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Tuning Your Mac
Make sure only essential software is running. For your AirParrot setup, this should be AirParrot and the media program you are watching. If you have opted to use Splashtop as a remote, you may need to consider turning this off and making do without it. To verify that only the basic software is running, hit the command + tab keys. This will pop up a small window with the software that is currently running. It’s also a quick way to switch between programs (although I prefer Mission Control launched with a trackpad gesture). Quit any other software applications, except Finder, which cannot be closed.
I would also suggest rebooting your entire system before an AirParrot session. First, shut down your Mac. Then restart your Apple TV (setting -> general -> restart, or hold down the bottom select button and menu button on the remote for 6 seconds, until the light on your Apple TV flashes rapidly). When your Apple TV is back online, start-up your Mac. When your Mac comes back online, verify that no software is running, other than Finder (you cannot quit Finder). If anything else is running, close it. Then start AirParrot and your media application (the one you will watch via AirParrot).
If you have one of the new Apple TVs that does 1080p video, I would suggest tuning AirParrot down to 720p. The increased resolution makes for more CPU usage, which is probably the cause of your audio drop-outs. You do this by clicking on the AirParrot widget icon at the top of your screen, then select “preferences”. Make sure “Enable 1080p on third generation Apple TVs” is unchecked.
If you still have a problem, try adjusting your screen resolution. In the “Mac Media System with AirParrot and Splashtop” article, I recommend a screen resolution of 1280 x 800. You want the height to be as close to 720 as possible, but not below. On my Mac, 1280 x 800 is as close as it gets. If you are running an excessively high resolution, with or without AirParrot, your Mac will need more CPU cycles for rendering graphics. With AirParrot, however, the software has to use more processing power in order to scale the graphics down for Apple TV. A 720p picture on your Apple TV does not require running a high resolution on your Mac. It just bogs down the whole system.
There’s even more you can do to fix AirParrot audio problems. You can tune down the video quality of AirParrot. To do this, open AirParrot from the widget icon at the top of your screen and select “preferences”. Adjust “video quality” and “max frame rate” such that you get the best picture without audio problems.
On some systems this may not solve the problem, as the CPU still can’t keep up. Furthermore, many people do not want to sacrifice picture quality. There is another option… (continue…)