Should I buy an Apple TV

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by shmeffrey, Dec 17, 2010.

  1. shmeffrey macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto Canada
    #1
    I currently have a PC hooked up to a TV with all my TV shows and Movies, probably about 1TB total. I want to be able to watch these shows on another TV in the house. I am looking at streaming with the Apple TV but all my files are .AVI and I see that I would need to convert all my stuff to .mp4 to work with an Apple TV, then I would also need to import the metadata to make it look good and complete. Is this crazy? Is .avi better in comparison to mp4?

    I like visual hub for converting to mp4 on my mac, but don't know what to use on my PC... I could move the files to a thumb drive or external then convert with my mac, and import into itunes on the PC... seems like a ton of work, but I would also like a nice user interface for watching these shows rather than windows and using a mouse. My PC is a media centre but I have never been able to get my media centre software and remote to work. I also have an iphone and will probably want to use airplay.

    Is there any other TV box that would be better for streaming .avi from a PC?
     
  2. nunes013 macrumors 65816

    nunes013

    Joined:
    May 24, 2010
    Location:
    Connecticut
    #2
    i dont have one but the western digital tv live hub looks pretty good. i have an apple tv and converted using handbrake. i spent about a day converting and setting up my media streaming with apple tv and airport. the one thing i dont like and cant find out about is if the apple tv can access an external hard drive connected to an airport extreme.
     
  3. siurpeeman macrumors 603

    siurpeeman

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2006
    Location:
    the OC
    #3
    i think apple tv will really take off when apps like air video will take advantage of airplay. until then, i think your best bet would be a boxee box.
     
  4. Panch0 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2010
    Location:
    Virginia
    #4
    The old AppleTV with ATVFlash is capable of streaming .avi.
    There is a beta version of ATVFlash available for the new AppleTV, so there's a good chance this will end up being available on the new version. Of course, at least for now, that requires a JailBreak and potential bricking of your AppleTV, so maybe not the best choice - I think the AppleTV is a great device because it does what it's designed to do very well and very easily. .avi files are beyond what it is designed to do for now.

    Oh, search this forum for discussion of a Plex Player. This requires a server component running on your computer to serve/stream the content, but might support .avi. For now that would also require a jailbreak I think - might work over AirPlay, but that seems very convoluted.

    PS3 will stream .avi.
    Not sure of others.

    Not Directly. Apple TV just Streams - implying that something needs to actively Serve the content, not just make it available as a share. iTunes Serves your Library and AppleTV Streams it via Home Sharing; NetFlix Serves content and AppleTV Streams it via the built in App. You COULD add media that is stored on your HDD connected to AEBS to your iTunes Library, then access it from AppleTV, but you still need a Mac or PC actively running iTunes.
     
  5. pasipple macrumors 6502a

    pasipple

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2009
    #5
    "....if the apple tv can access an external hard drive connected to an airport extreme".

    Yes...any external drive via USB on the Airport Extreme.

    I'm using a WD external drive as shown in my signature. Works flawlessly.
     
  6. shmeffrey thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto Canada
    #6
    Thanks for the help, I didn't realize that the PS3 can stream video. I think I will go with the Apple TV anyway, so that my whole house will be streamlined with apple products. I've already started converting the shows, I like that I can just put them through Visual Hub and walk away. I probably wont convert all my Movies, since I can just put one on a memory stick and plug that straight into my TV.

    The next upgrade will be airplay for music in every room controlled with my iphone.
     
  7. Zeneth macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2010
    #7
    how do u do this?

    Zeneth
     
  8. Dalton63841 macrumors 65816

    Dalton63841

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2010
    Location:
    SEMO, USA
    #8
    On the contrary, avi is a relatively archaic container, that simply has become too common to easily replace. MP4 is a newer container, with more options such as adding chapters, etc...To my knowledge it is also the one of the most common containers for the h.264 codec.

    Note I am not saying you should convert 1TB of vids to mp4. If you enjoy them and they are fine in AVI, it'll be fine. LOL I just recently finished converting all my vids to MP4(Im a perfectionist) and it took about a month and a half of nonstop converting...
     
  9. shmeffrey thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto Canada
    #9
    Airport Express, with sound systems, and the Remote app. Allow itunes on a computer to look for remote speakers on the network.

    Hopefully more manufacturers will make airplay devices soon, so I won't need to buy more airport express units.
     
  10. shmeffrey thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto Canada
    #10
    I've realized that most of my TV shows are ripped from TV so I'm going to re-download dvd rips and buy some seasons to have mp4 files with dvd quality. I don't care if it takes a month to download and convert. I'm in no rush to have everything on my Apple TV all at once.
     

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