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TV Tuner/video out

5481 Views 4 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  UncleMacro
I had an idea the other day when driving to work. im not sure if its possible but i figured you gous would know better than anyone else...

i want to hook up a spare PC to my entertainment center and use it along side my reciever. I pictured my pc hooked up with my tv as the monitor, and a wireless mouse and keyboard for me too use while in my recliner. i could use the pc for everything, so no more burning cd's or movies since the pc is there.

the problem is connecting my tv to the video card. ive seen it done before, but i never looked in to it, and they were special TV's. i want to use my existing tv for this if possible.

ive seen video cards with built in TV tuners, but i know its more complicated than that.

anyone know if this type of project is easily possible with a few PC mods?
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VIVO nesesary?

no one really wanted to help me, so i basically randomly looked around on newegg untill i found something like what i needed, but i know very little about this so far, so i have a few questions.

i want to have a video out, but does that mean i need a VIVO video card? or only one of those black circle shaped ports (sorry for the idiot talk). if all i need is one of those circular shaped pluggs on my vido card, do i need to buy a VIVO adapter just for the yellow female RCA plug? or does a single RCA adapter exist (like a VIVO cable minus the other 3 cables...)?

and heres another problem, i need a PCI interface as far as i know. its an older mother board, but it has sufficient memory and processing for what im going to use it for. from what i could find, VIVO dosent exist in PCI, but this may not even matter depending on the answer to the previous question.

and also, video cards 101... What does more memory mean for a video card?

sorry for being an idiot, ive never even looked into video cards because im not a gamer.
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You don't need a VIVO card to output to a TV. VIVO is Video In Video Out and you only need the video out part. All you need is TV out and all but the cheapest video cards have them. You can get PCI cards which have them. Your biggest problem is that a regular TV cannot display anywhere near as good a picture as even a crummy video card hooked to a cheapo computer monitor. A computer's user interface assumes that you can display very sharp versions of small color objects. Only HDTVs have any chance of doing a decent job of displaying those kinds of images. A regular TV will do a bad enough job displaying a computer's user interface that it will be extremely difficult to operate. And that's assuming that your TV has an SVideo input rather than a plain old composite monitor input. Video cards usually have an SVideo output which you can convert to plain old composite (the yellow RCA jack) with a cable usually included with the video card. So the summary is: computer monitor output - excellent; SVideo TV output - pretty bad; plain old composite TV output - extremely bad.

More memory in a video card is used almost exclusively by video games to hold all the data needed to display 3D models. If you're not playing games then you don't need lots of video RAM.
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so component out is a bad idea then? i found a card that would work, along with all the other things i will need. but i sopose it would be stupid to have such crummy picture. damn. that really puts a damper on my plans. thanks for the help.
Component video is definitely better than SVideo and can potentially get up to 640 X 480 with decent output quality on a very good TV set. If you get the right VIVO or ATI All-In-Wonder card then you can get component video output but running Windows at 640 X 480 can be a serious chore and most TVs with component video inputs can't really display 640 X 480 independently colored pixels. TVs work fine for running computer games but anything short of HDTV output will make it pretty difficult to run the Windows user interface. It's hard to use a regular TV as a replacement for a computer monitor even using component video.
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