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How can I get my PC to display on my Plasma TV?

by verboten / January 30, 2006 2:02 AM PST

I have a Dell Lattitude notebook, and the Phillips PF429630A Plasma. The TV has PC input as one of the features, and supports the following connection types:
-HDMI
-Component
-Composite
-S-Video

My Dell Lattitude has VGA and S-Video out.

I thought it would be as simple as plugging the S-Video straight from the TV to the PC, and then using the Alt+F8 key to toggle the screen output... apparently this doesnt work.

My guess is the Alt+F8 function only works when I use the VGA connection, so if this is the case, how can I get the S-Video to appear on the TV -OR- is there a cable out there that can convert VGA to either HDMI, Composite, S-Video, or Component?

thanks

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Connection options
by steve.trelease / January 30, 2006 3:36 AM PST

I can't speak for why the hotkey toggle doesn't work, but you should be able to switch to the S-Video port without problems (i.e. without the VGA port restriction you suggested). At the very least, the video card should have a tab for this (under Control Panel).

That being said, you'll probably be disappointed with the video quality, as S-Video only displays 480 lines of resolution. If "PC input" means the display has a 15-pin PC monitor port, use that - the resolution via this method is equivalent to HDMI/DVI/composite.

If it doesn't have this port, your best bet is probably an adaptor which converts PC monitor out to component. I believe ATI, among others, makes these.

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follow-up question
by verboten / January 30, 2006 6:10 AM PST
In reply to: Connection options

Thanks for the help, can you clarify how I could adjust this through the control panel? I tried changing display settings but didn't see a way to do this.

Either way, sounds like the VGA-Component adapter is the best route, but I was hoping to test out S-Video before I bought the adapter

Also, do you know if I would see a $150 dollar difference between the VGA-Component adapter and the VGA-HDMI adapter? I don't want to shell out 100+ for another HDMI cable unless it is a noticeable difference.

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More info
by steve.trelease / January 30, 2006 7:05 AM PST
In reply to: follow-up question

Regarding Control Panel - I'm familar with the hotkey monitor-switching feature on laptops (can't recall the exact sequence on mine at the moment), but if that doesn't work you should be able to switch the output through the video card settings application. It's typically found under the Settings tab of Display Properties - there should be an Advanced button which allows you to configure multiple monitors. First, I'd recommend connecting another device (DVD player, etc.) directly to the TV to assure S-Video in works properly. In any case, however, you will probably find the quality to be unacceptable.

Personally, I have not tried HDMI or DVI. I am using straight monitor out (via 15-pin PC monitor cable) into the display (no converter) and it works perfectly.

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Still more
by steve.trelease / January 30, 2006 11:57 PM PST
In reply to: More info

Alt-F5 (not F8) is the display output toggle on my laptop. Previously, I had only tried connecting it to an SD TV (via S-video) before (with the dubious results indicated before), so I hooked it up to the plasma with the monitor cable. The hotkey switched between displays, although it lowered the output resolution in the process. At the highest resolution on the video card, the display quality on the plasma was excellent.

This experiment was done with a relatively new Compaq laptop with an ATI video card, BTW. I'd suggest testing yours with a standard PC monitor first to see if your results are similar.

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My rule of thumb is this:
by Riverledge / January 30, 2006 6:11 AM PST
In reply to: Connection options

Keep your PC totally separate from HT/HDTV system all
together. It's not a mix and match thing.

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How can I get my PC to display on my Plasma TV?
by jcrobso / January 31, 2006 11:15 PM PST

The VGA to component adapter would be the best in your case.
The concept of the HT-PC and HDTVs some mix well other do not.
A PC that has a DVI-D out put and a HDTV that has DVI-D works very well. A friend of mine has his MAC Mini hooked up to his HDTV this way, works fine.
A PC that has DVI-D out and a HDTV that has DHMI will work with correct cable.

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