Question regarding TC+ATV possibilities

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by mh82, Oct 8, 2008.

  1. mh82 macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2008
    Hi everybody,
    Although i may seem new to this forum, i've been a regular visitor since i got my 1.gen iPhone. Up until now, have been using a PC (with windows). Now I'm sick and tired of endless reboots and general slowness and have decided to go with a MacBook Pro. I'm currently using a Vista laptop with a dead screen and no battery, hooked up to an external screen and a really bad ac adapter, so you can imagine i'm pretty keen on the arrival of the new MacBook Pro's..
    When they finaly arrive i've been thinking about also buying a 1T Time Capsule and an Apple TV. I've understood that the atv has some limited capabilites and I don't feel like I have the knowledge to just buy it without really knowing what i'm going to get, so i'm just wondering if my planned setup will work.

    Here's my plan:
    -Split up the harddrive on the TC, so that it uses 400gb for time machine, the rest for other stuff i personally put there (found a way to do this, so no problem).
    -Connect TC to the ATV with USB.
    -Sync my music on my MBP to the ATV and STREAM movies i peronally put on TC to ATV. (i don't want to use any of the space on the atv for movie files)

    It would also be nice if i didn't have to convert all movies to itunes/atv fileformat before watching.

    Is this in any way possible? How?
    I guess i have to hack the atv in some way.. Boxee? or some other hack?

    Thanks a million times..

    best regards
  2. nittany macrumors member

    May 21, 2008
    Standard out of the box capabilities for the aTV won't allow you to do what you're trying to accomplish. For content not contained within the aTV, the aTV is designed to connect (wired or wireless) to a machine running iTunes, which can, in turn, be connected to a storage device.

    In current stock form, the USB port on the aTV is not intended to be used by the consumer.

    For content external to the aTV, think: aTV <---> machine running iTunes <---> storage. Sure there are other configurations (like if a NAS was accessed by the machine running iTunes, but the point is that the aTV needs to talk with iTunes to obtain its external content. Minus iTunes, the aTV cannot access content on a standalone storage device.
  3. AeroStud1026 macrumors member


    Dec 19, 2007
    Galloway, NJ
    Now I don't have Time Capsule, but I do have AEBS with a 1TB External plugged in, and I have my whole iTunes directory on the External Drive wirelessly. I have iTunes pointed at that drive on my MacBook and have "Copy to iTunes Directory" unchecked in iTunes pref's.

    So When I'm using ATV my content is first streaming from my wireless 1TB to MacBook then out to ATV, and it works REALLY well.....I dont even need to use the 40GB of space everything streams so flawlessly, and mind you......everything is coming from the wireless External......I don't have any files on my MacBook or ATV
  4. mh82 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2008
    Cool, thanks! Thats almost what i want.. I still want my music to be on the macbook pro though.. i have to bring it to uni...
    When i download movies , can i move the movie files to the TC, add them to iTunes library (without copying to itunes dir) and then play them with aTV? Then the movie files would be on the TC and be streamed to aTV via the MBP, right? And my music can be on my MBP and be sync'ed to aTV? Correct?
    Do aTV have the option to only sync music with iTunes?

  5. mh82 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2008
    I found something:
    With the boxee hack, streaming from TC should be possible

    But it doesn't work at the moment because of a bug which they are trying to fix at the moment..
  6. AeroStud1026 macrumors member


    Dec 19, 2007
    Galloway, NJ
    Yes 100% correct. You can have all your movies on your TC and still have music on the advice would be to wipe your whole directory in the itunes program......put everything where you want it (folders on TC or Mbp)...then click add to library (remember unchecking the copy to itunes dir in prefs) and click on the folder in your TC that contains your movie files, then for music click add to library and click the folder that contains your music on your mbp.

    If you do it this way, your ATV will then look at your itunes directory and just stream your content from its original source which is TC for movies and MBP for music. Like I said I have everything streaming from my AEBS to my MB then to the ATV.

    Also yes you can only sync music. When your get ATV up and running your itunes should recognize it.....In iTunes click on the ATV then click "Custom Sync" and there will be tabs at the top movies,music, podcasts, can click what you want to sync and what not to sync. Easy as pie..
  7. mh82 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2008
    Thanks alot!
    You answered my question perfectly..
  8. nittany macrumors member

    May 21, 2008
    I have no problem with what AeroStud1026 has said. I believe it to be true. But I think you're still missing a key element in all of this.

    You asked to connect a TC directly to an aTV via USB. This is not possible. It is also not possible to directly attach a TC to an aTV wirelessly or with ethernet.

    The only way to connect a TC (or any other external storage device) to an aTV is through a machine running iTunes.

    That doesn't mean you can't stream content resident on a TC to your aTV, but it does mean that to do so you must have a machine running iTunes in the loop. Take that machine out of the loop (by taking it to work or by shutting it off) and all streaming will stop.

    If you want your aTV to run on demand, then the machine running iTunes must be on when you want to do so.

    By the way, you can stream whatever you want - music, movies, TV shows, pictures, etc. It all works the same way, but does require iTunes to be running.

    Since iTunes is the mechanism by which you can stream content to aTVs, then all streamed content must be iTunes compatible. You can Google the acceptable iTunes file formats, but, yes, streamed content must conform to iTunes' rules.

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