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  1. #1

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Took the Plunge Apple TV 1st Gen.
    It was not exactly on the top of my list of priorities...but I have been thinking about it for a while...and finally took the plunge today and purchased a used Apple TV (1st generation)

    I've read a lot of the threads for Apple TV 1 vs. Apple TV 2 (participated in some as well)...and of course still found each to have it's positives & negatives.

    Anyway...been thinking about it...and got this Apple TV 1 (160gig hard drive) for $50 bucks! For $50 bucks I figured:

    - I couldn't go wrong (just to mess around with it).
    - I currently don't have another device that does what it does.
    - Worst case scenario...I could remove the hard drive (upgrade one of my Mac-Mini's)...and give the Apple TV remote to my wife to use with her MacBook.

    I know that there's a number of programs that can be loaded onto the Apple TV 1st gen. to help improve the content the Apple TV 1 can access...and help improve how content is managed.

    So here are my questions:

    I've come across the following apps:

    - Boxee
    - XBMC
    - Couchsurfer
    - NitoTV
    - Sapphire

    1. Can anyone offer their opinions (pos. or neg.) about them (tips, tricks, "watch-outs", recommendations, etc.)?

    2. Are there any better or additional apps. out there for the Apple TV 1?

    3. The person that sold me the Apple TV said that he loaded the latest Apple TV software update (v.3.0.2)...and he said that it seemed to be much better than the old software (I think he was running a version before 3.0). Are there any major changes version 3.0 brought to the Apple TV 1?

    I did skim thru this Apple TV software update 3.0.2 document:

    About Apple TV (1st generation) software updates

    I'm definitely a "newbie" when it comes to the Apple TV 1...so any info is "good info!

    Thanks a bunch,

    - Nick

    p.s. The seller thru in an HDMI cable as well!
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
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  2. #2

    Kevriano's Avatar
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    I can't answer your questions, but if you find another one for $50 buy it and send it over (Paypal you the money!)
    Jeez, that's a bargain. Curse you UK, curse you!

    I will say that there are a lot of ATV1's with those apps installed selling on eBay here (for 250!), and they seem to be very popular.
    Try my custom Mac Forums Search Engine: Mac Forums Google Search

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  3. #3

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevriano View Post
    I can't answer your questions, but if you find another one for $50 buy it and send it over (Paypal you the money!)
    Jeez, that's a bargain. Curse you UK, curse you!

    I will say that there are a lot of ATV1's with those apps installed selling on eBay here (for 250!), and they seem to be very popular.
    I've actually been surprised that I haven't seen more ATV 1's on my local Craig's List. With the release of ATV2...I thought that more ATV1's would go up for sale...but then again...each has it's pos. & neg. points.

    The ATV1 I bought is probably only the 2nd one I've seen in the last couple months. The fact that it was a 160gig model...and only $50 dollars...is what really caught my attention. I didn't even try to negotiate with the seller's price (as I 99% of the time do)...since I figured that I would lose the deal just to save $5-$10 bucks (which the seller probably wouldn't have done due to other interested buyers).

    Just for fun...I watched a few e-Bay (US) auctions for ATV1's. Two 40gig models sold for $69-$76 (plus $12-$15 shipping)...and two 160gig models sold for $75-$107 (plus $10-$15 shipping). I'm betting if I watched more...there would probably be higher $$$ sales as well.

    WOW...250 for a used ATV1 on e-Bay UK seems pretty steep!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  4. #4

    Kevriano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pigoo3 View Post

    WOW...250 for a used ATV1 on e-Bay UK seems pretty steep!

    - Nick
    Well I think they are refurbs with 1TB drives and all that software you mentioned installed, but even so, pretty steep.
    Used 160GB's are selling for around 90-100, so as much as a new ATV2 , and I can buy a new ATV 1 for 140 still.
    I am still considering it (as the 2 will not play with my TV) but I am a little put off because it's not really High Def, and I don't need the HD either.
    I'm looking at other options now.

    Anyway, as you were , back to getting some answers.
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  5. #5

    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    I used to have the original Apple TV. Hated it. Honestly, I thought it utterly sucked. You can make a Patchstick and add in XBMC and whatnot. That will help play files unsupported by the ATV's native interface, but streaming in those 3rd party apps can be glitchy.

    A little over a year ago I switched from an ATV to a late '09 Mac mini to use as an HTPC, and liked it better, but with all the hassles involved, I finally gave up and grabbed an ATV2 last weekend. So far, much more satisfied with that.

    Oh yes… back to your question. Make yourself a Patchstick to add on extra functionality.
    atvusb-creator - Project Hosting on Google Code

    What to actually add depends on your wants. XBMC will play pretty much any video codec and stream videos from your Mac. But streaming HD video in particular can be glitchy. I forget what all is supported on the ATV. I'd strive for local file storage or an external drive if possible. The nifty thing about XBMC is that it will download the metadata for any videos you add to its library and store it in its own database. Downside is that the interface in setting up the library is wholly unintuitive. I suggest practicing with it on your Mac to get acquainted with how it works first.

    Boxee lets you grab videos off the internet. It's actually a fork of XBMC iirc. It's kinda like Hulu I suppose. But you can't use without setting up a user account and logging in, again iirc.

    One other nice trick. If you can do without the internal wi-fi card, you can add the Broadcom Crystal HD hardware decoder card and have buttery smooth 1080p playback via XBMC.
    Broadcom Crystal HD, It`s Magic. | XBMC

  6. #6

    drgrafix's Avatar
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    I did the same thing a few months ago and HS did you get a great deal. I paid $100 for a 40GB setup and I thought it was a decent price. I'm in the midst of setting it up now, and I'm going to stream from a remote USB drive but rather than wireless I'm going to put the ATV on a hardwire from the Airport. The USB drive is been formatted with HFS+ and I'm considering using HandBrake to convert to MP4 files. I did the patchstick after updating the ATV to the latest software, then added XMBC, Boxee, Sapphire, and per someone's suggestion... NAVI-X as one of my Apps.

    The one really annoying thing I'm trying to figure out is when I'm using the ATV on my bench 10' from my iMac, I'm seeing two totally different screens (iMac & Hanns-G) from FrontRow on each screen (I have the ATV feeding a 22" Hanns-G via HDMI to bench test until I connect to the big screen). As I'm using the Apple Remote to move around the ATV menus, sometimes music from my iTunes starts playing sometimes it gets louder or muted. Don't know what the deal is there. Somebody said that I should "un-sync" iTunes from the ATV but I'm not sure how to do that or if it'd screw something else up. The other thing is that theoretically, if you import the MP4 Movies into iTunes you could use that.

    The tricky stuff is getting the modded ATV to use the specific drive you have set up. Give the drive a name like "Media-1" and try adding the source. It also might be better if the USB source drive is plugged directly into the ATV? Maybe (IDK yet).
    Without Curiosity, Intelligence Is Nonexistent
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  7. #7

    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drgrafix View Post
    The one really annoying thing I'm trying to figure out is when I'm using the ATV on my bench 10' from my iMac, I'm seeing two totally different screens (iMac & Hanns-G) from FrontRow on each screen (I have the ATV feeding a 22" Hanns-G via HDMI to bench test until I connect to the big screen). As I'm using the Apple Remote to move around the ATV menus, sometimes music from my iTunes starts playing sometimes it gets louder or muted. Don't know what the deal is there. Somebody said that I should "un-sync" iTunes from the ATV but I'm not sure how to do that or if it'd screw something else up. The other thing is that theoretically, if you import the MP4 Movies into iTunes you could use that.
    The problem is that both the ATV and your iMac are receiving commands from the remote. You need to unpair the remote from the iMac.

    Mac OS X 10.6 Help: Pairing and unpairing an Apple Remote

  8. #8

    drgrafix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lifeisabeach View Post
    The problem is that both the ATV and your iMac are receiving commands from the remote. You need to unpair the remote from the iMac.

    Mac OS X 10.6 Help: Pairing and unpairing an Apple Remote
    Thanks... once I moved the ATV upstairs, its not a problem any longer LOL. But I may have to unpair anyway. Another problem, remote-related...

    As noted above, I just recently set up my Gen1 ATV in my home theater, connected via HDMI to my Yamaha AVR's HDMI3. Switch to #3 and I have a blank screen on the TV, so I push the Menu button. No flashing led. Push the upper button on the ATV remote... No flashing led. Power cycle the ATV the led starts flashing and all is well until the next time lapse when I switch from D*TV to ATV, and I have to pull the plug and re-plug. Kind of annoying LOL. Are there any settings within the ATV (has latest firmware/OS) to make sure the ATV listens when I beckon?
    Without Curiosity, Intelligence Is Nonexistent
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  9. #9

    Lifeisabeach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drgrafix View Post
    Thanks... once I moved the ATV upstairs, its not a problem any longer LOL. But I may have to unpair anyway. Another problem, remote-related...

    As noted above, I just recently set up my Gen1 ATV in my home theater, connected via HDMI to my Yamaha AVR's HDMI3. Switch to #3 and I have a blank screen on the TV, so I push the Menu button. No flashing led. Push the upper button on the ATV remote... No flashing led. Power cycle the ATV the led starts flashing and all is well until the next time lapse when I switch from D*TV to ATV, and I have to pull the plug and re-plug. Kind of annoying LOL. Are there any settings within the ATV (has latest firmware/OS) to make sure the ATV listens when I beckon?
    Perhaps you need to pair the remote with the ATV?
    Apple TV: Pairing and unpairing the Apple Remote

  10. #10

    drgrafix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lifeisabeach View Post
    Perhaps you need to pair the remote with the ATV?
    Apple TV: Pairing and unpairing the Apple Remote
    That's an interesting thought. This remote came with the ATV when I bought it, and I have just last weekend did the software update for the ATV, then did a new patchstick. Once booted the remote works just fine. But I'm gonna go try that right now!
    Without Curiosity, Intelligence Is Nonexistent
    Aging Grandpa drives a Supercharged Ford SVT Lightning

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