We’ve had an AppleTV connected in our home now for a few weeks and I’m very pleased with how it works. I currently have a PPC Mac Mini tethered to a 500GB drive as my primary streaming library but have also streamed from my MacBookPro, which has a more current and active list of podcasts, but considerably smaller media library.
The on-screen display is excellent and very elegant. As you would expect it’s super easy to use and requires no instructions. The AppleTV is really an iPod for your home theater. You can define how and what you want to sync or stream and it takes care of the rest from there … just like your iPod does.
My only gripe is that I can’t control things from a networked Mac here in the house. I’d really like to be able to still use iTunes or even a third party app to control things when the TV is off. We have the AppleTV configured into a whole-house system and there are plenty of times when I’m not in front of a TV, yet would still like to change the playlist. Quite a few people have already hacked the box to enable additional codecs as well as services like Joost, which is cool, but not what I have planned… As soon as Apple releases HD content for download – either directly to the AppleTV or just from the main ITMS, the box is going to explode the content market as HD content is the only real missing piece.