I have an Apple TV with which I'd like to read videos from my mac, both from Internet (Youtube for example) and from files stored on my hard drive.

There is two ways of doing it: the first one is Airplay Mirroring, but this does not work well enough, since there is a lag between the sound and the video. The second one is to use the built in option to read only the video, and not to mirror the whole screen.

I managed to use both of these options with my iPhone/iPad :

  • Airplay Mirroring is done through the control center
  • Reading only the video is done with a little icon that appears on the bottom right of the video player, like this one :enter image description here

But on my mac, the icon does not appear when I try to read a video. It is always in the menu bar (top left part of the screen), where it only allows me to to mirror my screen. I would like to read only the video, like I do with my iPad/iPhone, to avoid this sound/picture offset.

Is there any way to do it? The best would be to find a solution that would work for videos on the Internet and for saved video files.

2 Answers 2


There are two ways to send content via AirPlay from your Mac to your Apple TV when it comes out of the box. The first is the Mirroring method, found, as you mentioned, in the Menu Bar on OS X and in the Control Centre on iOS. As far as the in-app method goes, the only app that supports that is iTunes. There should be an AirPlay icon at the top of the window to send music and movies to your TV.

There is some third-party software available for sending content via AirPlay, as well. First of all, I have not personally tried these methods, so keep that in mind. The first is Beamer ($15), which can take video files and send them over to the TV. The second is AirParrot ($15), which allows you to mirror content as usual, but it also allows you to have the TV act as a second monitor or to beam over a single app (so you can send any single app over, like QuickTime or a web browser).

Then there is the tried-and-trusted option of just taking a video cable and connecting your Mac that way. I don't know what Mac you're using (might not be so feasible with a desktop) but AirPlay has in my experience always had some latency and picture quality drop associated with it (same goes with the Chromecast and other wireless display technologies I've tried in the past) and just using an HDMI cable should give you a speedy, high-quality output. It's the option I'd choose most of the time.

  • 2
    Just to share my user experience, there is no latency when streaming a video from an iOS device to the Apple TV. But as I said, there is with Airplay Mirroring. It's a shame that Apple did not use the same technology on all of its device. If they can do it with iOS, I don't see why they could not with OSX. Anyway, thank you for your answer
    – Sithered
    May 25, 2015 at 9:14
  • 1
    actually iTunes is not the only app which supports in-app AirPlay. QuickTime Player also supports this option.
    – mdarwin
    Oct 18, 2018 at 13:29

QuickTime can stream video only to AppleTV.

enter image description here

enter image description here

With most MP4 files it works well. I had issues with old videos in MP4 (recorded with Nokia from 2007) and some very large files.

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