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Alternative/cheap Hd Solutions For Upcoming Next-gen Consoles


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#1 Kira Yamoto

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Posted 15 August 2006 - 11:07 AM

I have been doing some research into what would fit my needs, as I am building my home theater and PC setup. I've come up with ways that a consumer that can't afford much after buying a next-gen console, be able to afford a HD solution to at least enjoy the content.

What you need:

PC w/ dvi and vga output in your graphics card, preferrably one that can display 1366x1080
Any LCD monitor capable of 8MS response time (AND NO HIGHER), 16:9 preferrable. I just saw a Viewsonic 20" 4:3 that has all you need (349.99)
DVI to HDMI cable (50.99 for 10ft)

This PC setup right here, is capable of offering you 1080i (except you'll get it progressive since its a monitor biggrin.gif) and 720p resolutions for your Xbox 360 and PS3. For the Xbox 360, just buy the VGA cables and you're good to go. For PS3, you will need a DVI to HDMI cable. Hook it into your HDMI port on the PS3 and you're ready. For the Wii, buy the VGA cables (just like Xbox) and you're ready. For the PS3, you may need to hook your audio into another source which shouldn't be too hard or costly. You can buy cheap cables that convert l/r audio channels to a microphone jack, and hook that into your Line-In input on your PC mobo/sound card.

If you are super cheap, you can use your current CRT monitor as your display, but you need to find out what it's max resolution is. 1280x1080 is preferrable. If you have one of the newer models (such as this one http://www.newegg.co...82E16824116282) then your luck ass can display 1920x1080 which is 1080p, but you still need a DVI to HDMI 1080p cable and its only for PS3.)

If you want to go the extra mile, you can buy a HDTV tuner for your PC that makes it a cable-like set-top box where you can get SD channels and HDTV programming, and also doubles as a TiVO w/o the need for a TiVO box, nor subscription. Also, if you already have cable tv (digi preferred), plug that in for the full TV experience. You will need a pretty big HD to store these videos so keep that in mind. I've seen tuners like these retail for 99.99 to 149.99.

Next, are the sound inputs. Buy yourself a sound card capable of handling 7.1, with all the latest dolby modes, and speakers to go along with that. PC speakers are known to be much cheaper than standard home theater speakers. Of course, home theater speakers work too. But if you don't have the money for this, buy a good set of headphones, and set your speaker setup in WinXP to 5.1 and in your game, set it to Dolby Prologic II.

This setup will make your LCD monitor a true HDTV without HDTV prices. The best thing about it is, that you are able to customize according to what you need, and you can eventually have a full setup for a lot sooner than you think because of the cheaper costs.

Edited by Kira Yamoto, 15 August 2006 - 11:20 AM.


#2 twistedsymphony

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Posted 15 August 2006 - 05:26 PM

Why would you buy a 7.1 surround card and then cut it off at the leggs by using only analog audio and DPL II?

Make sure your card has an optical input then spend a couple extra $$ on an optical switch... your ears will thank you later.

Also $50 for a HDMI/DVI cable? laugh.gif http://www.monoprice.......=1&format=2
you can use the money you saved to fix your Audio suggestions wink.gif

#3 Kira Yamoto

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Posted 16 August 2006 - 12:15 AM

3 ft? that's pretty short. Eh, I guess that's ok as long as you sit the PS3 right next to it.

Edited by Kira Yamoto, 16 August 2006 - 12:15 AM.


#4 twistedsymphony

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Posted 16 August 2006 - 02:54 PM

They do sell other lenghs of cables for around the same price, I just happened to link to the 3ft one...

... out of all the things you could have commented on... rolleyes.gif

#5 Kira Yamoto

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Posted 16 August 2006 - 03:24 PM

QUOTE(twistedsymphony @ Aug 16 2006, 03:01 PM) View Post

They do sell other lenghs of cables for around the same price, I just happened to link to the 3ft one...

... out of all the things you could have commented on... rolleyes.gif


lol! I'm not an audiophile, more of a videophile. I don't care for audio as much as the video, but I'm starting to get real interested in it, as I'm starting to hear a lot of stuff on my games and movies that I never heard before using headphones and the PC as an amp or decoder. On my games I put it on DDPL2 and on my movies I just put it on 5.1 and it sounds excellent. Surround sound for only 15 bucks. With the special effects my TV already has built in (WOW/TruSurround) it makes it stellar enough to be content with.

I'm pretty sure though, that I could come up with the best audio setup if I put my mind to it.

#6 twistedsymphony

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Posted 16 August 2006 - 03:57 PM

see I perfer audio over video... the best surround sound system in the world with a rinky-dink TV is so much more immersive IMO.

The thing about Video is you can easily say "this tv right here is the best one on the market" use a respectable cable and a decent source (though, if it's video games you don't have much of a choice) and you're video situation is covered. Audio has an unbelieable amount of factors, and the costs can go well above that of a high end display.

I have a home theater room in my basement, it's got an DLP front projector and a big 'ol glass bead screen for a beautiful picture at a not-so-cheap price... however I've probably spend more then 3 times that much on my audio setup... before the projector I had the same audio setup but with nothing more then a 25" tube TV. smile.gif

Cheap home theater in a box setups are a joke compaired to a REAL surround sound system.

#7 Kira Yamoto

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Posted 17 August 2006 - 12:17 AM

QUOTE(twistedsymphony @ Aug 16 2006, 04:04 PM) View Post

see I perfer audio over video... the best surround sound system in the world with a rinky-dink TV is so much more immersive IMO.

The thing about Video is you can easily say "this tv right here is the best one on the market" use a respectable cable and a decent source (though, if it's video games you don't have much of a choice) and you're video situation is covered. Audio has an unbelieable amount of factors, and the costs can go well above that of a high end display.

I have a home theater room in my basement, it's got an DLP front projector and a big 'ol glass bead screen for a beautiful picture at a not-so-cheap price... however I've probably spend more then 3 times that much on my audio setup... before the projector I had the same audio setup but with nothing more then a 25" tube TV. smile.gif

Cheap home theater in a box setups are a joke compaired to a REAL surround sound system.


joke as it may be, I only worry about the quality of the audio and not how loud it gets (as I live where I can't disturb my neighbors) so a PC setup would be sufficient if it supported TrueHD, DDPLII, and DD+

#8 Mr Invader

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 03:30 AM

QUOTE(Kira Yamoto @ Aug 15 2006, 05:14 AM) View Post

For the Wii, buy the VGA cables (just like Xbox) and you're ready.


uuh theres no point, the wii wont support anything above a widescreen standard definition

#9 Kira Yamoto

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 07:47 AM

QUOTE(Mr Invader @ Aug 23 2006, 03:37 AM) View Post

uuh theres no point, the wii wont support anything above a widescreen standard definition


Originally, Nintendo announced that Wii owners will be able to output 480p through a VGA or Component cables. 640x480 isn't too bad a display for CRT's or even PC monitor sized LCD's. The point of this is, to have a display that performs up to its highest resolution mode. It's common knowledge between HDTV owners now that 480i/p looks terrible. But using a VGA connection on a standard monitor, you're able to achieve 480p while still retaining its intended picture. So yes, there is a point. Why take this over a standard TV? Because its simply progressive.

#10 Mr Invader

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 09:54 PM

QUOTE(Kira Yamoto @ Aug 23 2006, 01:54 AM) View Post

Originally, Nintendo announced that Wii owners will be able to output 480p through a VGA or Component cables. 640x480 isn't too bad a display for CRT's or even PC monitor sized LCD's. The point of this is, to have a display that performs up to its highest resolution mode. It's common knowledge between HDTV owners now that 480i/p looks terrible. But using a VGA connection on a standard monitor, you're able to achieve 480p while still retaining its intended picture. So yes, there is a point. Why take this over a standard TV? Because its simply progressive.


this is true, but i still wouldn't bother buying a pc monitor just for a wii, maybe i would consider if i had all three consoles. But then you would have to buy a VGA cable for them all which would make it even more pricey.

#11 Mr Invader

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Posted 26 August 2006 - 06:13 PM

QUOTE(Kira Yamoto @ Aug 15 2006, 05:14 AM) View Post


PC w/ dvi and vga output in your graphics card, preferrably one that can display 1366x1080
Any LCD monitor capable of 8MS response time (AND NO HIGHER), 16:9 preferrable. I just saw a Viewsonic 20" 4:3 that has all you need (349.99)
DVI to HDMI cable (50.99 for 10ft)

This PC setup right here, is capable of offering you 1080i (except you'll get it progressive since its a monitor biggrin.gif) and 720p resolutions for your Xbox 360 and PS3. For the Xbox 360, just buy the VGA cables and you're good to go.


I'm going to go ahead and buy a pc monitor and a vga cable for my 360

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16824254008

With the 5ms, the 1440 x 900 resolution, and the 700:1 contrast ratio... Would this be a good investment? The people who bought them seem to be impressed.





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