Monday, October 04, 2010

Apple TV

Engadget has published a review of Apple's updated 'set top box'.

Excerpts follow:

"The first thing you'll notice about the Apple TV is just how small it is. The matte black box clocks in at just 3.9 inches square, stands just 0.9 inches off of your table of choice, and weighs a measly 0.6 pounds."

"Wiring options are minimal; around back you've got an Ethernet port, micro USB jack (for "service and support" they say), an HDMI port, an optical audio hook-up, and a spot for the power cable. Apart from the wired internet, the Apple TV also has WiFi."

"You can also set up multiple laptops or home computers on your home sharing network to stream to the TV, allowing for quick access to video, photos, and music you've got stored on your Mac or PC. After you flip on the appropriate settings (home sharing needs to be active on both your Apple TV and computer), grabbing your stuff remotely is clean and simple."

"There are a few other perks, like YouTube, the ability to flip through photos and internet radio."

"When streaming 720p content (particularly new movies) the clarity of video was impressive. There was some very minor compression artifacting, but far far less than you would see on HD video on demand from your cable provider, and considerably less than with Amazon's HD streaming. The video quality doesn't match up to the richness of full 1080p Blu-ray discs, but it looks good."

"Sound quality was also superb - standard stereo was rich and wide, while 5.1 was as crisp and encompassing as you'd expect. For a $99 box, it's more than pulling its weight in the sound category."

"As far as using the function for music, it worked without a hitch on our iPad running the iOS 4.2 beta, though there is that slight delay (say, for switching songs). Unlike video, you can sleep the device and have music continue to play, which makes sense given that iDevices also serve as iPods."

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