McTiVia melds your Mac and TV, despite a kludgy set-up procedure
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

McTiVia melds your Mac and TV, despite a kludgy set-up procedure

The McTiVia (, unveiled at January's Macworld Expo, sounds like a certain health food promoted on TV by Jamie Lee Curtis. But it's not.

The McTiVia is an US$199 device that lets you show all the content of your Mac -- as well as Windows computers, if you care -- on your TV wirelessly. You can purportedly control up to eight computers with your mouse and/or keyboard (I've only test driven it with one). You can share any content from your computers with your friends and family in your living room.

The McTiVia can also act as a wireless access point for your home network, and has a USB port for connecting a mouse and keyboard to control your Mac (sorry, no Bluetooth support). You can use it to, for example, use your big screen TV to play Mac games, surf the web from your couch, access TV shows/movies online, and more. What's more, you can also use your iPhone as a mouse/keyboard to control your Mac.

Hook-up isn't as simple as it could be. Connect the HDMI output on the McTiVia to your TV and turn on the television. (You'll have to bring extra for an HDMI cable, as the McTiVia doesn't come with one). Connect the power adapter to your McTiVia and plug it into an outlet (several outlet "tips" are provided). Turn on the McTiVia box.

There are four ways to connect the box to your home network. The McTiVia is touted for its wireless capabilities, but if you want the best performance, use an Ethernet connection. If an Ethernet cable isn't feasible, you can use a pair of power-line modems to set up a wired connection from your home network to the McTiVia. The provides good performance, but I doubt many Mac users will go this route.

Most folks will probably choose the "reasonable" performance offered by the partly wireless set-up. You can connect the McTiVia via cables to your home AP. The more adventurous, and/or technically minded, can go purely wireless for basic performance. However, this set-up is more complicated and vulnerable to any interference in the Wi-Fi signal.

After you've completed your set-up of choice, insert the CD-ROM that came with the MacTiVia and install the software. In your Applications folder, find and open up the new MirrorOp Sender app.

Next locate your Wi-Fi access point and choose McTiVia (the default SSID is McTivia) and click the Connect button. Hopefully, you'll connect to your McTivia server. If only one server is found, the software will automatically connect to it.

The software will temporarily adjust your computer resolution for the best projection result, and then project your Mac's screen to your TV.

To finish the projection, click the Stop button on McTiVia MirrorOps Sender. The screen resolution will be restored to its original res. To start projecting again, click the Play button in the MirrorOps Sender app.

At least that's the way it's supposed to work. My experience wasn't as seamless. I had to fiddle with the settings in the MirrorOps app. What worked best for me was setting the Projection quality to Normal. The app recommends Normal or Small computer screen resolution, saying that Large wants an Ethernet connection. However, I didn't use the Ethernet option, and Large worked wonderfully for me. But your mileage may vary.

You should also note that you'll have to use the McTiVia as a wireless router if you want to do things like broadcasting Hulu shows from your Mac to TV. That takes a bit of work, but you can find the steps at the McTiVia web site.

The box allows you view anything that you would normally view on your Mac on your TV -- all with full audio support (well, two channel audio). There's a slight "lag" in data from the Mac to TV, but both the video and audio is in sync on the TV.

McTiVia works with 802.11n WiFi signals and can purportedly can go up to 90 feet, though this depends on your WiFi environment. I didn't try it past 30 feet, and it worked fine at that range.

If you're going to be connecting to the Internet a lot when using McTivia, make plans to use Ethernet connectivity. Plug in an Ethernet cable to the Ethernet connector on the back of McTiVia then connect McTiVia by WiFi or se WiFi AP-Client Configuration function to set. You can refer the manual about this.

Also note that McTiVia only mirrors the main display now (the screen with Apple logo on the menu). However, extended desktop support is supposedly in the works.

The McTiVia doesn't have some glitches. However, I know lots of folks who have wanted to be able to wirelessly connect their Mac to their HDTV and, despite some less-than-seamless set-up procedures, it does a good job of wirelessly mirroring content from your computer to your HDTV.

Rating: 6.5 out of 10

-- Dennis Sellers


Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

World of Tanks Generals guide - Tips and...
World of Tanks Generals is a brand new card game by the developer behind the World of Tanks shooter franchise. It plays like a cross between chess and your typical card game. You have to keep in consideration where you place your tanks on the board... | Read more »
TruckSimulation 16 guide: How to succeed...
Remember those strangely enjoyable truck missions in Grand Theft Auto V whereit was a disturbing amount of fun to deliver cargo? TruckSimulation 16 is reminiscent of that, and has you play the role of a truck driver who has to deliver various... | Read more »
The best GIF making apps
Animated GIFs have exploded in popularity recently which is likely thanks to a combination of Tumblr, our shorter attention spans, and the simple fact they’re a lot of fun. [Read more] | Read more »
The best remote desktop apps for iOS
We've been sifting through the App Store to find the best ways to do computer tasks on a tablet. That gave us a thought - what if we could just do computer tasks from our tablets? Here's a list of the best remote desktop apps to help you use your... | Read more »
Warhammer 40,000: Freeblade guide - How...
Warhammer 40,000: Freebladejust launched in the App Store and it lets you live your childhood dream of blowing up and slashing a bunch of enemies as a massive, hulking Space Marine. It's not easy being a Space Marine though - and particularly if... | Read more »
Gopogo guide - How to bounce like the be...
Nitrome just launched a new game and, as to be expected, it's a lot of addictive fun. It's called Gopogo, and it challenges you to hoparound a bunch of platforms, avoiding enemies and picking up shiny stuff. It's not easy though - just like the... | Read more »
Sago Mini Superhero (Education)
Sago Mini Superhero 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: KAPOW! Jack the rabbit bursts into the sky as the Sago Mini Superhero! Fly with Jack as he lifts impossible weights,... | Read more »
Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes guide - How...
Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes is all about collecting heroes, powering them up, and using them together to defeat your foes. It's pretty straightforward stuff for the most part, but increasing your characters' stats can be a bit confusing because it... | Read more »
The best cooking apps (just in time for...
It’s that time of year again, where you’ll be gathering around the dinner table with your family and a huge feast in front of you. [Read more] | Read more »
Square Rave guide - How to grab those te...
Square Rave is an awesome little music-oriented puzzle game that smacks of games like Lumines, but with its own unique sense of gameplay. To help wrap your head around the game, keep the following tips and tricks in mind. [Read more] | Read more »

Price Scanner via

Cyber Monday: Apple MacBooks on sale for up t...
Apple resellers have MacBook Pros, MacBook Airs, and MacBooks on sale for up to $250 off MSRP for Cyber Monday 2015. The following is a roundup of the lowest prices available for new models from any... Read more
Cyber Monday: 15% off Apple products, and sto...
Use code CYBER15 on Cyber Monday only to take 15% on Apple products at Target, and store-wide. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale prices for online orders only, in-... Read more
iPad Air 2 And iPad mini Among Top Five Black...
Adobe has released its 2015 online shopping data for Black Friday and Thanksgiving Day. The five best selling electronic products on Black Friday were Samsung 4K TVs, Apple iPad Air 2, Microsoft Xbox... Read more
All-in-one PC Shipments Projected To Drop Ove...
Digitimes’ Aaron Lee and Joseph Tsai report that all-in-one (AIO) PC shipments may drop a double-digit percentage on-year in 2015 due to weaker-than-expected demand, although second-largest AIO make... Read more
Sprint Offers iPad Pro
Sprint now offers Apple’s new iPad Pro with Wi-Fi + Cellular, featuring a 12.9-inch Retina display with 5.6 million pixels. Customers can pick up iPad Pro at select Sprint retail locations. It can... Read more
Cyber Monday: Target offers 15% discount on A...
Target has discounted Apple Watches by 15% for Cyber Monday. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Sale prices for online orders only, in-store prices may vary: - Apple... Read more
Sunday roundup of Holiday weekend Mac sales:...
Take up to $500 off MSRP on the price of a new Mac at B&H Photo today as part of their Black Friday/Holiday weekend sale. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY tax only. These prices are... Read more
Holiday weekend: Apple Watch on sale for $50-...
B&H Photo has the Apple Watch on sale today for $50-$100 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - Apple Watch Sport: $50 off - Apple Watch: $50-$100 off Read more
Holiday weekend: iPad Air 2s on sale for up t...
B&H Photo has iPad Air 2s on sale for up to $80 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 16GB iPad Air 2 WiFi: $459 $40 off - 64GB iPad Air 2 WiFi: $569 $30 off - 128GB iPad Air... Read more
Holiday weekend Mac sales roundup: B&H Ph...
B&H Photo continues to have all new Macs on sale for up to $500 off MSRP as part of their Black Friday/Holiday weekend sale. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina... Read more

Jobs Board

Technical Program Manager, Strategic Merchant...
# Technical Program Manager, Strategic Merchants - Apple Pay Job Number: 44001177 Santa Clara Valley, Califo ia, United States Posted: Oct. 30, 2015 Weekly Hours: 40.00 Read more
Frameworks Engineer, *Apple* Watch - Apple...
# Frameworks Engineer, Apple Watch Job Number: 41403122 Santa Clara Valley, Califo ia, United States Posted: Jul. 1, 2015 Weekly Hours: 40.00 **Job Summary** Join the Read more
Software Engineer - *Apple* Pay - Apple (Un...
# Software Engineer - Apple Pay Job Number: 44003246 Santa Clara Valley, Califo ia, United States Posted: Nov. 16, 2015 Weekly Hours: 40.00 **Job Summary** Apple Pay Read more
Merchant Operations Manager: *Apple* Pay -...
# Merchant Operations Manager: Apple Pay Job Number: 43593822 Santa Clara Valley, Califo ia, United States Posted: Nov. 10, 2015 Weekly Hours: 40.00 **Job Summary** The Read more
Product Design Engineer - *Apple* Watch - A...
# Product Design Engineer - Apple Watch Job Number: 41727161 Santa Clara Valley, Califo ia, United States Posted: Jul. 22, 2015 Weekly Hours: 40.00 **Job Summary** Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.