If you have trouble understanding some of the terms you should check out my General A/V FAQ.
If you're looking for multimedia features please read the Xbox 360 Multimedia FAQ
Can I use my Laptop Screen to play Xbox 360 Games?
No... That's the simple answer, The video connector on your laptop is output only, you cannot use your laptop to play games from a console
Can I play games on my PC monitor if I use a capture card?
NO.... Capture cards are designed for recording Video ONLY. the processors in most cards are slow and produce anywhere from 1 to 4 seconds worth of lag making games completely unplayable. Professional cards with the speed you need run in the $500-$600 range and your PC might not even be able to handle them. At that point you might as well just buy an HDTV.
HELP! I get audio but no Video, what do I do
First try using a non-HD cable, try switching yours to regular TV mode and use the yellow connector, if that doesn't work borrow a known working cable from a friend, if that doesn't work try your console on your friend's TV. If that doesn't work then your console is f*cked and you should send it back to MS for repair... If you can't do that for whatever reason then there is limited success doing the X-Clamp Replacement.
How can I change my PAL 360 from 50Hz to 60Hz if I can't see what's on the screen
To change the setting "blind" follow this guide: http://forums.xbox-s...howtopic=608089
What Resolutions Will the Xbox 360 Support?
The output resolution can be set in the dashboard. The supported resolutions is largely dependent on the cable being used and the type of content you intend to view.
The chart below shows the supported output resolutions for the type of cable and the type of content:
Note: this chart only reflects North American Xbox 360 consoles, I don't know the AV standards for Europe, Japan, or any other region, though I'd be more then happy to make additional charts if someone could provide me with that data.
Support for these modes in games is dependent on the game. Some games (like PGR3) have been found to not support some modes.
What resolutions will game developers be required to support?
Game developers are only required to support 720p.
Does this mean I need an HDTV that supports 720p to play all of the Xbox360 games?
No. Despite the fact that developers are only required to support 720p the video encoder chip built into the Xbox360 has the ability to up-scale and down-scale games to any of the resolutions supported by the Xbox360. This means that even if a game was only developed in 720p you will have the ability to play it in 480i, 480p, 1080i or 1080p as well as 720p.
What about people with 4:3 screens? Isn't 720p a widescreen format?
Unfortunately the Xbox 360 is limited to the aspect ratio of your screen, if you have a 4:3 screen the picture will display in 4:3, if you have a 16:9 screen (or a 4:3 HDTV) then the picture will display in 16:9 There are currently no options to letterbox, stretch or crop the image (despite the fact that MS claimed there would be). Whether a game stretches, or plays letterboxed, or natively supports a 4:3 aspect ratio is left up to the game developers and changes on a game by game basis.
Why is the picture from the VGA cable washed out?
The VGA output of the Xbox 360 is naturally washed out. The reason has yet to be determined. There's nothing wrong with your Xbox 360, VGA cable, or display, that's just the way it is. Some believe that the washed out image has to do with how your display interprets color-space.
Q: I'm using a VGA cable and when I try to play games BC I get a message that says:
"This game does not support your current display setting"
A: VGA support for BC games is based on a profile to profile basis. Most Xbox 1 games will not play through a VGA video connection.
Q: When I try to play PGR3 in letterboxed mode it displays all stretched out, what's wrong?
A: There is a bug with PGR3 where it wont play letterboxed at particular resolutions, there is nothing you can do about it but use a different resolution.
What Audio formats does the Xbox360 Support?
Currently the Xbox360 supports mono, stereo, Dolby Pro Logic II, Dolby Digital 5.1, and Windows Audio
What Audio formats are Developers required to Support in their games?
Developers are required to support at least Dolby Digital 5.1. The other formats can be derived from that if the developer has not explicitly encoded their game in one of those formats.
What official A/V cables are available for the Xbox360?
At launch the following cable formats will be available:
For video: Composite, S-Video, Component, SCART, VGA, "Japanese" D-Terminal, and HDMI*
For Audio: RCA (Stereo), Optical, and HDMI*
*Only on Arcade, Elite, Halo, and specially market Pro Models manufactured after July 2007
What about Digital Formats like DVI or HDMI?
Launch consoles do not support HDMI or DVI... newer models such as Arcade, Elite, Halo, and specially market Pro Models manufactured after July 2007 do offer an HDMI v1.2 port which can be converted to a DVI-D connection with a simple adapter cable.
If your console does not have an HDMI port and you want HDMI the cheapest option is to buy a new console. The circuity needed to convert VGA or Component is low quality and expensive enough that you're much better off just buying an Arcade Unit with HDMI built in and selling you old console.
What is the best Cable to use to connect my Xbox to my TV?
In General the pecking order looks like this, with the lower quality connections to the left and the higher quality to the right.
RF Modulator << Composite (Yellow RCA) < S-Video << SCART <<< VGA/DVI-I/D-Terminal < Component (Red Green Blue RCA) < HDMI/DVI-D
A single < represents a minor superiority while << represents a slightly larger quality gap and <<< represents an enormous quality gap
How do I connect my Xbox 360 to my PC monitor?
You'll need to use the VGA cable. The Official VGA cable also includes a female/female adapter to connect the VGA adapter to a monitor with a hard-wired VGA cable. It is recommended that you avoid used or 3rd party VGA cables since they are often missing many of the small adapters necessary to hook the cable up to you monitor and whatever money you save in the initial purchase will usually get wasted buying these items separate. Some 3rd party adapters are also known to have major quality issue that diminish the image clarity and some are even missing the optical audio port necessary for surround sound. If you do decide to buy used or 3rd be sure to do your research before you make your purchase.
If you've got an HDMI equipped Xbox 360 and your monitor supports DVI-D then you can use an HDMI to DVI-D cable or adapter to hook it up. You can purchase HDMI/DVI-D cables at http://monoprice.com
Be warned that if you purchased a console other than the Elite you will either need to use HDMI as your audio source or purchase a separate Audio adapter to get audio output from the standard AV port. Elite units come with an audio adapter already. Regular Xbox 360 cables will not work because they are too "fat" and will not fit in the port at the same time as an HDMI cable. Alternatively you could modify a regular AV cable to fit by trimming away the plastic to make room for the HDMI cable.
How do I switch between my PC and the Xbox 360 if I only have 1 monitor?
You'll need to use a device called a "KVM Switch". These devices are made to switch 1 set of peripherals between multiple computers. Because of they they will typically switch a vga cable in addition to keyboard an mice, you can use them simply for their video switching capabilities.
Most LCD monitors that support DVI will have more than one port and an input switch button on the monitor itself If you hook up one device with VGA and the other with DVI you can use this built in function to switch inputs.
How do I connect my Xbox 360 to my PC speakers?
For surround sound you will need to purchase an optical audio cable and plug them directly into your surround sound speakers, if your surround sound speaker don't have an optical or coax audio port, you cannot use those speakers for surround sound and will need to buy new speakers. If they have a digital coax port you will need to buy an "optical to coax converter". If you don't have surround sound speakers or simply want to use analog audio you will only need a 3.5mm stereo female to two RCA Female.
What refresh rates does the VGA cable support?
The VGA cable can output at refresh rates of 50 or 60Hz.
My monitor has a hardwired VGA cable, will I need an adapter to use the Xbox 360 VGA Cable?
The Official Xbox 360 VGA cable includes a female-female VGA coupler for use in those situations. Not that buying a used or 3rd party unit this female-female adapter will most likely NOT be included.
What A/V cables are included with the Xbox360?
The Pro and Halo Xbox360 package comes with a single A/V adapter that includes both composite and component output, as well as stereo RCA output. It also has a socket in the connector for a digital toslink audio output for surround sound. There is a switch on the dongle to select component or composite.
The Core and Arcade Xbox360 package comes with a standard composite A/V adapter with stereo RCA outputs for audio and does not include an optical output for surround sound.
The Elite Xbox 360 package comes with 3 cables: The first is a single A/V adapter that includes both composite and component output, as well as stereo RCA output. It also has a socket in the connector for a digital toslink audio output for surround sound. There is a switch on the dongle to select component or composite. The Second is a standard HDMI cable, and the Third is an Audio breakout cable for connecting Stereo RCA and digital toslink audio while using an HDMI cable.
How do I get Digital Audio out of the Xbox 360?
All of the AV Cables (with the exception of the Standard, Composite, AV cable the comes with the Core version) have an Optical Toslink port on the dongle that plugs into the back of the Xbox 360. You will need to supply your own optical cable to connect it to your surround sound system.
My PC speakers don't have an optical port, instead they have 3 headphone jacks, or a large round connector, how do I hook up my Xbox 360?
You can't, buy a new surround sound system with an optical port... it's your cheapest option.
Are there any native A/V connections available on the Xbox360?
No, all connections are made through a proprietary port similar to the current gen Xbox. The only exception is newer units with an HDMI port do have native HDMI out though
Can I use my Xbox1 A/V Cables on the Xbox360
No the AV cables are completely different.
What's the difference between the different display technologies? Which one is best for me?
The article on Audioholic's website has a good current coverage of the different display technolgies availble today, what their benefits and shortcomings are. If you're buying a new TV soon, READ THESE FIRST :http://www.audioholi...logiesguide.php
What's the Best TV to use with the Xbox 360
The article on TeamXbox's website is hands down the best for picking out a quality HDTV for use with your Xbox 360. You can read the article here: http://features.team...ide-to-HDTV/p1/
Any further HDTV discussion should take place in the new HDTV forum here on Xbox-Scene:
What's the Pinout of the AV port so I can make my own cables?
How do I convert the Japanese "D-Terminal" cable to VGA?
If there are any inaccuracies, or pressing questions that should be added please let me know and I will make the appropriate changes
Edited by twistedsymphony, 18 December 2007 - 04:54 PM.