Huge difference in lag between ATV and AE

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by FordUniver, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. FordUniver, Nov 29, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2012

    FordUniver macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2012
    Hey everyone,

    I have noticed a hugely different lag when using AirPlay between the ATV with an external DAC and the Airport Express with analog output. The ATV is (almost) instantaneous and the AE has 1-2 seconds delay. Does anyone know the reason for this? Is it just the device or could it be related to the DAC?
  2. Jackintosh, Dec 9, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2012

    Jackintosh macrumors 6502a


    Mar 21, 2009
    I'm not sure what lag you mean... from the time you press play on your remote until sound is heard from the speakers?

    The AE has to do it's own digital to audio conversion vs. ATV sending the signal immediately to the amp to do that (when using an optical interconnect). It could be that the AE internal DAC is slower in processing than your amp. Also ATV has an internal memory buffer, which might make it faster.
  3. waw74 macrumors 68040

    May 27, 2008
    a DAC will not have any noticeable delay.

    how and what are you airplaying?
    are you sending video to the aTV?

    video/audio airplay and audio airplay are handled in 2 different ways.

    audio only has about a 2 second delay due to buffering.
  4. AtomicGrog macrumors regular

    Jul 25, 2011
    Have same issue when playing iTunes or vlc sourced Audio on my MBP to an old Airport Express.

    Lag is in the order of 4-5 seconds (most noticable when you switch on multiple audio output in iTunes).

    Suspect there's a standards issue here isn't one using Airplay (The ATv) and the other Airtunes (The AE). Airtunes wouldn't be worrying so much about audio/video sync and my well have different caching/sync buffers on the AE.
  5. rneglia macrumors 6502


    Apr 18, 2006
    I have an ATV and an AE using AirPlay in two adjacent rooms. There's only about a tenth of a second difference between them, but the effect is infuriating.

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