After Hours

Cracking open the Apple TV

Remove the case screws

One of the T8 screws holding securing the Apple TV's metal base plate.

Photo by: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic

Caption by: Bill Detwiler

About

Bill Detwiler is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and Tech Pro Research and the host of Cracking Open, CNET and TechRepublic's popular online show. Prior to joining TechRepublic in 2000, Bill was an IT manager, database administrator, and desktop supp...

14 comments
trag19
trag19

For Micron parts one must use Micron's FBGA decoder. On their main page, hover over "Products and Support" and click on the heading "Support", not any of the sub areas. Once you're at the main Support page, the FBGA Decoder is one of the links. Or you can get there through the site map. The MT47H32M16 is a 512Mbit DDR2 SDRAM in a 8M X 16 X 4 bank configuration. So Apple used four 16bit wide memory chips to build a 64 bit bus with a total of 2Gb/8 = 256MB of RAM.

ampli67
ampli67

Image 80 is coil (inductor). 0.82 uH [?H -microhenries]

mmillerllc
mmillerllc

Add Flashdrive Tell us how to add port to use an external flash drive to view additional content.

cyberax262
cyberax262

Really enjoyed the photos man.. Great work! I was just wondering what kind of camera you used. When ever I try to photograph boards and components like that, the pictures turn out too blurry. Any tips or techniques?

alainric
alainric

I don't think the holes in the base plate are there to reduce the weigh because they are not big enough to do much with respect to this goal. My guess is that they are here to let the air pass through when the sticky foil is applied and prevent bubbles from being captured between the base plate and the rubber pad...

ddmcp2000
ddmcp2000

The component you labeled as not being able to find any information on is simply a ferrite core, .82uH inductor... Judging by the following picture, and it's prominent placement and attachment to an obvious ground-plane, it's likely for RF filtering and FCC compliance

kenw
kenw

Does the hard drive contain any needed data? Can a user just replace it with a 100 GB hard drive?

nappy_d
nappy_d

When will Apple create and box a "true" PVR and TV tuner? This would be awesome. But I guess this would probably take away from their revenue on the iTunes site. Also, it would be a nice feature if it did not require a Mac to upload or stream files from. Rather, if they were to put a stripped down Mac OS and Safari browser that was locked down to only the iTunes site, you could purchase and DL your movies, tunes and whatever else directly to this box. Now that would be cool!!

lee.mclaren
lee.mclaren

Try opening one of the photos in another window, nearly all are blurry, couldn't find a tripod? Interesting enough article though.

tampa_poet
tampa_poet

I've not tried this myself, but I've read where someone else has already replaced the Apple TV harddrive with something larger. It's not difficult. The harddrive contains a stripped down version of Mac OS X. You'll need to plug the Apple TV drive into your Mac and copy the contents to your new drive.

snideley59
snideley59

My father in law is named Henry. And he's short. So could he be a microhenry? Just kidding and I won't go into the inductor puns here

johnmckay
johnmckay

Can't see the point in this if it's tied to itunes. Maybe someone will enlighten me. In the meantime I'll stick to my PCH c-200 as it handles ALL my music (mp3, dts, flac) and ALL my video (avi, mkv, vob, iso, ts from the sat box). I use 'grabit' for extra content and I'm guessing the itunes is a more user friendly, cash guzzling alternative. Maybe I'd see the point if I didn't have a freesat PVR... maybe. Next time I upgrade I'll dispense with the unused BluRay slot though and get a slimmer device like this... but not tied down like this.

Bill Detwiler
Bill Detwiler moderator

You can stream and sync content from either Mac or Windows iTunes. While not tying you to a Mac, Apple still forces you to use iTunes. The Apple TV would be a more compelling product if you could play content from any network resource.