Solution to a large itunes library?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by sonicrobby, Aug 20, 2013.

  1. sonicrobby, Aug 20, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2013

    sonicrobby macrumors 68020


    Apr 24, 2013
    New Orleans
    I will start off by saying: No external hardrive suggestions please.

    Im a minimalist, and I switched to Apple because it fits my style more. That being said, when I go out, I do not wish to take bulky equipment around with me. Because of this, my solutions are limited.

    Problem: Got a rMBP with 512GB SSD. My itunes library (movies and TV shows) extend over 350GB and constantly growing. I need those videos in my iTunes library to view on my Apple TV.

    Current Solution: I have a Time Capsule, and that is where my videos are currently stored. The problem with this is that my internet speed isnt great, and my videos are not accessible outside my home.

    Possible solutions:
    1) The best solution, yet most costly would be a bigger SSD, but as far as I know no one sells rMBP SSDs with a 750GB+ capacity. Therefore I would have to sell my rMBP, and buy a new rMBP with the upgraded SSD. That would probably be upwards of $1000+ out of my pocket.

    2) Second best is a mac mini as a media server. This one is probably the most feasible, but still costly. I would keep all my video files on the mini, and in its own iTunes library so my Apple TV can connect anytime, and use splashtop remote desktop to access my mini when Im out of my home. The issue I have with this solution is that Im still relying on multiple devices for a solution and I dont have all my media/data in one place, so this bothers me a bit. The price of a mini is also pretty costly. While I will mainly use it for a media server, I would also like it to be able to handle my regular rMBP duties if needed. So I look more toward the 2011 or 2012 models, which still go for around $500. I would be able to settle for a 2010, but those still go for a hefty $400.

    3) The third possible solution I had in mind were SD cards (multiple 128GB ones). My issue with this is that it is costly (about $100 a pop), I still have to carry things around with me (although they are really small), and my Apple TV streaming content would depend on which SD card I have plugged in.

    Any other suggestions you guys might have? I am considering option 1 for sometime in october, so I could just go for the haswell model (or even a discounted 2012 model with the largest SSD). But the dGPU has to be better than the 650M or it would be a dealbreaker :[

    Thanks in advance for any responses!
  2. FreakinEurekan macrumors 68040


    Sep 8, 2011
    Eureka Springs, Arkansas
    No matter what solution you choose, you risk running out of space if you try to keep it all on your MBP. I would suggest the media server route, then you can use iTunes Home Sharing to drag media across to the rMBP that you want to take with you. Everything is on the server (Mac Mini) and you can ramp it up with external drives to whatever you need.

    I run this type of solution, my Mini now has 5TB of storage but plenty of capacity for more. Blu-Ray rips are several GB each so it adds up quickly.

    I could copy movies to my MBA for traveling with this setup, just drag them across in iTunes from the shared library. Personally I don't do that, I sync a few to my iPad for traveling instead but the idea is the same - change out the media on your travel device from time to time, and have the whole thing available at home.

    Other benefit is that your whole library is always available on Apple TVs, no need to leave the MBP turned on.
  3. silvershamrock macrumors member

    Aug 1, 2013
    Edmonton, AB
    I can empathize with your dilemma, and considered the exact same set of options when I first got my 128GB MBA. (Even went so far as to order a couple of 128GB SD cards...)

    The problem with SD cards is, as I learned the hard way, they are fatally easy to lose (since they are so small). And unless you have the files backed up somewhere, losing a card from your collection would be catastrophic. The risk of loss can be lowered by purchasing a case for them ... but .....

    I know you didn't want to hear the "D" word. But TBH I'm not sure what the difference between carrying a case for your SD cards, and carrying a portable USB drive (which would be approximately the same size as a SD case, and you could get a 2TB portable drive for about the same price as a single 128GB SD card) would be.

    One additional thing to consider with networked access to your media files is that it only works at its best if you're actually connected to your home network. While there are ways to access your home network from other locations, your net performance will only be as good as the speed of the slowest internet connection between you and your home network. (And it doesn't matter how fast your personal ISP service is, if you're stuck in a public hotspot with 50 other people who are all competing for the same 10GBPS download speed... because you'll only be able to access your home network with your 1/50 share of that 10GBPS)

    Good luck, whatever you choose to do! :)
  4. sonicrobby thread starter macrumors 68020


    Apr 24, 2013
    New Orleans
    Thanks guys! Yeah I think I will eliminate option 3 as it is too risky.

    Im trying to go for my first option if I can sell my current rMBP at market value and find one with 768GB for under $2400 (not really seeing it though)

    If I have no luck with that one, I will wait until the mini refresh and pick up a 2010 or 2011 model from ebay or something.

    Thank you for your help! :D
  5. BrianBaughn macrumors 603


    Feb 13, 2011
    Baltimore, Maryland
  6. 7042003 macrumors newbie

    Apr 25, 2013
    Option 2, Install Plex

    If you decided to go with option 2. Install Plex, you would be able to listen to your music and watach your movies remotely for free.

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