Forum Question: How Can I Get a Large Full HD Home Video From My External Hard Drive To AppleTV?

I have about half a year’s worth of full HD home movies sitting on an external harddrive. I want to place them all into iMovie and stream it to AppleTV seeing as burning them to a DVD will only reduce the quality. My question is how can I stream AppleTV without taking up a ton of space on my Mac books harddrive? I read where you have to export from iMovie to iTunes in order to stream to AppleTV. My fear is if I do this, then my Mac book’s harddrive will not be able to take that much full HD video…which is why I store them on an external HDD in the first place. I’m using iMovie ’11 and a brand new Full HD Panasonic.

Comments: 7 Responses to “How Can I Get a Large Full HD Home Video From My External Hard Drive To AppleTV?”

    1/11/12 @ 7:58 pm

    You don’t have to use iMovie at all. Well, I guess it depends on the format of the videos now. The only purpose iMovie would serve is to convert video that is not compatible with Apple TV into video that is. If it is already there (test one to find out) then you don’t need to use iMovie for anything.
    But you do need to use iTunes. You need to bring the videos into your iTunes library.
    You should be able to add the video to iTunes without moving it. You can turn off “Copy files to iTunes Media folder” in iTunes, Preferences, Advanced and that should let you add the videos to iTunes without also copying them to your iTunes library. At least that’s the way it works with audio.
    Even if the videos aren’t in a format supported by Apple TV, you can use QuickTime Player to export them as Apple TV video much easier than doing it through iMovie.

    1/12/12 @ 12:25 am

    By default anything you drag into iTunes copies to your “Home” folder. However, like you I have many home movies I made using iMovie. Just export from iMovie to the drive you like to keep your movies on and launch iTunes and drag the movie into iTunes “from” your external HD but this time instead hold the Option key down. By holding down Option, it “virtually” uncheks that preference tha tells iTunes to copy the media, instead it “points” to it.

    1/12/12 @ 3:09 pm

    Thanks guys. Exactly what I needed to know and how to do it. Now I just have to test it with AppleTV and see how it works. FYI, I have already run the videos through ClipWrap2 and got them in AIC format which works on the macbook. Thanks again.

      1/13/12 @ 1:09 am

      Alternatively you can leave the movies on the external drive and AirPlay the videos using ios apps such as stream to me or file browser . Assuming you have an iOS device. I use my external drive as a NAS device, with my airport extreme, and AirPlay to my apple tv using file browser.

    1/13/12 @ 3:29 pm

    Alright, I borrowed my brother-in-law’s appleTV 1 and got 2 problems. 1: I did not see my new Full HD videos that I had put into iTunes but were not on the macbook’s hdd. On the macbook I can open the Full HD videos in my itunes and play them without problem…again, stored on the external hdd but the video icon is in itunes and plays no problem.

    2. The videos icons I do see on appleTV (from an earlier 720 pocket video recorder and stored on the macbook’s hdd) will not play correctly. I see them, begin to play them and then they crash and shut down appleTV.

    Is this a problem with appleTV 1 and 2 would be no problem? Or are their settings I need to fix? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

      1/13/12 @ 3:38 pm

      Try Control+clicking on those videos and see if there are conversion options to make them compatible with Apple TV.
      Of course, that might just make them compatible with Apple TV 2, not 1.

    1/13/12 @ 4:18 pm

    Amidabrian – I need to know your workaround. Can you explain it to me slowly and tell me where to get the apps. I have a new Mac book, iPhone 4, iPad 2 and appleTV1. Need to run those full hd videos (aic converted) off my external hdd. I see stream to me in the app store. Do I download that to my Mac and other devices? NAS device, airport extreme and AirPlay : does not compute with me. I’m new to this stuff, trying to learn and play my HD videos. Thanks.

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