Changing Mac Mini screen resolution to 720p

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by big_malk, Nov 2, 2007.

  1. big_malk macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    I recently bought a Mac Mini with the intention of connecting it to my TV using a DVI to component cable, but perhaps I should have looked into this more as the results have been less than successful. :(

    I hooked it all up, but the TV screen was just blank. I took control of the Mini remotely (very handy new Leopard feature) to confirm the Mini was showing something, and to play about with the settings. The best I got was a flickering green and pink screen where I could barely make out what was on the screen.

    I've read about on other forums where people have said simply they set the output to 720p and it worked fine, but no one has said how?!
    I can't see any 720 in the list of resolutions, and no mention of P or I

    Also, the TV manual says not to connect a computer which uses "TTL (5V)", what does that actually mean?
     
  2. Andrmgic macrumors 6502a

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  3. JAT macrumors 603

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    #3
    I've had problems, too. Mine works just fine with VGA analog, but not DVI. SwitchResX might help, look it up.
     
  4. iDave macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 14, 2003
    #4
    DVI to component? I didn't know there was such a thing. You haven't said what kind of TV it is. Are you unable to connect via DVI to HDMI?
     
  5. big_malk thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    Its a panasonic, sorry I dont have any more details available at the moment. I know it doesn't have an HDMI port though.
    I tried SwitchResX, thats how I managed to get the flickering green and pink picture, there may be something in there I didn't try though
     
  6. iDave macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    Sounds like an older analog TV if it doesn't have HDMI or DVI. Some of the analog sets had component inputs. Have you tried the DVI to VGA adapter that came with your mini? You then might need a VGA to composite (RCA yellow) adapter as well, if your TV doesn't have a VGA input (which it probably doesn't).

    Much like the problem with AppleTV, you might find that it's not possible to connect the mini to an older TV. I hope that's not the case here. Good luck.
     
  7. JAT macrumors 603

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    #7
    VGA-component is easier to find than DVI-component, and either should be the same video quality. But both are expensive.

    What exact product have you tried? Did you spend $300 on the DVI-component adapter?
     
  8. big_malk thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    Its a digital LCD TV, only about a year or two old.

    I spent about £20 - £30 (~ $40 - $60) on a cable, it wasn't anything fancy, perhaps my downfall was buying something so cheap, although I didn't expect a DVI - component adapter to cost $300
     
  9. JAT macrumors 603

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    #9
    DVI to component means transcoding and converting from digital to analog, not adapting. Transcoders are expensive. I can only imagine that such an inexpensive cable would actually be an adapter that would work only with certain video cards and displays. Such cables are just pinouts to a different connector. The video card has to actually output component through the DVI connector for that to work. ATI makes these cards.

    A quick "DVI to component" search turns up prices under $200, though. So ignore my first number above. This doesn't help in the UK, I imagine, but:
    converter

    I'd triple-check exactly what you have.
     
  10. gkarris macrumors 604

    gkarris

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    #10
  11. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #11
    I tried both DisplayConfigX and SwitchResX and ultimately ended up using SwitchResX. Once you let it add resolutions for the screen in question, you can actually uninstall it fairly easily.

    The tricky part is that you are using component cables. Component inputs are going to be very picky about what they want, since they are designed for specific television / entertainment standards like 720p that aren't used on computers. So I'm not sure what the TV will expect in terms of things like refresh rate, but you may have to do some tweaking. Typically, FWIW, when you connect via a "computer" connector like DVI or VGA (I've used VGA but never component for my computer), then the configuration process the TV uses is different. It's suited to computers, and it usually works with less hassle.

    I guess it would be nice if computer manufacturers would start putting in better stuff to try to help computers talk to HDTVs, although Apple's preferred solution seems to be the :apple:tv.
     
  12. JAT macrumors 603

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  13. iDave macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    I think some consumers are way ahead of the computer makers. TV, computers and the internet are converging whether those guys know it or not. It seems the various computer companies and TV and movie studios don't want it to happen, or one would think so by the slow progress.

    Look at the rumors of the Mac mini being discontinued; when it's obviously the best Apple option for connecting to a TV. Steve Jobs said just a few years ago, he didn't think computers and TV were related, saying something like "we turn our brains off to watch TV and turn our brains on to use a computer." Apple could be further ahead if it wasn't for that attitude. Jobs still says AppleTV is just a "hobby" for Apple.

    Then there are people like us, struggling to get the two connected, having to use adapters and special software that should just be built in and easy to use. I'm hoping there will soon be a very large high resolution computer monitor I can use for both TV and computing. The biggest currently, 30" is not quite big enough for watching HDTV from across the room. When it's available I'll sell my TV and use my Mac for that purpose all of the time.
     
  14. decadentdave macrumors 6502

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    Sep 11, 2007
    #14
    Maybe Steve Jobs needs to go back and drop some more acid again to get an inspired revelation that the convergence of television and home computers are unequivocally the inevitable future of multimedia and technology.:rolleyes: :apple:
     
  15. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #15
    You're correct; I'm sorry. I fixed it. :) Thanks!
     
  16. iDave macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 14, 2003
    #16
    Yeah, that's it. ;)
     

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