Interested in the AppleTV, just a few questions

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by FaasNat, Apr 14, 2008.

  1. FaasNat macrumors regular

    FaasNat

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2002
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    #1
    I am seriously looking at the AppleTV so my daughter can have all her VeggieTales and Disney/Pixar movies accessible (our 5 DVD changer is not cutting it anymore). Anyways, I dropped by the local Apple Store and couldn't get answers from several of the employees. My questions are

    -Does the AppleTV have subtitles support in movies and closed captioning for TV shows? (sales reps gave a not so convincing 'uh, I.....think.....it....can')
    -Does the AppleTV have chapter support in movies? If so, is there a way to directly access a chapter? (sales reps:'I think it has chapters, I'll have to try it out')
    -Does the AppleTV support VIDEO_TS folders? (sales reps: 'I can't comment on ripping DVDs')

    If the answer to the first two are 'no' having VIDEO_TS playback would address this as I'd be able to turn on/off subtitles in the DVD menu as well as use the chapter access from there. Plus I'd have access to the bonus features on some of them. I thought I read somewhere, though, that it's not supported, but wanted to double check first.

    The reason for wanting subtitles is because my wife likes to set the volume of the TV to 19 (as a reference, 30 is barely audible) and I need to turn on subtitles when we watch DVD so I know what the heck is going on. But when she's not there, I like to turn the volume to a normal level and not have the subtitles on the screen.

    As for the chapter access, my daughter likes to start movies at her favorite parts and on my DVD player, I just punch in the chapter number on the keypad and hit enter.

    Now I've read people saying the AppleTV is ahead of its time so I'm hoping it can do these things my DVD player can do. Anyone have any pointers?
     
  2. FaasNat thread starter macrumors regular

    FaasNat

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    #2
    Oh, the reason why I'm double checking on the VIDEO_TS thing is that I noticed FrontRow on my Mac supports playing it, so I was hoping the AppleTV could as well.
     
  3. petvas macrumors 601

    petvas

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    Location:
    Mannheim, Germany
    #3
    AppleTV doesn't play VIDEO_TS folders.

    Subtitles are supported but you won't find any movies on the iTunes Store with subtitles! Even if you convert DVDs with Handbrake, the subtitles will be burned on the picture, that means you won't be able to disable them if you want to!
    Chapter support exists but you will have to go from one chapter to the next. You can't jump to a specific chapter. AppleTV remembers though where you stopped the last time you watched a film and prompts you to resume playback...
     
  4. MikieMikie macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2007
    Location:
    Newton, MA
    #4
    It isn't a DVD player -- and I don't mean to be nasty in the response -- but it is a lot of things. It won't be a multi-dvd jukebox in the way that you want it to be, but it will hold all of your daughters' movies IF you take the time and the effort to rip them and encode them.

    The chapter access is sequential, not random access as it is on a DVD player. It's capable of jumping to the third chapter, say, but it will take three button clicks.

    The Apple TV plays video via the H.264 (MP4) streaming format, which is not the format that DVDs come in, so it's not going to work for what you want it to right out of the box.

    However.

    You should look into a Mac Mini as it does play VIDEO_TS folders.
     
  5. FaasNat thread starter macrumors regular

    FaasNat

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2002
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    #5
    Shucks, shucks, and shucks. I guess the chapters being in there is okay.

    Nothing harsh about your comment. Yeah, I know it's not a DVD player, just wish it was almost close to being equivalent. I guess there's not much that can be done with the simplified remote.

    It's still kinda appealing, though, since I can play all of my daughters music and her movies. As for the chapter thing, my big issue with the direct chapter access is going from chatper 28 to chatper 2 (hmmm, is there a restart from beginning option?).

    I did think about the Mini as well, but I'm waiting for a hardware upgrade or refresh (plus it costs more than the AppleTV and the wife may give a big fat VETO). I guess the same for the AppleTV hardware. Hoping for a refresh or an upgrade. Maybe whichever one gets updated first though there hasn't been much rumormongering about either of the two's hardware platforms.

    Anyways, thanks for the responses. Much appreciated!
     

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