Reviews and Problems with Apple TV 1st-gen 40GB-160GB / MA711 / MB189
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Apple TV Review
16 September 2013
Summary: The Apple TV is a well-thought device. It is great if you have an iPhone or iPad, mostly if you buy lots of contents on the iTunes Store. It actually brings your iTunes’ content to your living room (or sleeping room, or kitchen) TV.
If you are addicted to Netflix and prefer to watch it on a big screen, the Apple TV is a great gadget. Of course, as long as your TV is not a smart TV already.
Conclusion: If you’ve been waiting for 1080p, now’s the time to get an Apple TV, especially if you’re heavily invested in iTunes content and/or you want to beam your media from your Mac to your TV. But if your big-screen TV tops out at 720p, and you just want to stream Netflix and other internet-based content, the 720p Roku 2 HD is only $59.99.
Pros: 1080p support added. Capable streaming from Macs, PCs, and iOS devices. Internet content from Netflix, MLB, NHL, NBA, and more. Streams photos from Flickr, iCloud Photo Stream, and MobileMe.
Cons: Can’t add more content channels or customize interface. Can’t connect it to a TV without HDMI.
Conclusion: The new Apple TV with 1080p looks exactly the same. Nothing has changed since the last generation of the box. The remote control is that same and you can use the same Remote app for your iPhone/iPad. But this is not a bad thing because last year’s box was a great design and package. Apple TV relies heavily on iTunes and depending on your country you will have more or less content in the store.
Pros: User experience & friendliness, AirPlay, 1080p movies & Netflix, Control everything with iOS devices, Home Sharing, Ridiculously low power consumption
Cons: Requires other Apple devices, No 1080p24 support, No TV apps, 1080p a bit too compressed
Conclusion: Many times have my colleagues and I here at Big Picture Big Sound shared the wonders of Internet-ready TVs, as technologies have converged to bring once-unimaginable benefits to the home theater enthusiast. But since not everyone is in a position to run out and buy a new television to take advantage of these new features, there's the Apple TV, a more-than-ample fix that effectively links the contents of both the home network and the worldwide web to our living room, for...
Pros: A comprehensive portal to our current digital entertainment, plus online rentals, Eye-popping video quality, with 5.1 audio and nifty menus, HDMI-only video output: This thing is hardcore!, iPhone/iPod Touch remote app works great (and impressed the wife)
Cons: HDMI-only video output: Is this thing too hardcore?, High-definition movie rentals painfully slow, Included remote control pales next to iPhone/iPod touch app (see Turn-Ons)
Excerpt: While Apple dominated in the mobile market and is thriving with their line of laptops, they have never been able to grasp the home theater crowd with their video solutions, namely the first two revisions of the Apple TV (reviews here and here). Over three years from the release of the original Apple TV, Apple announced a new version of the Apple TV in combination with revisions of the iPod Touch and iPod Nano lines.
Excerpt: The latest version of the Apple TV is a big change over the previous version, more for what it no longer has than for what it now has. But the real question is; Can Apple TV 2.0 evolve from the realm of a Cupertino plaything, to a viable and worthy entertainment device? A device ready to sit atop your television set along with the likes of the Roku Box, Google TV and the many other streaming Internet video solutions now showing up or soon to be showing up in living...
Pros: Plays streaming video/audio/pictures very well, Netflix & YouTube streaming, Connects with MobileMe and Flickr for pictures and video, Streams anything in your iTunes library from a computer, Video quality is great, Interface is neat and simple to use, Small footprint, Easy to set up, Runs iOS giving it potential if Apple will unlock it
Cons: No Hulu, Limited TV content (only ABC and FOX), Only rents content from Apple directly from device, Streaming from other iOS devices (iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch) not implemented yet, Wi-Fi login credentials kept getting lost requiring re-entry, No hard drive connection, No support for displays that are not HDCP compliant, No component video output
Excerpt: The Good Smaller design Black housing Simple UI Netflix streaming iTunes rentals YouTube, Flickr AirPlay streaming from iOS devices Streaming from computers The Bad No way to connect to NAS Cannot attach external hard drive Limited access to third-party content providers Limited support for popular video formats Design: The hard drive omission and smaller components allow the overall size to be reduced by more than 75 percent.
Pros: Smaller design, Black housing, Simple UI, Netflix streaming, iTunes rentals, YouTube, Flickr, AirPlay streaming from iOS devices, Streaming from computers
Cons: No way to connect to NAS, Cannot attach external hard drive, Limited access to third-party content providers, Limited support for popular video formats
As I said before, if you are a hardcore iPod fiend who spends lots of time shopping iTunes and downloading content to watch wherever your day takes you, the Apple TV may be your dream product. Normal folks that aren’t into watching video and movie son their iPod’s will find the Apple TV to by limited in what it can do. This is a love it or leave it type of product.
Pros: Easy installation, No power brick
Cons: Includes no cables to connect to your TV, Remote is tiny and may get lost easy
Summary: Subtle, sexy and slim, Apple TV is almost everything a telly-loving Mac-head could wish for. Only its file format fussiness, average HD quality and high price (without even a HDMI cable to show for it) might disrupt Steve Jobs’ plans for world domination.