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Connect computer to LCD TV via Component input?

by chinigo / January 27, 2009 9:28 AM PST

My situation:

I've got a Samsung LN37A550 LCD TV, two mac laptops and one mac desktop. I want to connect my desktop to the television (the laptops were just to troubleshoot). All the HDMI/DVI inputs on the TV are already taken, so I want to use the Component input. I have a VGA/Component adapter cable.

Here's what I did:

- Connected Component end of adapter cable to the TV's Component 1 input.
- Connected VGA end of adapter cable to desktop.
- TV shows that Component 1 source is active, so I switch to that source.
- "No signal" message blinks around the screen indefinitely.

So then I started troubleshooting.

- Turned everything off, tried turning on 1) the desktop first, then 2) the TV first. Still nothing.
- Connected adapter cable to laptop 1 via Apple's mini-DVI/VGA cable (ie, TV's Component 1 -> Component/VGA cable -> VGA/mini-DVI cable -> laptop... I know, I know, complicated).
- Laptop detects external "LCD Display", offers me a bunch of different resolutions/refresh rates.
- I tried each setting (tried the 60Hz ones first), none of them worked.
- Tried each of the above steps with laptop 2, got exactly the same results.
- Tried the desktop, laptop 1, and laptop 2 via their respective cables to a regular monitor. Everything works as expected.

My conclusions:

- VGA/Component cable works OK, because everything worked with the regular monitor.
- Mini-DVI/VGA cable works OK, for the same reason. No cable problems.
- TV can see computer, because it moves the Component 1 source to the top of the list with the rest of the active sources.
- Computer can see TV, because when I click "Detect Displays" in the Display preference pane, it finds one called "LCD display."

So what's the problem? All the equipment and cables are known-working. Can you use the Component source for computer-type inputs? Thanks in advance.

~Chinigo

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Collapse -
Do Macs support component over VGA?
by clicq / January 27, 2009 12:30 PM PST

Do Macs even support component over VGA out of the box? If all you have is a simple cable adapter, the video card has to support it (basically the video card remaps the pins in the VGA connector to match what's necessary for component output)... which I didn't think any macs did (it's a different story if you have a box that actually converts the VGA into component).

When you said your VGA/Component cable worked ok, you actually tried it on another TV (when you said "regular monitor", most monitors I've seen don't have component inputs)?

You didn't mention that the VGA input on the TV is being used -- why don't you use that?

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Component...
by Samsung_HD_Tech Samsung staff / January 27, 2009 11:41 PM PST

If you're going to use component, the cable isn't just enough. You have to make sure the resolution that goes to the television is one of the supported formats and resolution (equivalent to 480i/p, 720p, 1080i) for the component inputs.

--HDTech

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