Mac Mini hooked up to TV

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by poozer115, Jan 27, 2009.

  1. poozer115 macrumors regular

    poozer115

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    #1
  2. Schtumple macrumors 601

    Schtumple

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2007
    Location:
    benkadams.com
  3. poozer115 thread starter macrumors regular

    poozer115

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    #3
    Nice! I've been posting around here a while, annoying people with my lack of technological knowledge =(, but this should be it now =D. Would this setup work;

    -TV linked above
    -Mac Mini hooked up
    -Ps2 also hooked up
    -My bose sound system hooked up

    -I think since it has standard video and DVI, both should be able to run on the screen, and use the speakers I already have? This would be the best, cheapest way to satisfy all of those needs I think right? Thanks! (oh and would this screen be a decent computer screen by the way?)
     
  4. Undo Redo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado, USA
    #4
    1920x1200 is an excellent resolution for a 20" display. Should be very sharp. I've seen comments on occasion that Samsung TVs don't play nice with Mac minis. Since this is a high resolution computer monitor, not just a TV, hopefully it'll work fine.
     
  5. micsaund macrumors 6502

    micsaund

    Joined:
    May 31, 2004
    Location:
    Colorado, USA
    #5
    I have a Mini on my LCD TV. The one major problem so far was that I could not use the VGA input on my TV. For some reason, the Mini would sync fine during the grey OS loading screen with the spinning thing, but once at a desktop, nothing would sync properly. It was unusable and very frustrating.

    Then, I grabbed a DVI to HDMI cable ($6 or so online) and it works great. No sync problems at all.

    The one minor niggle I have is that the screen is just a bit too small or a bit too large. I know there's some "tweak" program out that that lets you fiddle with the video timings, but I haven't messed with it yet. Right now, I run the desktop "slightly too large" which means the menu bar at the top is barely off the screen (and there's a similar amount off-screen at the bottom) but for watching videos, it's much better than having a black stripe around the sides.

    Mike
     
  6. BigBroncoG macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    #6
    Is there anything that I need to do before I hook my Mac mini up to my 50" Philips tv? I am using a Phillips DVI (Mac) to HDMI (Tv) cable and I am getting no picture... is it a setting in the OS? Any help would be appreciated... my excitement is almost wearing off :eek:
     
  7. Undo Redo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado, USA
    #7
    The only thing I can suggest is setting your Mac to a resolution which is lower than that of the TV before connecting it. Then turn on the TV first before turning on the Mac, of course being sure the TV is set for the HDMI input you're using for the Mac. If you can get any picture at all, then adjust for the correct resolution. Good luck.
     
  8. BigBroncoG macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    #8

    Thats strange... the same thing is happening to me now... I have my mac at 256 colors 640x480 and am now plugging in hoping to change the resolution when i have it hooked up to the tv properly... but now when I turn TV on then Mac I get my gray boot up screen then it goes blank... anymore ideas anyone?
     
  9. blackscooby macrumors 6502

    blackscooby

    Joined:
    May 12, 2005
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    #9
    using DVI > HDMI cable on Sony LCD Bravia, brillant. Mini used as a media server. Sound via stereo output to Denon AMP and speakers.
     
  10. Tara Davis macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2007
    #10
    Maybe we should have a "Home Theater mini" sticky, since so many people want to use minis for that purpose, and we constantly see new threads about this.

    Stuff n00bs would find useful to learn includes:

    1. HDMI and DVI are the same video spec. The only difference is that HDMI cables can also carry sound and the connectors are shaped differently. Cables exist for plugging the "DVI out" of the mini into the "HDMI in" found on HDTV's, and on most currently-sold sets it works perfectly. If you can't afford a big new HDTV, just about any computer monitor will also do the job nicely.

    2. The mini has a hybrid sound-out jack. You can use a headphone jack - RCA cable to connect it to any stereo system, or with a little adapter you can use an optical cable to connect it to a surround-sound receiver.

    3. Raw MPEG-2 HDTV signals (such as the typical 720p or 1080i streams currently in use by most broadcasters) are well within the mini's capacity to handle. Buy an Eye TV tuner and your mini becomes a pretty darn good High-Def PVR.

    4. The most demanding (and impressive) video codec, h.264, relies more on the CPU than the video card, and the mini has plenty of CPU juice to handle the job. Say goodbye to frame drops, so long as you're not running a lot of "heavy" apps in the background when you're watching stuff.

    5. A program called Handbrake has evolved over the years from a quick hack for batch-processing rips of VOB files to become a fabulous one-stop solution that does a great job of not only ripping DVD movies to any of several popular formats, but also converting other video files for use with iPods, iPhones, :apple:TVs, PSPs, etc. No media mac should be without it. Oh, and it's free, so be very nice to the devs when asking questions on the forums.

    6. A library of QuickTime code extensions called Perian will allow you do play nearly anything via QuickTime, iTunes, and FrontRow, although Apple's CoreAudio seems to mangle 5.1 "AC-3" signals when nested in MP4 files. That, along with a few other minor annoyances, has led most Home Theater mini users to either hack FrontRow with clever extensions, or abandon it for various other apps, which leads us to...

    7. Plex is an OS X flavor of XBMC, a home theater app originally written for people to use with hacked X-Box consoles and standard-def TV sets. At version 0.7.x, it is already quite mature and getting better at a rapid pace as contributing programmers and designers continue to tweak it. It is also free, and also indispensable.

    8. If you want a LOT of screen for not a lot of money, and you are able to control the light levels in your media room, the best deal out there is a projector and a screen. Under $1500 gets you a very high quality projector these days (especially if your eyes consider 720p to be good enough), and is even better if paired with a $700 high-contrast silver-beaded gray screen. That plus a good surround-sound system turns an ordinary media room into a movie theater experience which will rival, if not exceed, what you get at your local multiplex.

    9. The most essential peripheral for an HT mini project is the DiNovo Edge keyboard. It's a sleek, durable Bluetooth keyboard with a built-in trackpad and a rechargeable battery that lasts about a month per 4-hour charge. Map the Windows key to function as a command key, and you will find it so handy and unintrusive that you might not even bother with a remote control. Also, the trackpad allows you mouse control of the UI (and any games that are not TOO mouse-oriented) without the need of a flat surface to put a BT mouse on. If you can't afford to buy this keyboard, but have a laptop lying around, you can accomplish most things almost as easily by turning screen sharing on and treating the laptop as your remote kb/mouse solution.

    10. The integrated GMA-950 video card on the current mini is, sadly, almost as bad as you probably have heard. The good news is that it plays World of Warcraft smoothly, and can also handle City of Heroes fine if you dial the settings down a little bit. When (if) new minis come out, gamers will want to move up to those, while non-gamers can expect to find some great bargains on the current ones via the used market. Some people recommend waiting for these next-gen minis to arrive before buying, but it's the nature of computer tech that there's *always* something "just around the corner" that's better than what's currently available.

    11. Yes, you do want to upgrade the memory and yes, you can do it yourself in a matter of minutes without voiding the warranty, as long as you are careful not to break the DVD-drive's ribbon cable.
     

Share This Page