HTPC s-video or hdmi

Hey Guys,

I put together an HTPC with some old components for my wife and I to go old school and play some good old 8-bit nintendo games. The Video card is an old agp geforce mx4000 128mb 64-bit with vga and s-video output.

My tv is a 62" Toshiba Rear Projector dlp hdtv. I have it hooked up via the s-video at a maximum resolution of 1024x768 @60 hertz. The tv does 720p, 1080i, 1080p. Under Windows the games look "great" but the screen looks good but not too crisp, the words on desktop folders are hard to read. The tv has hdmi ports but no dvi.

I have a dvi to hdmi converter. So would buying a cheap video card with a dvi port and hooking that up improve the desktop image quality?

Let me know what you guys think.

Thanks in advance.
5 answers Last reply
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  1. Yes running it via DVI-HDMI will increase the picture quality.
    But the thing is to find the native resolution of the television because it's likely not 1080P, and it's unlikely you are sending 1024x768 on an MX4000 via S-video, I doubt the TV would even expect such a res in that input.

    Why you are seeing blurry text is because the TV needs to interpolate the solid defined lines of text to match the native resolution of the DLP.
  2. I would say you would see nearly an 85% difference in running your HTPC with a DVI-HDMI cable.

    Beware that you will likely be in the PC color space and unless the card has the capability (cheap one?) it will stay that way. I think ATI released/will release some video cards that will display in the HDTV color space.

    Also HDCP... Not sure if your TV requires on the HDMI port an HDCP compliant device (not likely but could happen).

    What distance is the HTPC from the TV?

    That would affect how expensive a cable you might need :).
  3. Thanks for the reply great ape. Yea I figured the s-cable was most likely holding the image quality back.

    You guys think a cheapo card like the geforce fx5200 will do?

    ches111 - Oh yea, the Silverstone htpc case is underneath the tv within the tv stand. And I'm not sure about the whole hdcp thing via hdmi but i thought that was for things like hd dvd.
  4. IMO go with either of the following;

    Forget that FX5200, it's not that great and I wouldn't trust the TMDS quality.

    Since it doesn't involve gaming go with the better 2D quality in the R9550, but the GF6200 even should give you better quality than the FX5200 for 2D.

    Just ensure you have proper support for the DVI->HDMI, I'd check for you but it's a Friday night and I just got home. :mrgreen:
  5. Thanks for the advice Great Ape. That 9550 looks good.

    Should get it sometime this week.
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