Steaming HD movies on a G-Network...

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Blazer5913, Feb 4, 2008.

  1. Blazer5913 macrumors 6502

    Jan 20, 2004
    I just picked up an AppleTV yesterday, couldn't wait any longer... Anyways, I have a few 720p encodes in my library, mostly around 4gb or so. I am on a G-wireless network. Anyways, when I select the AppleTV to stream these files from my MacBookPro and the external I have connected to it (FW800), it seems to take FOREVER to start up, and sometimes it never does. And when it does, it stutters and hickups a ton. I do all my files in VisualHub but just can't figure out what the deal is. I don't know if its my wireless network/router (Airport Express), as it seems it would be... Are there any tests to see if my network is just slow or if I'm not getting the most speed out of it? I'm on a college "hard-network" and the speeds are incredible when wired, so I know thats not the problem. For instance, I'm watching Shooter now. It looks unbelieavable, very impressive, when its playing. But it is ALWAYS stopping and rebuffering, almost every 10 seconds or so. Is this normal? I'm very disappointed now and near returning it, but LOVE the concept of it so much and can't believe how good my HD encodes look...

    EDIT: STREAMING HD Videos Haha, my bad...
  2. JonHimself macrumors 68000


    Nov 3, 2004
    Toronto, Ontario
    I have a couple 720p rips that I've converted with visualhub to 4gb files. My router is only G and the files are stored on an external USB drive. It takes 5-6 seconds to start-up but I find if I pause it for longer (maybe 15-20 seconds) it streams fine. I do notice that it is a little bit jumpy while playing though. I'm going to sync a file to the actual AppleTV and see if it is the file or the streaming causing that.
  3. brad.c macrumors 68020


    Aug 23, 2004
    50.813669°, -2.474796°
    I've often had difficulty streaming even SD video--at least watching off a network drive. That's even from a box running from OSX server.

    And I was slightly disappointed that you actually meant "Streaming HD Movies", not "Steaming..."
  4. Blazer5913 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 20, 2004
    Any follow up on this? I tried pausing the movie for about 10 seconds before starting it and this worked alright and the movie didn't skip at all... Yet, still jumpy at parts, especially high bitrate ones... Any feedback?
  5. MikieMikie macrumors 6502a

    Aug 7, 2007
    Newton, MA
    I think (and more accurately "guess") that "g" just isn't providing reliable through speeds.

    I wish I had a 720p movie with which to test on my "n" network.
  6. northy124 macrumors 68020


    Nov 18, 2007
    Right "N" and wired networks are great for 720p/1080p videos.
    "G" on the other hand sucks for HD streaming so expect some lag no matter what you try.
  7. Blazer5913 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 20, 2004
    Can anybody here try a 720p encode for me on the AppleTV streaming on an "N" network?? Thanks
  8. cowm007 macrumors regular

    Feb 2, 2005
    Just a bit of math here. Say your movie is 4GB and 2 hour long. A bit of units conversion and you arrive to about .5MB / second of video.

    802.11g has a theoretical maximum of 54mbit. However, average speeds are lower than that, somewhere around 10-20mbit if you have average reception.

    This means that your 802.11g network can handle about 1.25-2.5MB per second of data.

    Your G network should be able to handle HD data, but you're pushing the bandwidth limits and are bound to see stuttering if there's other activity on the network. It'll definitely help if you move to 802.11n or at least 100mbit ethernet.

    I'm using 802.11n and there's streaming is almost as good as playing the content directly off the drive.
  9. Blazer5913 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 20, 2004
    Thanks alot for the great reply. I just tried it by plugging both into the hard wired ethernet here at Boston College (speeds are ridiculously fast) and it worked like a charm, no stuttering, fast loads, ect. Fantastic! I just have another question, somewhat off topic. Anybody know where I can buy something that basically takes 1 ethernet connection and turns it into 3 or more ethernet ports. We only have two in the room, and I need 1 for the wireless router, 1 for my computer (fast downloading), 1 for xbox360, and 1 for AppleTV. Just don't know how to do this. Eventually, I will grab an N router, but just so glad to see this thing finally working!

    Another random question: Anybody know of a way to pick up basically my network activity to see if I'm going the greatest bandwidth possible from my connection? And to see if anybody else is on it, ect?
  10. cowm007 macrumors regular

    Feb 2, 2005
    Depending on your school's network configuration, you could probably use a desktop switch such as this D-link one: They go for like $20-$30. If that doesn't work you'll have to get a router to create your own mini network inside the dorm. If that's the case, you might as well go for the Airport N router instead of spending good money on a temporary one.
  11. Blazer5913 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 20, 2004
    I already have my own wireless network here with the Airport Express, right? I mean, its G, but it works... I want to stay wired to keep these great speeds up...
  12. jakeacc macrumors regular

    Jan 28, 2008
    I have a wireless G router and stream videos from my Windows Vista computer to my xbox-360. Some of the higher-quality videos require buffering every now and then. When I was setting up the connection, I got a Microsoft warning saying that wireless G streams aren't good for transfering video. They suggested I have my router change to A, which is much better. I did, and the videos played much smoother.

    So, if you don't have a wireless N router, the next best would be A, and then lastly, G.

    On a similar note, if you own a xbox 360, I wouldn't recommend buying a Apple TV, because you can get the program "Connect 360" which lets you wirelessly stream all of your iTunes media to your xbox 360.
  13. cowm007 macrumors regular

    Feb 2, 2005
    Unfortunately, 802.11a works on the 5GHz band so there are very few devices out there that will work with it. I've even had trouble with my Airport N in 5GHz mode since my Windows Desktop's wireless N card can only handle the 2.4Ghz band. Kinda defeats the purpose.

    Anyway, the advantage is that the 5GHz band is less cluttered so there is likely to be less interference so better connection. However, you're better off sticking with 802.11g or going up to 802.11n than trying to get an 802.11a network set up.

    The Airport Express is a wireless router so it creates a private network with whoever is connected to it. The most important functions it performs would be assigning IP addresses to all the devices and sharing the internet connection from the wired port.

    A switch on the other hand just "splits" the connection so-to-speak to allow multiple connections. However, it doesn't assign IP addresses nor performs any routing functions. This is why it might work but it all depends on your school's/dorm's network configuration.

    More specifically, if the wired connections have fixed IPs, then only one device will be able to plug in to them (as there is only one IP to share). This was the case in my school, so in order to do what you're trying to do, you'd need a router/switch combo like the Airport Extreme or a Linksys router.

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