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Xbox 360 HDMI VS Component HD AV Cable

Nov 10, 2007 7:27AM PST


I have the Xbox 360 HDMI cable and a Xbox 360 : elite, I'm wondering what is the real difference between 1080i and 1080p also HDMI vs Component HD?

Thank you.

Discussion is locked

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HDMI v. Component and 1080i v. 1080p
Nov 10, 2007 9:40AM PST

Good question by the way, I'm glad to educate. First, with 1080i and 1080p, the number designates the number of lines and the letter designates the way it's scanned, progressive or interlaced. Progressive scans the lines all at once, while interlaced scans half of the lines (one on, one off, one on...etc). Here's the kicker. 1080i scans half the lines every 60th of a second, producing a full picture every 30th of a second. 1080p scans all of the lines every 30th of a second, producing a full picture every 30th of a second. From that, it sounds like there isn't a big difference, but the actual difference is in the display panel. IF you have an HDTV capable of 1080p, great. Use the HDMI cable. If you don't have a 1080p HDTV, great. Use the HDMI cable. Which brings me to the second question. The xbox 360 is a digital source. With component cables, which are analog, you are downconverting the signal to analog, sending it over analog cables. You WILL lose a little bit of quality in this process. The HDMI cable however is a digital cable. Additionally it is a single cable. (If you have a surround sound system, you need to be using it. The 360 should have an optical out for surround, so use that.) Either way you look at it, you should use the HDMI cable no matter what. If you haven't made a TV purchase yet, consider the 1080p models. However, the 360 doesn't put out 1080p unless you bought the add-on HDDVD player. If you did, great. You will need a 1080p TV in that case. Sorry for the long read, hope it helps.

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Nov 10, 2007 10:00AM PST


Thank you for the quick response (Unlike Y****-Answers) as i said before that i have the Xbox 360 Elite version so the console came with the HDMI Cable Grin the reason i asked the question was because i had the original xbox 360 then bought elite when it came out (traded it in) so i used to use component HD Av cables before also. I guess the half-way image thing you said makes since, b/c when i played NFS MW on release if you were going 200mph+ you notice half of the screen showing a splitting line. But ever since i used HDMI i haven't notice anything like that. But just one last question is 1080p newer or 1080i ?

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Nov 11, 2007 8:00AM PST

Neither is newer, however, 1080p has fewer devices capable of producing that resolution, so you could call it newer.

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RE: HDMI vs. Component HD AV Cables
Nov 14, 2007 6:08AM PST

I have a TV that is 720p.

If I connect the XBox360 with the Component HD AV Cables, will it provide the same picture as connecting with the HDMI cable?

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Truth about 1080p output on 360
Nov 11, 2007 12:13PM PST

The 360 not being able to output a 1080p signal unless you buy an add-on HDDVD player is incorrect and misleading information. The truth is all 360's can output a 1080p signal which includes the elites, new 360's equipped with HDMI and older non-HDMI equipped 360's without the aid of an add-on. They all can do so via component, VGA, and HDMI if equipped. The HDMI port is not necessary to achieve 1080p output unless your 1080p hdtv cannot accept a 1080p signal via component or simply not accept 1080p resolution via VGA. But the benefits of HDMI offer a slightly superior and cleaner image compared to component or VGA. All you need to achieve a 1080p signal through your 360 is ofcourse a 360 set to output 1080p in the settings menu, a 1080p source(HDDVD's are all encoded in 1080p, also check the back of 360 games to see what resolutions they support, most support 720p & 1080i and few support 1080p, Halo 3 supports 1080p output) and the correct cables to send a 1080p signal to your 1080p tv, thats it. A side note about 1080i vs. 1080p, though 1080p is superior since it scans all lines at once providing a complete picture opposed to 1080i interlacing odd and even lines at separate intervals, the difference is only apparent if you have the eye for it. I can see the lines on interlaced signals such as 1080i and 480i move to what it appears to be up or down but only if I really try hard to find them. On casual everyday viewing the lines are practically impossible to distinguish, and many people cant distinguish the lines even if they tried hard enough. So the difference between 1080p & 1080i is insignificant unless you have the eye for it and it bothers you. For best results feed your tv the best resolution it can accept with the best connection(HDMI & DVI are better than component, component is better than S-video, S-video is better than composite, and so forth), if you have a 1080p tv then feed it 1080p, if the tv has a native resolution of 1366x768 then feed it a 1080i or 720p signal. I can understand the misconception about the 360's, HDMI, and 1080p since many sales reps are misinformed themselves. The truth is out there and don't always believe what store sales rep's may tell you since they may not know all the facts or may say something convincing just to make a sale. Always check trusted websites such as CNET and others, such as in this case to view all the facts.

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Thank you
Nov 11, 2007 2:35PM PST

Hi, Thank you both for answering my questions.

Thank you both again very much.

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Why get the HD player then?
Nov 15, 2007 1:34AM PST

If the 360 with HDMI port is capable of playing and outputting 1080p, why do we need the HD player? Is the HD player better at up-converting or something? What am I missing here...

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To play HD-DVDs
Nov 15, 2007 1:59AM PST

You need the HD-DVD player to play pre-recorded HD-DVDs. Movies that have been released in HD-DVD format, such as Transformers, 300, 2001, etc.

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HD Player
Nov 15, 2007 11:27AM PST

Why do we need the "HD player" if all 360's can output 1080p? Well, we don't. That is if you don't want to enjoy high def dvd's. As for your other question, the HDDVD player can upconvert standard dvd's but according to CNET here is their answer to your question... "The Xbox 360 HD DVD player certainly isn't as skilled as high-end upscalers like the Oppo DV-981HD and the Toshiba HD-XA2, and even the PlayStation 3 has a slight edge--but for noncritical viewers it will do a decent job."

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Nov 16, 2007 10:20AM PST

The Component 360 Will not perform 1080p

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Nov 16, 2007 2:56PM PST
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Nov 17, 2007 11:48AM PST

The software on all newer xbox360 are the same, wich is why it says it can handle 1080p with component. I have a 1080p lcd and a component 360. When 1080p is active, my TV says 1080i. So I called Microsoft and they said that the component 360s WILL NOT SUPPORT 1080p. This is coming from microsoft. Do your research!

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Hardware is 1080p capable
Nov 18, 2007 4:54AM PST

The hardware on all 360's is capable of producing a 1080p signal including older 360's. That is why a simple dashboard update(software update) was necessary to make the older component 1080i 360's into component 1080p 360's. Another fact is that not all 1080p tvs can accept the signal via component. Which might be your problem with your tv. Here is another link from the microsoft website about 1080p over component...

As for your phone call to tech support, your going to put all your belief over tech support? Half the time tech support doesn't even know what they're talking about. I've provided 3 links from reliable sources to back up what I am saying and all you have to go with is a phone call from one person at tech support. That's not very convincing at all. I've done my research, it looks like you need to do yours.

Another bit of help for your misunderstood self, you can still output a 1080p signal through the VGA cable to your tv, unless your budget 1080p lcd can't accept that signal through VGA. Remember not all 1080p tv's accept the 1080p signal through component or vga.

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Nov 18, 2007 9:34AM PST

I work for an electronics retailer. So after your response i tested your "theory" on Every 1080p television. NONE OF WICH WORKED. So to further my research i talked to our microsoft rep. He backed up the same information that the Tech support rep gave me. He explained that in testing microsoft found that the component video cables could not support High frame rates while running 1080p. Oh and that link to those instructions, pretty vague regarding 1080p. Nice try though im glad you know how to read instructions.

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You don't know what you're talking about
Nov 19, 2007 12:46PM PST

I don't know what kind of second hand bargain thrift store you work in but its true that 360's output 1080p over component. Nice try lying. Lets suppose you actually did test all your 1080p tv's, you only needed to test the ones that actually accept 1080p over component. Remember that not all 1080p tv's accept 1080p via component. There is much info on the website about 1080p through component, now if you think its not true then you are calling microsoft a lyer. I had a good laugh about you talking to your "microsoft rep". Like microsoft would actually hire a guy to work at a retail store on behalf of your store to talk about all things microsoft, LOL what a joke. Do you also have a sony rep? How about an apple rep? Here is another link about 360 1080p over component that will end your inaccurate opinions...

Oh by the way, I already tested the 360's 1080p component output on a friends Westinghouse TX-47F430S and guess what? It works! It's not as sharp as the HDMI output but it works. This discussion is over.

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Your full of sh@@#t
Nov 19, 2007 7:43PM PST

I did test a westinghouse 1080p Lcd, and it did not work. We do have microsoft reps, sony reps, apple reps, ect. These people work for microsoft, not actually at our store, but they come in to teach us about their company and their products. They come in once a month, and i remembered that i had a business card from our microsoft rep. If you dont beleive that these people exist, just go to any electronics retailer and ask. Also one of the TV i tested this on, My own TV, the Pioner Elite pro-110fd, It didnt work, and also stated in that it supports 1080p via component. But according to you i have a bargain 1080p TV. Stop telling people false information.

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You still don't know what your talking about
Nov 20, 2007 3:03AM PST

Microsoft says the 360 can output 1080p over component, check out their website. I got my 360 to output 1080p over component. Obviously you or your run down thrift store can't. Maybe you guys should sell something you actually know something about because electronics are way over your head. Oh by the way, everything I have proved I have provided with verifiable and reliable sources so all your bull about my "false info" can be proven right if you click on my links I provided. Never once have you questioned the links I have provided because you know your wrong, I didn't write them, Microsoft did and one was from CNET. If Microsoft was wrong about 1080p over component they would come out and apologize. I read the brochure for your kuro tv, and there is no reference of 1080p over component, all it says is "New 4 Independent HDMI 1.3 inputs with HDMI-CEC control and the ability to accept 1080p 24/60Hz signal". Nice try but you failed to prove yourself once again. This discussion is over, go to some other forum to talk about your fony bologna biased opinions. If you still think you have something to prove, then provide reliable, verifiable links. Don't go blabbing about your fairy tale stories that you made up one day when you got drunk and try to pass off as true. Let the facts do all the talking.

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get a life
Nov 20, 2007 9:32PM PST

obviously you cant admit when your wrong. More than likely you purchased your "crap" tv from my thrift store. But thats ok for those of you that are reading this dont beleive his lies.

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You can't prove me wrong
Nov 21, 2007 9:28AM PST

You keep wasting your time trying to prove me wrong, yet you can't. It's you who needs to get a life. You keep denying the facts yet you provide no factual information that says otherwise. PROVE ME WRONG! Don't babble about your made up stories that you can't prove, show me concrete facts in black & white. Provide links that prove your side of the story.

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1080p your both right
Nov 20, 2007 9:54PM PST

Hello My name is john and i work for a company that services Xbox 360s. I noticed this post about the 360's doing 1080p Via component. We actually started to notice that the newer Component Video 360s Had software already installed for 1080p. So we tested this Theory and found that it did not work like it said it would. The component Video cable Couldnt support the high bandwith that an HDMI cable could. What we found though is that most TVs still said that they were displaying 1080p. After further testing we found that it wasnt an actual 1080p signal but a deinterlaced 1080i signal. We found this out because of the frame rates. The 360 elite and other HDMI equipped xboxs will support 1080p 30hz, while the components will only do 1080i 24hz. When 1080p is select via component the frame rate is only 24hz. Also the HDMI 360s will support 50 and 60hz frame rate although No TV can handle that right now. When we tested the component it would not support 50 or 60hz but the HDMI systems would. It is kind of misleading from microsoft but your are not getting a true 1080p with component video.

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I have a further question on this topic...
Nov 16, 2007 7:18AM PST

I've hooked my Xbox 360 to my computer monitor with the HDMI cable and my Xbox reports I'm running in 1080i. However, I don't think my monitor is capable of displaying this level of resolution (it's 1680*1050 native resolution). Furthermore, I'm unable to select a different resolution as I would with the VGA Cable. So my question is whether I would be better off getting an HDMI to VGA adapter so that I can choose a resolution that's closer to my monitor's native resolution? Would the image degradation of an HDMI to VGA link outweigh the benefit of playing in 1280*1024?

For what it's worth, Halo 3 looks like garbage (jaggies and stretching) and Call of Duty 4, while much better, also looks like the pixels are being stretched.


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HDMI hookup question
Nov 20, 2007 2:30AM PST

Thanks for the replies to may question. I have a question and a comment. Question: If I buy the HD player, do I need an HDMI cable from my xbox console and another HDMI cable from my dvd player? Or, will the console pass the signal through the USB port, to the dvd player, and then to the tv through the HDMI cable?

Comment: as far as I can tell, the xbox console will output 1080p game content via component. However, even for brand new tv?s it?s rare to find a set that will accept 1080p via component. I just bought a brand new Panasonic plasma (pz77) and it does not. Further, I doubt most people would notice the difference between 1080p and 1080i.

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360 HD DVD Player
Nov 20, 2007 3:09AM PST

The HD DVD player passes the signal through the USB cable into the 360 and the 360 takes care of the output to the tv. You simply need one HDMI cable for the 360 to the tv.

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Upconverting quality?
Nov 20, 2007 4:02AM PST

Thanks. How is the upconverting on the HD DVD player? I have a 1080p LCD and I'm wondering if the 360 player is reasonably good compared to say a Toshiba A3 or A30.

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360 Upconvert
Nov 20, 2007 5:27AM PST

This is what CNET had to say about your question... "The Xbox 360 HD DVD player certainly isn't as skilled as high-end upscalers like the Oppo DV-981HD and the Toshiba HD-XA2, and even the PlayStation 3 has a slight edge--but for noncritical viewers it will do a decent job." Also you can test out your question without buying the HD DVD player yet, all you have to do is use the 360's built in DVD drive and try upconverting your regular DVD's, this way you'll get to know how the HDDVD player upconverts without having to buy it, since according to CNET is nearly identical to the HD DVD drive in terms of upconverting. Here is the quote from CNET... "We also took a look at standard definition DVD performance using the HD DVD add-on driver and the HDMI output at 1080p. Overall, it performed nearly identically to the built-in DVD player on the Xbox 360." You can check out the entire article right here...

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Nov 20, 2007 5:47AM PST

Thanks. I re-read previous parts of this post and found the same info regarding upconversion. You gave me an idea. I am going to do a test tonight. I currently have a Toshiba A30 hooked up to my 1080p plasma via HDMI, and my 360 via component. I have two copies of the same movie so I?ll pop them both in and watch them, flipping the input on the TV to compare. I?ll see if there really is any difference to my eye. If I don?t see any difference I am going to return the expensive A30 and get the 360 HD player to play HD movies.

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A bit unfair
Nov 20, 2007 7:20AM PST

Your going to compare a component(analog) signal vs a HDMI(digital) signal, which really is an unfair comparison. I can almost guarantee the HDMI connection will look better. For a fair comparison, try comparing the 360 with an HDMI cable to the toshiba A30 with HDMI, or 360 component & toshiba A30 component cables for an apples to apples comparison, otherwise you'd be comparing apples to oranges. Read johnnyblack87's post regarding an analog & digital signal, component & HDMI.

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Nov 21, 2007 2:41AM PST

if i have a hdtv which highest resolution is 1080i, can i still get a hd dvd xbox attachment and be able to watch movies on it. Or do i need to upgrade to a 1080p?

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MDX, I hope you got your answer.
Nov 21, 2007 9:34AM PST

If not, drop me a line.

Since there is too much squabbling going on, I've locked this discussion.