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Next episode - Apple TV - Got Questions?

We'll delve into this suddenly unpopular box and talk about other devices that do the same thing and sometimes a lot more.

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Comments
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Do tell why suddenly unpopular?

I'll have one in a week or two.

Bob

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apple question

does it have the apple factor that makes you buy apple stuff, or is it a mistake from apple?

how many apple tvs are selling? how many were produced?
is it a fail or not? were people expecting it?

i want to know, so we can ask friends to buy it when they go to USA

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Sony PS3 as mediacentre

I got the (european) PS3 last week hoping to get a mediacentre that also played nice games. The result is quite disappointing.

The PS3 can support 2 Operating system:
The default Sony Game OS and Linux

Game OS
The native Sony OS does not support network drives and has only one Codec for video. You can watch pictures that are stored on the HD or attached on a removable storage like USB key, SD, flash or external HD.
Cannot read my DivX encoded home videos or my MP3s stored on my PC.
Furthermore, DVD playback on the PS3 is not as good as my 150 USD Toshiba play with a HDMI output. The reason is that PS3 does not upscale DVD to HDTV format. Rendering is mediocre.

Linux
I installed Yellow Dog Linux on the other partition of the PS3, hoping to run Myth TV, Freevo or even VideoLAN. Once again the result is quite below my expectation. Sony has disabled access to the Graphics Processor Units from Linux. The results is that video playback quality is quite poor. Ok it works but results are better on my entry range DVD player.

PS3 is that its firware is upgradeable so my hope is that Sony will fix these issues in the next release.
In the meantime, I am not sure the 15 games available at the European launch are worth the investment at all.

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How do you get it all

Thanks for your help on the iTunes video question - my easy and least costly solution was to get the tv cable and leave my iPod behind Sad

Maybe the future topic could be how to make home entertainment tech work the way we want it to - not the MPAA/ RIAA.

Anyway, onto this topic - I'm a total newb to this stuff so please bear with me, I have a bunch of questions. It seems like the apple tv is nice but limited so that you still need the DVR and a DVD player and my media stand is running out of shelves.

I have an xbox 360 but haven't gotten online with it yet. Should I just speand $100 on the wireless for that (and possible more for the bigger hard drive)- does the apple tv have that much more? At least the 360 can play dvd's and if I pay comcast for the privlege of a DVR cablebox i'm back down to 2 items i can fit on my shelves nicely. (Call me girly but aesthetics does play a role in my media choices.)

Is there a way to upgrade or add DVD and DVR capabilities to the apple tv?

Could you 'easily' network an apple tv with a media center (pc? Mac Mini? Myth?) so you can get the apple interface w/ iTunes music/movies + the DVR, DVD and other abilities of a media center?
At least that + the cable box would only be 3 devices and maybe worth shlepping the gaming consols in and out.

Seems complicated - I?d love an easy solution, if there is one.

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Does it work if the Computer is off?

If the Apple TV is a streaming device, does that mean i need it AND my Mac/PC with my content on it to be on if i want to watch a movie or listen to some music?, or can i copy over at least some of that content over to the Apple TV's internal hard drive?, ideally with no hackery.

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