WD TV Live

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Gotmoose, Oct 27, 2009.

  1. Gotmoose macrumors newbie

    Oct 3, 2009
    Hello All,

    I'm debating getting Apple Tv. I came across this http://www.wdc.com/en/products/Products.asp?DriveID=735 and am wondering if anyone has bought this and what they think of it. Am I wrong or is WD tv live essentially the same as Apple Tv except that you can attach a external hardrive to it?

  2. AnalyzeThis macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2007
    Who is buying AppleTV?

    If you are dependent on iTunes store for video material, AppleTV would be your best bet.
    If you are not then I am not sure why AppleTV would be even considered in current state of the market.

    I had Popcorn A-110 and first WD TV and when WD TV Live came out I got two of them. Shortly after I sold the popcorn and old WD TV.

    WD TV [Live] interface is more like AppleTV. WD TV Live handles full bandwidth 1080P blu ray movies (~48Mbs) like it is nothing. I do not like using external HDD, so I stream all content with Twonky Media Server to multiple DLNA clients around my house over wire. WD TV works the best with portable WD Passport drives. I heard WD TV Live could go wireless with 3rd party USB WiFi adapter. Not many folks figured out WD TV Live, so grab one till you can until other folks would figure out the value.
  3. jamerican macrumors newbie

    Jul 22, 2009
    Wd Tv

    I have both the original WDTV and the WDTV Live. The Live is a big improvement over the original and I am pleased with both models. I use them both for playing ripped dvd's and with the live I have it set up on the network with my iMac from where I can add or delete files from the drives attached to the WDTV Live. The Live also lets you access YouTube directly. Hopefully, future software will allow access to other internet streaming sites. For the price, this is a great little box that plays almost every format that there is (.iso, mkv, mp4 and possibly more).:)
  4. jaw04005 macrumors 601


    Aug 19, 2003
    Microsoft just demoed a new version of the WDTV Live at their Windows 7 launch. You may want to wait to see if that one includes new features. From their demo, it supported push DLNA.

    I don’t know if it was a completely new device or just the WDTV Live with newer firmware.
  5. beejam macrumors member

    Jul 18, 2007
    Had to return mine.

    I ordered one when they first came out and had lots of problems with the video freezing (playing video_ts from an external usb, not streaming). Read on the forums that others were having this problem too. Maybe a problem with the first ones coming out? I thought it was a good product, but in the end I decided it was a toy I don't need right now so I ended up returning it.

    btw, they are still on sale at bestbuy's site.
  6. Gotmoose thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 3, 2009
    Thats why I asked. I haven't heard much about it. It does appear that it if it is a decent product (as you and others have noted) it is better than the current apple tv and cheaper.

    Thanks for the info.
  7. BORIStheBLADE macrumors regular


    Jun 15, 2008
  8. TuckBodi macrumors 6502

    Jan 10, 2007
    I took a look at some youtube videos of this new device and I see, while they've shifted things vertical, and added some network stuff, everything still looks pretty much the same. But I'm wondering if they've ironed out the bugs/quirks from the first gen device (which I own). Off the top of my head:

    - I have some tutorial videos labeled 1,2,3..20, 21 and instead of showing them in order the OS goes back to DOS days and shows them as 1,10,2,20,21,3,4,5...
    - I added coverart to my movies using MetaX and the hirez images cannot be displayed (isn't this a hi-def device??)
    - fast-forward/reverse is flakey
    - some of my MKV's it could not play
    - it couldn't intelligently break out movies and TV shows
    - overall I thought the remote and interface were very clunky
    - etc

    If these are still around (along with some music library issues I had) I think I'll stick with my AppleTV with XBMC. Plus, with the ~$25 Broadcomm card upgrade right around the corner, I should soon be awash in 1080p glory. Hopefully.
  9. crazytrain macrumors member

    Sep 9, 2009
    Just found out that this can decode DTS (don't have a surround sound system so this was a problem for me with the original version) so looks like I'll be picking one up! Have been converting my Bluray mkv rips to PS3 format but won't have to bother now with one of these - excellent update as far as I can see!
  10. polishdan macrumors newbie

    Dec 30, 2009
    I've had nothing but trouble trying to stream video from my Mac. Can you offer any suggestion as to what I might be doing wrong?

    I have a 24" iMac running Leopard with two external 1TB hard drives (one TV and one Movie). Both are formatted as Mac OS Extended (Journaled). After giving up on a wifi connection, I have the box and my Mac connected with 50ft of ethernet cable running through the wall (day-long project). I can just as easily connect the ethernet to my router instead but figured a direct-line would solve ANY issues with streaming.

    Network-wise: My two externals are properly shared with AFP and SMB via File Sharing in the Preferences Panel. In the window under the SMB checkbox, my name is listed as the account and ON. The box sees my Mac but when I try to connect, it does nothing for 2 minutes and then finally gives me a "cannot connect to this device" error. I went so far as to download Playback and that got everything streaming in a minute but now I have to go to Media Servers on my WD Live and I'm going through 5 menus just to get to my movie folder. Shows and movies are prone to be cut off when the WIRED connection quits at random times. Also, the box has given me slow response rates with the remote. I updated all the firmware but that made the whole thing run extremely slowly so I restored the factory defaults. Help?
  11. nobunaga209 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 13, 2009
    Old thread but wanted to add my spare change. I've owned both the ATV and [currently] the WDTV Live. I'm sure most of you are aware of ALL the pro's and con's related to ATV ownership so I'll spare you my personal history lesson.

    The WDTV Live is probably one of the best 'gadget' devices I've ever owned. It's specifically useful for me since a majority of my multimedia library is housed on my network rather than DVD's, CD's, Blu rays, etc. There isn't a single file format I've thrown at the thing that it won't play; I would highly recommend the product to anyone looking for a quick and easy media 'network' solution.

    That being said it does have flaws, however WD has been pretty diligent with the firmware upgrades and addressing consumer concerns.
  12. nREMfan macrumors member

    Feb 10, 2010
    Can any WDTV owners answer the following as it relates to AppleTV:

    - when playing music does it go into slideshow/screensaver mode from iPhoto?
    - will it stream from my current (non-DRM) iTunes folders, or does a separate one have to be set up?
    - how does it handle music lists - can it read iTunes playlists that are set up?

    I'm looking to replace a dead ATV, or getting this instead. Any help to those questions would be appreciated. Thanks.

    I guess I'm trying to find out any of the "gotcha's" that may await if I were to switch.
  13. TuckBodi macrumors 6502

    Jan 10, 2007
    Hmmm, interesting.. So as an ATV owner your media must be in M4V format and does your WDTV Live play this format okay? With my Handbraked AppleTV M4V files, forward/reverse doesn't even work. I have to convert the extension to MP4, but even then, forward/reverse is very flakey. Also, if I used say MetaX to embed hi-rez thumbnail coverart into the file, those won't appear in thumnail mode. Have they fixed this yet too?

    And are they able to split out movies from TV shows yet?

    The latest firmware I have on my WDTV (1.03.1) hasn't fixed any of these pesky issues and I'd be a little peeved if they were off and fixing what's been reported as bugs since my device first came out, on their new stuff. And yeah, with my original WDTV, they came out with some quick updates, but that was because they had some even worse bugs than what I mentioned above (their product was more like a beta), and those fixes have drastically slowed down in the past year.

    Hopefully your experience is a lot better than what I've gone through, but now since my AppleTV can play 1080p content, and can look like the following screenshot, I think I still prefer it over my WDTV.

  14. uponedownone macrumors newbie

    Feb 16, 2010
    thumbnail generator

    Does anyone know if there is a WDTV thumbnail generator for Macs?
  15. fpnc macrumors 68000

    Oct 30, 2002
    San Diego, CA
    I've got both an Apple TV and a WD TV Live. I played with the WD TV Live for a few days and after that I haven't really used it. I found that the user interface is pretty clunky in comparison to the Apple TV and even though several have posted that the WD TV Live can play "anything" I've found that it (the WD TV Live) won't play some of the unprotected content that I use on my unhacked Apple TV. Thus, if you have any content that you've prepared for the Apple TV or that you've purchased from the iTunes Store you may find that some of that will not play on the WD TV Live (and once again, I'm talking about unprotected, non-DRM'd content).

    Furthermore, the WD TV Live can't play any of the commercially available protected content which means that you can't rent or purchase movies online with the WD TV Live. Given that, I wouldn't recommend the WD TV Live unless you plan on restricting your content to ripped DVDs and other self-prepared content. If the latter is the case (exclusively), then the WD TV Live would be a good choice. However, if you are thinking about using a mix of online, purchased content and self-prepared videos then the Apple TV is arguably the better product.
  16. rabbisound macrumors newbie

    Mar 21, 2010
    I bought a WDTV Live around 4 months ago probably the best investment I've made in years, in a heartbeat get one, I no longer have to encode/compress my DVDS, I use MAKEMKV for a 1:1 exact copy of the DVD Mpeg2 VOB file to .MKV, plus the beauty of being able to download something throw it on a portable HD or a USB stick and play straight away rocks.
    I love APPLETV had one for over 2 years, I mainly use for streaming RADIO STATIONS and Music and the FREE TV show downloads in HD from iTunes but it's really just a hassle with the video having to be reconverted, which isn't really too much of a problem as I have an Elgato Turbo .264 HD stick which certainly speeds the conversions up but still a hassle.
    The WDTV Live is a must have, the APPLETV is a must have too, if you only want one then WDTV Live is it and buy some more portable USB drives (the non power adapter ones) and get ripping your xfiles, millennium, space above and beyond, firefly, babylon5, deep space nice, sopranos seasons to Hard disk using MKV with NO LOSS IN quality ie the itunes equivalent of an audio ALAC file you should be encoding your music with in iTunes.
    MKV = Lossless VIDEO
    ALAC - Lossless AUDIO
    WDTV Live = EASE
  17. duky macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2007
    North Carolina
    How did you get your aTV to play 1080p content? And what interface is that your image is showing?
  18. Blazer5913 macrumors 6502

    Jan 20, 2004

    I would really like to know this answer too. Both, the ATV playing 1080p and mainly that INTERFACE, it's absolutely gorgeous. I love it

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