What can I do with Apple TV?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Matt-Man-Plus, May 18, 2008.

  1. Matt-Man-Plus macrumors regular

    Mar 20, 2008
    If I bought an Apple TV and say, a 500gb external hard drive, how easy is it to get my dvd library (about 35 movie dvd's and 10 home movies) on A-TV using handbreak? How about the dvd covers...can those be downloaded from somewhere?
  2. psychofreak Retired


    May 16, 2006
    Its an easy but slow process, and you can get the covers from the web.
  3. EricNau Moderator emeritus


    Apr 27, 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    Handbrake is simple, there's even an AppleTV preset. It does take some time, however.

    Here are three threads which can help you with dvd cover art:
    * iTunes Official Artwork - Music, Movies, TV Shows, Music Videos and Short Films
    iTunes Unofficial Artwork - Movies and TV Shows
    Artwork For iTunes *Photoshopped*

    Since the AppleTV cannot handle external drives, I'm assuming you will be keeping the movies in iTunes and streaming them (via wireless or ethernet) to AppleTV? That's what I do, and it works quite nicely.
  4. Alfie macrumors member

    Feb 22, 2004
    South Dakota
    I've been working on exactly the same thing you are talking about. I bought 500gb of external storage and moved my iTunes library over. Then I imported all the kids' movies so we wouldn't have to be swapping discs all the time. After I saw how great that worked, I was hooked and started slowly converting all my movies. The other posts are right....it does take awhile, but I just try to get a few converted here and there and don't try to get it all done at once. After you've used Handbrake to covert the movie, use MetaX to add tags to the movie. The best part of this is that MetaX actually goes to the net and pulls in the cover art for you. You just pick the correct art from the options that it finds, and MetaX adds it to the mp4 file for you. It's a great program.
  5. Matt-Man-Plus thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 20, 2008
    Great thanks for the info, but what do you mean by "tags"?
    So the itunes library actually resides on the external HD? I'm kinda confused.
    I thought the eternal HD was just for storage. You actually run itunes on it?
    Eventually the content has to end up on the A-tv, right? So you stream it right from the external HD? Bear with me guys, i'm new to this. Thanks, Matt
  6. Alfie macrumors member

    Feb 22, 2004
    South Dakota
    1. Tags are the "extra" pieces of information about the movie that you can attach to the mp4 file you're creating. Handbrake will give the movie a title and that's about it. MetaX allows you to add the cover art, actors, director, genre, movie rating, a brief description of the movie, etc. After MetaX adds this stuff to the mp4 file, MetaX then adds it to you're iTunes library, thereby making it available to the Apple TV. The end result looks great on the ATV because all the extras (especially cover art) are there and make the experience a lot more fun.

    2. iTunes does not actually reside on the external drive. It's still on the computer's drive. What I did was transfer the "iTunes Music" folder from my local hard drive to the external drive. Then you tell itunes where to look for your files. Once it knows where the files are, itunes just plays all your files from the external. I followed this help article from Apple's website to do this.


    Be sure to do it this way....don't just drag and drop the itunes file to the new drive.

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