Posted on May 27, 2011
ATV2: el nuevo standard
Although I have not written because of my work, the new devices keep coming. Now it’s the turn of the Apple TV 2. In one of my previous posts I talk about PLEX, the Home Theater software that turns a Mac mini in a full fledged home media center. you can listen to music, watch videos, TV, and much web content from Netflix to Hulu, YouTube and all online video services.
The problem with Plex is that it requires a fairly powerful and expensive computer (mac mini core2 2.4ghz with 4 GB of RAM) and basically have a mac “wasted” connected to an LCD TV, that you have to turn on by hand and wait for it to boot, or keep it on standby or sleep, while it consumes electricity. This can be replaced with a small and inexpensive device delivers a computer that can be used for business or sold at a good price.
When Apple introduced the new version of its system for home media consumption, what most struck me was its price. $ 99 for a device very small, black, with only very limited and only basic connections in the rear, a top apple logo and a discreet “led” to the front.
Normally ATV2 functionality is pretty basic, restricted to the iTunes store, and consume content focused on Apple computers or local. This type of configuration will not agree with my way of consuming content, so I was not interested. Until finally XBMC.
As mentioned earlier, Plex is a modification of XBMC (Xbox Media Center) started as a “hack” in the first Xbox to turn it into a “Media Center”. Today has been modified to run on multiple platforms, and recently the “Port” to IOS, which runs on ATV2, iPad and iPhone.
A friend told me notice of the availability of this application, which requires having “jailbreak or unlock. after checking (with my friend as a guinea pig) that the program worked much like the Plex, I gave myself the task of getting one, unlock it and install XBMC.
The jailbreak is a little more complicated on this unit because it requires a series of remote control commands (no other mode of control) and a special cable (microUSB) that comes with the computer. After several attempts to stay ready. This thing is complicated and not for the fainthearted or cautious: you have to connect via SSH and type:
$ ssh root@[your ATV2 IP Address] root@[your ATV2 IP Address]'s password: ''the password is "alpine" by default'' $ apt-get install wget $ wget -O- http://apt.awkwardtv.org/awkwardtv.pub | apt-key add - $ echo "deb http://apt.awkwardtv.org/ stable main" > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/awkwardtv.list $ echo "deb http://mirrors.xbmc.org/apt/atv2 ./" > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/xbmc.list $ apt-get update $ apt-get install org.xbmc.xbmc-atv2
That’s it. Upon reboot, the homepage of Apple TV2, XBMC will appear enabling full functionality. Hence only a matter of configuring the local servers or computers where you have the movies, music and photos.
The interesting thing is that this can be done in the iPhone and iPad (previously released) and turn the device into a portable media viewer, with all the benefits of XBMC on hand. The only drawback is you have to be in a WiFi network, the amount of data to be transmitted, but a high-definition movie looks perfect.
At the end I replace my Mac Mini with Plex for this little gadget, and even sacrificed some visual candy, I have recovered a computer and I have instant-on a device that does not consume even half of energy or space than before.
As always I welcome your comments.