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Apple releases Apple TV "Take 2" software update - Page 5

post #161 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by ramsey123 View Post

Teckstud,

I'm not in front of my Apple TV right now, but hopefully you caught that earlier response that you can indeed pair your remote to either the Apple TV or your Mac remote to your Mac. I've done it. Under Settings on Apple TV you'll see the Pairing Your Remote option. It works.

And after pairing, you can even use a learning remote to learn and control your Apple TV and not affect your Mac as you do so. Give Apple credit. It would have taken 150,000 e-mail complaints to Microsoft before they would have even admitted to a remote conflict situation, much less had a simple solution to it before people even started complaining.

I give the AppleInsider and especially solipsism more credit. It's nice to find a place where Apple enthusiasts can actually help each other out. Apple's customer service has been slipping since they changed to Apple Corp from Apple Computer. Even my AppleCare has been outsourced to non-American countries (no offense) and has not been nearly as helpful as 2 years ago.
post #162 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

It doesn't even need to be that smart. Just disallow rewinding after the first 24 hours and totally expire it after 30 days (even 7 days is plenty) whether or not it's been watched.

Sounds good to me, except maybe after 24 hours allow rewinding by up to a minute or so in case you miss something. Easier to implement than the "perfect" DRM but more reasonable than the current implementation.
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post #163 of 180
Your points are well taken. There may be a future to your wishes if there really are hundreds of folks that dont finish a movie in 24-48 hours after starting it (maybe Im the kooky one). Perhaps Apple could add options. But you can see how it would become difficult to document: Can rewind a rental in the first 24 hours, but cannot after X time period, etc. Apple usually avoids such complexity.

And the bigger fist is Hollywood. They are no doubt watching this Apple TV like a hawk, and will pounce at the first sign of shenanigans. They will always rule on the side of total control and Jobs will take their lead to keep this business plan moving forward. Too much at stake here.
post #164 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

But until then - what is the HD option? Do you think we'll be able to hack these rentals to last longer?SSShhhhh!

I don't rent. If I am not served by a product I do not get it. That's the power of the consumer, we don't buy what we don't want.
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post #165 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

I will make the rational assumption that most people watch a movie in one sitting, that they don't ever seek to watch it again. A movie is usually 1.5—2.5 hours and usually falling around the 2hr mark. A box takes considerably more time and I'm not a slow reader. I don't need to nor want to space out my movie watching. Hell, I don't evn want my TV shows interrupted by commercials so I usually get the DVDs from Netflix months later.I say hacks will come, but




I say hacks will come for the sake of hacking it, but since these rentals will be released 30 days after they are released on optical media and therefore DVD screeners and high-quality cams of the films will have already run rampant on file sharing sites there won't be an issue with thievery here.

Yes I agree, most will watch a movie in one seating. But from the howls of the professional reviewers I am not alone in wanting more than 24 hours to complete a movie. Changing the time limit from one day to one to two weeks would be better in my view.

And that is a good point about the hacks. Good copies will be all over the torrents long before the movie reaches iTunes.
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post #166 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by aresee View Post

Yes I agree, most will watch a movie in one seating. But from the howls of the professional reviewers I am not alone in wanting more than 24 hours to complete a movie. Changing the time limit from one day to one to two weeks would be better in my view.

And that is a good point about the hacks. Good copies will be all over the torrents long before the movie reaches iTunes.

Everyone else is doing the 24 hour model for on-demand movies too, so Apple is playing copycat here. I would have liked to seen 36 hours, which would allow you to start it early one evening and finish it last the next evening. That extra 12 hours (or even 6 hours) would go along way, IMO, to make it a feel like a two day rental.

Perhaps Apple tried for a different timeframe and couldn't swing it or perhaps they never even tred. I have a feeling that Apple had to make a lot of concessions to get the deal it did with every major studio. Especially after the the power they saw Apple take from the recording companies.
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post #167 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


From my very rough estimate based on the downlaod speed it looks to be about 3x faster than my SD iTunes rentals. That means about 4.55Mbps.

This is just about right, I get 4.66-4.75 Mbps using a combination of a progressive
download formula and the Apple specs at:

http://www.apple.com/appletv/specs.html#movierentals

Apple is very cagey to not give the average movie encoding speed directly,
and until an HD file is captured in the wild to yield its filesize (whereby
speed = movie duration / filesize), we don't have exact figures.

Nonetheless, from first principles, since for a progressive ("quick start") download,
the raw download time (D) is the sum of the wait time (W) and the play time (P), so

W = D - P

Now if we dub the encoded file rate (units of bits/sec) as "E", and the Internet connection
speed as "I", then we can express the download time in terms of these rates and also P, i.e.

D = (P * E / I)

thus W = (P * E/I) -P, or W = P ( E/I -1), and thus

E = I (W/P + 1)

Now, at the Apple webpage above (see footnotes), the examples are:

P = 90 mins, I = 2 Mbps, W = 2 hours
and
also for the slow 768kps Internet speed with a wait time of 8 hours

Substituting in the first case, E = 2 Mbps ( (2 hrs / 1.5 hrs) + 1 ) = 4.66 Mbps
For the second case, E = .75 ( (8/1.5) + 1 ) = 19 / 4 Mpbs = 4.75 Mbps

Whew! They probably built in some slop so perhaps the bitrate is really only 4.5 Mbps.
post #168 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by retiarius View Post

d
For the second case, E = .75 ( (8/1.5) + 1 ) = 19 / 4 Mpbs = 4.75 Mbps

Whew! They probably built in some slop so perhaps the bitrate is really only 4.5 Mbps.

Slight gaffe -- using 768Kbps, the second case yields 4.87 Mbps (or so),
if Apple's examples are to be taken as gospel.

What is better is to get a rough official rate from Apple (they still only say 5 Mbps max
for 720p), then make a Dashboard widget that combines your actual broadband speed
at www.speedtest.net with a real movie duration time. Of course they will
say encoding rate will vary with content, but if they would display movie filesize and duration
like they do for iTunes *purchases*, that'd be useful.

My motivation for all this was just to answer my wife & kids question about
how long would it take to wait for a high-def rental given our current DSL speed.
From the peanut gallery, an hour of patience is about the max. For a realistic
2-hour flick time, 3 Mbps will barely cut it. In my area, 6 Mbps doesn't seem
to be available, but paying extra for highspeed internet from Comcast cable rather
defeats the purpose of renting HD video content from Apple.
post #169 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by retiarius View Post

Apple is very cagey to not give the average movie encoding speed directly, and until an HD file is captured in the wild to yield its filesize (whereby speed = movie duration / filesize), we don't have exact figures.

Does your internet provider tell you how much you downloaded? If so just turn off all the other computers and download a movie.. right?. I can look up at an hourly or daily level... but I'm not in the US.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cory Bauer View Post

One thing on the HD trailers though, the load bar is pretty pointless; even after it's entirely loaded, the trailer still stops and stutters 2-3 times.

On both my Frontrow and AppleTV, movie trailers will occasionally stop, re-cache and start again, then stop, etc. Not all the time - perhaps it's when my network speeds are "inconsistent", rather than when they're "slow". It's a great pity that Quicktime can't look at how much it's downloaded since it started and use that to determine an "average download speed" for the rest of the download...

The end result would be that it might stop once... then wait a while before it starts again.
(hey, even being able to tell the AppleTV to be "more cautious" before starting playback would be great).
post #170 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by retiarius View Post

This is just about right, I get 4.66-4.75 Mbps using a combination of a progressive
download formula and the Apple specs at:
...
Whew! They probably built in some slop so perhaps the bitrate is really only 4.5 Mbps.

I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry took up 3.63GB of space, according to the AppleTV section of iTunes. It was the only video, of any kind, on the AppleTV. The capacity used before the addition of the rented movie and after it was deleted back up the film being 3.63GB in size.

The AppleTV also stated the video was 1.9 hours long. I didn't measure the actual movie's duration, but I have no reason that iTunes measure is not accurate. Nor do I care to get more specific; I'll let someone else crack open their device for a more accurate bit count of video and audio.
size: 3.63GB x 1024 = 3,717.12MB x 1024 = 3,806,330.88KB x 8 = 30,450,647.04Kb

time: 1.9hrs = 1:54h:m = 114mins = 6,840secs

total: 30,450,647.04Kb ÷ 6,840secs = 4451.85kb/s (rounded) That is a total of 4.35Mb/s (rounded) for H.264 HD video w/ 5.1 channel audio. That is lower than I thought it would be but the 720p video looked good, even when centimeters from my LG 37" 720p/1080i LCD HDTV set on 720p from the AppleTV. I even found a dead pixel in the TV. I wonder if the AppleTV is upcoverting to make up for a lower bitrate.

So...
Better than as cable HD
Better than upconverted DVDs
Not as good as HD optical media
Surprised? me neither.
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post #171 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

So...
Better than as cable HD
Better than upconverted DVDs
Not as good as HD optical media
Surprised? me neither.

Nor should anyone, this is exactly as it should be.... my head is literally about to explode with all the "waaaaaahhhhh, it's not as good as Blu-ray.... it's not 1080p!!! How can I subject my eyes to such utter crap???" whiners

It's a downloadable on-demand media people! Get over it - for what it is, there's nothing I've seen that comes close to ease of use and quality. The "HD" movies we've rented over the last week look fantastic - better than some cable broadcast HD and certainly better than upconverted DVD.

Once the content broadens it'll be a true home-run. My only other hope is that the encoding of purchase content will at some point in the near future be brought up to the rental specs, both for SD and HD content.
post #172 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by slate1 View Post

Nor should anyone, this is exactly as it should be.... my head is literally about to explode with all the "waaaaaahhhhh, it's not as good as Blu-ray.... it's not 1080p!!! How can I subject my eyes to such utter crap???" whiners

It's a downloadable on-demand media people! Get over it - for what it is, there's nothing I've seen that comes close to ease of use and quality. The "HD" movies we've rented over the last week look fantastic - better than some cable broadcast HD and certainly better than upconverted DVD.

Once the content broadens it'll be a true home-run. My only other hope is that the encoding of purchase content will at some point in the near future be brought up to the rental specs, both for SD and HD content.

Perhaps now we can stop these "it's worse quality than DVD and VHS comments that seem to sprout up without any empirical evidence.

PS: It may sound silly and self absorbed but I'm so glad someone responded to my post. It seems the more effort I put into the post the less likely I am to receive a response. Thanks, Slate1.
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post #173 of 180
Tried to rent Pirates 3 last night, and I kept getting "internal error on iTunes server", not up to Apple's usual standards... Hopefully they didn't bill me for 10 movie rentals, since I kept on trying it after it failed.
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post #174 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Perhaps now we can stop these "it's worse quality than DVD and VHS comments that seem to sprout up without any empirical evidence.

The thing is, that when they first launched, the SD downloads were significantly inferior to DVD. It's only recently that the SD files jumped up in resolution by using anamorphic coding, so now they equal DVD resolution. They still lack proper surround-sound, though, so overall DVD is still superior to iTunes SD purchases.

If you were talking about the ludicrous suggestions that even the HD stuff was worse than DVD due to the "heavy amount of compression", then I agree: hopefully these comments will now cease.
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post #175 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

The thing is, that when they first launched, the SD downloads were significantly inferior to DVD. It's only recently that the SD files jumped up in resolution by using anamorphic coding, so now they equal DVD resolution. They still lack proper surround-sound, though, so overall DVD is still superior to iTunes SD purchases.

If you were talking about the ludicrous suggestions that even the HD stuff was worse than DVD due to the "heavy amount of compression", then I agree: hopefully these comments will now cease.

I have no qualms about saying that 640x480 with only 2 channel audio is worse than DVD in both audio and video. But even after iTS content moved from 320x240 to 640x480 I read often that it was still worse than VHS. That simply isn't true, though seemed to be parroted often. Perhaps it was a throwback to the odd choice of even going with 320x240 (though perhaps the iPod w/ video at the time couldn't handle 640x480) or it's the FUD fueled hyperbole that seems to orbit Apple products.
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post #176 of 180
Thanx for the actual data point -- looks like iLounge did a teardown

http://www.ilounge.com/index.php/art...entals-part-2/

to find out the rate for the HD version of the Simpson's movie, clocking in at ~ 4.2 Mbps.

One disconcerting find over there is that Apple SD is not 720x480 anamorphic,
but 640x480, which for a typical 2.35:1 widescreen (853x356) stretches the
pixels horizontally by 33%. Yikes, given the rumor that Apple just re-encodes DVDs
from MPEG-2 to H.264, we have the following chain of horizontal re-scaling (720->640->800
(graphix chip driver)->720/1080), rivaling the stretching of poor John Barleycorn.
post #177 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by retiarius View Post

One disconcerting find over there is that Apple SD is not 720x480 anamorphic, but 640x480, which for a typical 2.35:1 widescreen (853x356) stretches the pixels horizontally by 33%.

That's what anamorphic coding is.

It squishes a widescreen frame into a 4:3 frame, which is then stretched out again come playback time.
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post #178 of 180
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

That's what anamorphic coding is.

It squishes a widescreen frame into a 4:3 frame, which is then stretched out again come playback time.

True for Apple, untrue for DVD, which for 720x480 is a 3:2 "frame".

720 is higher resolution than 640, so, for Apple SD, there will still be the knock
against it that it is still "sub DVD" quality. Some hoped that Apple SD anamorphic
would be just an H.264 version of the MPEG-2 DVD bits at the same rez.
Perhaps the Broadcom decoder in the iPods are limited to downsampling
640-wide with PAR, or maybe this is a studio-imposed deal.

But for a dollar more, this all changes.
post #179 of 180
The latest version of Handbrake supports encoding of 5.1 into MP4 files that can playback on ATV. I can vouch for the fact that it works brilliantly. I encoded several movies yesterday including "War", "The Mask of Zorro" and a Groove Armada Concert DVD. I did all three with the ATV preset with 2 pass encoding and AC3. Results are awesome. I cannot tell the difference between the encoded file and the DVD (on an upconverting Pioneer Elite DVD player to a 50" Pioneer Plasma). The Handbrake guys have knocked it out of the park with this latest release.
post #180 of 180
I was wondering when you sync content onto Apple TV if you can delete it from your iTunes library so it does not take room up on your computer?

Also, is there anything under settings to get a new source, say from Time Machine?

Thanks
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