HDTV as a PC monitor: How exactly?

Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-FedRegistered User regular
I'm looking into doing this with my new PC and I found this on ehow:
ehow wrote:
Determine whether your computer has a DVI (digital video interface) card installed. If not, install one or buy an external DVI card.

How do I tell if I have this? Do video cards come with that normally? Mine has a 1024MB ATI Radeon HD 5770 GDDR5. It also has a HDMI to VGA adaptor but I don't think that has anything to do with what ehow is talking about.

Little help? Do I need to buy something else?

Magic Pink on

Posts

  • UrsaUrsa Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    What they're really looking for is just a connector that can link to your TV from your computer. DVI is just another kind of video output. Most HD TVs will have HDMI ports and usually a VGA or DVI, best to just have a look on the back for which connections are available.

    Once you have a connection between the two you'll be able to switch outputs from the control panel in windows.

    Ursa on
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  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Ah, awesome, thanks. The PC has a VGA and the TV has a VGA and a HDMI. I guess my model doesn't work if you use the VGA with a PC tho for some reason. Makes me wonder why they put it on there then.

    Magic Pink on
  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    VGA is shit, all modern cards have DVI/HDMI.
    Even my old as fuck Radeon 9600 had DVI.

    VGA is analog and shit. Use DVI.

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  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I don't know that the card HAS a DVI slot. I know the PC comes with a VGA-HDMI convertor so I'm thinking I'm not going to have the option of using DVI.

    Magic Pink on
  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    I don't know that the card HAS a DVI slot. I know the PC comes with a VGA-HDMI convertor so I'm thinking I'm not going to have the option of using DVI.

    can you find a picture of your card online, or at least post the exact model?

    Because DVI slots have been industry standard for the last 6 years.

    BTW, oversimplifying a lot, HDMI = DVI + Sound + security measures.

    So HDMI is good too.

    Just avoid VGA like the plague.

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  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I posted the model in the OP. Here's a picture, spoilered for huge:
    ati_radeon_5770_1_0.jpg

    Some other places I've read say that connecting DVI to HDMI will make you lose the sound tho. So I may have to go buy speakers too. Ugh.

    Magic Pink on
  • UrsaUrsa Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Teehee, both those larger slots with the 3 rows of square ports are DVI ports, you'll just need a DVI cable assuming your TV has the correct connection. You could also do a straight HDMI connection surely?

    HDMI > DVI > VGA

    Ursa on
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  • yurnamehereyurnamehere Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Ursa wrote: »
    Teehee, both those larger slots with the 3 rows of square ports are DVI ports, you'll just need a DVI cable assuming your TV has the correct connection. You could also do a straight HDMI connection surely?

    HDMI > DVI > VGA

    And the one right next to the bottom DVI port is a friggin HDMI port. :P

    yurnamehere on
  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    that's two huge DVI ports right there. Plus an HDMI. and a displayport.

    There isn't even a VGA port.

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  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Well then why in the freakin' hell are they packing a VGA->HDMI cable with the PC? Those jerks.

    Thanks, all.

    Magic Pink on
  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    that's probably a DVI > HDMI or DVI>VGA or something
    It doesn't really matter, just use HDMI and sing.

    Stormwatcher on
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  • yurnamehereyurnamehere Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Are you sure it isn't a DVI to VGA adapter? Those are usually included with ATI cards.

    At any rate, the purpose would be to connect a monitor that only supports VGA to the card.

    yurnamehere on
  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    It lists it specifically as HDMI to VGA Adaptor. Maybe it's just for using an older monitor with? That's gotta be it.

    In any case, HDMI-HDMI it will be.

    Magic Pink on
  • fshavlakfshavlak Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    There are major issues using ATI cards with HDMI out - the pixel mapping is not 1 to 1 and the results look terrible, even if you play with the overscan settings. I have experienced this on two machines using HDTVs as monitors (my desktop, and my media center). VGA works fine for my desktop, and I was able to get the media center "good enough" over HDMI.

    After poking around today I understand that the most recent drivers might have fixed this. I'll try it out when I get home tonight and find out.

    fshavlak on
  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Thanks!

    Magic Pink on
  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Well, in case the hdmi problem persists, DVI will work just as well, the video signal is exactly the same as HDMI.

    thing is, HDMI includes audio, DVI is video only.

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  • RoyceSraphimRoyceSraphim Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I used my radeon 4850 with my brother big tv when he moved up and played BC 2 just fine, it was just a problem of stretching everything out when family left...

    Just pop in the HDMI cable into each device and switch to the HDMI "channel" and click the right setting.

    RoyceSraphim on
  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    The right setting in what?

    Magic Pink on
  • krapst78krapst78 Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    fshavlak wrote: »
    There are major issues using ATI cards with HDMI out - the pixel mapping is not 1 to 1 and the results look terrible, even if you play with the overscan settings. I have experienced this on two machines using HDTVs as monitors (my desktop, and my media center). VGA works fine for my desktop, and I was able to get the media center "good enough" over HDMI.

    After poking around today I understand that the most recent drivers might have fixed this. I'll try it out when I get home tonight and find out.

    Yeah, this is a problem with the default HDMI overscan settings used by AMD's CCC suite. You will not be able to get 1:1 pixel mapping using only the TV settings. You can remedy this problem by following these steps.

    http://forums.penny-arcade.com/showpost.php?p=15736645&postcount=6

    krapst78 on
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  • PeewiPeewi Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    krapst78 wrote: »
    fshavlak wrote: »
    There are major issues using ATI cards with HDMI out - the pixel mapping is not 1 to 1 and the results look terrible, even if you play with the overscan settings. I have experienced this on two machines using HDTVs as monitors (my desktop, and my media center). VGA works fine for my desktop, and I was able to get the media center "good enough" over HDMI.

    After poking around today I understand that the most recent drivers might have fixed this. I'll try it out when I get home tonight and find out.

    Yeah, this is a problem with the default HDMI overscan settings used by AMD's CCC suite. You will not be able to get 1:1 pixel mapping using only the TV settings. You can remedy this problem by following these steps.

    http://forums.penny-arcade.com/showpost.php?p=15736645&postcount=6

    The CCC interface has been completely changed and that option is easier to find.

    In the left hand menu it's under "My Digital Flat-Panels" -> Scaling Options. It only appears when a monitor is connected through HDMI and if multiple are connected there's a display selector at the top.

    You'll want the overscan set to 0%.

    Peewi on
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  • krapst78krapst78 Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Ah nice, I ended up swapping out the GPU in my HDTV to an nvidia card later on. Good to hear that they finally updated that horrendous user flow.

    krapst78 on
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  • autono-wally, erotibot300autono-wally, erotibot300 love machine Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    I don't know that the card HAS a DVI slot. I know the PC comes with a VGA-HDMI convertor so I'm thinking I'm not going to have the option of using DVI.

    it's a vga-dvi convertor, and it only "converts" the cable, as DVI-I has pins for analogue output, which the TV probably doesn't use
    long story short, it will not work

    autono-wally, erotibot300 on
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  • SmokeStacksSmokeStacks The Myth, the Legend, the Bowman, the Shambler FuckerRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I used to use a 40" HDTV as a monitor.

    Kinda sucked for gaming (HDTVs aren't as flexible with supported resolutions as LCD monitors are, and I have a weaker machine which means I can't always run things at high resolutions), but for everything else it was goddamn glorious.

    If you do any mapping in Hammer or UnrealEd you'll go apeshit the first time you see them running on a huge screen.

    SmokeStacks on
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  • MrVyngaardMrVyngaard Live From New Etoile Straight Outta SosariaRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    There's also Powerstrip which might help with using the TV as a monitor in regards to settings and getting it detected as a monitor if you've had trouble with that at all.

    It's a helpful utility that can also let you custom make a monitor driver for your TV in the event you don't have one. Helps me with the resolution in games issue. It's a little tricky to use, but their forums have decent resources in figuring it out.

    MrVyngaard on
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  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Might as well take advantage of this discussion for my own means:

    I do this with a 37LG50, which is a fine, older, middle-of-the-road LCD that does 1080p, and a pair of 470GTXs. Since I need to connect to just one of the cards, and the interface has two DVI outputs and a mini HDMI output.

    I use the mini HDMI for my ASUS LED monitor (which has most of my gaming needs), and a 35 foot, heavy gauge, rather expensive DVI-HDMI cable for the HDTV: naturally, it conveys audio as well.

    Good idea? Not a good idea? It's a bit late now, since I'm not really in the mood to retire the 35 foot DVI-HDMI for a HDMI of the same length, but I was just wondering. The setup exists from my older 8800GT, which had no HDMI out.

    Synthesis on
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    Synthesis wrote:
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  • fshavlakfshavlak Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    On the ATI HDMI problems:

    on both a Sony and a Toshiba tv, with current drivers, I still can't get one to one pixel mapping even with the overscan forced to 100% - I have the opposite problem of black borders around the display at that point, where the desktop extends past the borders of the actual display.

    On my desktop I'm happy enough with the VGA cable (which works fine with no pixel mapping problems), and on my media center I need to upgrade to an HDCP capable card anyway, so I'll try an nVidia card and see what happens.

    fshavlak on
  • PeewiPeewi Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    fshavlak wrote: »
    On the ATI HDMI problems:

    on both a Sony and a Toshiba tv, with current drivers, I still can't get one to one pixel mapping even with the overscan forced to 100% - I have the opposite problem of black borders around the display at that point, where the desktop extends past the borders of the actual display.

    On my desktop I'm happy enough with the VGA cable (which works fine with no pixel mapping problems), and on my media center I need to upgrade to an HDCP capable card anyway, so I'll try an nVidia card and see what happens.

    Have you tried messing with the scaling options on the TVs? I have a Phillips TV and while it does overscan it is easily turned off.

    Peewi on
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  • JediNightJediNight Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    The OP is obviously completely uninformed about connector workings, so a lot of you are being too complicated with the terminology.

    OP: The two large black square connectors stacked in that picture are your DVI ports. To the left of them is the HDMI port. Ignore the far left port, you won't be using it. (For this)

    HDMI sends video AND audio to your TV. DVI will only send video. So obviously it is preferable for you to try it with HDMI first.

    Don't get ripped off buying expensive cables at retail stores, they charge 10x + markup. I recommend something like this:
    http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10240&cs_id=1024008&p_id=3993&seq=1&format=2

    That one is 10 feet, but if you need longer, this is a 15ft that would work (just keep in mind the 15ft+ cables tend to use thicker wire and jacketing, so they will be stiffer when trying to connect things)
    http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10240&cs_id=1024004&p_id=3663&seq=1&format=2

    After they are connected, you may have to enable the TV under Control Panels >> Display >> Screen Resolutions. Extended means it makes your PC desktop extend across both at the same time. Mirrored means it works just like normal, except that you see the same thing on the monitor and the TV at the same time.

    JediNight on
  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    JediNight wrote: »
    The OP is obviously completely uninformed about connector workings, so a lot of you are being too complicated with the terminology.

    OP: The two large black square connectors stacked in that picture are your DVI ports. To the left of them is the HDMI port. Ignore the far left port, you won't be using it. (For this)

    HDMI sends video AND audio to your TV. DVI will only send video. So obviously it is preferable for you to try it with HDMI first.

    This may not be true, technically, in your case. Universally, it's untrue.

    I can't say it definitively, but I'm almost certain that your ATi 5770 HD can output audio over DVI. Even Radeons a few steps earlier can do it. The most obvious way to test this would be to use a DVI over HDMI cable, which are designed to carry audio unless otherwise noted.

    This, of course, may not be any more convenient, but just putting it out there. If your video card is new enough to output audio over DVI, it will probably have an HDMI output anyway. A lot of people have gotten the impression that DVI can only put out video, no matter what, win this is simply not true. Useful if that HDMI is already going to something else.

    Monoprice is a good place to go though, when I needed a 35 foot long HDMI-DVI cable, I got one there for a pretty good price.

    Synthesis on
    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • fshavlakfshavlak Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Peewi wrote: »
    fshavlak wrote: »
    On the ATI HDMI problems:

    on both a Sony and a Toshiba tv, with current drivers, I still can't get one to one pixel mapping even with the overscan forced to 100% - I have the opposite problem of black borders around the display at that point, where the desktop extends past the borders of the actual display.

    On my desktop I'm happy enough with the VGA cable (which works fine with no pixel mapping problems), and on my media center I need to upgrade to an HDCP capable card anyway, so I'll try an nVidia card and see what happens.

    Have you tried messing with the scaling options on the TVs? I have a Phillips TV and while it does overscan it is easily turned off.

    I haven't thought to look at TV settings. Sounds promising, I'll take a look.

    fshavlak on
  • EgoEgo Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    fshavlak wrote: »
    Peewi wrote: »
    fshavlak wrote: »
    On the ATI HDMI problems:

    on both a Sony and a Toshiba tv, with current drivers, I still can't get one to one pixel mapping even with the overscan forced to 100% - I have the opposite problem of black borders around the display at that point, where the desktop extends past the borders of the actual display.

    On my desktop I'm happy enough with the VGA cable (which works fine with no pixel mapping problems), and on my media center I need to upgrade to an HDCP capable card anyway, so I'll try an nVidia card and see what happens.

    Have you tried messing with the scaling options on the TVs? I have a Phillips TV and while it does overscan it is easily turned off.

    I haven't thought to look at TV settings. Sounds promising, I'll take a look.

    Yeah, this is likely what it is. Different brands call the setting different things, ie in LG TVs the setting is 'just scan'. AVSforum is pretty good for finding out this sort of information as they tend to have threads on individual HDTV models.

    Ego on
    Erik
  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Finally got the pc, hooked it up, worked right out of the box and it's awesome. I wouldn't mind figuring out how to make fonts bigger universally but it's ok for right now.

    Magic Pink on
  • fshavlakfshavlak Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Ego wrote: »
    fshavlak wrote: »
    Peewi wrote: »
    fshavlak wrote: »
    On the ATI HDMI problems:

    on both a Sony and a Toshiba tv, with current drivers, I still can't get one to one pixel mapping even with the overscan forced to 100% - I have the opposite problem of black borders around the display at that point, where the desktop extends past the borders of the actual display.

    On my desktop I'm happy enough with the VGA cable (which works fine with no pixel mapping problems), and on my media center I need to upgrade to an HDCP capable card anyway, so I'll try an nVidia card and see what happens.

    Have you tried messing with the scaling options on the TVs? I have a Phillips TV and while it does overscan it is easily turned off.

    I haven't thought to look at TV settings. Sounds promising, I'll take a look.

    Yeah, this is likely what it is. Different brands call the setting different things, ie in LG TVs the setting is 'just scan'. AVSforum is pretty good for finding out this sort of information as they tend to have threads on individual HDTV models.

    Well it worked, on both machines I'm on HDMI with no pixelation issues.

    On my Sony, I had to turn off a bunch of enhancement features which I'm sure work great for television and movies but tend to make a mess of text.

    Thanks for the help.

    fshavlak on
  • EgoEgo Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Out of curiosity, and if you recall, what was the name of the setting for your HDTVs? I do a decent bit of tech support so that'll come in handy some day ;).

    Ego on
    Erik
  • fshavlakfshavlak Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Ego wrote: »
    Out of curiosity, and if you recall, what was the name of the setting for your HDTVs? I do a decent bit of tech support so that'll come in handy some day ;).

    On the toshiba I found the sizing under "Theater Options" or something along those lines, and there was a scaling option that was set to "Natural" as default, and "Native" was the setting I needed.

    On the Sony I think it was very similar with something like "Cinema Settings," and then with similar options to the Toshiba. I also had to turn off a number of picture enhancements to make text look reasonable.

    fshavlak on
  • EgoEgo Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    :^:

    Thank you kindly :).

    Ego on
    Erik
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