Apple recently announced the availability of Apple TV in several countries, and to alleviate the wait we offer you a number of additional details that will allow you to better understand what to expect from the expected digital entertainment device.
HDD. The 40 GB hard drive offers a true storage capacity for 33 GB content. The hard drive is not considered by Apple as a user upgradeable part. Apple indicates that as iTunes is smart about the way it handles the content of the Apple TV (allowing to synchronize the five most recent movies that have not yet been seen, for example), since it is also possible to stream the content, the Disk size shouldn’t be a problem. Whether or not the user can install a larger capacity hard drive has yet to be considered. (And we will surely try before that decision has been made.)
Formats. Although Apple cannot say if the Apple TV will support additional audio and video formats over those listed among the technical characteristics, the Apple device incorporates a Software Update mechanism that suggests the fact that some of its features will be upgradeable, although still we are not certain about what these characteristics are.
USB port. Apple has confirmed that the USB 2.0 port located on the back of the Apple TV is for diagnostic and maintenance use. Therefore, forget about the possibility of connecting an iPod to play its content through that port.
Synchronization. Each host (iTunes 7.1 or higher running on Mac OS X or Windows) can sync or cast with up to five different Apple TVs.
HD content. Apple has yet to start selling 720p content through the iTunes Store. Nor has it indicated whether there will be any change in this situation. In the meantime, users can encode content from their HD cameras or other HD sources using the Export for Apple TV option available in the latest version of QuickTime Pro. Another option is to use the Visual Hub app priced at approximately $ 24. .
Apple TV can decode a 720p signal but it can also scale it up to 1080i. The device takes care of scaling the videos with the appropriate output resolution. iTunes and AppleTV cannot decode 1080p content.
Silent. Apple indicates that the Apple TV is “incredibly quiet” with a noise range between 7 and 10 dB.
Connections. The product does not come with any video or audio cables, although HDMI, HDMI to DVI, Component and Toslink cables are quite cheap.
With the HDMI connection, the Apple TV takes care of choosing the appropriate output resolution. When you connect the component cables for the first time, Apple TV will show you a list of available resolutions so that you can select the most suitable for your television.
In case the HDMI and component cables are connected, Apple TV will use the HDMI connection by default. In the case of audio, Apple TV will send the signal simultaneously through all available connections.