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Directv HD signal into 24" iMac

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George Wedemeyer
Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 12:33:36 am

Greetings,

PC user here who is attempting to convert to Mac. I currently have a Dell 17" Media Monitor and an XPS tower. I have both an office and home theater in my basement. So I ran a component cable from my Directv reciever 30' or so into my Dell monitor via component in. This allows me to watch an HD Directv signal in picture in picture while I work on my home office PC. I also have a VGA cable going out of the Dell Monitor about 40' or so to my Marantz projector so that I can watch my PC source on my 10' home theater fixed screen.

Now to my problem. I need to use some Mac apps for work, prefer the OS and want to switch to Mac in my home office. I am very interested in buying the 24" iMac. After a discussion with Mac Sales it seems clear that I can use an Apple mini DVI to VGA adapter to send the iMac source via VGA cable to my home theater projecter. What is unclear to me is how in the world to convert my Directv signal via component cable into the iMac for display? Mind you I don't want to edit the video or store it or burn it or send it to friends or pirate it in any way - so I don't think I need a video capture card. I just want to be able to view the signal and turn the iMac into a dumb monitor in this instance.

Second question. If I can somehow display an HD Directv signal on the iMac ( I know there is a solution for standard def and terrestrial HD signals) via component, surely the video card that comes standard in the iMac - the ATI Radeon HD 2600 PRO with 256MB of GDDR3 memory will allow me to view not just the iMac desktop, but any Directv signal that is now viewable on the iMac (presumably in a window or picture in picture)???

I spoke with sales reps at both AJA and Black Majic. they both offer costly solutions or cheaper video card solutions that would allow component in, but only cards that would install in a tower such as the Mac Pro. I would strongly prefer an iMac based solution as it is the perfect Mac for my home office needs and the Mac Pro is overkill.

Any and all suggestions are welcome.

Thanks,

Illiniwin


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Zane Barker
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 5:47:42 am

http://www.elgato.com

Don't let technology get in the way of your creativity!


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George Wedemeyer
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 4:15:29 pm

Thanks, but the eyeTV solutions only allow you to watch terrestrial HD via antenna or standard def Directv on the Mac, correct? They will not allow me to display the HD programming of the Directv box the way my Dell monitor can, right?



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Jeff Carpenter
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 8:01:16 pm

Why don't you leave the Dell Monitor next to the iMac? Leave the TV on it full-screen instead of using picture-in-picture. The monitor should work without a computer attached to it, right?

Is there not enough room on the desk?

The problem with your current idea is that any video conversion hardware I know of is designed to capture the video into an editing program rather than to watch it live. The one big exception, of course, are the eyeTV products which are designed to be TV tuners, not component video inputs (as you noticed).

If you have the space I'd say that keeping the old monitor is the best solution.



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George Wedemeyer
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 8:51:47 pm

Jeff,

I think you have hit the solution on the head. Since even solutions like eyeTV are not intended to be component video inputs, my best solution might be to keep the Dell monitor on my desk as a second monitor. The only difference is that I might use a mini DVI to VGA adapter going out of the iMac into a VGA switch, rather than just use the Monitor as a dumb monitor. That way I can connect the Dell Monitor VGA to VGA into the VGA switch and use the Dell as a true second monitor, right? Ultimately I want to be able to send the iMac display to my projector so that I can play Poker on the big screen!

What do you think about that solution? Can you recommend any cheap VGA switches?

Thanks in advance for your help.



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Jeff Carpenter
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 9:48:26 pm

Your plan is solid. Rather than a VGA switch, however, I'd suggest a splitter:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/503968-REG/Analog_Way_DVS_DVS_Dual_VG...

It will always send the VGA signal both places. Just turn on the Dell or the projector. No other switching needed. (I like eliminating steps from processes.)

You WILL, however, have to sometimes switch the iMac's output. You may sometimes want mirror mode (showing websites to people on your projector while you sit at the computer) but maybe sometimes you'll want the span mode (playing a DVD on the projector while using the computer at the same time or using a dual-monitor computer setup on the Dell).

I suggest turning on the display preference that puts the display controls in the menu bar. (Up by the clock). That should make that switching a little faster to get to.





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Zane Barker
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 9:51:04 pm

[George Wedemeyer] "Since even solutions like eyeTV are not intended to be component video inputs"

If you would have looked at the Technical Specifications page of the EyeTV Hybrid you would have read the following information.

Input and Output:
Antenna input: Coaxial connector (IEC)
S-Video (via break out cable, included)
Composite video (via break out cable, included)
Stereo audio (via break out cable, included)

You can feed a component input into it, just like a TV it has an antenna and OTHER inputs, all you need to dod is select which input you are taking the signal from just like a TV.

Don't let technology get in the way of your creativity!


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George Wedemeyer
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 10:42:08 pm

Zane,

Are you implying that the EyeTV will take a component input and ALSO PASS the component signal to the display??



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Zane Barker
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 10:46:01 pm

[George Wedemeyer] "Are you implying that the EyeTV will take a component input and ALSO PASS the component signal to the display??"

YES

Don't let technology get in the way of your creativity!


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Gary Milligan
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 11:39:30 pm

Zane,

I do see "composite" in/out, but I don't see where it says "component" (RGB)

Gary

This is me - this is what I do - http://web.mac.com/garymmw


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Zane Barker
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 5, 2008 at 11:42:24 pm

My bad I must have read the Tech Info page wrong.

Don't let technology get in the way of your creativity!


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George Wedemeyer
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 6, 2008 at 12:21:16 am

Guys,

What about something like this? Would I be able to use this product to pass the Directv DVR component feed into the iMac 24"?

http://www.adstech.com/products/API-558-EFS/intro/API-558_intro.asp?pid=API...

The product is the ADS Pyro A/V Link. It has a component in and can go out via firewire and into the iMac. Just not sure if it can be used as a pass-through device.

Any ideas?

Thanks.





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David Peralta
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 6, 2008 at 9:38:55 pm

How bout the Pro version of the slingbox? has component inputs and streams throughout the network.

hmm... I wonder what this button does...


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Mario Alessi
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 16, 2008 at 11:02:41 pm

You need something like this: http://www.gefen.com/kvm/product.jsp?prod_id=4173

That will convert the analog component signal to the DVI-D that apple display uses.





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Zane Barker
Re: Directv HD signal into 24" iMac
on Mar 16, 2008 at 11:24:30 pm

[Mario Alessi] "That will convert the analog component signal to the DVI-D that apple display uses"

Nice product and all but he wants to use an iMac, which has no DVI connector from an external source.

There are no "technical solutions" to your "artistic problems".
Don't let technology get in the way of your creativity!



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