Without going too deep into the crazy TV-watching arrangement I have right now, I just discovered something interesting.
Last night, I tried for a few hours to watch a torrent of Top Chef: Texas, streaming it from my Mac Mini to my PS3. Strangely, the Mac Mini couldn’t handle it. It would buffer for ages, then stutter and stop.
Assuming it was a driver issue, I looked for a new version of PS3 Media Server and, sure enough, I was many versions behind so I upgraded and that broke the whole thing – tons of errors and crashes. I rolled it back to 1.0 and was able to run again but still had the terrible performance.
Today I had some long drives up to NYC and back and spent the time listening to some podcasts on the new version of Instacast HD (a must-buy, people) on my iPad2. I was struck with the thought that maybe I should try using my iPad to try to stream the Top Chef videos using StreamToMe. Hmm.
I got home, I opened up the iPad and fired up StreamToMe and AppleTV. After I hit the Airplay button, I knew I had a winning solution. The stream is flawless and the video looks great.
I guess I was slightly surprised that the iPad2 could handle it so well but the Mini is a few years old, has 1GB of RAM, and was running experimental PS3 software. On the other hand, it was another case of how great the iPad2 is.