HDMI to component (HTPC)

I'm in the process of transitioning my desktop into an HTPC. I just got a new 785G mobo which outputs VGA, DVI, and HDMI. I also have CRT television set. I will be getting an HDTV eventually. What I'm wondering is if in the interim it would be worth anything to find an HDMI to component cable to hook up my computer now and test out the system. Has anyone tried this and what was the video/audio quality like? I plan to use this as a DVR (once I get a tuner card) and for watching movies and playing music. Or should all of this just wait until I can afford an HDTV and sound system?
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  1. What resolution is your CRT TV? Is it 1080i, 480p? Even older???

    I remember my old CRT HDTV that accepted 1080i/480i signals. My first foray into HTPC looked like absolute crap using s-video (480i). I never tried component @ 1080i so you might be OK.
  2. DVI to Component would be easier and exactly the same as HDMI is just DVI with added audio.
  3. My CRT is an SDTV, 480i. This would just be a temporary solution if it happens at all. I am aware that my desktop will likely look like crap at this resolution, but I thought I might give it a try and see.

    After doing a little more looking around I have found some ATI branded DVI to component adapters, but on their website they only list a few video cards in the Radeon 9000 and 8000 series that it works with. I'm wondering if this will work with my 4200 IGP or not. Of course, this thing costs less than $10 with shipping, so maybe it's worth a shot. If I decide to go this route I'll post my results here.
  4. Best answer
    There is no HDMI to component 'cable' you need a box that changes the signals from digital to analogue. The reason the DVI works is because i has both Analogue and Digital pins. VGA is RGB and would work also.

    You need a converter box to convert from HDMI to component.
  5. I keep researching this and it's looking more and more like it isn't worth it. The cheapest converter boxes are still $50. My motherboard IGP has DVI-D, not DVI-I, so that definitely won't work. VGA to component probably also won't work with my tv because they are two different kinds of signals. Reviews of VGA to component adapters/cables have shown success only for things like projectors, not computers and video cards.

    One option I might consider is just buying the DVI to component adapter and one of the video cards it officially supports (if I can find one). But that might be putting more money into than I care to do for a poor solution anyway. I'm better off saving up for that LG 42LH55.

    Thanks for the feedback, guys.
  6. Best answer selected by BigBlueDart.
  7. Yeah the VGA options are a little more difficult but it can be done (I had it for my AIW R8500DV and it worked fine) but you need to match the input of the TV. Some TVs take RGB, but others are specific as to requiring YCbCr or YPbPr formats, so you need to match the adapter to the unit. There was a major support/format shift during the R8500->9500 series (9000 & 9200 were same as 8500), so not all dongles are created equal.

    Interestingly some new A/V surround units are doing both Component to HDMI and HDMI to component changing, and even the new Onkyo 608 I've been eying does VGA to HDMI (not sure about VGA to component as wasn't interested in that since my component TV also has VGA). So perhaps a non-tradtional solution like that may be the way to go if you're planning to get an A/V unit anyways.
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