?
    - Obviously the recent rumors of a new ATV could make all of this unnecessary, but I'd like to put something together sooner rather than later. If there isn't an announcement at WWDC, it probably won't happen until a Septemberish itunes event.
  2. roidy macrumors 65816

    Dec 30, 2008
    Nottingham, UK

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