Apple TV is Worth It

2 cables and 2 minutes. That's all it took to get the Apple TV up and running. I connected power and the HDMI to my TV. I chose English, chose my wireless network, entered my password, and then entered the generated passcode into my Mac mini downstairs. That's all. I was live and living.

You probably don't like to read my paragraphs, so let me tell you why I'm loving the Apple TV in list form.

  • Easy setup - I just covered that

  • Tiny size

  • Album art looks amazing. The "drifting" art screen saver is great. I could sit and watch it for hours.

  • Menus are snappy and handsome - I don't know why people are saying the interface looks like crap. It's simple and sleek. What do you want it to be?

  • Streaming is working great. The smallish hard drive doesn't seem to be a problem when the streaming works so well. For reference, both my iTunes library and the Apple TV are wireless.

  • Syncing setup is simple, although slow on that first sync ;)

  • It syncs your playcounts like an iPod! This might be my favorite feature so far. I know, I'm weird. If you think about this, it makes sense since it will sync only your unwatched shows by default, but since other playback of "shared" content doesn't update the playcounts (like playback from another computer over the network), I wasn't expecting this. I still need to see if streamed content updates. I know sync'd content does.

  • Movie trailers start-up almost instantly. You could always do this in iTunes, but it was such a pain in the ass. Now you can be sitting in the family room with friends and decide what movie to go see as a group, right on the TV...without going and hooking up any other gear.

  • Video podcasts - You'll hear folks saying the Apple TV doesn't do anything more than a video iPod with the video output cable. I agree, as long as you forget the fact that you have to leave a cable hanging from your TV for your iPod....and your iPod has to be charged...and your iPod has to be with you...and you don't mind running to the iPod every 3 minutes to start a new podcast...and you don't want to pause...and...and....hmmm, I'm writing paragraphs again :)

  • Photos - I've sync'd photos to my ReplayTV before. It was great once they were there. Getting them there was terrible. Now I tick a box for the album I want and I'm done.

At this point, I'm definitely recommending this.

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