With Streaming, Why Get the Bigger HD?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by czachorski, Jan 8, 2009.

  1. czachorski macrumors 6502a


    Sep 24, 2007
    What am I missing here - I'm thinking about getting an ATV, just for the convenience of being able to watch YouTube and PodCasts on my TV, and to move some music and videos from my Mac to TV more easily when I occasionally do it. I don't rip that many DVDs, so moving video files to the ATV is probably something that will be more occasionally, and probably mostly done with home videos from iMovie (which I have a TB of - way to much to put on the ATV HD).

    So what good would the larger HD serve, with streaming being available? I guess I don't get the value of paying for the bigger HD model. What am I missing?
  2. bilbo--baggins macrumors 6502a

    Jan 6, 2006
    The mixing of streamed and sync'd content is seamless now with the Apple TV, so you generally don't know what it's streaming and what has been copied to the Apple TV.

    The only advantages of getting a larger HD is

    1) If you don't keep your computer and iTunes running 24/7 then you may go to use the Apple TV and it doesn't have what you want.

    2) If you're using wifi (or a slow or busy wired network) to stream the content and have signal problems (such as interference) then you might get frequent interruptions to playback, especially with video. Therefore having more content stored locally means you will this problem less often.

    It seems like a very long time since Apple launched the 160GB version, surely it can't be much longer before they drop the 40GB version and launch something better. I've been waiting for months to replace my 40GB Apple TV but I'm not buying until they bring out something newer.
  3. jersey10 macrumors regular

    Jan 20, 2004
    It's also helpful to have the larger hard drive if you want to travel with AppleTV. Go on vacation, load a ton of movies, and music on it, and then hook it up when you get there. Particularly great if you have kids.
  4. bilbo--baggins macrumors 6502a

    Jan 6, 2006
    Good point - though I tend to put video on my iPod and connect that up to the TV when I'm away because it's much more compact.

    Bear in mind that you need a modern TV with the right inputs to connect to the Apple TV (supposed to be HD, though I believe there are workarounds), whereas cables to connect to iPods include composite which is common on old TV's.
  5. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    I had a quick look; the cheapest 80 GB hard drive I could find was £32, the cheapest 160 GB was £40. Couldn't find anything smaller than 80 GB. So selling a 40 GB Apple TV seems rather pointless.
  6. czachorski thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 24, 2007
    Good points - my iMac is in the family room about 15 feet from the TV - we use it a lot. So I will probably run a wired connection to the Mac. I have it connected to the TV right now by a VGA cable, which works well, but the content is not managed very well from front-row, and ATV seems to add enough features to be compelling at $200 or so (refrub) - with HD movie rentals, browsing youTube and Podcasts, and streaming easily.

    I will probably wait for a revision, and then just get the cheapest one and rely on streaming a lot.

    A few more question: I have my iMac connected to a NetGear Router. Would I just plug the ATV into the router with an ethernet cord? Is that all there is to it, or do I really need an Apple router to make it all work as well?

    I have a ton of content in iMovie. I have 100's of hours of home video organized in my iMovie library, and have made a dozen or so edits from that footage as iMovie projects. The projects have been exported to iTunes, but the raw footage is not. Will ATV see all the footage in my iMovie library, or do I somehow have to get all that footage organized into iTunes? That seems like a PITA. If needed, how would I go about doing that easily, and without making dupes of all my video (about 1 TB of videos).

    Thanks for your help so far!
  7. aprofetto macrumors 6502a


    Dec 19, 2008
    Hamilton, Ontario
    I bought the 40 gig AppleTV and figured I'd just stream everything, which works great for me. I have my whole iTunes library on an external HD which is attached to my iMac (which I should probably back-up sometime soon).

    Mind you, I have my iMac with me at school now and my AppleTV has been turned into a movie rental device now... lol.

    I'm sure theres plenty of good reasons to get the bigger HD. It's all a matter of what you're going to use it for. I more or less bought it just as a way to get my iTunes library, both music and movies to my TV, and of course for the excuse to buy another Apple product.
  8. xraydoc macrumors demi-god


    Oct 9, 2005
    I have three Apple TVs in my home. All three are 40GB models and stream virtually everything off an 802.11n-only network. Only the newest 3 movies and TV episodes are pushed out to the devices.

    While I have not yet tried streaming HD video to all three simultaneously, I can tell you that two at a time presents no problem. The Mac which supplies the iTunes library is always on, and since I don't travel with the ATVs, I didn't see the need for the larger HD.
  9. alFR macrumors 68020

    Aug 10, 2006
    Any router is fine for wired: for wireless streaming you're probably best with a 802.11N router like the Airport Extreme (although again you don't necessarily need an Apple product), but an uncongested 802.11G network seems to work well for a lot of folks on here.

    ATV will see the rendered videos that you have exported into iTunes, but not the raw footage in iMovie. You could just create a few projects in iMovie, drop all your raw footage in, click on "share to iTunes" and let it churn away for a couple of days, then you'd have it all available. I suppose what you have to ask yourself is whether you really want to see all your shaky, blurred, OOF bits of your home movies on the TV or just the polished final edits. ;)
  10. sandman42 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 23, 2003
    Apple's specs for the :apple:TV don't actually require the TV to be high-def, just widescreen. The :apple:TV supports 480p, and Apple's 'tech specs' page says the :apple:TV is intended for use with "high definition or enhanced definition widescreen TVs.
  11. veedow macrumors newbie


    Dec 19, 2008
    Chicago suburbs
    No need here, for a larger HD. I have (2) 40GB TVs, and both stream content fine. One ATV is hard wired, and the other is wireless-g. There is a slight lag time on the wireless when starting a movie, but other then that, no other noticeable difference then wired. I have a large movie library, that is on external HDs, hanging off an iMac. This computer is always on, with iTunes running. It has the mother iTunes library, and audio and video stream great.

    I prefer to stream, so I don't have to wait for the ATVs to sync content also.

    I guess it would be nice to have networked HDs, and get the ATVs to see the media on these, without having to have my iMac always on. Anyone know how to do that?
  12. crea78 macrumors newbie

    Jun 30, 2005
    disregard this post... figured out how to actually stream to my ATV
  13. frogger2020 macrumors regular

    Sep 10, 2006
    Is there any way to stream directly from an iTunes server (on a NAS) so you don't have to have the mac turned on 24/7?
  14. NightStorm macrumors 68000

    Jan 26, 2006
    Whitehouse, OH
    Not currently.

Share This Page