Apple TV

I couldn’t wait to get my hands on an Apple TV and I managed to buy one at GHC in town today. Yaaay! I took some pics of the unboxing, for all you Apple obsessives, just click the pic above for the gallery.

The installation was the usual Apple breeze. Plugged in the power, plugged in the HDMI lead and… that’s it. When the Apple TV booted, it came up on my telly (via my AV amp) and I set the language and screen res:

Then I synced it to my Macbook Pro and had a cuppa while all my vids and podcasts and some of my music library was transferred. I had to cherry-pick what music was transferred because the Apple TV has a 40 gig hard drive and my music collection is now at 209 gigs. And, yes, it is all legal!

My first impressions is that this is an extremely well thought-out and designed bit of kit. No big surprise there as it’s an Apple product. But the Apple TV is even slicker than normal: it’s iPod slick. Apple have made this a pretty foolproof media hub. Yes, you could argue that this means they’ve left out some potentially uselful geekier functions but I think they made the right decision. I don’t think this gadget will intimidate anyone. In fact, it’s user interface is definitely easier to navigate than most TVs and video recorders I’ve had.

The sound quality is far better than I get by running a bloody long lead from my Macbook Pro to my amp. Music sounds more spacious, stereo definition and placement is more precise and dynamic bandwidth seems greater too. The picture quality is equally impressive. Of course, if you feed the Apple TV low-res podcasts or YouTubed vids, it can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear and you will see jaggies and blocking. When you view some of the HD film trailers from the Apple site, that’s when you can see possibilities of this little gizmo. It’s making me itch to rip all my DVDs!

I’m going to try some other experiments with it tomorrow but so far, brilliant! 😀