Mac Mini output to Composite or S-video??

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by smueboy, Mar 9, 2009.

  1. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 30, 2006
    I've been planning to purchase a Mac Mini to use it as a HTPC, and i'm all set to spend the cash, but i currently have an old tv with only composite video or S-video inputs. At the moment i have a DVI to S-video adapter working from my MBP which works well. However, i see that the mini-DVI and Mini display port outputs on the new Mac Mini only output digital signals...

    So, how can i plug my mac mini into my S-video or composite video inputs?? The adapters sold by Apple (mini-DVI to S-video/composite) don't work and i don't know of any other solution!!

    Any solutions or suggestions would be great.
  2. macrumors 601


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    I'm not doubting you, but do you know for a fact that the Apple mini-DVI to Video Adapter won't work? I'm not sure why it wouldn't.

    If that doesn't work, Apple sells a DVI-Video adapter that could plug into the included miniDVI-DVI adapter.

    Otherwise, you're probably looking at some sort of DVI-analog video converter which sounds $$$ to me.


    EDIT - scratch that second suggestion. I'm thinking that the miniDVI-DVI adapter provides a DVI-D connection, not a DVI-A or DVI-I connection which is what would be required.
  3. macrumors 68000

    May 6, 2004

    This is the same situation with the White Macbook with NVIDIA Chip. You can go mini-DVI to VGA. Maybe you can find a VGA to S-Video Adapter? I think VGA to Component exists, not sure about VGA to S-Video though?
  4. thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Oct 30, 2006

    As i understand it, the output from the mini-DVI ports on the new Macbooks and Mac mini only output DVD-D. Thus the mini-DVI to video adapter will not work at all since the only signal being sent out is digital. I also assume (though i do not know) that the signal from the mini display port is also only digital, and thus won't be easy to convert to analogue S-video or component?

    Thats not bad idea. I looked at VGA to S-video adapters, but they don't work unless the signal coming out is analogue. Maybe this would work:

    But i have no idea what is best. :confused: It is frustrating that Apple no longer seems to be supporting the ability to hook up their hardware to 'normal' tv's. I wish i had an HDTV, but one thing at a time is all i can afford.
  5. macrumors member

    Jul 13, 2007
    Unfortunately there is not a good solution. Composite and S-video are going to be 640x480 resolution. The above post has a link to a scan converter that will work. It probably won't look the best. Scan converters tend to look "blurry."
  6. macrumors newbie

    Apr 4, 2009
    Just got a 2009 Mini

    I got a Mini display port to VGA adapter and a Mini DVI to svideo/composite.

    The VGA worked fine. The Mini DVI to svideo did not work with my TV.

    I will be returning the adapter to the store (with some feedback) and have ordered a VGA to svideo converter from monoprice. I'll put feedback here when it comes in.

    Many of us do not have the newer TVs and want to get a few more years out. I have Series 2 TiVo with component output. I record at the highest compression & get artifacts. I might even be using the RF input to one of my TVs.

    Frankly, I don't care about getting the high quality on my TV. When I get a new TV, it will be 720p which will be more then enough quality.

    I think Apple is a bit ahead of the curve here, just like when they eliminated floppies and did USB in the past. I wish they had kept the analog in the mini DVI and I wonder why they dropped it. I can't imagine they saved much on costs.
  7. macrumors newbie

    Apr 16, 2009
    It is my understanding that the 9400M chipset supports DVI-D only. I have not tested this, but if this IS the case VGA _MAY_ not work without an active converter. There are 3 DVI standards:

    DVI-D = Digital signals only
    DVI-A = Analog signals over a DVI port (basically normal VGA over DVI)
    DVI-I = Combination of DVI-D and DVI-A

    With the D-15 connector there are some things that will absolutely not work with DVI-D. One of those being RGB which is what most of your TV and Projectors use that have a D-15 connector. Computer monitors however use other signals not the RGB from the D-15 and should work just fine with either a mini-dvi to VGA cable or a passive DVI to VGA adapter like most video cards come with.

    I do not currently know if this is a limitation of the chipset or the way it's wired into the Mini. It's worth looking into what output is available over the display port adapter. If I get a chance I will pull the mini over to the O-scope and see what I get on the pins on it.

    Incidentally I did some testing with a Dynex mini dvi to s-video cable and there is _A_ signal but it looks like a digital signal. I'm returning the adapter but I need to look up the pinout variation on DVI-D and DVI-A as I don't think there should be anything there so maybe Apple or Nvidia has something hidden there.
  8. macrumors newbie

    May 26, 2009
    Analog video does not work with Mac Mini 2 Ghz MB464LL/S

    Apple sold me the mini-DVI to S-video/RCA adapter, replaced it then finally I got in touch with someone at Apple who told me it would not work. No analog video out on mac mini. No cable adapter possible.
  9. macrumors regular

    May 19, 2009
  10. macrumors 6502a

    Sep 9, 2007
  11. macrumors regular

    May 19, 2009
  12. macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2009
    So Bottom line!

    So bottom line is, with the recent purchase of my mini-DVI-to-Video Adapter will not work connecting my Macbook to my analog tv using composite (RCA) cables....? Does that sound right? If so, I need to return the Adapter and get my money back. If this is correct that is a bunch Bull SH*T! just another reason why PC is the way to go! EFF YOU APPLE.
  13. macrumors 6502a

    Sep 9, 2007

    Which MacBook? The old ones no, the new ones yes.

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