Mac Mini 1.42GHz PPC Media Centre Project Log

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by eenu, Mar 26, 2007.

  1. macrumors 65816

    eenu

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #1
    Well i ordered the :apple: TV on launch day but cancelled shortly after due to its lack of media support. I have an old 1.42GHz PPC Mini lying around so i have decided to use this instead.

    This will be a log of how i do it and also for me to ask for help which i am going to have to do in this first post :rolleyes:

    Ok so the first problem! i have a Tosh 27wl56:

    http://www.home-entertainment.toshi...s/lcdplasma-widescreenlcd-27wl56?opendocument

    The mini is set to 1280x720 yet its display is bigger than the TV! half of the dock is cut off......a bit of the desktop on the left and right is gone and also the top bar. I have it connected DVI - HDMI as the Xbox is using the DSub connector as a hi def component input. I have Composite left over. Any ideas?

    I've always had this issue with connecting PCs to the TV the only thing that has ever worked was Windows Media Centre in Vista......the Vista desktop didn't work but as soon as MCE was started it went to proper 720p res

    Also its darker on my TV than a computer monitor.....none of the colour profiles seem to correct this.
     
  2. j26
    macrumors 65816

    j26

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2005
    Location:
    Paddyland
    #2
    Sometimes the tv has aspect settings. Mine sometimes goes to 4:3 when I connect my Macbook whereas it should be 16:9. A quick flick on the tv remote sorts it out. Have a look at your tv for that one.

    I'm interested to see how you get on with this - I'm considering something similar.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors 65816

    eenu

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #3
    Tried the resizing thing...... 'Not Available' probably as its coming from a PC/Mac.
     
  4. thread starter macrumors 65816

    eenu

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #4
    so out of all the people on this forum with all the minis that have been connected to loads of different TVs by them and no one can provide an answer :rolleyes: :D
     
  5. thread starter macrumors 65816

    eenu

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #5
    Bumped.

    Can no one provide a solution?
     
  6. macrumors P6

    twoodcc

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Location:
    Right side of wrong
    #6
    i'm not sure what to tell you. just double check every setting on the TV.....if i had to guess, i'd say that's where it's messing up.

    i hope you get it working....
     
  7. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #7
    Sounds like your TV overscans by quite a bit. This is pretty common for TVs and I'm not sure offhand how to fix it. You should see if you can find a service menu for your TV to reduce the overscan amounts.

    As for the color profiles, you can custom calibrate displays in OSX quite easily, and adjust the gamma (darkness) while you are doing that.
     
  8. thread starter macrumors 65816

    eenu

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #8
    Yes i think you are right about the overscan as when i deselected that on the mini i can see the whole screen.....great.....except this time its to small :)

    Will have a look for an overscan menu. cheers
     
  9. Gee
    macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2004
    Location:
    London, UK
    #9
    What you need I think is a little utility called displayconfigX that can fix your overscan problems. Check out the forums over at 123macmini (I think that's what it's called) for loads of posts on how to set up a mini as a media centre.
     
  10. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #10
    Your TV is 1366x768 and stretches 720p media to fit it, but it's probably set to to 1 to 1 pixel mapping over HMDI. You should be able to tell your mini to output 1366x768 and turn off overscan to use the whole panel. At least that might work.
     
  11. thread starter macrumors 65816

    eenu

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #11
    How do i do that if the mini doesn't give that res in the monitor section in the preferences?
     
  12. thread starter macrumors 65816

    eenu

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #12
    actually my tv spec is:

    Display resolution: W XGA (1280X720)
     
  13. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 28, 2006
    Location:
    MN
    #13
    I see where you are having your problem. I just got a Sharp 32 inch with the same issue.

    The problem your having is with the mini's resolution. True your WXGA resolution of your TV is 1280x720(or 720p for short), but the actual pixal by pixal size of the tv is 1366x768. Your tv takes in a regular 720p signal and resizes it for the actual screen size. All 720p tv's(even mine) are 1366x768 in size. The the cutoff your having is because the mini doesn't have an exact sizing for the tv's 'true' resolution. As I said I've got the same problem when I hook up my Macbook up via VGA or DVI-HDMI.

    As another post has said try using Displayconfigx. I haven't tried it myself, but it's worth a shot. It looks like it allows you to manual set the resolution output of the mini so it matches the tv. The default resolutions of the mini don't match up.

    Here's a linkhttp://www.3dexpress.de/. I'm curious if you get it to work or not. Keep us updated.
     
  14. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #14
    That's what I was going to say... :p I swear I read around here somewhere that after 10.4.9 someone said they had an option for 1366x768 on their mini. I must be crazy tho!
     
  15. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 28, 2006
    Location:
    MN
    #15
    Well I can tell you my Macbook is running 10.4.9 and I don't have that resolution setting.;)
     
  16. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #16
    Well, alright then! I must be crazy! :)
     
  17. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2007
    #17
    I've had this problem for years, both with a mini and now with a dual-G5 tower hooked up to my Panasonic PT-AE700U projector.

    I tried DisplayConfigX as well as another utility that everybody raved about, and was very unsatisfied with both. Every time I shut off my projector, the Mac would loose my settings and revert to 1280x720.

    My solution was rather simple: I moved the dock to the right-hand side of the screen, and adjusted the picture down to where I can see the whole menu at the top.

    Yes, I lose about two dozen rows of pixels when I watch TV, but that's less than what a lot of TV sets cut off anyway, so TV show producers generally don't put anything ultra-important on the edges of the screen.

    Also, most movies are an even wider ratio than 16:9, so they are in letterboxes well above the cut-off section.

    Not a perfect solution, but it will do for now. Hopefully with the rise of :apple:TV, the good people at Cupertino will put a little more effort into getting a handle on this stuff.
     
  18. macrumors 65816

    redeye be

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    Location:
    BXL
    #18
    My main computer is a 1.42 mini and I am running 10.4.9

    I do have a 1360 x 786 resolution available...
    Close enough?
     
  19. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #19
    AH, I knew someone mentioned this! :) That's probably close enough, I wonder if the OP has updated to 10.4.9...
     
  20. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2007
    #20
    I'm also on 10.4.9, and OS X does not offer that as a resolution option for my projector. The closest it gets is 1344x756 (INTERLACED), which is neither a native resolution for my projector (it looks extremely blurry), nor does it solve the pixel-dropping problem.

    So I'm still on 1280x720 and living with it. :mad:
     
  21. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #21
    What system are you doing this with? Could be GPU limited...
     
  22. thread starter macrumors 65816

    eenu

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #22
    I am on 10.4.9 and the resolutions it offers me are:

    640 x 480
    640 x 480 (Stretched)
    720 x 480
    720 x 576
    800 x 600
    1024 x 576
    1280 x 720
    1920 x 1080 (interlaced)

    Will try that extra program that has been suggested now and post back with the results.
     
  23. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2007
    #23
    Dual G5 2.0 tower with the standard ATI Radeon 9600.

    I tried swapping in a more powerful card from ATI once, but it just made the machine noisier from the extra GPU fan, offered only minimal enhancement to game performance, and did not solve the resolution problem.
     
  24. macrumors 65816

    redeye be

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2005
    Location:
    BXL
    #24
    Maybe I should add that I use a DVI connected Dell FPW.
    Doesn't OS X try to determine which screen is connected to show you relevant resolutions?
     
  25. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2007
    #25
    It does, but TV sets & home theater projectors apparently don't always report that information to the machine very accurately.
     

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