Is anyone streaming to an Apple TV via a Drobo?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by ascender, Nov 27, 2008.

  1. ascender macrumors 68020

    Dec 8, 2005
    In my continued quest to get my Apple TV working, I'm now looking at my Drobo as being a possible weak link. I'm having problems with stuttering video and that would appear to be caused by the ATV struggling to cache the video across the network.

    I've now patched the iMac and ATV in to the same AEBS and am still having the problem at times.

    The only other thing I can think about is the fact that the Drobo is connected externally via FW800. Could this be the bottleneck?

    Just wondering if anyone else has got this setup running and could comment?

  2. rball1979 macrumors regular

    Jun 6, 2008
    I don't have Drobo but I have an external HD on my network and stream from that. I don't get any stuttering video at all...
  3. ascender thread starter macrumors 68020

    Dec 8, 2005
    Thanks for the reply.

    How is your external HD connected? Shared from another Mac or hanging off the back of an AEBS?
  4. rball1979 macrumors regular

    Jun 6, 2008

    It braches off my Time Capsule...It seems to do the job but the larger my library gets, the slower everything seems to go. Playback is fine though, just takes a while to load sometimes
  5. mpshay macrumors 6502

    May 19, 2008
    I'm streaming off an external hard drive connected to my iMac via FW800. No problems what so ever. However, I'm using gigabit Ethernet not wireless to connect the :apple:TV
  6. VTMac macrumors 6502

    Jun 9, 2008
    I've using a wireless G network, with an external hard drive connected via USB and have no stuttering problems at all. Movies are buffered and playing within 5 secs or so.
  7. drummerlondonw3 macrumors 6502a


    Feb 10, 2008
    Although I dont have this set-up I would suggest looking at the transmit rate in your network and/or the amount of users accessing it at the same time

    Also are you running a G or N network?

    you can do this by holding down the option key while clicking on the menubar airport icon

  8. Alrescha macrumors 68020

    Jan 1, 2008
    I have no streaming issues with a Drobo on my Mini and Ethernet to my Apple TV.

  9. hualon macrumors 6502

    Feb 5, 2008
    I have no problems streaming from my Drobo to my ATV.

    I had a TON of problems when I was using the Drobo populated with the Seagate 1.5TB drives but once I replaced those everything was fine.

    If you're using wireless, I would suggest that you run a network cable through the hallway and see if the problem goes away.
  10. CyberBob859 macrumors 6502


    Jun 13, 2007
    Just a thought

    Does the Apple TV use it's hard drive as a buffer when streaming video from iTunes? If so, then a nearly full hard drive will probably cause the Apple TV to stream video more erratically since it has less space to buffer the video.

    I don't know if this is a factor or not, but it might be something to consider.
  11. ascender thread starter macrumors 68020

    Dec 8, 2005
    Both the iMac and the ATV are connected via cat5 to the AEBS so I've eliminated wireless.

    Last night, it played a whole episode of a programme without any problems. Decided to play the next one and it starts stuttering from the off.

    The HDD on it is pretty near full, but as its on automatic synch, there's not much I can do about that.
  12. hualon macrumors 6502

    Feb 5, 2008
    Try adding a copy of a few TV shows to your iMac's desktop and then put them in your iTunes library. This way you can eliminate the Drobo.

    Are you running the Drobo software? If so, does it report that everything's OK? You're not using those 1.5TB Seagate drives, are you?

    Is the Drobo almost full? When Drobo fills up beyond 85% it slows itself down for some reason. I think Data Robotics does that to warn you that it's time to upgrade a drive.
  13. Winnterpeg macrumors newbie

    Sep 7, 2008
    Great White North
    I have my libraries on a D-Link DNS323 network storage device, and the ATV hard wired to to a N Gigabyte Extreme router. All operates very smoothly.
  14. stomer macrumors 6502a

    Apr 2, 2007
    Leeds, UK
    I'd just add the I've tried serving my iTunes library from a Drobo, and it's not good. Movies won't stream very well at all.
  15. JonHimself macrumors 68000


    Nov 3, 2004
    Toronto, Ontario
    I've got a DNS323 wired into my router (wireless g) with my itunes library on that connected to my macbook pro over wireless. I've never had any problems streaming with apple tv or boxee/xbmc.
  16. Cuthbert macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2008
    Weird. I have a drobo with 2-1TB WD green drives connected to my macbook pro. About 550 gb of content right now. Airport extreme. Streams to the Apple TV like a dream.

    Drobo was the best buy I made this year.
  17. eleven59 macrumors regular


    Jul 21, 2008
    yikes! im wanting to get a drobo too but seeing as some have slow issues and others dont, i dont knwo what to expect now..

    i know when i tried having my itunes media on TC, :apple:tv took a min or so to start playing every time. but everything i have is wireless and i heard its bc the network is actually having to send data twice back and forth... once i went back to an ext fw400 on my main comp, its great again.. im just out of HD space and the drobo looks sooo easy and future proof

    perhaps that could be the slower speed issues with an all wireless network and having to have a comp on just for itunes...

    of course ALL of this would easily had been solved had apple given the :apple:tv the ability to run its own itunes/library file + input for an ext. HD!!! argh!!!

    to me that is the #1 & #2 features missing on an :apple:tv, not blue ray or dvr, etcc.
  18. ascender thread starter macrumors 68020

    Dec 8, 2005
    If you're having problems with the Drobo, check you've updated to the latest firmware as it specifically addresses stuttering issues with video. You might have to download the file manually as I couldn't get the Drobo Dashboard to find it with the auto-update button.
  19. Alrescha macrumors 68020

    Jan 1, 2008
    I don't want to rain on your parade, but from the release notes:

    o Fixed upgrade issue with a select number of First Generation Drobos
    o Resolved USB disconnect issue that could occur on some Mac systems
    o Miscellaneous FireWire compatibility improvements

    That is all that is mentioned for the latest release (v 1.30).

  20. Rich1963 macrumors 6502

    Jul 18, 2008
    You're both half-right about the updates to Drobo. There was a fix for stuttering video, but it was in 1.2.4. Also, I've got 2.5 TB of info on my Drobo (all iTunes video-related) and I have zero stuttering. It's most likely your AppleTV hard drive approaching it's limit. You need to stream ALL video (TV shows and Movies). I've got zero problems and hammer both my Drobo and AppleTV constantly with video (both SD and HD).
  21. guywoodman7 macrumors member

    Jan 28, 2008
    New York
    Just got an ATV and am streaming my iTunes library (all of which has been encoded from DVD in Handbrake using the old iPod High-Rez preset) off my Drobo which is connected via Firewire 800. ATV is connected to my wireless-N network (Time Capsule) and it has been EXTREMELY smooth sailing.

    I had also been using MediaLink on my PS3 for the past year or so and have had lots of hits and misses with that method of streaming.

    So far my ATV/Drobo experience has been flawless and I am VERY happy.
  22. CultHero macrumors 6502

    Mar 20, 2007
    fwiw, I have my drobo hung off the airport extreme using USB. It streams to the apple tv with no issues. Occasionally it drops, but we are talking once every couple weeks.

    One issue I do have, is as it is hung off the airport I can't use drobo dashboard so can't update firmware.
  23. Winnterpeg macrumors newbie

    Sep 7, 2008
    Great White North
    Yes, that is the weirdest thing about Apple TV. It seems very natural and common sense thing to have the iTunes software running on the ATV itself. I cannot imagine why the thing only uses a the network to commicate with a separate computer that runs the iTunes software?
  24. ascender thread starter macrumors 68020

    Dec 8, 2005
    Well, for some reason I've installed 1.3.0 and its fixed my stuttering problems. So I'm not sure how, but I'm happy.....ish. I still think ATV is the buggiest product Apple produce which is a real shame given the potential it has.
  25. hitekalex macrumors 68000


    Feb 4, 2008
    Chicago, USA
    Well, one reason is that some of us have multiple ATVs around the house.. and it would have been a complete nightmare if each one of them maintained their own local library. So a centralized iTunes server serves the same content to each of my ATVs, resulting in consistent user experience.

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