Help me understand apple tv

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by bp1000, Nov 23, 2011.

  1. bp1000 macrumors 65816

    Jul 7, 2011
    Please help me understand apple TVs uses

    There is one thing I don't understand. I would like to store many DVDs on an external drive. My MBA hdd is too small.

    Can I store DVD films on an exteranal drive and still have nice picture art as I browse in apple tv, it will be in mp4 format using handbrake.

    Also is there any way to get apple tv to talk to the external drive without the mac being on?

    Would I need some type of network device to do this?
  2. Risasi macrumors 6502

    Sep 16, 2011
    It doesn't really work that way.
    You can store your m4v files in your iTunes on a computer and the AppleTV is able to stream them from your computer. Your computer must be on, and iTunes running.

    Me personally, I have maybe three dozen movies that are keepers (Pixar, Clint Eastwood favorites, etc) Everything else I stream via AppleTV. I find we end up watching most everything once and rarely why keep it?
    We also keep a 15-ft thunderbolt to HDMI cable (w/ audio) hooked up to the TV. That way we can watch a DVD, stream stuff from Hulu, M-TV, etc. and display it to the TV. I have sort of abandoned disc media, haven't really missed it.

    You can rip your DVD's and store them this way, or you can buy most movies via iTunes. Depends on your goals.
  3. hafr macrumors 68030

    Sep 21, 2011
    If the external drive is connected to your computer - no. If not, then jailbreak is the solution.
  4. slothrob macrumors 6502

    Jun 12, 2007
    You can put the media on an external drive and connect that to the computer or the network and iTunes can see it and the aTV2 will play it. I have my iTunes library on an external disk plugged into my notebook.

    You do need to have the computer on, unless you hack the aTV2. However, you can allow the computer to go to sleep and it can be set up to wake when you use the aTV.
  5. Bernard SG macrumors 65816

    Bernard SG

    Jul 3, 2010
    In your computer iTunes preferences>advanced, you can specify a path for your iTunes library ( in this case the external HDD).
    The drawback is that ALL your media (music, video...) has to be in that same path.
    The Mac has to be on, it's the server, basically.

    Hope this answers your question.

  6. slothrob macrumors 6502

    Jun 12, 2007
    If you really want, you can have media stored in other places if you uncheck the "copy to iTunes" and "keep media organized" options before adding the files to iTunes. It's nice to just take advantage of iTunes database management, though, and store everything in the iTunes media folders.
  7. dBeats macrumors 6502a


    Jun 21, 2011
    Handbrake is the perfect DVD to iTunes solution I have found. I have an iMac with wake-on LAN set. If I want to watch any of my DvDs I ripped to iTunes on my TV, I just go to libraries and select movies. The iMac wakes, and in seconds I'm watching my favorite DVD. To get the icon to be the DVD cover, well I haven't figured that out, but I didn't really care about it. Maybe you can force iTunes to do that??

    If you're a laptop-only household, then it's not quite a smooth I guess. But my setup is really perfect, I can't live without the Apple TV in the living room or the other one in my bedroom. I'd get a third if I actually had a third TV in my house.


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