The $40 Apple TV

Yes, yes, the Apple TV is superb. Stunning picture quality. Nice, compact form. Totally worth the $300.

Except, it’s not, if you’re me and you don’t want to spend $300 on video (because you’re saving up for the iPhone, like me). I made a homemade version of the Apple TV for $40. It doesn’t do fancy streaming or anything like that, and you have to plug wires into your computer (gasp..the horror!), but it gets the job done, and for around…what…1/8 the price?

Step One: Get the standard Apple Mini-DVI to Video Adapter: $20. You’ll plug a “yellow” composite video cord into this, and the other end into your TV. If you’re like me, you have 20 of these yellow cords laying around in your house.


Step Two: Buy the Belkin Retractable TV/iPod Cable: $20. You’ll only be using the red and white cables. Ignore the yellow one.


Congrats. You’ve now obtained everything you need for your $40 Apple TV. Next steps:

1. Plug the DVI to Video cord into your MacBook/MacBookPro’s Mini DVI port, and plug the Belkin jack into your computer’s headphone jack:


2. Plug the yellow cord from the DVI to Video adapter into your TV, as well as the Belkin cable’s red and white cords. Leave the Belkin cable’s yellow cord alone, or if you’re hungry, eat it.


3. Remember that Apple Remote that came with your MacBook? Find it, and press the menu button.


4. Voila! The $40 Apple TV!


So, if you find yourself between spending $300 on the Apple TV or saving up for the iPhone, give this a whirl. It works for me, and that’s all that matters, after all.

Another reason to save up for the iPhone? My Blackberry Pearl’s camera is awful, as we can all plainly see.

~ by Brad Levinson on March 27, 2007.

2 Responses to “The $40 Apple TV”

  1. […] you’re saving up for the iPhone). I made a homemade version of the Apple TV for $40. […]read more | digg […]

  2. Not a bad idea, in fact I have actually done that before, but it does get really annoying to hook up everytime. Plus there are times that I really want to watch something (like CommandN or and at the same time look up something on my laptop. The other major advantage of the AppleTV is that is automatically formats everything for component output from the box and optical audio – this gets you much better video quality and full surround sound if you want it.

    Great idea for the cheap crowd though…

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