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 Post subject: Do HDMI To Component (ypbpr) converters really work?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2012 4:23 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2003 11:47 am
Posts: 79
I have been looking for the "perfect" fanless HTPC that has component (YPBPR) video outputs but it looks like all current fanless PCs now come with HDMI (and/or VGA) output only.

So I was thinking of making a compromise and buy whatever is available today (HDMI), then externally attach an "HDMI To Component converter" (I really need this compatibility with one older subsystem that I prefer not to replace right now).

But somehow I got the impression that the commercially available such converters have significant limitations and/or don't work in all circumstances (like component video does). Is this true?

If this isn't true, can you recommend a reasonably priced HDMI To Component converter?

The following converter, for example, is certainly within my affordable price range, but I don't know how it works. Any real-life experience with it?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6815276024

Then there is model in Amazon, with conflicting (and thus confusing) reports regarding is functionality:

http://www.amazon.com/HDMI-RCA-componen ... B002WBOQPU

Lastly, there is this "industrial grade" model but its price is way beyond what I am willing to spend on a converter:

http://r.ebay.com/yFGTex

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 Post subject: Re: Do HDMI To Component (ypbpr) converters really work?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 2:31 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 21, 2004 6:13 pm
Posts: 144
As far as I can tell the first two devices are essentially the same (and also cost about the same). I can't see a reason why they wouldn't work, provided your component output device and your htpc can agree on a resolution they both support (480p, 720p, or 1080i - well graphic cards can generate just about any resolution, I'm not sure though what gets reported as supported resolution by that device the driver might pick something which doesn't work I guess so you better have another monitor to configure it). It looks like both of them are able to deal with hdcp (the first one doesn't explicitly say so but has hdcp in the name), which iirc is on shaky grounds for the manufacturers (might violate some hdcp licensing terms), which is why the industrial grade one doesn't support this. If you need that or not I can't tell, but if you plan on doing something like bluray playback on that htpc without using some "unofficial" means you certainly will need it.
Your legacy device might also force overscan over component input I guess, if you can't configure it away it may be possible to get rid of it with graphic driver settings fiddling if it bothers you.
Just a guess though personally I stay far away from devices having analog video inputs only :-).


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 Post subject: Re: Do HDMI To Component (ypbpr) converters really work?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:42 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2003 11:47 am
Posts: 79
Thanks for the thoughtful reply. I would stay away from older non-compatible subsystems as well, but it's a projector being fed via cat5 baluns through the walls... so cost is an issue here.

My projector allows me to watch movies at a "virtual resolution" of 1920x1080 @ 1080i. So, image quality wise I don't see any reason to "upgrade" to HDMI, except for being forced by the conglomerates to do so.

My goal is to get the lowest cost fanless PC that can play DVDs, so I can either go with a modern HDMI-based fanless motherboard + an el-cheapo HDMI-to-YPBPR converter, or... I just spotted the following dinosaurs:

http://www.directron.com/nf94270lf.html
http://www.logicsupply.com/products/vb8002_16_fs (not fanless! :( )
http://www.logicsupply.com/products/nf94_270_lf
http://r.ebay.com/Kno90v (same as http://www.logicsupply.com/products/i965gmt_la)

The main problem with the latter approach is that while it's more elegant (no external boxes between HTPC and projector), if the motherboard dies in 1-2 years from now, it would be next to impossible (or too expensive) to fix.

The conglomerates sure know what they are doing.

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ASUS P4P800 Deluxe / P4-2.6CGHz
Zalman CNPS7000A-ALCU
1GB (2 x KINGMAX MPXC22D-38KT3R)
Samsung SP1614N 160GB 7200RPM
Evercase E4252-PCT
Hercules - 3D Prophet II MX (32MB)
Lite-On LDW-811S


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