Using DVI interface for HDTV as a monitor

By Godataloss
Oct 30, 2003
  1. Anyone have experience hooking a pc up to a HDTV with a DVI connector? I cant seem to get my grafix card to output anything higer than 640*820 and 32 bit color. Everytime on startup XP gives me a balloon telling me that my resolution is set too low and click here to allow XP to auto adjust, but nothing happens. Even when I force the grafix card to display incompatible resolutions it won't display them.

    The monitor is 1080i compatable which equals 1080*1920 @ 60hz correct?

    BTW- although I'm currently only getting 480p resolution, the color depth is simply amazing. DRM issues aside, I definitely think DVI is the way to go.
  2. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    According to this page, 1080i stands for 1920*1080 and that it's interlaced, but nothing more...

    I guess you knew that, and it was only a typo... (If not, it might explain why you have such a hard time to make it display anything ;))

    But without more information about your system (what graphics card do you have, what HDTV) it's quite hard to give you anything helpful...

    If you give us that info (and maybe what AlienWare model you have, so we can check all the specs) we should be able to give you the help you need :)
  3. Godataloss

    Godataloss TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 482

    The video card is an Nvidia 64mb Geforce 4ti 4200.
    The PC is an Alienware Media Center (the shuttle case).
    The TV is a rear projection 57inch Hitachi- it has a DVI connector.

    Perhaps I would have more luck with something like a DVI to component video or VGA to component video?
  4. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512


    There doesn't seem to be too much info about anyone else with a similar problem to yours...

    I have found a couple of things, though they may not be what you seek...

    Here is a page dedicated to HDTV's and how to best set them up with your computer... Only problem is that it's so old that it says the Geforce series doesn't allow custom resolutionsin Win2k, and XP isn't mentioned at all..
    But aside from that, most of the info seem relevant, and from what I know PowerStrip has been updated to the point where it allows you to set custom resolutions in 2k/XP...

    Unfortunately AlienWare only allows people who has purchased one of their products into their support section (forum and knowledbase), nor do they have any links to the Alienware Media Center available, so I haven't been able to get any information from that...
    So if you take a look there, you might be lucky and see someone with the same problem/an article in their knowledge base...

    If you could give us the model nr of the tv, it'd help as Hitachi has created quite a few 57" HDTV's so we could find out if the problems lies with the tv...

    Over to a bit of speculation based on what I've read about Hitachi HDTV's, I think you might have more luck with a DVI to component video, as that seems to be the prefered input for hitachi...

    Sorry I couldn't be of more help, but if you post back with the # of the HDTV I'll give it another shot...
  5. Godataloss

    Godataloss TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 482

    Thanks for that link, it was very informative if not a bit scarry. It seems that I must investigate the Powerstrip software a bit further, but I wish the article would of been a bit more current and made mention of the DVI interface- it provides a beautiful picture and cost me a C-note for the cable- using it with scan velocity modulation enabled sharpens the text very nicely, but the amount of overscan severly limits the desktop space and makes for an awkward workspace. Using it in a dual monitor set-up lessens this and makes me feel like Buck Rogers.

    The set is a Hitachi 57uwx20b I think (im at work)- but Hitachi naturally will give no support along these lines. In fact Im sure I voided my warranty the moment I hooked it up to my pc.

    As for the Alienware I picked it up at best buy for $1200 bucks because someone bought it and then backed out and the employees opened it and stole the t-shirt (may they rot in hell), but I figured the $800 I saved could buy a bunch of t-shirts. Its been a fine machine and I havent had to use tech support yet so perhaps Ill give them a try though I dont have any high hopes as they dont even sell a media center pc anymore(the idea's a bit ahead of its time).

    One good thing- the xbox works fine.
  6. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    Ok... A bit of checking around on the powerstrip forum told me that you should use the DVI and ignore the DVI-to-component cable...

    It would seem most HDTV producers doesn't really want to deal with the hassle of techsupport to those who use DVI, and thus tells them to use a more regular way of connecting to the set... (Of course, this could be wrong, since I don't really know how reliable the info from the forum is, but it doesn't sound too unplausible... Especially since you get a beautiful pic with it....)

    Anyways, I found this little nugget of info which might explain why you have problems outputting anything more than 480p...

    It says that there's and issue with Nvidia and outputting interlaced resolutions, and therefor you can not use 1080i...
    But as was also pointed out in that thread, support for this is added in the latest drivers from Nvidia...

    So in fact you should only need to download and install them, and you'd be able to run 1080i without worrying about powerstrip :)

    Hope this helps!
  7. Godataloss

    Godataloss TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 482

    I have the latest drivers and if I choose to override the refresh rate it lists 1920 by 1080i as supported, but will not allow me to use it in display properties.

    I moved my system back to my office-(easy task by virtue of the shuttle system) in preparation of cutting a hole in the wall so I can run the dvi into the living room and use a wireless keyboard and mouse, but still have my office intact.

    I appreciate the help greatly- you guys got a good thing goin here- and I will post my results along with some pics when I find the proper sized hole saw and begin the demolition cum modification. I think Power-Strip may be the rosetta stone im looking for.
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