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Zaphilosophile
2007-01-11, 13:49
i am curious to know what other members think of the new apple tv media streaming box? obviously there are many differences between the sqeezebox and appleTV such as the dependence on itunes - a TV - a Computer etc. however they are obviously similar in function i.e. streaming music wirelessly.

what do you think of all the hype around this box? how much of a competitor do you reckon it is?

cheers,

Jazz1
2007-01-11, 18:29
i am curious to know what other members think of the new apple tv media streaming box? obviously there are many differences between the sqeezebox and appleTV such as the dependence on itunes - a TV - a Computer etc. however they are obviously similar in function i.e. streaming music wirelessly.

what do you think of all the hype around this box? how much of a competitor do you reckon it is?

cheers,

I love my SB, but I'm a Machead, so the AppleTV thing's audio capabilites along with the FrontRow like video menu holds some allure. Of course, it would have to sound as good or better than SB3, and handle Internet radio with aplomb before it would trip my trigger.

One other thing I don't have is an HD t.v. and I'm wondering if AppleTV requires that. I'm having trouble figuring that one out. With only S-Video in on my Sony XBR 61" rear projection (old) t.v. I think I'm out of luck anyway. I like seeing album art you see.

crapulent
2007-01-13, 23:53
720p is why I'm not thrilled about the Apple TV. I have an airport express
already for music.

On 1/11/07, Jazz1 <Jazz1.2k9x7z1168565401 (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com>
wrote:
>
>
> Zaphilosophile;169383 Wrote:
> > i am curious to know what other members think of the new apple tv media
> > streaming box? obviously there are many differences between the
> > sqeezebox and appleTV such as the dependence on itunes - a TV - a
> > Computer etc. however they are obviously similar in function i.e.
> > streaming music wirelessly.
> >
> > what do you think of all the hype around this box? how much of a
> > competitor do you reckon it is?
> >
> > cheers,
>
> I love my SB, but I'm a Machead, so the AppleTV thing's audio
> capabilites along with the FrontRow like video menu holds some allure.
> Of course, it would have to sound as good or better than SB3, and
> handle Internet radio with aplomb before it would trip my trigger.
>
> One other thing I don't have is an HD t.v. and I'm wondering if AppleTV
> requires that. I'm having trouble figuring that one out. With only
> S-Video in on my Sony XBR 61" rear projection (old) t.v. I think I'm
> out of luck anyway. I like seeing album art you see.
>
>
> --
> Jazz1
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Jazz1's Profile: http://forums.slimdevices.com/member.php?userid=6623
> View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=31559
>
>

maurice
2007-01-16, 07:09
i am curious to know what other members think of the new apple tv media streaming box? .... what do you think of all the hype around this box? how much of a competitor do you reckon it is?

cheers,

(I'm glad another thread got started on this question. The last one went nowhere.)

It seems like the AppleTV device could be a strong competitor to the Squeezebox. From looking at the specs, it will stream music via iTunes from one computer, which acts like the server. Other computers can be added to serve as "guest streamers." Not bad when you have kids into music with their own computers.

Using the iTunes interface to control the device rather than the web-based control for the Squeezebox is an advantage and disadvantage. Of course, with the SB, I have the remote and onboard display. With the AppleTV, I will need the TV on to act as the display. A disadvantage for AppleTV. An advantage is that the iTunes interface is so much better than the SD's server web pages and I would not have the problem of rescanning the iTunes db on a regular basis. I tend to use the web interface more often than the remote to set up my playing. And one database is simpler. Additionally, the small percentage of iTMS tracks that I own would now work without any work on my part.

The addition of video support and a "staging" hard disk for the same price as the Squeezebox makes the AppleTV option seem very promising. But even if you remove the video option, AppleTV still seems like a strong competitor. I hope SD recognizes AppleTV as a competitor and responds with an aggressive positioning of why their products are "better than AppleTV," and not just dismiss the challenge. Of course, come February, we can stop speculating and see for ourselves.

BTW, I own three SlimDevices units and I have been running the SlimDevices system since late 2002.

morberg
2007-01-18, 06:31
With the AppleTV, I will need the TV on to act as the display. A disadvantage for AppleTV.

I was thinking about a music only solution and get a 17" LCD monitor to mount on the wall next to the AppleTV. Then you'd get a streaming solution with a good display for $299 (Apple TV) + $179 (new 17" at Dell - could be a lot cheaper if you went for a used one).

sc53
2007-01-18, 08:43
You mention the Dell 17"--Would any LCD computer monitor work, or does it need HDMI in?

CardinalFang
2007-01-19, 10:39
You mention the Dell 17"--Would any LCD computer monitor work, or does it need HDMI in?

It's not straightforward to convert from HDMI to RGB - there aren't aren't any converter cables that I'm aware of and you usually need a converter unit that adjusts for the differnt frequencies and signal types. It would probably be cheaper to get a small HD TV like one of the Sharp Aquos 15" ones on Amazon.

Nostromo
2007-01-19, 12:10
Probably won't sound as good as the Squeezebox. Does it even have a digital out?

rupped
2007-01-19, 12:28
Does it even have a digital out?

I don't know the answer, but I'll bet it won't, 'cause then (e gads) you could make a copy of it....

CCRDude
2007-01-19, 15:22
Probably won't sound as good as the Squeezebox. Does it even have a digital out?

Optical audio out (http://www.apple.com/appletv/connect.html)

Do you know of any indicators why it wouldn't sound as good?

kolding
2007-01-19, 16:24
Probably won't sound as good as the Squeezebox. Does it even have a digital out?

Yes, it does. Optical only, I believe.

My big thing about the Apple TV is the TV part. I have to turn the TV on to use it. So, even if it sounded as good as the SB, I wouldn't be happy. I like to turn on my stereo and SB, and just start listening.

Now, for watching TV, the Apple TV sounds interesting. Too bad I'm out of inputs to my receiver.

Eric

Nostromo
2007-01-19, 17:02
Do you know of any indicators why it wouldn't sound as good?

Jack of all trades, master of none.

sgard9
2007-01-19, 23:16
But in this case I thought it was jack of several trades, master of a
few. Scientifically speaking of course.

-- Scott --

On Jan 19, 2007, at 4:02 PM, Nostromo wrote:

>
>> Do you know of any indicators why it wouldn't sound as good?
>
> Jack of all trades, master of none.
>
>
> --
> Nostromo
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> --
> Nostromo's Profile: http://forums.slimdevices.com/member.php?
> userid=6322
> View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=31559
>
>

xio
2007-01-20, 02:12
I recently bought a mac mini for the main functions of what apple tv would provide. Given the relatively small price difference and the huge difference in flexibilty I can't see why the apple tv would appeal to anyone with a technical background, particlarly as you have the remote and front row stuff as standard with the mini. That said, I guess the non-technical market is rather larger...

CardinalFang
2007-01-20, 02:20
Jack of all trades, master of none.

But they aren't different trades, it's all playback of media via codecs. Adding some video circuitry shouldn't alter audio playback as long as PSUs and other critical circuits are adequate.

iPods were sometimes used at HiFi shows as music sources, I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss the AppleTV yet. On the other hand, the sound quality of all MP3 players has been noted to have fallen off over the years as cheaper components have been substituted, the iPod Vn2 is reckoned to be the best sounding (I still have mine, although battery life is short).

We'll find out soon enough, they ship in a couple of weeks. I'm very interested in one fed into a DAC, iTunes is far more family friendly than Slimserver and all they have to do is build something with reasonably low jitter.

Simon Still
2007-01-20, 04:58
On 1/20/07, CardinalFang <
CardinalFang.2kpcjo1169285102 (AT) no-mx (DOT) forums.slimdevices.com> wrote:
>
> the iPod Vn2 is
> reckoned to be the best sounding (I still have mine, although battery
> life is short).


I'm never sure about iPod version numbers - i've got a 10gb with the touch
scrollwheel. Assuming that the mechanical scrollwheel is v1 then i figure
i'm on the same as you.

I got sick of the poor battery life and bought a replacement battery from
eBay. I can't remember the capacity but I bought the highest available and
get about double the life i used to which makes a huge difference. Getting
the case open was a faff but I got there eventually.

Kevin O. Lepard
2007-01-20, 08:27
>I recently bought a mac mini for the main functions of what apple tv
>would provide.

I agree. I'm on the verge of getting one for just that function.
I'm just holding out for it to have 802.11n and a Core 2 Duo in it.
I'm disappointed that it wasn't updated with those features at
MacWorld. I figure it will happen soon, though. I can't imagine
they're selling well now that essentially everything is 802.11n
(well, pre-n).

I was disappointed that there is no VOB or MPEG2 support in Apple TV.
That makes it a total non-starter for me.

>I guess the non-technical market is rather larger...

That seems very likely.

Kevin
--
Kevin O. Lepard

Happiness is being 100% Microsoft free.

rfrost
2007-01-20, 09:28
First, my friends, look over the damning discussion of this item on engadget: <http://www.engadget.com/2007/01/09/itv-becomes-apple-tv/>.

I ordered one such unit the same day Stevie announced it, then looked at the specs and realized that it was just another Apple gimmick to keep people bound to the iTunes, iPod, and iTunes Music Store bundle. Believe me, I've been an Apple user for 20 years now and I spend hours each day on my Apple computer, but I've become wary of the ways Jobs seeks lock-in. Just look at the messy and annoying DRM at the core of all of the Apple entertainment technologies. Worse, Apple could have offered a credible replacement for those dreadful set-top boxes we are usually forced to lease from the cable providers, but the Apple TV simply isn't a credible solution to that.

Slim has been heroic in support of open-source and fair-use solutions for content, and it remains largely agnostic with respect to formats and platforms. Bravo!

I'm building essentially the "entertainment hub" Apple TV claims to be. It's pretty simple: take an old but not ancient laptop, load linux or a hacked MacOSX on it, run Slim as either server-client or just client, attach a Pinnacle HD Pro tuner stick on it, etc. For the real expert, try mythtv. Also consider the forthcoming Netgear EVA8000 which will have far better capabilities than the Apple device, and will prolly cost a good bit less. Also consider the new variant on the SlingBox.

Remember that with AppleTV, you still need a DVD drive and some way to control that, and good luck trying to install any codecs on it that are not blessed by Steve.

xio
2007-01-20, 16:33
Kevin - in terms of VOB support I'm using the dvd assist hack to fool the dvd player. It's slightly (but only slightly) tedious to set up but frankly works like a dream when you're up an running. For my own purposes, the wireless stuff isn't even activated - due to home improvements works (;-)) I have cat5e running around the house. All dvd's etc are ripped and stored on a linux box in a cupboard and the streaming works just fine. I've not found a problem with the core due performance to need the extra power - what sort of apps are you looking to run? (or is it just future proofing?)

Also figured if I got brave in future I could stick mythtv on it.

CardinalFang
2007-01-21, 03:16
Remember that with AppleTV, you still need a DVD drive and some way to control that, and good luck trying to install any codecs on it that are not blessed by Steve.

AFAIK, you can plug USB devices into the new Apple Airport, essentially making it a 802.11n NAS box. Not sure if a DVD drive would work, but you can certainly plug in USB drives to act as your music server.

I agree Apple is a closed shop, but I must admit that it doesn't bother me after having used many pieces of their software over the years as well as Open Source packages. If it works, then it's fine by me. The Open Source nature of SB is attractive, but to most people that just means free. The proprietary nature of Apple solutions simply doesn't bother the mass market - hence the rise of the iPod.

I don't think too many people who have Slim boxes will change to Apple, owning a SB involves so much commitment to make it work that you are reluctant to give up on that investment, especially if you have used FLAC. I'm thinking about it because I use Apple Lossless, but I need to hear the AppleTV first through my DAC. It's much more likely that someone new to the market will look at all the options and go for the recognised brand, especially if they think it's an iPod for the home.

Kevin O. Lepard
2007-01-21, 11:28
xio

Thanks for your comments. I've been considering using dvd assist,
and I'm glad that it works well. My understanding is that it only
works with VIDEO_TS folders, though, and not .iso's correct?

My house is hardwired too. Wireless is nice and I actually use it
successfully for one of my Squeezeboxes, but I basically have a
"wires work" attitude..

My current issues with the Mini are more future proofing. I think
with their announcements, waiting for the Mini to have their 802.11n
(pre-n) implementation is worth it. The g stuff is obviously going
to fall away now. And getting the Core 2 Due would be nice, too. I
don't really need more power than that for running the Mini as a
HTPC, as you know.

Kevin
--
Kevin O. Lepard

Happiness is being 100% Microsoft free.

xio
2007-01-22, 05:45
Kevin,

Like you, I use wireless for one of my squeezeboxes only - and it's the only one that ever gives me any trouble - and then not very often at all. It's a v1 squeezebox though so the buffer isn't so big.

I think you're right about the iso issue in DVD assist. I bought the mac and started ripping afterwards so it wasn't really a problem for me. It may be possible to do a bulk convert, but I don't know how you'd feel about that if you've got a lot of stuff ripped (and/or use if for other things). There's some speculation about what the next version of front row might support, but my view is that Apple are so tight about their existing protection systems that they're not likely to allow you to play ripped content other than via some kind of iTunes import or similar.

Kevin O. Lepard
2007-01-22, 10:38
>There's some speculation about what the next version of
>front row might support, but my view is that Apple are so tight about
>their existing protection systems that they're not likely to allow you
>to play ripped content other than via some kind of iTunes import or
>similar.

Agreed. I don't see any large company (e.g., Apple, Microsoft) that
has an investment in DRM and relationships with RIAA and their ilk
doing that. I expect to end up using 3rd party software, though I
haven't decided what yet. MediaCentral looks promising, though.

Kevin
--
Kevin O. Lepard

Happiness is being 100% Microsoft free.

gsalton
2007-03-28, 13:11
So, now that the Apple TV is out, what do people think?

My read (not having tried it yet) is that I would go with the AppleTV over a squeezebox, as much as I love the one I have, for the ease of use and (even limited) video/photo capabilities. For $50 more, and the ease of use, it seems to me a pretty easy choice for most. Particularly since it has a hard drive inside, meaning no need to keep another server on all the time (although we will all complain about the size of the drive, at least some of the library would be accessible). Buffering/storage should mean that 90% of the stuttering music issues would go away.

There will invariably some who want particular features of Squeezebox, open source, or whatever, but the little oddities of my squeezebox have eaten up a lot of my time. For example, due to an issue with certain foreign language characters, 30% of my music library couldn't be used until I spent hours fiddling. And don't get me started on tagging - doesn't matter whose software caused the problems, this was another massive time suck. Sticking with iTunes would have been much easier.

Please, this is not a troll or attempt to start a flamewar. But for me, for the money and ease of use, the current squeezebox is looking long in the tooth compared to the Apple TV. And I suspect for any consumer even slightly less inclined to spend money fiddling than I have been, it is not even a question that they won't bother with the effort.

bklaas
2007-03-28, 13:27
to each their own, but there is a substantial number of squeezebox owners that don't have (nor want) a TV in the room they listen to music. I am one of them.

AppleTV has lots of competition (for example, http://www.ehomeupgrade.com/entry/3690/mvix_mx-760hd_vs), but not the squeezebox. Beyond being media streamers, they fill fairly different niches.

The thing that gets under my skin about Apple is they put things in a pretty package with a bow on it and all of a sudden everyone thinks they were the forerunners of that particular technology. Sure, they are design and marketing gods, but most people with brains can see past that. But it's not any of that which keeps me away from Apple--it's the way they've used proprietary DRM to monopolize a market. AppleTV will have the same baggage. That's a capital offense, in my book.

cheers,
#!/ben

gsalton
2007-03-28, 14:06
to each their own, but there is a substantial number of squeezebox owners that don't have (nor want) a TV in the room they listen to music. I am one of them.

The thing that gets under my skin about Apple is they put things in a pretty package with a bow on it and all of a sudden everyone thinks they were the forerunners of that particular technology. Sure, they are design and marketing gods, but most people with brains can see past that. But it's not any of that which keeps me away from Apple--it's the way they've used proprietary DRM to monopolize a market. AppleTV will have the same baggage. That's a capital offense, in my book.

cheers,
#!/ben

Yeah, but they make that box with a pretty package work so well. Same with the ipod - it's not technically superior, but it works much more simply.

And one question about this that I've never understood: what's the problem with the DRM? If you don't buy music from them, you can keep it in any format supported, including MP3 and AIFF (non-apple formats). And if you're willing to spend the time, keep copies at the same time in any other format you like.

I personally have a handful of files bought from iTunes store. Probably wouldn't do it again, but that was a known limitation when I bought them, and why I buy all my music elsewhere.

azinck3
2007-03-28, 14:14
Yeah, but they make that box with a pretty package work so well. Same with the ipod - it's not technically superior, but it works much more simply.

And one question about this that I've never understood: what's the problem with the DRM? If you don't buy music from them, you can keep it in any format supported, including MP3 and AIFF (non-apple formats). And if you're willing to spend the time, keep copies at the same time in any other format you like.

I personally have a handful of files bought from iTunes store. Probably wouldn't do it again, but that was a known limitation when I bought them, and why I buy all my music elsewhere.

Good points. Apple's done well for a reason. As for me, I just don't like itunes. I've never really managed to figure it out. Also, I fundamentally don't trust Apple. I don't think they're the devil, but when it comes down to buying gear for myself I'd rather have something more flexible that meets my needs precisely. And I kind of like having something that's a bit "different" :).

CardinalFang
2007-03-28, 15:18
The thing that gets under my skin about Apple is they put things in a pretty package with a bow on it and all of a sudden everyone thinks they were the forerunners of that particular technology. Sure, they are design and marketing gods, but most people with brains can see past that. But it's not any of that which keeps me away from Apple--it's the way they've used proprietary DRM to monopolize a market. AppleTV will have the same baggage. That's a capital offense, in my book.

The best consumer products rarely break new ground with internals, they are dependant on using tried and trusted technology for cost and reliability reasons. Where Apple always score is usability - their stuff just works and is really nice to look at. Slim works well too, mostly, but the interface is obtuse and clunky in comparison if you are Joe User and not an audiophile geek. I have brains and I see AppleTV for what it is, smart design by a company that knows its audience well, and that's not really to be frowned on is it?

As for DRM, I have bought music from iTunes, but since I can also burn to CD, I could then re-rip the tunes and bypass the initial DRM. As it happens I only buy iTunes music for my iPod, not my stereo, so it's not really an issue and I don't bother. I think the reason Apple did so well with iTunes is simply that they did it better than anyone else and used their marketing and design muscle to make it appealing to the mass market - they made it an easy to consume product.

hmurchison
2007-03-29, 01:08
The Apple TV is very formidable competition. It plays HD video, supports lossless audio and plays your photographs.

It has a an Intel proc, Nvidia GPU and a 40GB hard drive that is a snap to replace with whatever 2.5" drive you want (PATA). It runs OS X 10.4 with a full Quicktime stack which has been modified with Perian to support more codecs.

It has Toslink, Component outputs and HDMI and a "mysterious" USB port for "service" needs.

If I'm a consumer and I'm looking at an Apple TV versus a Slimbox it's going to boil down to if I want Photo and video support and if I hate/love having the TV show the UI.

Complaints about Apple being the Devil or using DRM to gain a monopoly is just dogma pure and simple. Apple is where they are because of excellent design and execution.

I hope that with Logitech's backing Slim Devices can thrive and compete at this level.

Steven Moore
2007-03-29, 01:59
I think having the TV on is not a problem for most users. In fact it will be a talking point amongst friends and relatives which will give buyers that confident feeling that they have got value for money.
I think it was stated before that this is a consumer machine and not aimed at the audiophile market. When viewed from this perspective the Apple tv is a strong competitor to the squeezebox.
Remember you don't need to buy a single track from Apple it will play all your ripped music so really the only lock in is that you need to use itunes, which in my opinion an excellent piece of software and is free.
The big advantage of the Apple tv is that it will not need much maintenance if any.
Squeezebox on the other hand does take a degree of technical knowledge and a certain amount of maintenance, and if things go wrong...
Which would you recommend to your very non technical relative?

The only stumbling block is the need for an hd tv, but have you been into an electrical shop recently? That's pretty much all you can buy.

bpa
2007-03-29, 02:26
Apple TV is fine if you live in the Apple ecosystem but I think Slimserver still has the edge in terms of supported sources and formats esp. if you include Plugins such as WMA, FLAC, OGG, RealAudio, XM, Sirius, AAC+, Pandora.

From the Apple TV spec sheet.


Audio formats supported
AAC (16 to 320 Kbps); protected AAC (from iTunes Store); MP3 (16 to 320 Kbps); MP3 VBR; Apple Lossless; AIFF; WAV

adamslim
2007-03-29, 04:08
Apple show up where SD fail - the consumer product versus the enthusiast product.

To compete, SD need to do two things:

- make it work out of the box. This means supplying it with a fully-configured NAS as a complete option, plus bundled ripping software that all just works.

- make the web user interface a joy to use. The remote is fine, but the web interface is not suitable as the end-user consumer interface. If third parties can do it (Nokia 770), why can't SD?

I reckon the Logitech acquisition will improve both of these, but we'll see.

Adam

gsalton
2007-03-29, 04:26
The big advantage of the Apple tv is that it will not need much maintenance if any.
Squeezebox on the other hand does take a degree of technical knowledge and a certain amount of maintenance, and if things go wrong...
Which would you recommend to your very non technical relative?



This is my point - as much as I like my squeezebox, I'd be reluctant to recommend to anyone even remotely non-technical. iTunes is easy, Apple TV looks easy.

In addition, it's pretty good value for money.

While I've had fun with my squeezebox, it has been a huge time-suck and required too much fiddling/compromises (the non-ASCII song/filenames issue has caused huge problems for me). In many cases here, I notice plenty of people have dedicated servers, and some have bought some specifically for that. Lots of people I know would not do this - they have one laptop, and aren't going to dedicate it to running an audio client full-time.

I also don't understand the comments about the "apple ecosystem." The only "Apple ecosystem" requirement is to use iTunes. Granted, that means users have to be using windows or mac os x, but that does cover just about the entire market. (Would mt-daapd or whatever it's called work?)

Anyone using "better" fileformats (like FLAC) is probably sophisticated enough to set up a converter to populate iTunes with AAC, MP3 or apple lossless files.

This will make the slimserver a much, much harder sell. Or relegate SD to a hard-core niche market. On the other hand, maybe that's where they want to go with the $2000 transporter.

Braidy
2007-03-29, 05:41
Apple show up where SD fail - the consumer product versus the enthusiast product.

To compete, SD need to do two things:

- make it work out of the box. This means supplying it with a fully-configured NAS as a complete option, plus bundled ripping software that all just works.

- make the web user interface a joy to use. The remote is fine, but the web interface is not suitable as the end-user consumer interface. If third parties can do it (Nokia 770), why can't SD?

Agree with all of this. My NAS and Squeezebox probably sat idle for a good two weeks before I figured out what to do with it (I still have no idea of what to use the NAS for apart from streaming music). I love the sound the SB3 produces but it's certainly not been trouble free and I certainly wouldn't recommend it to anyone that I know

Most people in the world have even less interest in how computers work than me and I've struggled to make it work. I've persevered because the combination of great sound and convenience is very alluring. But most people are more interested in the convenience side rather than the audiophile side.



Make it as simple as Apple make all their hardware or it will always be a niche product.

Mark Lanctot
2007-03-29, 06:00
The Apple TV is very formidable competition. It plays HD video, supports lossless audio and plays your photographs.

Yes and a toaster makes toast. Why can't a Squeezebox make toast too? Boy, it's not going to make it in the market then!

...It's a different product aimed for a different market. Yes, it's a market the consumer loves: dumbed-down, closed, inflexible, "just works" because all the decisions are made for you.

Which is not necessarily a bad thing.


Apple is where they are because of excellent design and execution.

A couple billion dollars worth of marketing doesn't hurt either.

gusi
2007-03-29, 09:03
Apple show up where SD fail - the consumer product versus the enthusiast product.

To compete, SD need to do two things:

- make it work out of the box. This means supplying it with a fully-configured NAS as a complete option, plus bundled ripping software that all just works.

- make the web user interface a joy to use. The remote is fine, but the web interface is not suitable as the end-user consumer interface. If third parties can do it (Nokia 770), why can't SD?

I reckon the Logitech acquisition will improve both of these, but we'll see.

Adam

I'd have to disagree. I already have a PC and laptop I can use as a remote. They would be nice as optionals but the total cost could blow out.

All these other devices and software packages Slim would have to support and that is expensive. There is a lot to be said for just doing what you are good at and leaving the rest to others.

But then I work in IT and am comfortable around computers, it is not a solution I'd recommend to friends who are not comfortable with computers.

Gus

hmurchison
2007-03-29, 12:35
Yes and a toaster makes toast. Why can't a Squeezebox make toast too? Boy, it's not going to make it in the market then!

...It's a different product aimed for a different market. Yes, it's a market the consumer loves: dumbed-down, closed, inflexible, "just works" because all the decisions are made for you.
Which is not necessarily a bad thing.
A couple billion dollars worth of marketing doesn't hurt either.

I'm not slamming the SB I'm just saying that at its price the ATV is going to be formidable. I don't think the markets are different. If I like FLAC I've got a couple of choices. I can convert to Apple Lossless as my codec of choice or I can hack my Apple TV to support FLAC. Calling the Apple TV "closed" merely means you have seen the level hacking that has already happened.

The HDD has been easily upgraded
Since it runs OS X 10.4 enthusiasts have added to the Quicktime to support Divx,3vix and other codecs. Perian (Perian.org) is easily added.
VNC and SSH have been made to work as well as Apache.

http://www.appletvhacker.blogspot.com/ for more stuff.

Calling the Apple TV "closed" and "inflexible" with the huge amount of hacks that have already been discovere merely means you haven't been looking at the world around you regarding streaming players or have succombed to tired "Apple is proprietary" diatribes.

I'm not here to bash the SB. It's just that the Apple TV has presented such an amazing amount of tweakability if Apple doesn't pull the reins back a bit who knows what people are going to find with this box. Logictech/SD should take note and I'm sure we've got some nice stuff to look forward to coming down the pipeline.

kaline
2007-03-30, 20:00
I'm struggling with this, as well. I love my Squeezebox and have no complaints with it, but I, and my wife especially, would love to be able to scroll through the album covers on the tv to pick things to listen to. I've got a pretty big collection and it gets tough to scroll through everything. Add in the ability to look at pictures (we take a ton), and it's pretty neat. (Not to mention the TV shows and movies, but I don't see myself using that much.)

But, I love my Squeezebox because of the add-ins - having the weather display on the unit is very nice, as is being able to listen to XM radio. Plus, I don't have to worry about formats. Squeezebox plays everything I throw at it. And sounds great while doing it. Looks good, too.

I'm not an Apple guy...I don't own one and I don't even own an IPod (gasp!), but I'm pretty intrigued by this device. I wish Slim made something similar, but I might be the only one.

The Witty Frog
2007-04-08, 19:13
Previously, I was running three Squeezeboxes (AIFF streaming) and EyeHome for video (MPEG2 from .vob files).

Using Airport Express, the most I could get from the system (understandably) was either three SBs or 1 SB and the EyeHome.

AppleTV has replaced the EyeHome. Much better. In terms of quality though, the DAC chip is nowhere near the calibre of the SBs. Moreover, as no digital display exists on the AppleTV, the HDTV must be left on (thus interference).

So, for basic sound quality, AppleTV is no match for SB. I believe the AppleTV has much more potential than people believe. Also, in terms of streaming, using the new Airport Extreme (802.11n), I'm easily obtaining three SBs AND AppleTV in full H.264 quality ('over-encoded' at 6000k to try and maintain as much quality as possible).

Anyone who is having problems with their SB network, I strongly suggest buy one of the new 802.1n extremes. Even at 802.1g, the strength and range of the signal is vastly improved; also the Airport software is more sophisticated than before in terms of assigning MAC addresses to specific IP addresses which can then be fed via DHCP.

nicketynick
2007-05-18, 12:31
I found this article interesting:
http://blogs.zdnet.com/Ou/?p=406
Anybody seen or heard of anybody hacking the AppleTV to run Slimserver?

verbatone
2007-05-18, 14:12
Being techie, it's easy to say certain things, like I configured my SS to all the latest plugins and such. I run FLAC and also have all my FLAC files replaygained. I have an old 60's console that I've installed a new power amp in. The console has old Altec speakers in it which sound tremendous. I have a 90's Sony Hi-Fi pre-amp (I know that sounds like an oxy-moron, but it's a great pre-amp) with the SB on top of it. But it pays off.

So who cares right? Everyone that comes over to my place can't believe what a nice setup it is. The whole package, the ease of playing music...the ease at which podcasts or whatever can be played...the consistency of volume. It really is the whole package that counts.

Well it took a lot of time to get all that done, but now I get to hear premium sound!!!! And with premium convenience! Plug'n'play is nice, sure, but what I find is that my system is spot on. All that work impresses others. Will they be that impressed with their Apple TV install? Probably not.

The same thing goes for Rockbox, my portable runs Rockbox installed in my car and everything just works!!! Not only does it work, but it also is works in a smooth/silky sorta way. I hear people play their ipods in their cars and it runs like a piece of crap. The inconsistant sound levels...dodgy encoding...lack of featurs, etc. just don't allow for conveniences that Rockbox allows. It's plug'n'play, but that's the very aspect that's ruined the expierence. "It's so easy, anyone can screw it up!!!"

Bottom line - quality is in the details! You can have plug'n'play, but the ability to have seemless, flowing music through my Hi-fi is something I think Apple will be hard pressed to do. Does SS have improvements needed? Sure, but we'll get there!

blessingx
2007-05-28, 19:51
I just want to add for those saying these two products are for different markets - I for one am looking at both for the exact some use - audio playing detached from my computer feeding a separate DAC. I'm likely pulling the tigger on the SB3 sale through the end of the day, but the Apple TV is waying in on my decision. I find it strange that some here are saying there is no crossover. And as some has mentioned, although Slim Devices is much better, Apple does support "open standards" and deserves some credit. AAC isn't Apples WMA, MP3 support is there (and as everyone knows isn't open source) and we all only need one lossless (and converting between them is easy). But the "white sale" is pulling me. ;)