March 13, 2011

Rogue Amoeba Airfoil: Send any audio to Apple TV

When I hit a webpage with an audio clip – Rogue Amoeba's Airfoil app $25, makes it trivial to route this audio wirelessly from my laptop to my Apple TV 2  $99, and play the sound through my TV's sound system. Yes, iTunes' AirPlay does the same thing for free but only for audio from iTunes.

Multiple Devices
This snapshot of Airfoil's main window on my laptop shows that I've directed only the audio from the Safari browser app to my Apple TV 2. The other potential destinations on my home WiFi network that I could have chosen include:
  • Airfoil Speakers app on my iPhone or iPad 
  • Airfoil Speakers app on my mini (OS X, Windows, Linux)
  • Speakers attached to my Airport Express (mine is named AirTunes)
Audio Synchronized across Multiple Devices
I could also have chosen to send all audio (i.e. System Audio) from my macbook rather than just the audio from one application. As well, I could have selected multiple output devices - and the audio would have been synced!

Another nice feature is Airfoil's built-in equalizer to tweak the routed audio before streaming it.

Video Streaming 
The current version of Airfoil for OS X is 4.x and supports streaming video. I haven't tried that feature and am currently running version 3.5.5.

Rogue Amoeba's Airfoil application is available for both OS X and Windows. A free test download is available and a variety of individual, family, and combo OSX/Windows software licenses start at $25.