Hey guys I'd like to know if this set-top box and pc monitor combo would work.
Set top box:
I realise the technical information of the Set top box isn't in English (it's in Finnish) but does anyone know if it would work? You can see the outputs on the back on the second page, and it's all pretty straightforward. You can translate the page to English with Google Chrome but for some reason Google Translate complains when I try and do it there to English.
I basically want to run the Set top box, from HDMI, to DVI with a little working converter plug that I have into the PC monitor.
Then run the S/PDIF audio out into an RCA cable, and then into a set of Logitech speakers that I have.
Would this work? The Monitor is apparenty HDCP compliant, so would plugging it into the Set top box work without any issues? The Set top box says 1 HDMI/HDCP out, so both the Set top box and my monitor should get along fine right?
Most of the threads of this thing I can find are very old with a lot of HDCP related questions, as it was quite a skeptical thing a few years ago. I should imagine that it should be relatively a pice of cake these days right?
I really like this monitor, and if I could just score a 100€ Set top box that displays all the way up to 1080p that would be awesome. Sure I don't expect it to decode 10bit 10000kbps x264 .mkv files on the fly hahaha but I do expect it to display HD television channels onto the monitor without any problems.
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Last edited by Zeptinune; 9th May 2014 at 15:37.
LED PC monitors are not exactly like LED TVs. TVs can do their own upscaling, de-interlacing, and frame rate adjustments. On the other hand, PC monitors depend on software and a video card to ensure that video card's output matches the PC's monitors input requirements. Standard 1920x1080 PC monitors typically require progressive video input at at 1920x1080 resolution and 60 Hz (or 60 frames frames per second). Chances are the Humax STB is designed to be used with a TV, and cannot adjust the characteristics of its output to meet the input requirements for a normal PC monitor as a video card would do.
If you want to connect the PC speakers directly to a set top box, you need a set top box with a headphone jack. SPDIF is digital and typical PC speakers use analog audio. A simple cable won't work. Electronics are required to do the conversion from digital audio to analog audio. In addition, the Humax STB's S/PDIF out is probably intended to be connected to a home theater receiver and streams whatever compressed audio the TV channel uses rather than converting it to PCM first for output. This means you would probably need to connect the Humax's S/PDIF out to an audio receiver with a headphone jack to decode the audio, and connect the PC speakers to the headphone jack.
Maybe I am not understanding things correctly then. I thought that the whole point of having HDCP on a monitor is that you could use it as a television provided that of course the Set top box you are using isn't super old and supports the same thing. Also I was aware that Set top boxes usually have a way (these days) to change the output signal so they could conform with what a monitor uses.
I got the idea when I read this article: http://www.instructables.com/id/Use-an-LCD-Monitor-as-a-TV-without-a-Computer/
I don't really see how the Samsung screen is very different from my BenQ GL2240M screen. They have almost the same specs, just a different brand and slightly different size. Though it does have HDMI in and it says that it's HDTV compatible. I realise that the BenQ (or any monitor for that matter) is gonna require a bit of extra work but yeah, I didn't think it would be near impossible?
Also I realised that I would need to convert the optical (digital) audio to analogue. Which is why I was going to buy this: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/261473965085?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT - Then simply plug that into the set of Logitech speakers I have from the headphone jack.
Also I am from Europe. I cannot use Newegg and I don't want to have to buy a new monitor. I'd like to use this one and it should be possible.
----------- EDIT / Here is the Set top box's specifications entirely in English: http://www.max-nordic.com/uploads/tx_commercedownloads/BXR-HD2.pdf
Last edited by Zeptinune; 10th May 2014 at 05:53.
The problem with that article is that it is probably written by an American for Americans.
The main issue is not HDCP. You pass that test with the monitor. It is the refresh rate of the display. You set-top box will output 50i (as per the incoming European signal). Your monitor displays 60p. So you will get a picture but it will not be a smooth picture. Now if your set-top box can output 60p it should work fine.
I am not sure if 50i is supported. Are you absolutely sure that the output of the EU set top box would be 50i? and not 50p or 60p?
The monitor says that its optimum resolution is 1920x1080 @ 60 however it can do the same @ 50.
Is it really so unbelieveable to think that a set top box cannot output a Refresh Rate of 60Hz? I thought most televisions these days were also 60Hz. Whenever I have ever plugged a PC into a TV they have always suggested 60Hz as the refresh rate.
The Set top box says that it supports: 1080p/24, 1080i, 720p, 576p & 576i
Shouldn't the box be able to display the channels at the monitors native resolution then. Ergo: 1080p (1920x1080)
Or at the very least 720p (1280x720)?
Last edited by Zeptinune; 10th May 2014 at 06:30.
Your laptop has a video card/driver which controls the display. The set-top box must perform that function.
I can only comment on UK boxes and they output 50i.
Get hold of the actual manual for the set-top box and see what it can output re refresh rates. The quoted spec is minimalistic.
Well from what the computer says, it only shows refresh rates that the -monitor can display- so it's not referring to exactly what the video card can do. Which means that it seems the monitor (regardless of other hardware) is capable of 50, 59 and 60Hz refresh rates respectively.
50i? I am not so sure I guess.. Tholugh it looks as if it can do 50p. I've got some experience in using external monitors/tvs etc in the past. Televisions always had the ability to display at multiple refresh rates (many more than PC monitors). Some as low as even 40Hz I think, and in addition to every (p)rogressive Refresh Rate, there was always an accompanying (i)nterlaced option. My monitor obviously has none of latter :/ - At least not whilst plugged into my PC.
So what to do... I guess find out what display output formats the Set top box is capable of. Though I doubt I could get my hands on a full manual without actually buying the damn thing.
720p and 576i or 576p do not match your monitor's native resolution. 1080i is the only broadcast resolution that matches your monitor's native resolution, but 1080i DTV in the EU is 50 fields per second, not 50 frames per second. A 1080i field has only half the lines (vertical resolution) of a complete 1080p frame, with each field containing either all the odd lines in one frame or all the even even lines in the frame. An LCD TV combines two fields to make one deinterlaced frame, displayed at 25 frames per second. I doubt that the Humax set top box can deinterlace a 1080i video signal and output the resulting complete frames at 50Hz or 60Hz.
Ugh... Ok all of this is pretty understandable. But why does it seem to work with some people's monitors and set top boxes?
So there are STBs that either what:
* Deinterlace the video and display it at a resolution and refresh rate that the monitor can understand.
Monitors that can:
* Display (and recieve) 1080p/24, 1080i, 720p and 576i or 576p?
And I am just bang out of luck on not having one of those monitors and/or STBs?
I suppose I should just give up on this whole thing then.. I thought it'd be simple enough with a half decent box and that the biggest issue would be getting the audio sent to a seperate device whilst using the HDMI (because the audio in the HDMI goes nowhere). I just feel like none of this makes rational sense, you say that
An LCD TV combines two fields to make one deinterlaced frame, displayed at 25 frames per second.
At this point I give up. I've spent too much time translating user manuals and no matter what information I find it seems that all of the information that I NEED is not documented at all. I can't find anywhere what output format the STB displays. Whether it is 50i or something else. I know for a fact that the monitor can do those 3 rates I mentioned. 50p, 59p and 60p. But I am skeptical that it can do anything with regards to (i)nterlaced display configurations. I'm pretty furious that television signals and thus their outputs are so different that Monitors and Televisions can't just get along and be interswappable.
After all of this I am not even sure I want to watch Eurovision online anymore... hah.
Last edited by Zeptinune; 10th May 2014 at 11:05.
TV/monitors are really small TVs with the ability to work well as a monitor if connected to a PC. I have no idea which STBs (if any) can perform all the same video processing that a TV would do so they can work well with monitors.
Last edited by usually_quiet; 10th May 2014 at 11:18.
Well I guess that's that then. Thanks for everyone's time. I'm going to sell the monitor as I have no use for it then and just buy a TV.
Last edited by usually_quiet; 10th May 2014 at 13:00. Reason: correct typo
Monitors and Televisions aren't too far apart. In the long run TVs are actually cheaper (in terms of size vs. price). However I find that Monitors have a higher pixel density and are comparibly show far better picture quality. Thanks everyone for all the detailed explanations.
The better picture quality for some PC monitors is more likely to be the result of the type of panel used, not the pixel density. All small TVs seem to have have TN panels (which provide an inferior picture compared to IPS panels), but monitors with IPS panels are common. TN panels are also less expensive than IPS panels.
Last edited by usually_quiet; 10th May 2014 at 17:19. Reason: Typed the wrong resolution for TVs sold as 720p