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Connecting Tv To A Computer


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my parents want to be able to watch their downloaded korean dramas on their TV screen instead of having to sit in front of the computer. i went to circuit city and purchased a setup recommended by an employee, but i'm not sure i bought the right accessories. i have a 6' VGA cable, and i have an HP Notebook QuickDock, a piece of equipment that's supposed to reduce cable clutter around your computer and is listed as being compatible with HP computers (which my parents don't have).

the problem is, i'm not exactly sure what kind of TV and computer my parents have (they don't either, and they live across the country, so i can't go and check), but my guesses should be very close if not correct. both the TV and the computer are a few years old. i believe their computer is a Dell Dimension 4600. i believe their TV is a 60" Sony Grand WEGA™ 3LCD Projection HDTV.

i've been reading the "using your TV as a display" in this article and i'm convinced i didn't buy the right equipment, but i don't know for sure and i don't know what else i should buy. can you help me out? thanks.

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From what I read you don't need any of that. The HP thing uses a connector only found on their laptops. And I don't think the TV has the VGA inputs needed for the VGA cable.

Typically the back of a HDTV will have connections similar to this


(image blatantly stolen from newegg)

As you can see, one of them is VGA D-Sub which is a normal PC monitor connector.

If the TV you linked is correct... then this will be fun >_<

# Input(s): RF 75-ohm F-type

# Input(s): POD PCMCIA-type

# Composite Video Input(s): 3(F:1/R:2)

# S-Video Input(s): 3(F:1 R:2)

# Component Video (Y/Pb/Pr ) Input(s): 2(F:0 R:2)

# Input(s): Incorporates HDMI™1 technology. HDMI + Audio L&R

So we have a classic antenna connector.

POD PCMCIA I honestly don't know what it is, but I think thats what cable cards use.

Composite is the classic yellow connector (usually bundled in yellow, white, red on game consoles)

Svideo is a slightly lesser known cable its typically black and looks similar to a mouse connector.

Component thats the blue, green, red, red white cable that dvd players usually use.

And HDMI which is the modern video connector that everyone wants to use. It looks similar to a huge USB connector.

So the TV doesn't have the connector we need.

Our best bet is the last 3, Svideo, Component, and HDMI.

The problem is I don't know what the back of the computer offers as outputs.

If it has Svideo the picture wont look nice but thats very easy to use.

If its VGA then im not sure what we can do, I have seen VGA to component cables which would theoretically work but I honestly never tried it.

If they have DVI (white connector pretty common for LCDs) then there is a chance with DVI to HDMI cables.

Normally I would say buy a new video card for $40 with either HDMI outputs or one thats "HD compatible" with component outputs but they will probably say its too hard to install and I don't know if their computer would use AGP or PCI-E (the connector for the video card)

With all that said, have you considered other alternatives?

DVD players with Divx support are pretty good, burn media onto dvd play the divx http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16882641008

Something similar to the Apple TV but supports more formats would also be good (to the 1337 hax0rz yes you can hack apple TV to play other things but im aiming for simplicity). You can just enable the network shares and just stream the videos from the computer to the box with either network cables or over wireless (not recommended with HD)

Newegg has a whole bunch

Most of those have standard component and HDMI outputs which will work with the TV. Im just not 100% sure about how you send the files to the device. Never used one since I use a VGA cable for my HD in my room.

BTW :tears: you ask hard questions!

And there are tons of other places that sell that stuff... newegg is just easy to search and has nice pictures :P

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sorry to be a pain... of course i ask hard questions; the easy ones i can answer myself!

actually i was completely wrong about the computer. apparently my dad bought a laptop and that's what he wants to connect to the TV. but i am right about the TV. so

computer: http://www.gateway.com/retail/mx8711.php

TV: http://www.samsclub.com/shopping/navigate....amp;prDeTab=2#A

4 USB 2.0 ports

IEEE 1394 Port

VGA connector

S-Video connector

RJ-45 Ethernet port

RJ-11 modem port

Headphone/audio out


Kensington lock slot

AC adapter connector

if i'm understanding you correctly:

- i can get them an S-video cable... it's cheap, it's easy for them to connect, but the video quality will suck

- i can look into getting a... VGA to component cable... but this may not work well or at all... and i wouldn't know which kind to get

- i guess the computer doesn't have this DVI thing

- apple TV? my bro and i were discussing getting this, but i don't know if they can watch their korean dramas on it, and that's pretty much all they'd want to do

since they live so far away, i can't install anything for them myself... i mean... even if i were home i guess the question would be could i install anything complicated and the answer is probably not... but my point is, my parents need a really, really simple setup or i shouldn't even bother buying them anything. so this video card thing sounds nice, but probably not feasible.

thanks for your reply, it's been very helpful to me

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In terms of all the options you have... Svideo wouldnt' be too bad. Yeah it will look a little blurry and might take a little guessing to get the resolution right but at least they can use the computer on the TV and it wouldn't need too much work.

If im bored ill dig up a svideo cable and try to compare the two on the TV to see.

The network media boxes would be ideal for your purposes... actually a modified Xbox with Xbox media center and a HD component pack would be more than ideal but then we are deviating from simplicity. The only two things about those that I can think of is I don't know how well it can handle subtitles and how the interfaces would work. Ideally one would buy the box and connect it to their TV and just share the media on their computer to the box. Realistically issues include bandwith for streaming, formats, file names (esp with unicode), and issues with subtitles.

Okay so I tried out a Svideo cable I don't think they will mind. As long as you don't try to read text from the screen you will be fine. Text as in try to read soompi.


As you can see, my screen automatically shrunk to 720x480 which is like bleh from my normal 1280x800.

Okay excuse the horrible shots I just suck at it.


The setup with Svideo the picture quality looks terrible in the shot but really wasn't bad at all. I think you can get away with it. I might dig up a movie with subs and try to take a picture of that tomorrow.


Another horrendous shot of the above desktop on the TV... notice how it kinda globs? That was my concern.


I seriously need a tripod =__= but that is a different computer on the same TV (its running XP notice how small everything is in comparison)

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wow, thanks so much!!! i guess i'll return the equipment i bought and exchange it for an S-video cable. it seems like an easy solution. if you say the picture quality is decent enough, then that's good enough for me. (just out of curiosity, not that it changes anything, was it any different from the VGA cable?)

well, this was supposed to be a birthday present for my dad... and i don't think an S-video cable makes a very exciting present for anyone... but i'll just buy him something else along with the cable. hmm maybe some clothes.

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Well it sucks for trying to read text but it looked pretty decent for video. Yeah subtitles are readable on the TV. I considered a shot but decided against it since it doesn't reflect the picture quality well.

Also get a 1/8" to rca connector http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.js...rentPage=search

Something like that... probably not at that price. A headphone to the two RCA connectors so they can get the sound to their TV as well.

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so i need to buy an S-video cable (for the video), and a 1/8" to rca connector (for the sound)? is it commonly called a Y-adapter? i'm just going to print out the specs, take them to the store, and hope to god i get an employee who knows his stuff.

well... my parents don't need subtitles for their korean dramas. my dad likes to have english subtitles for american movies for some reason... but i don't think he dls american stuff anyway. so hopefully that's good enough for them. thanks :)

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Remember monster cables are overpriced, people at stores often try to push it. It is however sometimes worth it to get slightly thicker cables, but it won't make much of a difference in terms of picture quality.

That cable is just an adapter for headphone to RCA that home units use. They are pretty common these days for people who want to connect their Ipod or other mp3 players to their home sound system. I actually got both the cables at the 99 cent store >_<"

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