42" Plasma, Macbook, and Mini-DVI to Video-Help

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by HoyeBoye, Nov 8, 2008.

  1. HoyeBoye macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2006
    Problem: I cannot get my macbook to output to the correct resolution on my 42" Plasma TV using a Mini-DVI to Video adapter (svideo and RCA).

    My setup:
    Macbook 1.83hz Intel
    Panasonic 42" TH-42PX75U (1024 x 768 @ 480hz (someone in another forum stated it was at 480hz-spec not listed in the manual))
    Dynex Mini-DVI to Video Adapter
    Tried using both S-Video and RCA cable with same results

    When plugged into my macbook, the only resolution I can set it to that does not result in black and white lines running across the screen at different rates is 640x480@60hz. In that mode, the image is displayed on the screen twice, wrapped around the screen top to bottom, and in black and white. I tried numerous settings and could not get it to work. I even tried using ScreenResX to manually set the output to 1024 x 768 @ 480hz with no luck.

    I wanted to use RCA/S-Video because my wife could use it with a wide array of projectors for when she travels, and I thought we could use it at home too. Do I just need to stop being cheap and buy the mini-dvi to dvi adapter with a dvi-HDMI adapter and buy an HDMI cable? Is there something special I can do that I am missing?
  2. akm3 macrumors 68020

    Nov 15, 2007
    S-Video and RCA can only carry low-rez signals.

    Only VGA or DVI (or Displayport...or Component...) can display above standard definition.

    Why would you cripple your computer output with a horrible composite or SVideo connection?
  3. HoyeBoye thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2006
    1: I'm cheap and already had the required cables.
    2: I'm mentally stuck in legacy mode-I was looking for something that would be useable in many situations outside my home, but I suppose the rest of the world is beyond RCA and SVideo.

    Thanks for the quick answer. I have a friend at Best Buy, so I can always get what I need at a discount. Guess I'll just have to bite the bullet. Thanks again.
  4. ftaok macrumors 603


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    You'll need the mini-DVI to DVI adapter from Apple. It's $30. As for the cable, just get an HDMI-DVI cable. Monoprice has them for less than $15 ... I think they're like around $10 actually.

    Don't buy a cable from BestBuy, unless your buddy can get it for less than $15 or so.

  5. HoyeBoye thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2006
    The employee prices at Best Buy are pretty much the same as at monoprice. Since I don't have any DVI devices, I may end up doing Mini-DVI to DVI>DVI to HDMI Female adapter>HDMI Cable. That way, I'll have an HDMI cable I can use elsewhere.
  6. ftaok macrumors 603


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    Good to have confirmation that BB (and other stores) are ripping people off for stuff like cables and such. If I ever get laid off, I'll go work at BB and get that great discount. ;)

    Anyways, the reason that I suggested a DVI-HDMI cable is that you'd have one fewer adapter in your chain. Just another spot that can get loose or go bad. Besides, it would save you a couple of bucks, unless you already had the adapter.

    Also, don't forget about audio. You hadn't mentioned it, but you'll need a 1/8" minijack by RCA audio connector, and then a set of RCA audio cables ... but it depends on how your TV handles the audio portion of the HDMI inputs.
  7. xchaotic macrumors member

    Jan 14, 2008
    I just happen to have the same setup as yours - a 42" Panasonic plasma and a macbook.

    Through a mini-dvi to dvi and then dvi-to-hdmi I get all the resolutions and refresh rates I want (btw. I'm sure 480Hz is a typo).

    The video processor on Panasonic is very good, so many resolutions look good, not only the native 1024x768 widescreen.

  8. HoyeBoye thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2006
    I thought it sounded a little high, but it was a multiple of 120hz, and Panasonic makes some awesome plasmas, so I thought I'd give it the benefit of the doubt.

    After spending a few hours messing with PRAM, Open Firmware(which I found out is NOT present on Intel Macs), and different TVs, I finally googled "Dynex Mini-DVI to Video" and found a bunch of reviews stating "Does not work with apple computers." So, looks like I'll be trading this one for the Apple brand. If the employee discount is just as amazing on the Apple brand, I may get both the mini-dvi to video and the mini-dvi to dvi.

    Long story short, DON'T buy the dynex adapters.
  9. elder88 macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2009

    I also have the same set up,panasonic 42" to macbook pro but I can not get it to work,all I have is a blank screen,any ideas??

Share This Page