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aTV Flash (black) Beta6 Now Available

We are pleased to announce the release aTV Flash (black) Beta6 for the 2nd generation AppleTV.

Beta6 includes huge improvements in playback performance that come by way of a brand brand-new, lightweight player that has been built from the ground up specifically for iOS. This new player empowers your AppleTV to play a wide variety of media formats without having to sacrifice the simplicity of the native AppleTV interface.

Keep reading to find out all the details.

What's new in Beta6?

General

  • Added show/hide options for standard AppleTV menus
  • Added option to manually install if no AppleTVs are detected
  • Improved auto-update disabling
  • Improved installation error handling
  • Minor UI adjustments

Media Player

  • Added new lightweight player
  • Added recently played items to 'Top Shelf' in main menu
  • Added Favorites to main menu
  • Added option to manually mark files as watched/unwatched
  • Added 'Test Connection' option for AFP/SMB shares
  • Added support for DVD subtitles
  • Added support for multiple DVD audio tracks
  • Added basic support for M2TS files
  • Improved overall video playback (especially HD video files)
  • Improved thumbnail generation when cover art is not available
  • Improved FF/RW controls
  • Improved DVD menu and video playback
  • Improved DVD playback progress reporting
  • Improved memory management
  • Improved AFP/SMB streaming
  • Improved error handling for invalid files
  • Resolved most video stuttering issues
  • Resolved energy saver mode issue
  • Resolved issue that resulted in some DVDs being displayed in (squished) 4x3 mode
  • Resolved numerous DVD playback issues
  • Resolved flickering when navigating through certain menus
  • Resolved additional conflicts with XBMC
  • Reduced number of network connections used
  • Minor UI and other miscellaneous fixes

Screenshots

So how much better is this new player?

In short, it's way, way, way better!

To more effectively illustrate real-world improvement we tested video playback in both Beta6 as well as the previous Beta5 version. The results show dramatic improvement in playback performance and system efficiency. More details can be seen in the graphs below.

Note: The source file used was an H.264 (AVC) video (24 FPS) with AAC audio, and was re-encoded into various resolutions for testing.

FPS comparison

Free memory comparison

CPU usage comparison

Awesome! Where can I get it?

If you're already running a version of aTV Flash (black) the new Beta6 version can be installed through the Maintenance --> Manage Extras menu. If for some reason you need to re-install aTV Flash (black) onto your AppleTV links for the new version can be found in your account under the Downloads tab.

New users can pre-order aTV Flash (black) here.

Enjoy! :-) 

aTV Flash 4.3 Now Available

We are pleased to announce the release of aTV Flash version 4.3 for the original silver AppleTV. Included are some new features, as well as a number of improvements to existing features and core components. Read on for more details.

What's new in 4.3?

  • Added File Sharing (SMB Server)
  • Improved DVD file playback
  • Improved metadata scrapers
  • Improved Last.fm scrobbling (2.0)
  • Improved FTP and SSH connections
  • Improved memory management
  • Improved installation routine
  • Improved system tools
  • Minor UI improvements
  • Other miscellaneous fixes

What can I do with File Sharing?

File Sharing allows you to stream non-iTunes media stored on your AppleTV (including media stored on external drives) to other devices including a second AppleTV (silver or black) or a Mac/PC computer.

How to use File Sharing

After installing the File Sharing package through the Maintenance --> Install Extras menu, the File Sharing option can be enabled through the Maintenance --> Settings menu.

When File Sharing is enabled (or set to Auto-Start) the relevant connection info will be visible when the File Sharing item is highlighted. The AppleTV's username and password are both 'frontrow' (without quotes).

Great! Where can I get it?

aTV Flash version 4.3 is available through the Downloads tab in your account. If you're already running aTV Flash on your AppleTV you can update through the Maintenance --> Manage Plugins menu.

Enjoy! :-)

aTV Flash (black) Beta5 Now Available

Today we are pleased to announce the release aTV Flash (black) Beta5 for the 2nd generation AppleTV.

Beta5 features improvements to virtually every aspect of aTV Flash (black) but our main focus has been on building and improving the Media Player feature. Media Player has received a big boost in Beta5, but is still under heavy development with many more exciting features and improvements still to come.

Keep reading to find out what's new in Beta5.

AppleTV 4.2.2 update

Yesterday (5/11) Apple released a 4.2.2 update for the 2nd gen AppleTV and Seas0nPass has been updated to provide an untetheted jailbreak for this new version. As usual, the latest version of Seas0nPass can be found at seas0npass.com.

Note: Updating to 4.2.2 is not required to install Beta5.

What's new in Beta5?

General

  • Added AppleTV 4.2.2 compatibility
  • Improved installer routine
  • Improved handling of failed installations
  • Improved error handling
  • Minor UI adjustments

Media Player

  • Added SMB streaming
  • Added photo slideshows
  • Added basic video playlists
  • Added 'Favorites' section
  • Added individual photo browsing and viewing
  • Added support for 'xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx/folder' shares
  • Added support for guest/anonymous NAS logins
  • Added volumes list sorting
  • Added option to disable metadata fetching
  • Added option to hide file extensions
  • Improved handling of HD video files
  • Improved memory management
  • Improved DVD file detection
  • Improved remote share folder browsing (root folder issue)
  • Improved Remote.app support
  • Resolved artifact issues (green line near bottom of screen)
  • Resolved rare crashes related to AFP streaming
  • Resolved issues in share navigation resulting in incorrect 'menu' button handling
  • Resolved issues resulting in incorrect video playback after rewinding on 'fastest' speed
  • Resolved issues related to removing saved shares
  • Resolved duplicate AFP share entries
  • Resolved conflicts with XBMC
  • Minor UI fixes
  • Other miscellaneous fixes

Couch Surfer Pro

  • Added HTML5 audio support (for sites like http://tv.tunein.com/)
  • Added EyeTV streaming
  • Improved web pages scrolling and layout handling
  • Improved iOS-optimized JavaScript support
  • Improved highlighting of large web elements
  • Auto-complete history is now cleared when clearing history
  • New SSL indicator
  • Other minor bug fixes

Weather

  • Added 5-day forecasts
  • Added location search option
  • Added automatic location detection (if no saved locations exist)
  • Added day/night weather forecasts
  • Added 'Feels Like' temperature info
  • Minor UI fixes

Last.fm

  • Added lightweight audio streaming player
  • Improved memory management

What we're still working on

  • New lightweight audio/video player
  • Additional codecs
  • DVD chapter controls
  • AC3/DTS (5.1 surround) sound
  • Subtitle support
  • Multiple audio track support
  • Improved UI and file browsing
  • Better memory management

(If you missed it last time, a brief demo of Media Player in action can be seen here).

Great! Where can I get it?

Beta5 is available through the Downloads tab in your account. If you're already running aTV Flash (black) on your AppleTV all the new features can be installed through the Maintenance --> Manage Extras menu.

Enjoy! :-) 

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