iPad Seeking a Lightning to HDMI adapter... but is the only one available is $39.99?

Discussion in 'iPad Accessories' started by MusicEnthusiast, Apr 14, 2013.

  1. MusicEnthusiast macrumors 6502


    Jun 23, 2010
    Los Angeles
    Hi all!

    My laptop has seen better days; it has a difficult time working with an HDMI extension to my 60" widescreen TV (it overheats). I've had my iPad 4 since launch and I was looking for a lightning to HDMI accessory to use on the TV. However, quick searches on eBay and Amazon show that the only type available is ridiculously expensive for what it's worth!

    Is there any chance I could find one for half the price, at the most?

    Also, how is the output on a widescreen TV with an iPad? Are there black bars on each side, or does it fill the screen? Thanks!
  2. blueroom macrumors 603


    Feb 15, 2009
    Toronto, Canada
    For double you could get a refurbished Apple TV 3. If you're mirroring stick with the cable, if you're streaming media the ATV3 is a more elegant option.
  3. Ckwilson73 macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2011
    While the apple adapter may seem expensive to you, it's really durable and works well.
  4. spyguy10709 macrumors 6502a


    Apr 5, 2010
    One Infinite Loop, Cupertino CA
    It's actually not an adapter. It's a mini-computer on a cable.
  5. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    Depends on the content. If you're mirroring the iPad probably doesn't have the same exact aspect ratio of your TV and will have bars. However, some content (movies, TV shows, etc) may match your TV's aspect ratio.

    It's not ridiculously expensive if you consider what it actually does. I wouldn't expect to see one at half price and you'd probably get what you pay for on this one.
  6. Menneisyys2 macrumors 603

    Jun 7, 2011
    Note that if you play back media playable by the iOS hardware (and also the ATV), the Lightning connector - as it does the decoding itself - produces quality output, unlike with mirroring.

    Nevertheless, the mirroring quality - while in no way as good as that of the old 30-pin VGA / HDMI adapters - is still much better than that of the ATV. The latter is pretty bad. I've just shot two new 720p60 videos for my forthcoming "The Encyclopedia of Games with Native TV Out Support" (Part of my TV out series; previous parts at http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1578989 and at http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1581053 ); they show how bad the lag / framerate are in games when using wireless AirPlay mirroring:




    Also note that we're having a very thourough discussion of the cable here at MR at http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?p=16932541 . It's also being disucssed (to a lesser degree) at http://forums.toucharcade.com/showthread.php?p=2824436 . And, of course, in my past, TV-out-related articles - albeit I'll only later publish my Lightning-HDMI-dedicated articles. Currently, for example the one at http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1581053 , some sections already discuss the Lightning connector's (current, as of FW version 6.1.0) problems; see for exampel section " Is this because of scaling?".


    Just be aware of its limitations. In cases, using a 30-pin iDevice with the old HDMI / VGA adapters can be preferable:

    - cases when the best image quality is needed (Lightning's IQ is far from perfect when not playing back iOS-native videos)
    - cases when absolutely no lag is needed.

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