Hi. First off, I am not sure if this is the right place to post this but I'll proceed anyways.
I am thinking about buying the Apple TV 2 for my good old CRT and have done some pretty massive and extensive search in the last few days upon HDMI > RCA Converter boxes but still coming to no conclusions as to which device will give me the best picture and sound quality, since there are not many reviews about this on the Internet. Here are some of the options I've come to find:
Playvision Mini HDMI2AV Video Converter (HDV-M610):
Playvision HDMI to CVBS Video Converter (HDV-HD10):
(?) GENERIC (?) HDMI to AV Converter (CVT-HDMIAV):
According to what I've seen so far, the Playvision Mini is the most popular and customers say it pretty much meets their expectations. But how about picture quality and sound? All three devices share very similar prices, only the Playvision Mini being a tad cheaper but I'd have to attribute to the fact it sports no cables, unlike the other ones. I've also been informed from a costumer that the Playvision Mini produces some hiss when turning up volume, but nothing to worry about (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ogd4y9TFaGQ).
So what do you guys say? Has any of you ever tested one of these? What are your thoughts? Any suggestions?
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Last edited by prankstare; 14th Jan 2013 at 20:11.
Hi, i had a similar problem to yours , except i wanted to convert from vga to hdmi. In the end i bought a Startech model.
The model i was looking at was basically the same as a more expensive one , but it was still expensive.
I think you get what you pay for.
The models you listed would do the job but check-out Startech too.....
Keep in mind that composite video has a resolution of less than 640x480 (NTSC) or 640x576 (PAL). Higher resolution sources will be downscaled. Small text will become unreadable. Some examples of high res VGA to composite using a similar device:
I have the third one down on your list, the generic HDMI>S-Video/Composite converter. It works reliably, never had any problems with it over the past two years. The converted quality is OK but not great: it changes the black level (contrast), making the video darker, and you do lose some detail. Depending on your TV and the sources you need to convert, these can be minor issues or dealbreakers. With an old CRT television, you have more flexibility because CRT conceals a lot of crap and is optimized to display 480i to begin with. A slight adjustment of your picture controls, and you could be very happy with this converter. But viewing on a large LCD or plasma TV, you won't be as happy: they emphasize standard-def flaws, and of course the size magnifies everything mercilessly. The murkier output of the converter is more difficult to compensate on large LCD screens, and you'd really need to dedicate one of your TV inputs to the converter at all times so you can leave the adjustments locked in without affecting other inputs.
The second converter on your list, the AC powered Playvision, is relatively new. Haven't seen any reviews yet. It looks interesting, with a couple improvements over the generic converter like ventilation holes in the case (generic gets very warm) and a "zoom" button that could prove useful. I'm curious about it.
The Playvision Mini is the "flavor of the month" right now that everyone is talking about. It gets fairly good reviews on AV forums, comparable to the older generic converter. But be sure to read these user reviews carefully: I've seen a great many posting orgasms over the thing simply because its so cheap to buy. You'd be surprised how many people rave over it because of the price, then the last line in the review says something like "I only get a black & white picture out of it, but its SO CHEAP! YAY!" or "It doesn't really work so good without external power, but its very picky about what external USB power it likes, and the power source affects the video unpredictably, but YAY! ITS SO CHEAP! HOORAY! I LOVE IT!"
You see my point. The Mini is worth a try, I'm looking into it myself, but make sure you can return it or you'll be out that money if you don't like it.
Per Atotaloss suggestion, I just took a look at the Startech site and they only have one converter. It costs three to four times the price of the models you listed, and might have distinctly better output quality. It claims to offer an onscreen overlay allowing you to make "live" setting adjustments: that might be really helpful on larger LCD screens. But at $169, I think it is overkill for your intended use on a smaller CRT (27" or less). You could probably be fine with either the generic converter or the AC powered PlayVision. If you opt for the generic, buy it thru Monoprice website as they seem to get the authentic, original version of the unit. Some of the knockoffs that look identical can have quality control problems.
Last edited by orsetto; 15th Jan 2013 at 12:51.
Great analysis there orsetto.
Yep, the Startech is expesnive but damn it gives a fantastic picture on 1080p60 or 50 hz screens. Mine has an audio optical in as well as the 3.5 mm jack.
Due to a very strange thing on my media center the audio in optical mode came from my vdr and not the file i was playing.
I then set it up using the analogue jack and bingo - sound , but as i turned the volume up a constant high pitch / sharp sound came in. Seems i need a special filter cable which seperates the left and right channels.
I am waiting for it to arrive ......
PS - As you know mine goes from vga to hdmi .
I'm going to look further into the Startech HDMI>Composite converter: if its as good as your VGA>HDMI version, I'd be willing to pay the extra for it. The generic Lenking converter I'm currently using is adequate, but I'd prefer something a lot better. AFAIK, the only path to really excellent HDMI>S-Vid/Composite is via the HDfury coupled with a pricey pro-level component>S-Vid converter. That setup easily tops $500, which is a bit much to make standard-def recordings: at that point may as well not bother. If the Startech is a step up from the generic stuff or the Mini, it could be a nice compromise, so thanks for tip.
Seems on the face of it a good idea in theory and the cable isn`t expensive.
Imported from Germany , here`s a UK site that has it , although just Google fga-35 should bring up results.
Looks a bit like the anti-parasite capacitor used to eliminate interference from car speaker systems.
This is just an update on that audio cable that eliminates interference.
Arrived yesterday and tested it today , no more interference.
It works for me , but every system is different, but it costs so little - was worth a .shot.
Now, seems i have another problem on the video side. the pc/desktop side is fantastic , crystal clear in 1080p , however, film playback is clear but jittery - o well.
I`ll start a new tread.
LKV381A (as in, new and improved revision)
I would go for the Mini because you don't need a power adapter (apparently), and it has an OSD.
Thank you all for the replies! Those seem to be very good options as well.
I'm also particularly interested in the HDV-HD10 (http://dx.com/p/hdmi-to-cvbs-video-c...=80407&u=81278). Has anybody tested it? Looks good from here. There's also another great HDMI > RCA converter, the ViewHD VHD-H2STV, looks sturdy and very robust. It has been receiving one of the best reviews by users so far (http://www.amazon.co.uk/ViewHD-Universal-Composite-S-Video-Converter/dp/B00AQ4HF7G).
Last edited by prankstare; 19th Jan 2013 at 14:15.