iPad Air and streaming video from local network

Discussion in 'iPad Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by Issam2204, Aug 26, 2014.

  1. Issam2204 macrumors newbie

    Aug 26, 2014
    Hello everyone! I'm a new member and a new Apple device user.

    I come from Android and honestly my experience wasn't negative or bad, but I was kind of sick of the look and feel of Android. I decided therefore to try something new, fresh and so well spoken of: the iPad Air (16 GB WiFi only model).

    However this is not a review or anything so let me skip directly to the issue: streaming video on a local network.

    In Android this is a basic thing, you can do it in several ways with several app over different networks (SMB, FTP, SFTP, DLNA (UPNP), etc.). The first thing I did is to try the FTP streaming with VLC: suffice to say that after a second it closes itself (the video, not the app), and this happens with all the videos. I've been searching for a working alternative but so far I found only paid apps. I cannot pay for something I'm not completely sure it is going to work. Free alternatives of paid apps are extremely limited (i.e: no audio or even no network streaming).

    What I need to know is this: is it possible on the iPad Air to stream video from a local network (preferably SMB and FTP) without any sort of conversion or transcoding? What I would like to stream are video in 720p or 1080p, sometimes even 15 Gb Blurays. Files are either in mkv or mp4 format. I also always use subtitles.

    Please let me know if this is possible.
  2. Night Spring, Aug 26, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2014

    Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    I don't know what protocol iOS apps use for streaming. I assume you are talking about streaming from a computer to the iPad, right? And with iPad apps, what you do is download a server program(which is free when you purchase the iOS app) to the computer, and the client app to the iPad, you start the server program on the computer, then open the client app on the iPad, and the two just find each other, provided they are on the same network. So no idea what protocol they use.

    As for transcoding, while iPads can only play Apple format files, what the streaming apps do is transcode on the fly. So the files don't have to be transcoded ahead of time in order to stream them. It does take a bit of time for the file to start streaming if they are being transcoded on the fly, depending on your computer's power and your network speed. I often find it easier to just transcode them ahead of time. The streaming app I'm using also does file conversion, so I just convert video files first thing when I get them.

    Oh, and they do subtitles, too.

    The streaming app I'm using is called Air Video HD. It works well, but I find it has so many options on how to convert a file, it can be confusing. Hopefully other forum members can tell you about other apps they are using.

    EDIT: Just found this, it's free.
  3. Issam2204 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 26, 2014
    Thank you so much for answering! I'm gonna try what you have just suggested, but I would really prefer to avoid transcoding (conversion of files, even on the fly) because it diminishes the quality of the file and hangs my pc.

    I guess I have to buy some apps to have what I need.

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