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Play music through Apple TV without actual TV on?

Joseph H

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 15, 2013
595
821
Hello

I have an Apple TV 4. I would like to set up so that the Apple TV plays music through a Bose system (via optical audio, using an adapter of some sort) independently of the actual TV the Apple TV is connected to being on (or on the correct source)

For example, being able to play the normal TV on the television whilst music from the Apple TV plays through the Bose sound system, but then to switch back to the TV source for Apple TV visual/screensavers if required.

With a splitter or some other solution, is this even possible?

Would really appreciate help on this.
 
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OllyW

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 11, 2005
17,113
6,492
The Black Country, England
For example, being able to play the normal TV on the television whilst music from the Apple TV plays through the Bose sound system, but then to switch back to the TV source for Apple TV visual/screensavers if required.

With a splitter or some other solution, is this even possible?
You shouldn't need a splitter, all the TVs I've owned have had the option to chose which input is displayed on screen.
 

Joseph H

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 15, 2013
595
821
You shouldn't need a splitter, all the TVs I've owned have had the option to chose which input is displayed on screen.

The problem is, when switching from the Apple TV HDMI input, to analogue, the music from Apple TV stops playing.
 
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Joseph H

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 15, 2013
595
821
Is the Apple TV plugged into the TV or the Bose sound system?

I've tried various options. I'm asking on behalf of a friend.

The Bose Lifestyle 28 VS2 converter he has he wants to ideally plug the Apple TV into. I believe currently the Apple TV is plugged in to the TV directly which plays the music via the Bose system (main unit, not VS2) and then the optical audio is going into the Bose to the TV.

Not sure if any of that makes sense to you. We bought an HDMI splitter but didn't have much luck with that. It's so confusing!
[doublepost=1485181214][/doublepost]Beginning to think the configuration required is simply impossible. :(
 

benjitek

macrumors 6502a
Sep 23, 2012
863
452
Check to see if the TV has the capability to turn off the screen but leave the TV on, my Samsung smart-TV has this option and it's what I do when I want music to play through the stereo system without the picture on.
 
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Joseph H

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 15, 2013
595
821
Check to see if the TV has the capability to turn off the screen but leave the TV on, my Samsung smart-TV has this option and it's what I do when I want music to play through the stereo system without the picture on.
Thanks for the reply. The objective is to play the TV news through Analogue source (muted) while Apple TV plays music in the background. It's for a cafe bar. So what we want is the Apple TV to play music without having to be the selected source on the TV.

But seems impossible :(
 

OllyW

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 11, 2005
17,113
6,492
The Black Country, England
Thanks for the reply. The objective is to play the TV news through Analogue source (muted) while Apple TV plays music in the background. It's for a cafe bar. So what we want is the Apple TV to play music without having to be the selected source on the TV.

But seems impossible :(
My Apple TV is plugged into a receiver which connects to the TV. If I chose the internal tuner as the TV source and Apple TV as the source on the receiver, I have live TV on screen and can play music from the Apple TV through the receiver.

I use the old iOS Remote app to select music and control the Apple TV from my iPhone.
 
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Joseph H

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 15, 2013
595
821
My Apple TV is plugged into a receiver which connects to the TV. If I chose the internal tuner as the TV source and Apple TV as the source on the receiver, I have live TV on screen and can play music from the Apple TV through the receiver.

I use the old iOS Remote app to select music and control the Apple TV from my iPhone.
Thanks for replying. Can you point me to what this receiver is and how it works?

Really appreciate your help.
 

Richard8655

macrumors 65816
Mar 11, 2009
1,262
613
Chicago
Per above, it depends on your audio component.

If you have an audio system that doesn't have HDMI inputs, then the only method is to connect the ATV 4 directly to the TV (which connects to the audio system via analog or optical cable). In that mode, I don't think it's possible to view TV while playing music through ATV 4 separately. This is my setup as my stereo receiver doesn't have HDMI ports.

This is the sad fact about ATV 4 compared to 3. The lack of a separate optical output. But an audio system that has HDMI solves this problem.
 

Richard8655

macrumors 65816
Mar 11, 2009
1,262
613
Chicago
Although an audio extractor would work, I hate to spend more money on stuff that should already work (as frugal as I am).

An option that works for me is DLNA if your audio system supports it. My non-HDMI stereo receiver supports DLNA. Using the free version of Plex, it's able to stream music from my iTunes library very well. It's a bit more cumbersome than using Apple software, though. Also many newer receivers support AirPlay, which would also allow playing iTunes music without dependence on the TV and ATV 4.
 
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funandblindness

macrumors member
Jul 18, 2002
46
27
Oregon
Per above, it depends on your audio component.

If you have an audio system that doesn't have HDMI inputs, then the only method is to connect the ATV 4 directly to the TV (which connects to the audio system via analog or optical cable). In that mode, I don't think it's possible to view TV while playing music through ATV 4 separately. This is my setup as my stereo receiver doesn't have HDMI ports.

This is the sad fact about ATV 4 compared to 3. The lack of a separate optical output. But an audio system that has HDMI solves this problem.
Yes, I have this setup with an ATV4 and ATV2. From the 4 you select the 2 as the audio output. I use the ATV2 optical out to my receiver. I can then use OTA/Cable to view content on the TV while the ATV plays music thru the receiver. If the TV has speakers you can also crank that volume up if something comes on you want to hear.
 

Joseph H

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 15, 2013
595
821
Per above, it depends on your audio component.

If you have an audio system that doesn't have HDMI inputs, then the only method is to connect the ATV 4 directly to the TV (which connects to the audio system via analog or optical cable). In that mode, I don't think it's possible to view TV while playing music through ATV 4 separately. This is my setup as my stereo receiver doesn't have HDMI ports.

This is the sad fact about ATV 4 compared to 3. The lack of a separate optical output. But an audio system that has HDMI solves this problem.

The equipment we have is a Bose Lifestyle 28 home entertainment system for audio. http://worldwide.bose.com/productsu...ting_an_audio_video_device_with_vs2/page.html

It looks a bit like the attached file. You can choose the source on the Bose system as AUX or VCR (?). We bought an HDMI splitter but it did not work as it caused the music to stop playing when the TV source was switched from the HDMI input to which the Apple TV was connected.

We want Apple Music to play sound on the Apple TV but not to interfere with whatever source is on the TV (i.e. the antenna/traditional TV view). So in other words, have the news channel playing on the TV while Music plays through the Bose surround system.

Apologies if this doesn't make sense as it barely makes any sense to me myself!

Thanks in advance.
 

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Richard8655

macrumors 65816
Mar 11, 2009
1,262
613
Chicago
Yes, I have this setup with an ATV4 and ATV2. From the 4 you select the 2 as the audio output. I use the ATV2 optical out to my receiver. I can then use OTA/Cable to view content on the TV while the ATV plays music thru the receiver. If the TV has speakers you can also crank that volume up if something comes on you want to hear.

Looks like a viable solution to play iTunes music separately from a TV connected to ATV 4. But you do need an additional older ATV. I'm thinking about doing the same thing by adding my original ATV 3 to the system with existing ATV 4.

The equipment we have is a Bose Lifestyle 28 home entertainment system for audio. http://worldwide.bose.com/productsu...ting_an_audio_video_device_with_vs2/page.html

It looks a bit like the attached file. You can choose the source on the Bose system as AUX or VCR (?). We bought an HDMI splitter but it did not work as it caused the music to stop playing when the TV source was switched from the HDMI input to which the Apple TV was connected.

We want Apple Music to play sound on the Apple TV but not to interfere with whatever source is on the TV (i.e. the antenna/traditional TV view). So in other words, have the news channel playing on the TV while Music plays through the Bose surround system.

Apologies if this doesn't make sense as it barely makes any sense to me myself!

Thanks in advance.

From an overview of the Bose Lifestyle system you have, it seems to me it doesn't have the flexibility to do what you want. It basically wants to output audio to its Lifestyle speakers from whatever input source is selected - TV tuner, AUX, VCR, or CBL-SAT input ports. It's a fairly complicated system and I can't tell how Bose designed the internal source switching. Maybe contact Bose or the retail shop to see if selecting TV tuner as a source will allow listening to ATV audio separately, but seems not likely to me.

As mentioned by others above, a solution might be an audio extractor or additional older ATV (not sure these would work with existing ATV 4 in this system, though). It's also pretty sure this system doesn't support DLNA as it's not network capable, so not that option either. Maybe others here who know Bose Lifestyle can provide more information.
 
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funandblindness

macrumors member
Jul 18, 2002
46
27
Oregon
Looks like a viable solution to play iTunes music separately from a TV connected to ATV 4. But you do need an additional older ATV. I'm thinking about doing the same thing by adding my original ATV 3 to the system with existing ATV 4.


It is actually a very flexible solution. You can airplay direct to the ATV2 for audio as well, freeing the ATV4 completely.
 
I believe OP is asking: "How do I have any TV picture on with muted (TV) sound while playing music from :apple:TV through the Bose sound system?"

If so, it seems very simple. Just think about splitting the signals: video to TV, audio to Bose and not trying to get the Bose to do both within itself (which it is probably not able to do).

  1. :apple:TV HDMI "out" and into "VCR" HDMI in on that Bose.
  2. Bose HDMI out to one of the HDMI "in" jacks in on the TV. (for the sake of simple instructions, let's use HDMI2 on the TV)
  3. Video source box (cable/satt) HDMI out to another of the HDMI jacks on the TV. (for the sake of simple instructions, let's use HDMI1 on the TV)
To show the news on the TV screen while playing music from :apple:TV via the Bose system:
  • Choose the HDMI2 input on the TV (and "VCR" on the Bose) to display the :apple:TV music menus and get the desired music playing. Then,
  • Choose the HDMI1 input on the TV to display whatever video you want from the video source box. Use the cable/satt remote to put whatever channel you want on the TV screen.
Music from :apple:TV should be playing through the Bose system and the TV should be displaying any channel you want it to display (such as the desired news channel). If you have TV picture sound also coming out of the TV's speakers, use the TV's remote and push the "mute" button or turn volume down to zero. That should leave the Bose speakers playing :apple:TV music and a silent TV playing whatever (video) channel you've chosen.

There probably is no option to get the Bose or the TV to play audio from one source and video from another. The whole concept of having multiple jacks on such devices is to simplify the playback of Video + Audio from individual source boxes. What OP seems to be wanting is to play video from one source box and audio from another.

The above should do the trick as I think I understand it. If the goal is solely picture from a non:apple:TV video source box like cable or satt and audio from :apple:TV, no need to read any further.

The rest of this post tries to deal with the flexibility to also play the video source box audio through the Bose when OP would want to do that instead of :apple:TV music...

If OP also wants audio from the video source box playing through the Bose system when :apple:TV is not in use, the above is basically bypassing that option by sending the video signal straight to a TV HDMI in jack (HDMI1). The Bose box appears to have a second HDMI that could be used as an input from the video source box but odds are high that the cable or satt video source box has only one HDMI out jack, so the above uses it to run an HDMI cable straight to the TV (HDMI1) instead of into the remaining HDMI in jack on the Bose box. OP could switch that cable back & forth when he wants to use the Bose box for TV audio playback when not using the :apple:TV but switching that HDMI cable back & forth might get aggravating.

A way around this problem would be to get a 1 "in" and 2 "out" HDMI splitter. Video source box HDMI out into the splitter's HDMI in. Then, one HDMI cable out of the splitter's HDMI out to the TV (HDMI1) and the other HDMI cable out of the splitter into the spare Bose HDMI in jack. As long as it is a splitter that sends the video & audio over both HDMI outputs simultaneously, this should work without much issue. The main benefit here is being able to use the Bose system for TV audio when not using :apple:TV. If this is not actually important to OP, this option would not be necessary.

Another option if it is available would be to use any audio out options offered on the TV to route audio back to the Bose system. For example, if the TV has analog audio out (it probably does), OP could run analog audio cables back to the Bose box and whatever video is playing on the TV should have the sound able to play via Bose when OP switches the mode so that the Bose is using that source (the analog audio in) for sound.

If the TV has HDMI out (probably not), an HDMI cable back from this jack on the TV to the other HDMI "in" jack on the Bose would probably accomplish the same thing. But I bet the TV doesn't have HDMI out.
 
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341328

Suspended
Jul 18, 2009
732
951
You shouldn't need a splitter, all the TVs I've owned have had the option to chose which input is displayed on screen.
I’m a little shocked at the lack of understanding a macrumors staff member has! You didn’t understand the initial question.
[doublepost=1518336998][/doublepost]
Hello

I have an Apple TV 4. I would like to set up so that the Apple TV plays music through a Bose system (via optical audio, using an adapter of some sort) independently of the actual TV the Apple TV is connected to being on (or on the correct source)

For example, being able to play the normal TV on the television whilst music from the Apple TV plays through the Bose sound system, but then to switch back to the TV source for Apple TV visual/screensavers if required.

With a splitter or some other solution, is this even possible?

Would really appreciate help on this.
Your original question makes perfect sense. The initial replies are what don’t make sense.
 

-Gonzo-

macrumors 6502a
Nov 14, 2015
607
262
I believe OP is asking: "How do I have any TV picture on with muted (TV) sound while playing music from :apple:TV through the Bose sound system?"

If so, it seems very simple. Just think about splitting the signals: video to TV, audio to Bose and not trying to get the Bose to do both within itself (which it is probably not able to do).

  1. :apple:TV HDMI "out" and into "VCR" HDMI in on that Bose.
  2. Bose HDMI out to one of the HDMI "in" jacks in on the TV. (for the sake of simple instructions, let's use HDMI2 on the TV)
  3. Video source box (cable/satt) HDMI out to another of the HDMI jacks on the TV. (for the sake of simple instructions, let's use HDMI1 on the TV)
To show the news on the TV screen while playing music from :apple:TV via the Bose system:
  • Choose the HDMI2 input on the TV (and "VCR" on the Bose) to display the :apple:TV music menus and get the desired music playing. Then,
  • Choose the HDMI1 input on the TV to display whatever video you want from the video source box. Use the cable/satt remote to put whatever channel you want on the TV screen.
Music from :apple:TV should be playing through the Bose system and the TV should be displaying any channel you want it to display (such as the desired news channel). If you have TV picture sound also coming out of the TV's speakers, use the TV's remote and push the "mute" button or turn volume down to zero. That should leave the Bose speakers playing :apple:TV music and a silent TV playing whatever (video) channel you've chosen.

There probably is no option to get the Bose or the TV to play audio from one source and video from another. The whole concept of having multiple jacks on such devices is to simplify the playback of Video + Audio from individual source boxes. What OP seems to be wanting is to play video from one source box and audio from another.

The above should do the trick as I think I understand it. If the goal is solely picture from a non:apple:TV video source box like cable or satt and audio from :apple:TV, no need to read any further.

The rest of this post tries to deal with the flexibility to also play the video source box audio through the Bose when OP would want to do that instead of :apple:TV music...

If OP also wants audio from the video source box playing through the Bose system when :apple:TV is not in use, the above is basically bypassing that option by sending the video signal straight to a TV HDMI in jack (HDMI1). The Bose box appears to have a second HDMI that could be used as an input from the video source box but odds are high that the cable or satt video source box has only one HDMI out jack, so the above uses it to run an HDMI cable straight to the TV (HDMI1) instead of into the remaining HDMI in jack on the Bose box. OP could switch that cable back & forth when he wants to use the Bose box for TV audio playback when not using the :apple:TV but switching that HDMI cable back & forth might get aggravating.

A way around this problem would be to get a 1 "in" and 2 "out" HDMI splitter. Video source box HDMI out into the splitter's HDMI in. Then, one HDMI cable out of the splitter's HDMI out to the TV (HDMI1) and the other HDMI cable out of the splitter into the spare Bose HDMI in jack. As long as it is a splitter that sends the video & audio over both HDMI outputs simultaneously, this should work without much issue. The main benefit here is being able to use the Bose system for TV audio when not using :apple:TV. If this is not actually important to OP, this option would not be necessary.

Another option if it is available would be to use any audio out options offered on the TV to route audio back to the Bose system. For example, if the TV has analog audio out (it probably does), OP could run analog audio cables back to the Bose box and whatever video is playing on the TV should have the sound able to play via Bose when OP switches the mode so that the Bose is using that source (the analog audio in) for sound.

If the TV has HDMI out (probably not), an HDMI cable back from this jack on the TV to the other HDMI "in" jack on the Bose would probably accomplish the same thing. But I bet the TV doesn't have HDMI out.

Come on fella, is your going to insist on using an everytime instead actually typing Apple then at least use something that’s a little more correct ie: TV, TV4, TV4K, Music

Save this in your text replacement 
 

twideman

macrumors newbie
Dec 16, 2014
3
0
You need an HDMI audio extractor like one of these.

https://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=10251

https://www.amazon.com/ViewHD-Extractor-Optical-Converter-VHD-H2HSAs/dp/B00KBHX072

You take the HDMI output of your Apple TV4 and put it into the input on the audio extractor. Then you run the optical audio out to your Bose and HDMI out to your TV.

Thanks! I've been scrubbing the internet trying to get my new Apple TV 4K to work with a 5 year old sound bar and TV. I want to turn the TV off at night but use the Apple TV to play music through the sound bar. I upgraded from a 3rd gen Apple TV which had the optical output to the sound bar. Now that it's all HDMI, the sound switches off as soon as the TV is turned off, even though it's at the end of the virtual daisy chain (ATV-Soundbar-TV). I'm getting an extractor with an ARC switch in case ARC is interfering from the TV to the ATV.
I think this solution should work for the OP as well, trying to have separate audio and video sources.
Thanks for actually listening to the OP's question and giving a good answer. :)
 

Beerstalker

macrumors 6502
Jun 14, 2011
481
174
Peoria, IL
No problem

You may end up needing to turn off HDMI-CEC on the AppleTV and TV, otherwise it might turn the AppleTV off when you turn off the TV (if your audio extractor passes the HDMI-CEC signals).
 
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twideman

macrumors newbie
Dec 16, 2014
3
0
No problem

You may end up needing to turn off HDMI-CEC on the AppleTV and TV, otherwise it might turn the AppleTV off when you turn off the TV (if your audio extractor passes the HDMI-CEC signals).
Yeah, that's the thing, I've found no CEC control on either my TV or ATV. So, hoping the extractor with CEC switch will address that issue. Thanks again!
 
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