AppleTV Works With “Normal” TVs

March 22nd, 2007

Paul Kafasis of Rogue Amoeba got a chance to play with Apple’s newest toy, and discovered that it’s not quite as off-limits to us old-timers as Apple might have suggested! This is the unusual situation where a new product claims a certain limitation but is actually quite more forgiving. Paul discovered that Apple TV actually comes with a “480i” option that makes it suitable (or at least plausible) for some modern-ish TVs that are not quite ready for HDTV, but at least still have “component” input.

I have to admit there’s a big time rift in my technology adoption. Computers? Yes please. Televisions? Umm… when it really matters, maybe. I don’t upgrade my television, as a rule. In fact I have always, over the course of my life, been happy with “whatever television” was around. Right now it’s a 19″ TV that takes coaxial input or “RCA” style AV. It won’t even accept the component video that Paul is excited about. Oh well, I’m an old-timer.

But it’s good news for semi-old-timers who were hoping to use the Apple TV but thought they would be excluded. If you’ve sort of kept up with TV trends, then the Apple TV might be within your reach, even before you upgrade to the latest and greatest. If your TV has “component” inputs, then you could be in luck. If you haven’t, well… welcome to my world.

5 Responses to “AppleTV Works With “Normal” TVs”

  1. Bob Says:

    I was disappointed, too, in the minimum requirements. So I doubt Apple is losing only a few customers in order to simplify the product. The lack of QuickTime support is disappointing. It may be twice the cost, but maybe I should get a Mac Mini and use FrontRow. It’ll be a good XGrid contributor, and maybe a segue into the Intel world for me.


  2. Julian Cheal Says:

    I would like an Apple TV. However the keypoint in the name is “TV”. All of us out there who don’t own televisions we’re missing out. I think it’s unfair! Lol not really, but I still would like one. I just need the TV bit first.

  3. peter royal Says:

    ah, someone else from my school of thought :)

    we only have a single 19″-er in my house too. it does have component inputs though, only because its only a year and a half old, and it just came with them.

    so when your 19″ dies, your next one should have components :)

  4. Zac White Says:

    I have never been big into TVs (and I’m no old-timer). Maybe it is just because I don’t have the money…

  5. Augie Fackler Says:

    I suspect that this device will fare poorly with the programmer/hardcore geek crowd initially, largely because I’ve noticed an increasing trend to use TV Tuners and/or iTunes/BitTorrent rather than “traditional” TVs. I suspect this is because we tend to invest our money in computers (duh) and then we have monitors larger than our TVs. I think my largest (admittedly CRT) monitor is one I got for free and it’s as large as our largest TV here, while providing better picture quality when watching DVDs. Recently, I’ve even noticed the same trend amongst far less geeky college friends (I live in a dorm as yet), although I suspect part of that is just space constraints. Given all of this, I wonder if maybe Apple should have included VGA or DVI in the available outputs?

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