Apple TV 2

Having spent the last few years with a couple of Apple TV’s hooked up to hard drives courtesy of aTV flash software I decided to take the plunge with a new AppleTV 2. Why? because as much as it galls me to say but it was never ultra-reliable, sometimes not finding the drives it should do, and inconsistently playing back content. That’s it in a nutshell. True some of the issues are probably because my media server mac is an old g4 mac-mini with a bunch of USB/Firewire Drives hooked up to it.

So given that I’m not in a position to replace the Mac-mini anytime soon I thought it would be interesting to see how I got on with the Apple TV2. I have already come to terms with not being able to watch native ripped DVD’s without the aTVflash/NitoTV plugin combination, the latest version of RipIt allows you to rip a DVD and subsequently compress the main feature for iTunes. It may have also helped that a drive with a whole bunch of films on catastrophically failed on me without a backup, giving me an excuse to re-rip them.

The easy bit was swapping out the old and bringing in the new, I don’t bother with the wi-fi side of things, just a wired network hookup. All I had to do was add the new AppleTV to Home Sharing by associating it with my itunes account, tediously entering my long account id and password using the remote. Once this was setup then AppleTV found all the shared itunes libraries on the network, all that is that had Home Sharing turned on and were running iTunes 10.0.1.

Its early days but the experience so far has been smooth, I watched a recording made from Eyetv and exported to iTunes and that appeared to play smoothly. One frustrating omission from the interface that hasn’t made it from the original AppleTV is the ability to control the volume via the apple remote. I know you don’t get volume control on a dvd player etc but even so, having the choice to do this would be nice.

So it looks like my original AppleTV’s are heading towards ebay.