Apple TV 4K Review & Comments

Discussion in 'Video Streaming Boxes & Services' started by Steve Withers, Sep 28, 2017.


    1. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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    2. HMHB

      HMHB
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      Thanks for the review :) Quick question.... I don't have 4K and still use my old 1080p plasma telly which does the job well for me, so is there any benefit from getting the 4K Apple TV over the older one? Is this newer version quicker etc?
       
    3. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      The newer version is marginally quicker but given that you're still using a 1080p plasma TV I can't really see any reason to upgrade right now.
       
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    4. DELUCAS

      DELUCAS
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      What could of been a greater box is the missing usb port 3.0 at the rear.
      So that should of been listed as a negative in conclusion list .

      Shame it ticked a lot of boxes but as usual Apple dont want anything connected to there products .
      Soon it will just have a power lead going to it and thats it .

      Oh wait wireless charging will sort that out .
       
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    5. HMHB

      HMHB
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      I don't have any device like this so I'm not upgrading from a previous version :) I'm currently investigating all these devices to see which will give me the features I want.
       
    6. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      In that case I guess the question is what features do you want?
       
    7. HMHB

      HMHB
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      Indeed, and I'm not 100% sure to be honest :) I'd like to be able to watch youtube stuff on the telly and it would be nice to be able to stream stuff from my NAS drive.
       
    8. Abacus

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      It’s definitely game changing on the film side by reducing prices, (but that could have been done with or without the new box) but as usual because it has the Apple badge it cost twice as much as what it should, so as usual only for Apple Fans, while most of the world will go elsewhere.

      Bill
       
    9. Navvie

      Navvie
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      How do I play local content? Like disc rips on my NAS? Install Kodi or Plex, or similar?

      Edit: reworded to be less confrontational.
       
      Last edited: Sep 28, 2017
    10. next010

      next010
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      Plex & Emby clients are available.

      If you want something NAS file share only no media server required;

      MrMC which is the Apple fork of Kodi that is app store compatible, made by ex-Kodi/XBMC guys who created the original XBMC port for the very first AppleTV back in the mid 2000's (has built in Plex & Emby clients too).

      InFuse from Firecore, also long time AppleTV guys going all the way back.

      VLC is also present.

      In regards Youtube the built in app plays anything on Youtube up to 1080p, as the review points out the new ATV lacks the hardware video decoder for 4K Youtube and the format of HLG HDR it uses. Apple would have to cook up software decoder of some kind to play 4K Youtube, maybe they can use bits of the their hardware video decoder, it's possible but unlikely.

      Also unlikely is auto refresh rate switching, just a hunch but Apple is not going to do that as it could have done it at any time now.

      For local content this can be offset somewhat using MrMC as it retains Kodi's "sync playback to display" feature (settings\video\playback) so it can smooth some judder though it resamples audio in the process so stereo only.
       
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      Last edited: Sep 28, 2017
    11. Jake3103

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      Fantastic review as always. The first one I've seen which mentions the HDR switching issue. I picked up on this problem within 10 mins of setting mine up, and I can't believe other outlets have ignored it or just not noticed. It's really frustrating having to switch manually between different modes. Also, I'm running mine on a 2016 LG C6 OLED, and Dolby Vision 60Hz isn't an option on there (only 30, 25, or 24Hz in DV mode), so making my way through the menus at 24Hz or 30Hz is painfully slow. This would be fixed if they could just have an "Auto" mode that switched to the correct refresh rate and HDR mode upon selecting a supported film/program.
       
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    12. mtenga

      mtenga
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      The manual switching and lack of Atmos counts me out. Fix those and maybe back in. Pity because it has just gone into stock in my local Apple Store.
       
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    13. DELUCAS

      DELUCAS
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      Its coming with Atmos soon on an update
      Think i mentioned it on the apple tv4k thread .
       
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    14. JMB 1962

      JMB 1962
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      Great review Steve. One thing that I haven’t been able to discover is how to easily transfer all apps and passwords from a fourth generation Apple TV. The USB C port on the latter was meant for backing up and restoring. But this port has been removed from the Apple TV 4K.

      Any ideas?
       
    15. johnburn

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      There is an option when you enable icloud accounts to sync apps / desktops etc. I don't think the old USB port was ever used for anything other than to restore the OS if the Apple TV bricked itself other than adding the developer profile. This is now done in x-code.
       
    16. Captain Ron

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      Does it support DTS:X?
       
    17. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      There wasn't a USB 3.0 port on the previous generation either but it's annoying when Apple include a USB to Lightning cable for charging the remote but you can't do it from the device itself.
       
    18. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      I agree on both counts but no harm in asking.
       
    19. Uppsalaing

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      Semi-fatal* flaw...:facepalm:

      Not matching the proper colour "format" (HDR/SDR) to the content automatically makes it not suitable for our living room. There is no way my family are going to geek out and select from an alphabet soup of letters and numbers just to watch a movie properly. Zero chance of that happening, they might as well have added a physical switch for it on the bottom of the device :rotfl:

      The whole point of using an Apple type device is for it to work properly in a minimalist and ergonomic package... I doesn't matter how many dolby/hdr/4k logos you can reference or how low the content or device prices are if you get the colour setting wrong.

      They should listen less to the spec-oriented peanut gallary (they don't buy apple anyway ;)) and focus on doing things properly and ergonomically instead.

      * If they sort this out, I'll probably buy two for the house. :cool:
       
    20. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      I'm amazed at how few so-called professional reviews have even mentioned it. They are either deliberately ignoring the issue which is bad enough or they don't know what they're doing, which is even worse.
      It's a serious and unusual miscalculation on the part of Apple and surprising because, as you say, they usually do this kind of thing really well.
       
    21. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      DTS of any variety isn't mentioned in the specs but then from a streaming perspective DTS support is non-existent.
       
    22. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      It's all done in the Cloud now, so when you set the Apple TV 4K up it asks if you want to transfer across all the apps you've previously bought (not sure about passwords).
       
    23. BrightonChris

      BrightonChris
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      Finally a review which understands how bad forcing HDR onto SDR content is. Not that I expected anything less from Steve and this site.

      But reading supposed technology sites like The Verge, it's unbelievable how little attention is paid to it. Even worse is that users in the comments just either ignore it completely, or think that they are actually getting HDR from a non HDR source.

      My 10 year old WDTV live hub can manage to automatically switch - admittedly it's not HDR but Apple have unlimited resources so this must have been a deliberate decision to 'HDRify' everything.
       
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    24. Jamie0003

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      The USB port was only used for servicing so this is kinda irrelevant. Who cares
       
    25. Kotatsu Neko

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      I've had an Apple TV 4 for a while and I've tried to use it as my main streaming box. In the end I gave up and went back to my PS4 (I use my B7 now).

      The biggest problem I had with the Apple TV was the quality of key apps, namely Now TV, iPlayer, and YouTube. They're all wildly different to the versions you find on every other streamer/smart TV, and they're all hugely inferior. Now TV is a joke, it's amazing that something so amateurish and bare bones could ever have been released. BBC iPlayer and YouTube are weak too. There's a real lack of apps as well - no Demand 5, All 4, ITV Hub, Amazon, or UKTV Play.

      The remote is awful too. Far too small to be comfortable, and it's black with no back light, which makes it impossible to find when watching a movie. Genius move.

      Now I just use it for accessing my iTunes purchases. It just feels like UK providers have no interest in it, and the platform is moribund as a result.

      Odd that they're forcing everything into HDR/60 on the 4K ATV too. Such an odd and illogical decision. The Verge said it made SDR content look very grainy and unsightly.
       
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      Last edited: Sep 28, 2017
    26. Kotatsu Neko

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      You could sideload apps onto it, but there were some hoops to jump through. I had an emulator called Provenance on mine for a while.
       
    27. vetikje

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      Hi,

      I really want to buy this device but I have one question about sound output.
      I have a Samsung soundbar ( hw-k950 ) with dolby digital pluss and only pcm 2.0 support.

      Will I get Dolby digital plus from streaming apps on ATV4k ?

      Thanks :)
       
    28. Uppsalaing

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      I really hope this changes. Keeping the content true to the artists/director's intention is key to being able to take advantage of current technology. Even most non-enthusiasts can appreciate this.

      Consumers have already lost the battle when it comes to their TVs default settings (too cool and too much additional motion smoothing), but at least we can turn those off once and it stays that way. There already is a new generation of viewers who actually prefer blue tinted soap-opera-effect content o_O. They're still in the minority, but have become accustomed to it recently. A few of my friends are like this now (and they're in their 30s!), but to be honest, they have bad taste anyway :D.

      If we also lose colour fidelity in our playback devices, it'll only get worse and the only people who will make enough of a fuss about it are enthusiasts and the better reviewers. I'm glad there are people discussing this. It makes recommending and buying a playback device much easier.
       
    29. cooperda

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      For BBC iPlayer streaming - isn't it 'adaptive' now not SD or HD - that only applies to downloads?
       
    30. plum23

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      You're right in that hunch - apparently it was a deliberate decision as they didn't like that tvs flash/go blank for a second when adjusting modes.
       

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