Storing Movies on :apple:TV

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Brotherman00, Mar 11, 2008.

  1. Brotherman00 macrumors newbie


    Jan 16, 2008
    NY, NY
    I just purchased an :apple:TV like two weeks ago and I'm absolutely in love with it. I have a problem though. Like some of the members of the forum I have a large collection of DVDs that I would like to have put on my :apple:TV. I already know what to do in regards to ripping, encoding, tagging etc. But, I want to be able to keep the movies in :apple:TV and not have to keep it on my computer as well. Is there a way of doing this? I set up syncing to custom and all that but I can't seem to manually put the movie unto the machine. I turned off syncing and my :apple:TV disappeared from iTunes. I don't have the space or an external drive to have keep all the movies in. I figured I have a 160 gig :apple:TV I can use that.

    Bottom Line: Is there a way i can manually transfer movies to :apple:TV without having to have the same movie on my computer?

    I prefer syncing because I can listen to my internet readio stations from iTunes on my home theater system. Any advice or solutions around this will be greatly appreciated.
  2. MikieMikie macrumors 6502a

    Aug 7, 2007
    Newton, MA
    Once you sync the movies, delete (or move) the original files but don't delete them from iTunes. As longs as iTunes thinks the movie is there, it won't delete it from your :apple:TV.
  3. Igor92101 macrumors newbie

    Apr 22, 2008
    Storing Movies on :apple:TV


    I've been trying to figure this out for awhile. Could you please take me through how this is done step-by-step. Thank You.

  4. MikieMikie macrumors 6502a

    Aug 7, 2007
    Newton, MA
    Yeah, it's not obvious, but it's not tough once it's explained.

    1. Import your movie to iTunes the way you normally do.
    2. Sync the movie to Apple TV.
    3. Find the movie on your computer's hard drive and copy it to a safe place, like a different folder or another HDD.
    4. Delete the original file from your HDD.

    iTunes will still think the movie is available to it, so it will not delete it from your Apple TV.

    When you click on the movie and ask for information about it, or try to play it from iTunes, itunes won't be able to find the file and will place an exclamation mark in front of the title. It will ask you to locate the file, but don't do it.
  5. gwsat macrumors 68000


    Apr 12, 2008
    I only recently started ripping movies with Handbrake and converting them to MP4 in order to sync them to my Apple TV. Because the MP4 files had virtually filled up my MacBook Pro’s hard drive, I wanted to keep them on an external drive, instead. I then started a thread to try to figure out how to do all of this:

    I think that it may help you.
  6. Igor92101 macrumors newbie

    Apr 22, 2008
    Thanks ! I've been trying to figure this out for weeks... Igor.
  7. JLandis macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2008
    New spin on this thread

    Hello, I hate to bring up an old thread. I reviewed the issues written by the OP, as well as the second to last post to this thread. Both were very helpful in answering my questions regarding managing MP4 files on an external drive.

    However, I have a large collection of DVDs that I have encoded with handbrake into Apple approved MP4, as well as a large collection of DVDrips in .avi and a few mkv.

    Now that I have the files that Apple will allow to be managed with Apple TV in place, I want to find a seamless way to play the .avi files along with the others.

    I see two options. 1: Re-encode the .avi files with handbrake into something like MP4 which Apple will allow, or use an external application such as Boxee or XMBC hosted on the Apple TV to play the files I already have in .avi.

    Please let me know if anyone has any smart ways of dealing with this or if you can point me to any other threads that I have not found. I want to be able to use or sync all movie files in one place using the best video decoder that Apple TV or Boxee can offer. I have a high-end HDTV and would like to use it at its full capacity. Streaming files through Boxee leads me to believe that the quality would not be as good as files hosted on the Apple TV in native format. Using the native Apple TV software just seems like a better choice. Conversely, re-encoding the .avi files into MP4 will reduce the quality of the file upon conversion as well. I thank you for helping me with these issues.
  8. Aidoneus macrumors 6502

    Aug 3, 2009
    The easiest way would be to re-encode the .avi and .mkv files with Handbrake. Use the Universal preset, and set the constant quality to 90%+, which should avoid any loss of quality.
  9. srexy macrumors 6502a

    Nov 19, 2006
    With all of the issues that peeps seem to be having w/iTunes and their :apple:TVs - combine that w/the stringent format restrictions that the :apple:TV has I'd wager that the easiest way to do this is to hack your :apple:TV and use XBMC or Boxee.
  10. Manzana macrumors 6502a


    Jul 19, 2004
    Orange County, CA
    I used Videodrive option #4 to repackage avi's into a mov container for importing into itunes and sync to apple tv. Of course, you have to add Perian to Apple TV but it seems to work well. I am still on the trial version of the software which is good for 20 movies. One nice thing is that it adds metadata and artwork to the avi files in the mov container it uses.
  11. donster28 macrumors 68000

    Oct 5, 2006
    Great White North
    I understand that you want your movies in ATV, but...

    ...why don't you just save your movies to an external hard drive (in APT format/m4v), connect it to your mac, run itunes and point it to the movies/library and "stream' them to your ATV. If you want to listen to your music through your audio receiver, which I assume your ATV is connected to, just turn on "Airtunes" in iTunes and stream them to your ATV too. This way, you don't have to worry about your library expanding. You can just buy another external hard drive to accomodate more. This will futureproof your collection without figuring out how to upgrade your ATV's hard drive. Just leave it as is. I bought the lowest model (40gig) and I'm happy with it.

    I've been doing this for a while now seamlessly. I have 50+ of my Blurays and HD-DVDs ripped to an external hard drive along with regular movie DVDs that aren't available in hidef yet and let me tell you, nothing beats the ATV and I tried the rest. I even have my movies organized, complete with artwork. And one cool tidbit for you: ATV labels my bluray and hd-dvd rips as 'HD' that's smart I think.

    If you have an iPhone, download the 'Remote' app and control your ATV using gestures...I can't even describe how awesome this is. Everytime, I feel like Tony Stark.
  12. JLandis macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2008
    Is your external HD connected to your computer or ATV? I find that when using anything larger that standard def or DVDrips, like 720P episodes I have donwloaded Boxee does not do a good job of streaming the content. It skips and stops in sections making it unwatchable. I think they have a lousy buffering system. Does the ATV buffer larger resolution files well? I would like to keep my external HDD connected to my computer to help with managing content.

    I am in the process of converting all of my DVDrips to a format compatible with ATV so I can get away from boxee and their streaming setup. It sounds like you have a good setup figured out. I do not want to have delays in video playback when streaming larger content. Please comment.
  13. JLandis macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2008

    Also, what ripper are you using and what format do you encode to. I assume you have a blueray drive in your computer to be able to rip these formats.

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