Make suggestions to this Home Theater Setup.

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by BrittQ, Dec 13, 2008.

  1. BrittQ macrumors regular

    May 23, 2007
    Before I start spending and moving things around... Please make any suggestions for improving the actual setup and devices (within reason (price)).

    Current Setup
    MBP w/ 2port esata card.
    750gig OWC External (connect to MBP via eSATA)
    Airport Extreme

    Living Room:
    42in Sony Bravia

    Planned Setup:
    Same as above with the addition of:
    5 Bay External w/ 5 Terabyte Drives (maybe 1.5T?). 2 Drives to store media, 2 to back up those. And the last drive for Time Machine of internal MBP and OWC external.

    Living Room:
    Same as above but:
    Mac mini (move atv to bedroom)

    Will there be any problem w/ sharing the 5 bay enclosure on the network and have the media stream to the Mini (probably connected w/ ethernet cable instead of wireless)?

    I'm going to add EyeTV, but not sure if it would be better to add it to the Mini or MBP? I will be doing most of the editing of TV shows and Home Videos on the MBP, but will watch them on the mini/tv.

    I only use the PS3 for Blu Ray. I was thinking about replacing it with an external BR Drive/Writer and connecting to the Mini. Should I wait until external BR drives are more Mac friendly?
  2. geoffreak macrumors 68020


    Feb 8, 2008
    Stay away from the 1.5TB drives for now. They are having serious reliability issues.

    You might want to look into a drobo as a storage medium. Seeing as you plan on having 2 drives mirroring another two, you will have 2TB of accessible space, but a drobo can use those same four 1TB drives to create 2.7TB of accessible space. This equates to roughly the same amount of accessible space as you would have had in your other setup of 5 drives. You can partition the drobo to use time machine on a partition.

    I also recommend connecting whatever storage you use, straight to the media computer and then share the drives on the network. This allows for you to minimize lag and loading of media while playing the files on the device you will play them on most, but also gives you the option to view the files on any other computer in your network.

    Regardless of whether or not you attach a Blu-Ray drive to your mac mini, Mac OSX cannot play Blu-Ray disks. You can, however, boot into windows to rip and decrypt the disk before encoding it to be played in Mac OSX.

    Assuming you are using the current generation of Mini's, you shouldn't have any problem using Eye TV on your Mini. I own a 1.83 Mini and haven't had any problem using video encoding software like Handbrake.
  3. BrittQ thread starter macrumors regular

    May 23, 2007
    Thanks geoffreak,

    I read about the Seagate firmware issues for the 1.5TB drive. Was hoping the firmware update fixed everything.

    Would there really be delays/lag/stutter if the media was stored on an external connected to the MBP and was wired, not wireless?

    I looked at the Drobo but quickly dismissed it after I saw the price. But now
    that you put it that way... It might be a better option for me to go w/ the 1st Gen Drobo and connect that to the Mini (USB2) and put all my media there.

    Then share the drive over the network for the MBP. And use my external OWC as a time machine drive for my MBP internal. Maybe partition a 100gigs or so to use as a temp holding tank when video editing.

  4. brobins macrumors member

    Nov 27, 2008
    Nice set-up BUT... no av-receiver or speakers?

    Watching any decent film on a Tvs speakers is a waste of time in my opinion..

    I would Look into a decent amp and speakers..

    Check out Onkyo Amps - I can highly recommend Tannoy Arena Speakers too
  5. BrittQ thread starter macrumors regular

    May 23, 2007
    Sorry, left those out.
    I have a Sony STR-DG720 receiver.
    Sony w-2500 Sub
    And 2 Yamaha Floor speakers (about 7 years old)
    and a random panasonic center.

    A new 7.1 speaker setup will be next on my list.
    (also wireless speakers in the bathroom:D)
  6. Killyp macrumors 68040


    Jun 14, 2006
    The receiver is the strongest part by the sound of things. How large is the room?

    I personally wouldn't want to go for a sub/sat package, but make sure all the speakers are perfectly capable of performing well without a subwoofer, and then add the subwoofer in for extra kick.
  7. BrittQ thread starter macrumors regular

    May 23, 2007
    The room is about 15X20

    Any recommendations on satellite speakers? I don't need top of the line, just a good bang for the buck...
  8. Killyp macrumors 68040


    Jun 14, 2006
    How much have you got to spend, and do you listen to much music?
  9. BrittQ thread starter macrumors regular

    May 23, 2007
    I listen to a lot of music, but overall the time spent listening to music is probably equal to the time spent watching movies/tv.

    Probably like to keep it around $100 a satellite speaker.
  10. crotalus99 macrumors regular

    Dec 4, 2007
    I have a 1st gen Drobo attached to a mini that is connected to the network via ethernet.

    It works great. An added bonus of Leopard is that I do not even have a monitor, keyboard or mouse connected. I manage everything use the screen sharing feature. The whole setup sits on a shelf in my family room up and out of the way and hands of the kids.

    I highly recommend this setup. I have had it for about 8 months now and couldn't be happier.
  11. Michael73 macrumors 65816

    Feb 27, 2007
    My recent purchase

    A few weeks ago I finally upgraded my home theater system and really can't be happier. I certainly didn't go top of the line but among other components I paired set of Klipsch Quintet SL's with a Klipsch Sub-10 and the sound in my 16'x24' room is great. BTW, all the speakers are being driven by a Yamaha RX-V1800. I got all the stuff at BB and the deals were pretty good.
  12. ericjohnson1981 macrumors newbie

    Dec 15, 2008
    Ooo Klipsch Quintet, good choice :) [​IMG]
  13. mark34 macrumors 6502a

    May 18, 2006
    Did you upgrade your "random Panasonic Center"? That is the most important speaker of all for tv and movies.
  14. BrittQ thread starter macrumors regular

    May 23, 2007
    Haha, it's still there... Suggestions?
  15. netdog macrumors 603


    Feb 6, 2006
    I'm really pleased with my B&W 685's. I am sure there are boutique brands that are even better, but these are marvelously musical little speakers. Highly recommended.
  16. BrittQ thread starter macrumors regular

    May 23, 2007
  17. Killyp macrumors 68040


    Jun 14, 2006
    I can't stop recommending them either! I don't actually own a pair (I mainly use my little DM303s), but they're stunningly good speakers, regardless of their price. Easily outperform many offerings at twice the cost.

    Both packages seem good. IMO, you can't go far wrong with Klipsch, although I wouldn't say everything they make is hifi, they don't make any 'junk' - it all performs to at least an acceptable level or above.
  18. Michael73 macrumors 65816

    Feb 27, 2007
    Funny you bring up the Quintet III. BB regularly runs programs you get $250-$300 off a package of Yamaha Receiver (663 or 863) / Quintet III / Sub-10 / 12. I originally got the 663, quintet III and sub-10. Before I'd even unboxed stuff, BB ran a 2-day sale with the SL's for $679 ($120 off) and sub-10 for $319 ($80 off). The $180 difference to get the SL's were definitely worth it.

    The Yamaha receiver was put "at risk" aka "end of life" on Dec 4th because they just came out with the v1900 (reg. $1,399 at Magnolia Stores). So the receiver which was originally $1,299 was clearanced for $699 and I got a demo and they knocked off another $50 to make it $649. I haven't even begun to scratch it's surface on all the features. All I can say is that everything is hooked up via HDMI and the receiver has 4 HDMI In / 1 HDMI Out. The other thing to note is that the receiver itself has upscaling. Don't ask me how, but somehow it can upscale my dvd's from the dvd player that is already upscaling them?!? My kids just spent the better part of this weekend watching the non-blue ray version of Wall-E and the picture was stunning.

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