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Apple TV Discussion of Apple TV, the new revolution in watching television.

Jailbreak ATV2 + Airport Extreme + External HDD = No iTunes?


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smanicom

 
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Hi guys

I have been reading as much as possible on the topic in this and many other forums and am unable to find a definitive answer to my dilemma therefore here I am, requesting your awesomeness to help me figure this out...please!

I have iMac, MBP, iPad2 and ATV2.

Right now the iMac is always on and serves my ATV2 via iTunes/Home Sharing! I can also see my iTunes library on my iPad and everything's cool.

But... Now I need to sell my iMac. I need the money and all it is really doing is holding my iTunes library. Thats £1400 just to hold an iTunes library so it has to go, I have to downscale.

So I plan to replace the iMac with Airport Extreme and an External HDD, storing my iTunes library. The problem is you still need iTunes running and I dont want to have to boot up my MBP and leave it on just so I can watch my ATV2.

So what can I do? If I jailbreak the ATV2 and run XBMC on it, can i stream from a shared folder (my iTunes folder for example) without iTunes running? If so, then thats cool.

Then when I switch on my MBP I can point to the library on the ext drive and job done, I assume.

Now what happens with the iPad - it, like the ATV2 need iTunes running all the time, right? So from that perspective I have to always boot up my MBP, run iTunes (pointed to my ext drive/library) and only then I can stream media to my iPad. - anyway around this at all?

Is the above all correct? Have I missed anything? Im hoping to achieve what I have right now (with the iMac) once its sold. Hoping a straight swap for Airport Extreme + Ext HDD + ATV2 Jailbreak will work.

Please help, thanks!
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Lifeisabeach

 
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You really should simply test all this out yourself to see if it meets expectations. I've used XBMC and Plex on a Mac mini in the past, and quite frankly their streaming capabilities are rather inferior to Apple's streaming quality.

Another option is to sell your iMac and pick up a cheap, used Windows PC, plop iTunes on it, and use that to serve up your media.


Please verify and include the exact model/year of your Mac and OS X version number (available from "About This Mac", then "More Info" on the Apple menu).
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bobtomay

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lifeisabeach View Post
...
Another option is to sell your iMac and pick up a cheap, used Windows PC, plop iTunes on it, and use that to serve up your media.
I'd go for that option and sell the ATV2 also. Then set the Win machine as your HTPC directly connected to the TV. No more worries about whether something is "Apple" compatible or what you can display on the big screen.

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Lifeisabeach

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobtomay View Post
I'd go for that option and sell the ATV2 also. Then set the Win machine as your HTPC directly connected to the TV. No more worries about whether something is "Apple" compatible or what you can display on the big screen.
Well speaking for myself, I tried and tried and tried to like using a Mac mini as an HTPC using Plex because I didn't want to worry about my media being Apple compatible. I traded out to an Apple TV 2 and have zero regrets. The reasons are varied, but in short… Apple's software is just MUCH better at streaming than anything else is. That said, if you go with an HTPC and keep all your files stored locally on it, then streaming is really a non-issue. Worth mentioning… any HTPC will be adding to the background noise, some more than others. The Mac mini is as low as that gets, short of the ATV2 which is utterly silent. And an HTPC will be adding more "bulk" to your living room appliances.


Please verify and include the exact model/year of your Mac and OS X version number (available from "About This Mac", then "More Info" on the Apple menu).
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JohnCL

 
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Just to add to the mix, for a Windows HTPC the Dell Zino HD is a great option and can be had pretty cheap. It is dead silent (like my Mac Mini) and has a BD-ROM, HDMI, etc. Same footprint as the Mini but twice as tall. It takes a 3.5" SATA drive, and I have a TB in mine now. The newest models have the IR sensor on the front for the Media Center remote too..

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You can build virtually silent HTPCs with some consideration. Built my own starting off with the Antec Fusion Black. It also doubles as my CD, DVD, HD-DVD and Blu-Ray player though.



John,
Does that Dell have HDMI out and does it pass thru DTS-HD and Dolby TrueHD via the HDMI port (if at all) or do you need to use the optical output for that?

They're offering the Blu-Ray equipped version of it with the upgraded video card for $499 this weekend.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobtomay View Post
You can build virtually silent HTPCs with some consideration. Built my own starting off with the Antec Fusion Black. It also doubles as my CD, DVD, HD-DVD and Blu-Ray player though.



John,
Does that Dell have HDMI out and does it pass thru DTS-HD and Dolby TrueHD via the HDMI port (if at all) or do you need to use the optical output for that?

They're offering the Blu-Ray equipped version of it with the upgraded video card for $499 this weekend.
Sweet case!! The Dell does have HDMI and the Zino HD model passes the audio. There were 2 models, the Zino and the Zino HD (Inspiron 400 and 410 if I remember right)

I am not using in as a HTPC at the moment, just as my primary Windows machine. I keep everything in iTunes, so the ATV2 streaming from the Mac Mini fits the bill perfectly for me right now.

2.4GHz 13" rMBP 256gb | 2.5GHz Mac Mini w/ FusionDrive | Mac Mini Server 2.53GHz | Mac Pro 3,1 2x 2.8GHz | Dual 2.0GHz PowerMac G5 | 24" ACD | 32GB Verizon iPhone 5S | iPad 32GB Verizon LTE | iPad mini 16GB | Gen 7 Nano | TV1 | TV3
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