Nothing like taking a 13 MacBook or 15 /17 inch MacBook Pro and connecting to a 50” or 60” flat screen!!! From experience, let me tell you how awesome it is!!!!
Are you one of those that has been trying to piece together cables so that your MacBook or MacBook Pro would work with your HDTV or other HDMI compatible device and doing so without much luck, only to find out, after lots of research that others are struggling too and there really isn’t a sound solution available? Well, I’ve got some good news for you but first, lets me remind you that there are solutions available. You can put together a solution that does work and that does allow you to use your laptop (MacBooks) on your flat screen TV’s. Some may ask why – but, think about this……..sitting in your favorite couch potato chair, in front of your Panasonic 50” or 60” flat screen TV and deciding that you want to do some research on-line so you plug in your Mini-Display port to DVI cable that is connected to a mini-dvi to dvi adapter. Then you have a DVI to HDMI cable connected to your flat screen TV and walla; there you have it – the Internet as big as life! Check that configuration out if you have a flat screen in your bedroom – it is awesome to work or research while hanging out in bed or in your other favorite chair.
So, where do you get the cables and which cables do you get? Well, of course you can get them from Apple on-line and they are actually cheaper there than most places I’ve found – plus, the quality is pretty good: www.store.apple.com/us
Now, let me explain something that may help. There are three kinds of DVI cables. “DVI-I” stands for “DVI-Integrated” and supports both digital and analog transfers, so it works with both digital and analog Visual Display Units. “DVI-D” stands for “DVI-Digital” and supports digital transfers only. “DVI-A” stands for “DVI-Analog and supports analog transfers only. One tidbit that may be useful is that DVI does NOT transfer audio, only video.
One of the hardest problems users have is recognizing the DVI cables. Here is a quick help as well as a reproduction from datapro on how to differentiate between the cables:
There are two variables in every DVI connector, and each represents one characteristic.
The flat pin on one side denotes whether the cable is digital or analog:
A flat pin with four surrounding pins is either DVI-I or DVI-A
A flat pin alone denotes DVI-D
The pinsets vary depending on whether the cable is single-link, dual-link, or analog:
Two separated 9-pin sets (rows of 6) for a single-link cable
A solid 24-pin set (rows of 8) for a dual-link cable
A separated 8-pin and 4-pin set is for DVI-A.
If you head to www.datapro.com they offer pictures of the cables that can help you determine what you need.
The DVI stated signal distance is 16 feet but you can find places that carry 25 foot cables and then if you have extra cash, you may want to pick up a a signal booster. But, I haven’t talked with anyone that has ever needed a signal booster for their DVI cable system. But, on the other hand, I’ve never tried going over 12 feet and my research has shown that users going over 16 feet and using the 25 foot cables are not experiencing degradation. So most likely you wouldn’t need a booster.
What we all need to do is get them to develop the wireless DVI to HDMI. Imagine a Mini-display port wireless card about and inch long and a quarter of an inch wide coming from the side of your Mac and then a small HDMI wireless connector on your TV. Now, that is what I want. There is good news on the development front, not on the wireless front but on the HDMI topic, Monoprice has developed Mini-DisplayPort to HDMI adapter and was to have it to market in January 2009. Unfortunately, they are having problems finding vendors that can produce the product for them. Stay tuned for an update, as this is a pretty, darn hot topic and lots of users are waiting for this solution.
So, bottom line, what you need is a mini-display port to dvi cable that you can get for $29.99 from Apple (http://store.apple.com/us/product/MB570Z/A). Then, you grab a dvi to HDMI cable / adapter from datapro that is anywhere from $16.95 to $45.oo depending on the length (http://www.datapro.net/products/dvi-to-hdmi-digital-video-cable.html). At that point, you have a HDMI ready cable and you are set! And, it is a beautiful thing when you get it all put together, which only takes about 5 minutes.