Which Media Player to purchase for my needs?
Sorry for the extremely vague question that I'm sure has been asked before...

I have only ever used AppleTVs, but I would love to find a media center that can:

1) Run Kodi
2) Play local files from an attached external hard drive
3) Play netflix/hbo go
4) Screen mirror with my MacBook Pro and be remote speakers when needed.

Right now, I am in the process of transitioning from ATV1 to ATV4. The ATV4 handles all of these except local files but the jailbreak is kinda odd and I'm finding out I might need to re-do it every week which isn't practical for me so I still have my ATV1 hooked up too and I might send the ATV4 back. The ATV1 with OSMC is still doing great but it goes through waves where I won't have any problem for a while and then all of a sudden tons of files and streams don't play correctly and are laggy, etc. I think big files and some types of files (mkv?) don't agree with the ATV1...

The mirroring is the least important feature since I'm pretty sure that isn't really possible without either an AppleTV or 3rd party software that costs money. Playing local files from an attached external hard drive is probably the most important point since most media players I've seen lately have no problem with the other uses.

I've always bought Apple products (ever since the IIgs), but I know there are probably better and cheaper alternatives that I don't know about....
Moving your post the the Hardware Forum.

You should read the Stickies at the top of the listing as most of your questions would be answered there.
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@Whitey9457, I strongly suggest you stick with the ATV4 for anything to do with Airplay, Screen Mirroring and interactions with other Apple products otherwise expect unreliability and trouble. Definitely do NOT get any other platform if you want to Mirror from your Mac.

What often happens is Apple pushes out a ATV4 tvOS update and then expect Airplay / Air mirror breakage with 3rd party, unlicenced Airplay Apps.

What you need is a Kodi fork that directly installs to the ATV4. There actually is one called MrMC - put out by an very experienced ex- Kodi developer - @davilla. I doubt you will find better support anywhere.

I suggest any HDD is attached to a Networked router like a Airport Extreme - and setup a SMB server on that. Pretty easy to do with Apple products. You can even directly transfer / manage files from a Mac with such a SMB router.

If you need features like HEVC (H265) decoding or HD Audio passthrough for Kodi - compliment your ATV4 with a relatively cheap OSMC or LibreELEC device, that will play anything you throw at it:
AMLogic S905(x) - LibreELEC / OSMC - Kodi Krypton - 4K Options:

You will then have two devices that compliment each other really well and you will not have to compromise very much at all. Smile

PS: Soli's Kinos (Ubuntu 12.04) is the ultimate expression of Kodi Jarvis on the old ATV1 - better than anything that has come before:
[Apple TV 1] [Release] Kinos - Kodi Jarvis for Apple TV gen 1

I used a Crystalbuntu - ATV1 for years until 1080i OTA TV became a must have requirement.

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Which Media Player to purchase for my needs?00