My first renting experience

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by levitynyc, Mar 1, 2008.

  1. levitynyc macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2006
    #1
    I decided it was time to rent a movie on my AppleTV.

    Me and my wife decided to rent the Simpsons movie in HD. I have a DSL 3mps connection so I figured it would take 10-15 minutes for the movie to be able to watch.

    She took a shower during this period and I got the popcorn and snacks together. About 20 minutes later the movie was at 26 % complete and still not ready to watch. We decided while waiting to watch an episode of South Park we already had synched. Once the episode was over we noticed the Dload stopped and it was still at 26%. I guess the downloading stops while playing a synced tv show. (VERY VERY lame).

    About 20 minutes later the movie was ready to watch. The picture and sound was fantastic. My my Paradigm surround sound system made my basement shake during a few scenes. 5.1 sound was excellent.

    We decided once the movie was over that we would immediately rent DIE HARD 4 and Transformers and just let them download and watch them within 30 days. The rules for renting are great for us as we set aside nights to watch movies and we won't be interrupted. The 24 hour rule is fine with me.

    I wish there were more movies available in HD. Why in the world would they not have Spiderman 3 in HD? There are so many movies available that I would want to watch, but I am not insulting my 52inch LCD TV with SD content. If I wanted SD content, I could plop a DVD into my PS3 and have it upscale.

    I give the Apple TV renting experience a B as it looked beautiful and was pretty simple, but the download time and the fact that it stopped while watching something else is extremely lame.

    The lack of HD content hurts the Apple TV so I would give the Apple TV an overall C+ grade for now.
     
  2. gr8tfly macrumors 603

    gr8tfly

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    Oct 29, 2006
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    ~119W 34N
    #2
    46 min. sound pretty minimal for the movie to start, even with 3mpbs. I have the same speed, and most HD's (90min) take over an hour to start, then play fine - provided I'm not using the connection for other things.

    As for SD, it's really [upscaled] DVD quality. It's not like "SD" from sat (if you've seen that) - which is 4:3, then zoomed on top of that if letterboxed. If it's not worth the wait for the 5.1 sound and/or movie really doesn't matter whether it's HD or not, the almost instant start of SD (<1min) is pretty nice. (I have a 50" plasma, for ref.)

    I tend to want to ignore anything less than HD these days, too, but as you know upscaled DVD's look pretty nice (depending on the player, etc). I think it'd be worth giving the ITS SD rental a try, at least until the HD selection increases.
     
  3. levitynyc thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Aug 19, 2006
    #3
    It was about 50 minutes. Jobs said on a 5Mbp connection, it would take 30 seconds for an SD movie to start. According to my calculations an HD movie on a 3MPS connection should start in about 10-15 minutes.

    BTW, the PS3 upscales fantasticly. I watched the Karate Kid last night and it looked great. The transfer on that DVD is pretty crappy too.

    The 5.1 makes the movies. I am not insulting my $1500 system with 2.0 stereo sound :)
     
  4. gr8tfly macrumors 603

    gr8tfly

    Joined:
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    #4
    That's what I estimated initially, too, before I checked the file size.

    It's about 1GB/30min, so if you get 380KB/s, that's 2:19 to dl a 3GB, 90min movie. So, just doing a quick calc, the movie can't start until it's 36% complete - and that's assuming the connection's not used for anything else. Even so, that's just 48min. I'm sure they're added some cushion (obviously) to the buffer to try and make sure it plays without interruption.

    I agree on the sound, though I think some of the 2.0 is Pro Logic surround. Not much of a comparison. I'm preparing to re-rip a few of my movies to the new higher def + 5.1.
     
  5. levitynyc thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Aug 19, 2006
    #5
    Good guess. My movie was ready at 38%
     
  6. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #6
    According to Apple SD movies will be ready in less than 30 seconds with a 6 Mbps connection, in about 1 minute with a 2 Mbps connection, and in about 1.5 hours with a 768 Kbps connection. HD movies will be ready in less than one minute with 6 Mbps, about 2 hours with 2 Mbps, and 8 hours with 768 Kbps.

    http://www.apple.com/appletv/specs.html
     
  7. levitynyc thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2006
    #7
    How does that make any sense? A 2MPS speed is 1/3 as fast so downloading times should be 1/3 the speed and make the time to ready 3 times longer.

    Am I using incorrect math here?

    WTF?
     
  8. chuckles:) macrumors 6502

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    May 3, 2006
    Location:
    CANADA
    #8
    its because the speeds advertised by ISPs are maximum amounts, with average transfer somewhat lower. so with 6mbits/s you might get 5 sustained, but with 3 you would only get 1-2.
     
  9. jecapaga macrumors 601

    jecapaga

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    #9
    I decided to try out Michael Clayton HD this last weekend. 5mps connection and it started after about 3 or 4 minutes and then about 10 mins in it hung. I paused the movie to let it catch up and download. I watched the rest of the movie and it was a great experience. Worst part is the selection of available HD movies.
     
  10. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #10
    Keep in mind, the slower the connection the higher the percentage download must be before the movie can start.

    For example (and I'm making these numbers up), one with a 6 Mbps connection may start watching after only 10% has been downloaded, but someone with a 768 Kbps may have to wait until 90% has already been downloaded.
     
  11. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2005
    Location:
    Russia
    #11
    OMG guys you have so fast connections!!

    Our local ISP advertises 8 Mbit/sec ADSL, but those who have it say the download speed is about 800kbit/sec.

    I'm on 64kbit/sec plan, and on a good day I can get 50-55 kbit/sec out of it :eek:

    My plan has unlimited traffic though, so it not so bad...
     
  12. levitynyc thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2006
    #12
    Im patiently awaiting FIOS.
     
  13. brinycbri macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2007
    #13
    that's so strange, i have a regular cable connection, nothing super speedy, but i rented Hairspray on HD and it took me about 25 seconds and I could watch from beginning to end. It worked GREAT
     
  14. nando2323 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2007
    #14
    Same here 6Mpbs cable. Rented Die Hard HD and it was ready within 2 minutes tops, started watching and never stopped there after.
     

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