Mini DisplayPort to Component

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by dillegenza, Oct 8, 2009.

  1. dillegenza macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2009
    I'm currently trying to connect a new MacBook to an HDTV via a component connection. I've tried to find a definitive answer on how to do this but all I've seen so far is a variety of conflicting info. My first attempt was miniDP -> DVI (via the monoprice cable) -> component. Unfortunately, this didn't seem to work. The reason, I think, is that the monoprice cable won't carry an analog signal. Is this true?

    Certain posts on this forum suggest that miniDP -> VGA -> component will work although this one seems to emphatically say that it won't. So I suppose my question is - will it work, or will it not work or does it depend on other factors like the model of the TV or the alignment of the stars?

  2. m85476585 macrumors 65816

    Feb 26, 2008
  3. dillegenza thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2009
    Quality isn't very important to me, but paying 100$ to get an analog signal out of my computer offends my delicate sensibilities. Perhaps a cheaper solution would be - this DVI to composite/S-video connector?
  4. m85476585 macrumors 65816

    Feb 26, 2008
    That won't work either. The MDP to DVI adapter doesn't have the analog signal that that adapter depends on. You would need a converter box, though a VGA to S-video ones are quite a bit cheaper ($26):
    It has a USB power cable, so you don't even need a power supply.

    Not having analog video outs (besides VGA) was a poor choice by Apple.
  5. felt. macrumors 6502a

    Mar 13, 2008
    how can it qualify as an HDTV if there are no digital inputs?
  6. m85476585 macrumors 65816

    Feb 26, 2008
    Component video and VGA will both do HD, probably even 1080p. I have seen TVs with no analog inputs, TVs with no digital inputs (not many HDTVs with no digital, but they are out there, especially older ones), and TVs with both.
  7. dillegenza thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2009
    So, for the record, the only way to do this is via a converter box? This was the thread that gave me hope for a cables only solution: Is the info in this guide plainly wrong or am I just misreading it?

    Anyway, thanks for all the info and esp. the cheap converter box link.
  8. m85476585 macrumors 65816

    Feb 26, 2008
    The VGA-S-video adapter in that thread depends on the video card having TV out, which I am fairly sure the MDP-VGA adapter does not.

    The DVI-Composite cable depends on the DVI port being DVI-I (carries analog and digital signal), but the MDP to DVI adapter is digital only.
  9. MacsOnAnabolics macrumors regular


    Jul 31, 2009
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA
    If your HDTV has an HDMI in put why not use this one- from

    I thought that in order for it to be an HDTV, it needs to be a digital with HDMI input? If not please correct me....
  10. dillegenza thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2009
    The single hdmi port is already filled by the satellite box. An HDMI switcher would be ideal, but there's no way to get an audio signal over from the displayport, so that solution is out - as far as I know.
  11. reallynotnick macrumors 6502a

    Oct 21, 2005
    This would solve that problem:

    Then you could either do an HDMI switcher or run the Satellite box via component
  12. dillegenza thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 8, 2009
    I saw that! But, it's $30 for that and $20something for the switcher, which is kind of a lot to pay for such a cumbersome setup (not one but two crazy cabling arrangements - one at the tv and one at the laptop). I'm on the fence between this and the USB-powered adapter mentioned earlier. Unless a third way comes along.

    Thanks for the suggestion.
  13. m85476585 macrumors 65816

    Feb 26, 2008
    No. HDMI is not required for it to be a HDTV. The first HDTVs were sold before HDMI existed (2003 according to Wikipedia). They probably mainly used component video inputs, but some probably had VGA and DVI too. I know someone with a really old DLP HDTV from around 2002, but I can't remember what kind of inputs it had.

    The only thing required for HDTV is more lines than regular TV (typically at least 720 for HD with SD less than 480). It doesn't matter what the input is as long as it can handle that much resolution and bandwidth.

    HDMI will give you a better picture since it is digital. The difference will be especially noticeable if you want to show text or line graphics on the TV, since those need pixel accuracy. Any reduction in quality will probably not be as noticeable in video (movies) since motion will usually hide any flaws, and the you might not notice small changes in details like textures. Kind of the same way heavy JPEG compression looks really bad on text but leaves images more recognizable. And if you go with S-video, you go down to SD resolution, which can look really bad on a large HDTV.

    Why doesn't Apple just make a MDP to S-video/Composite adapter?
  14. polaris20 macrumors 68020

    Jul 13, 2008

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