AMD A6-3650 HTPC not filling the screen on my HDTV?? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 03:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Starting this thread because I have searched high and low (including this forum) and played around with every possible setting and messed up some in the process and then restored that, but still do not have a fix for the issue!

This is my hardware:

HTPC: Llano based (A6-3650) HTPC, no VGA using the on-board video of the A6 to display, so it is the catalyst controller that controls the display! If you need catalyst version and driver version number ask and I will update those!

HDTV: Samsung DLP 67" 1080p used as the display.

The problem is that the computer screen (everything else except for WMC) is not filling the screen or it is filling itself too much (I can only see the middle part of it)! The crazy thing is when in WMC it works exactly and fills it corner to corner, also when connected to my other Haans-G 28" monitor it works just fine, but just on the DLP and when out of WMC the display is all messed up!

On the HTPC - I have tried adjusting the underscan and overscan on the AMD catalyst control center (CCC), I've tried adding the 1080x1920 @ 60hz presets and tried to reset it, none of this has worked so far! I managed to mess it up bad, and stretched the image beyond the screen and messed up the WMC display as well!

I also have a receiver connected in the midst, here is the cable mapping:
HTPC ---> Yamaha RX-V671 ---> TV (all HDMI)! Could it have something to do with the receiver setup, if so what should I change?

Here is what I've tried myself:

On the TV - I've tried to change the picture size of the display from Just scan to 16:9 to 4:3 and Wide, did not solve that either! I have tried to reset the catalyst to factory settings and tried it from the beginning still no luck!

I ended messing up the WMC display when I switched to another resolution, but managed to get it back somehow (don't know what I did but it was factory reset and something else before that)! The HTPC works well, since I have it set to boot into WMC and rarely have to come out of it, but when I do come out of it, it is a nightmare. Now it is in a stretched mode and I cant see any of the desktop icons or the taskbar, just the middle portion.

I know the TV is on 1080x1920 @ 60Hz as it keeps telling me so, as Samsung TV's do! All my other devices play 1080p quality video on the same screen without any issues whatsoever (PS3, ROKU-XS, etc).

All help is welcome, thank you!
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post #2 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 04:21 PM
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DLP will never get a perfect fit. This is a limitation of DLP technology as this is a projection TV.

I have a DLP as well.
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post #3 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 04:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

DLP will never get a perfect fit. This is a limitation of DLP technology as this is a projection TV.

I have a DLP as well.

So are you saying that there is no fix for this issue? Or is there some workaround?

How do I get a perfect fit in WMC then? I'm pretty sure that if it can provide a good fit in one application then why not in the others? I'll post some pictures for better clarifications once i get home!

I love the DLP picture quality, I have a LCD and a Plasma upstairs, will try on those and see if it gets fixed!
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post #4 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 04:27 PM
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You need to adjust your resolution in control panel or the driver software for your GPU.

You may also want to take the AVR out of the circuit temporarily to adjust it then put it back into the circuit although that may not make a difference.

BTW, the way you have them daisey chained is the correct way to do it.

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post #5 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 04:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

You need to adjust your resolution in control panel or the driver software for your GPU.

You may also want to take the AVR out of the circuit temporarily to adjust it then put it back into the circuit although that may not make a difference.

BTW, the way you have them daisey chained is the correct way to do it.

By "adjust the resolution" if you mean changing it from 1080p to something else on the PC yes I have tried it to multiple resolutions and with no effect!

How do i do this on the TV? I don't want to mess up the TV display for other media equipment connected to it.
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post #6 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 04:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abhi.ko View Post

So are you saying that there is no fix for this issue? Or is there some workaround?

How do I get a perfect fit in WMC then? I'm pretty sure that if it can provide a good fit in one application then why not in the others? I'll post some pictures for better clarifications once i get home!

I love the DLP picture quality, I have a LCD and a Plasma upstairs, will try on those and see if it gets fixed!

Wmc will be near perfect if setup correctly. Your desktop and internet will likely always be slightly off. Again this is a limitation of dlp. Plenty of threads on this at avs if you are interested.
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post #7 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 04:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

Wmc will be near perfect if setup correctly. Your desktop and internet will likely always be slightly off. Again this is a limitation of dlp. Plenty of threads on this at avs if you are interested.

Thank you for that! So no fix for that then heh! That sucks but now I know at least it is nothing I did!
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post #8 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 04:54 PM
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Not to be picky but it's a standard 1920x1080p (60Hz) resolution you want to be set to on the video as well as setting the CCC for 0% overscan. That said, Samsung's can be tricky as to which input you use and it's input NAME assignment -- read the TV manual as the wrong HDMI input may default to overscan if it's not per the manual. As a test, connect directly to the right HDMI input on your TV using 1920x1080. Once you have that working, you can bring in the rest of your consumer devices and the AVR.
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post #9 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 05:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Hornfeck View Post

Not to be picky but it's a standard 1920x1080p (60Hz) resolution you want to be set to on the video as well as setting the CCC for 0% overscan. That said, Samsung's can be tricky as to which input you use and it's input NAME assignment -- read the TV manual as the wrong HDMI input may default to overscan if it's not per the manual. As a test, connect directly to the right HDMI input on your TV using 1920x1080. Once you have that working, you can bring in the rest of your consumer devices and the AVR.

HDMI1 works perfectly on my Samsung LCD.

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post #10 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 05:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Hornfeck View Post

Not to be picky but it's a standard 1920x1080p (60Hz) resolution you want to be set to on the video as well as setting the CCC for 0% overscan. That said, Samsung's can be tricky as to which input you use and it's input NAME assignment -- read the TV manual as the wrong HDMI input may default to overscan if it's not per the manual. As a test, connect directly to the right HDMI input on your TV using 1920x1080. Once you have that working, you can bring in the rest of your consumer devices and the AVR.

That is an awesome suggestion. I found this (probably while you were typing this) but it pretty much says the same thing as you mentioned here!

Thank you so much.

One quick question though, if that works (lets assume for right now it does, as I'm not home to try this immediately) how do I do what you suggested here -
Quote:
Once you have that working, you can bring in the rest of your consumer devices and the AVR.

- can you explain a bit more please!

If it works without the AVR then does than mean that we cannot get the AVR back into the equation later? Or can we? I love the sound quality provided by the AVR especially for my blu-ray and MKV rips!

Now i feel a little more optimistic! Would have Rep'd if there was something like that here! Let me know if there is something similar here (i'm new to AVS).
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post #11 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 05:12 PM - Thread Starter
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How about something like this utility - PowerStrip 3.9? Would this help?
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post #12 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 05:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abhi.ko View Post

That is an awesome suggestion. I found this (probably while you were typing this) but it pretty much says the same thing as you mentioned here!

Thank you so much.

One quick question though, if that works (lets assume for right now it does, as I'm not home to try this immediately) how do I do what you suggested here - - can you explain a bit more please!

If it works without the AVR then does than mean that we cannot get the AVR back into the equation later? Or can we? I love the sound quality provided by the AVR especially for my blu-ray and MKV rips!

Now i feel a little more optimistic! Would have Rep'd if there was something like that here! Let me know if there is something similar here (i'm new to AVS).

Labeling the input can make a pretty big difference on LCD/LED/Plasma but in my experience doesn't do much for DLP. Its a great suggestion though and easy to try so report back if it works.
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post #13 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 05:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abhi.ko View Post

How about something like this utility - PowerStrip 3.9? Would this help?

Just adjust the overscan on the desktop. It won't be perfect but it will be plenty usable.
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post #14 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 05:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

Just adjust the overscan on the desktop. It won't be perfect but it will be plenty usable.

If you are talking about adjusting the overscan using the CCC I've done that multiple times! does not have the desired result!
That screenshot was from the DLP TV manual, I will try and see if it works, hopefully it will!
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post #15 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 05:36 PM
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Originally Posted by abhi.ko View Post

If you are talking about adjusting the overscan using the CCC I've done that multiple times! does not have the desired result!

Right. And what I am saying is that it may never have the desired result on your DLP. It should be close, but not quite perfect.

I have a Samsung DLP. Trust me. I have been there and done that. The desktop will never be perfect but luckily your playback of actual movies should be. Again, this is a limitation of the DLP and not your HTPC. Try it one other TVs for confirmation if you like.
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post #16 of 53 Old 02-17-2012, 05:44 PM
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Don't use HDMI3/DVI on the TV. Use HDMI1 and let your AVR do the switching. There really only needs to be one input into the TV and HDMI1 is it. All other HDMI inputs should go into your AVR. That instruction for the TV manual looks a litte familiar (been a long time since I looked at my TV manual) but I think it only applies to that port.

Assassin has a Samsung DLP. I'm sure he knows more about your situation than me.

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post #17 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 09:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Sammy2 View Post

Don't use HDMI3/DVI on the TV. Use HDMI1 and let your AVR do the switching. There really only needs to be one input into the TV and HDMI1 is it. All other HDMI inputs should go into your AVR. That instruction for the TV manual looks a litte familiar (been a long time since I looked at my TV manual) but I think it only applies to that port.

Assassin has a Samsung DLP. I'm sure he knows more about your situation than me.

Don't think you understood what I mentioned in the OP! I have 4 devices hooked up to the TV using the AVR and it works fine except for this one issue with the HTPC not displaying full screen on the TV!

So you telling me to do what I have done already doesn't help sorry! I'm trying to solve the problem with the HTPC not utilizing the whole on screen real estate here - do you have a fix for that?

It pays sometimes to look at the manual Sammy, even if you consider yourself the expert! I don't doubt Assasin has a DLP nor that he knows what he is talking about (thanks for the vote of confidence though)!

I don't know whether you have tried what Andrew suggested Assasin, if not then you should, because Andrew's suggestion did fix the problem for me - so thank you for that again Andrew - that was a great suggestion. I had posted this elsewhere as well and got the same suggestion and decided to give it a try despite Sammy here sternly telling me not to and it did work for my scenario! Now I'm wondering how to get the AVR back into the mix because I love the sound quality provided by that for my Blu-rays and MKV's!

I don't have a optical audio port (S/PDIF) on my mobo, so probably will have to invest in a sound card then..right? If there is another way to do this please let me know! This is my motherboard - ECS A75-F-M2
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post #18 of 53 Old 02-18-2012, 11:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abhi.ko View Post

I don't have a optical audio port (S/PDIF) on my mobo, so probably will have to invest in a sound card then..right? If there is another way to do this please let me know! This is my motherboard - ECS A75-F-M2

S/PDIF would be a step backwards. Both your AVR and your APU support HD audio (DTS-HD/TrueHD) bitstreaming via HDMI.
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post #19 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 06:59 AM - Thread Starter
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S/PDIF would be a step backwards. Both your AVR and your APU support HD audio (DTS-HD/TrueHD) bitstreaming via HDMI.

Thank you. I'm aware of that and that is how the system was connected via HDMI to the receiver and the receiver to the TV via HDMI again. If you read the posts above especially the OP then you would see that the problem with that.

So now we figured a solution to that and took the receiver out of the equation and the display is fine. The HTPC is now connected directly to the HDMI 3 port on the TV as per Andrew's suggestion.

Now the problem is the audio part as my TV does not support ARC I believe it is HDMI 1.3. Also I don't want to use the TV speakers for audio I would want to use my AVR and 7.1 speaker set up instead.

Are you saying that even though there is no audio ports other than normal RCA jacks I can still get the HD sound over the receiver without having to buy a sound card. If so please explain how, I'm happy to try what you suggest.
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post #20 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 07:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abhi.ko View Post

I don't know whether you have tried what Andrew suggested Assasin, if not then you should, because Andrew's suggestion did fix the problem for me - so thank you for that again Andrew - that was a great suggestion. I had posted this elsewhere as well and got the same suggestion and decided to give it a try despite Sammy here sternly telling me not to and it did work for my scenario! Now I'm wondering how to get the AVR back into the mix because I love the sound quality provided by that for my Blu-rays and MKV's!

Of course I have tried this. Doesn't work on my DLP, my friend's DLP or my in-laws DLP (all Samsung).

Consider yourself fortunate that you have a display that this worked on.
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post #21 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 11:12 AM
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This isn't about ME, guys... I'm just passing onn what I've read on this forum about the Samsung chasis and how it will swtich to NO OVERSCAN when it's in "PC" mode via setting of the name! (Apparently it's a "reserved" name in their book as opposed to a random character field like My DVR, Oppo-DVD, or XboX, they evaluate.)

I said 'as a test'. Now that you know the Samsung HDMI3 input has different charactistics, hook the TV back to the AVR and the PC back as well. This time the PC should play just fine at full screen. When you switch your AVR to other components they should also be correct. I suspect the TV was using overscan (since it wasn't "PC") and you simply couldn't tell the other components (BR, Xbox) were being stretched off the screen as you could the Windows desktop. (Video cal discs like Digital Video Essentials, AVIA, and AVIA-2 would present video test images showing the percentage of overscan.)

I hope this goes smoothly - you should be able to keep the HDMI-Audio as before and this TV input should make the video at no-overscan. If you find the video isn't right, see how you have the Yammy set as far as video scaling. Since you're outputting full 1920x1080 from the computer you want NO video processing by the Yammy for that input. How you have the others set would depend on their individual output capability. Only use video processing (upscaling) in the Yammy for those inputs (consumer devices like game consoles) that do not output 1920x1080 themselves... if you pass resolutions other than 1920x1080 the TV will be 'adjusting' itself every time you switch the AVR! In that case, have the Yammy upconvert to 1080p and all is common to the Samsung.

As far as ARC, that isn't what you want either... just reconnect the PC to AVR to TV. Also, be sure the Yammy is not trying to pass the audio through to the TV. You want the HDMI audio to stop at the AVR -- had you already been getting the DD, DTS, DolbyTruHD & DTS-MA detected on the Yammy? I hope so since this issue is all about the video over-scan.
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post #22 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 11:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Hornfeck View Post

This isn't about ME, guys... I'm just passing onn what I've read on this forum about the Samsung chasis and how it will swtich to NO OVERSCAN when it's in "PC" mode via setting of the name! (Apparently it's a "reserved" name in their book as opposed to a random character field like My DVR, Oppo-DVD, or XboX, they evaluate.)

I said 'as a test'. Now that you know the Samsung HDMI3 input has different charactistics, hook the TV back to the AVR and the PC back as well. This time the PC should play just fine at full screen. When you switch your AVR to other components they should also be correct. I suspect the TV was using overscan (since it wasn't "PC") and you simply couldn't tell the other components (BR, Xbox) were being stretched off the screen as you could the Windows desktop. (Video cal discs like Digital Video Essentials, AVIA, and AVIA-2 would present video test images showing the percentage of overscan.)

I hope this goes smoothly - you should be able to keep the HDMI-Audio as before and this TV input should make the video at no-overscan. If you find the video isn't right, see how you have the Yammy set as far as video scaling. Since you're outputting full 1920x1080 from the computer you want NO video processing by the Yammy for that input. How you have the others set would depend on their individual output capability. Only use video processing (upscaling) in the Yammy for those inputs (consumer devices like game consoles) that do not output 1920x1080 themselves... if you pass resolutions other than 1920x1080 the TV will be 'adjusting' itself every time you switch the AVR! In that case, have the Yammy upconvert to 1080p and all is common to the Samsung.

As far as ARC, that isn't what you want either... just reconnect the PC to AVR to TV. Also, be sure the Yammy is not trying to pass the audio through to the TV. You want the HDMI audio to stop at the AVR -- had you already been getting the DD, DTS, DolbyTruHD & DTS-MA detected on the Yammy? I hope so since this issue is all about the video over-scan.

Thanks for the explanation! Here is how I had the connectors hooked up:

PS3, ROKU, HTPC, STB ----> All hooked up via HDMI to HDMI IN ports 1,2,3 and 5 respectively on the Yamaha AVR ----> HDMI Out from the AVR to HDMI 1 on the Samsung. While connected like this is when I had the display issues!

Now I just removed the HTPC from the HDMI 3 port on the Yamaha AVR and hooked it straight to the HDMI 3/DVI port on the Samsung DLP as per your suggestion. That is how I have it now, the display is full screen and the audio is not connected anywhere!

So if I understand the above post correctly then now what you are saying is just connect it back into the HDMI 3 slot as before on the AVR and leave everything else as it is, and the display should be full screen still, and the older issue will not reoccur?

Or should I change the HDMI OUT from the AVR to go to HDMI3/DVI on the TV instead of the HDMI 1??

Sorry kinda confused there! Thanks again for the input, I appreciate it!
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post #23 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 12:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abhi.ko View Post

Thank you. I'm aware of that and that is how the system was connected via HDMI to the receiver and the receiver to the TV via HDMI again. If you read the posts above especially the OP then you would see that the problem with that.

I meant after you worked out how to add your AVR back into the chain.

If you can't work out that problem, I would recommend buying a cheap HDMI video card capable of bitstreaming HD audio ($50 max) and run one to the TV and one to the receiver.


Quote:
Originally Posted by abhi.ko View Post

Are you saying that even though there is no audio ports other than normal RCA jacks I can still get the HD sound over the receiver without having to buy a sound card. If so please explain how, I'm happy to try what you suggest.

You could do it with the normal RCA jacks if your receiver had multichannel inputs; unfortunately, it doesn't.

Back to your original issue:

Make sure you have video scaling turned off in the receiver and then connect the HTPC back to to it. If you still have the scaling issue, connect the receiver to HDMI 3 on the TV.

See page 94 of your manual to turn off scaling:
Video -> Processing -> Off

or

Video -> Processing -> On
Video -> Resolution -> Through (or you can try 1080p)
Video -> Aspect -> Through
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post #24 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 03:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abhi.ko View Post

Thanks for the explanation! Here is how I had the connectors hooked up:

PS3, ROKU, HTPC, STB ----> All hooked up via HDMI to HDMI IN ports 1,2,3 and 5 respectively on the Yamaha AVR ----> HDMI Out from the AVR to HDMI 1 on the Samsung. While connected like this is when I had the display issues!

Now I just removed the HTPC from the HDMI 3 port on the Yamaha AVR and hooked it straight to the HDMI 3/DVI port on the Samsung DLP as per your suggestion. That is how I have it now, the display is full screen and the audio is not connected anywhere!

So if I understand the above post correctly then now what you are saying is just connect it back into the HDMI 3 slot as before on the AVR and leave everything else as it is, and the display should be full screen still, and the older issue will not reoccur?

Or should I change the HDMI OUT from the AVR to go to HDMI3/DVI on the TV instead of the HDMI 1??

Sorry kinda confused there! Thanks again for the input, I appreciate it!

Now that the TV is working right using HDMI 3 as the input keep using it - your PC needs this! My theory is the other devices (roku, STB, etc) will benefit from using the TVs HDMI 3 input as well.

Using your format above, connect the PC HDMI out to the Yammy input 3 as you originally had it. Then connect the Yammy HDMI out to the TV on its HDMI-3 you were just using to give you the full screen image. Do nothing else but try your PC and the other devices - all may be well... especially the PC. If not, reread my other post about upscaling on the Yammy, your audio format and what vladd stated about your processing...
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post #25 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 10:38 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you Andrew and vladd!

I've tried all the above suggested methods, and I've decided to settle on leaving the HTPC connected directly to the TV's HDMI 3 port and using the HDMI 1 on the TV for the AVR through which all other devices would be connected!

Now this means I would need a sound card for my HTPC to get HD quality audio through the AVR! What should I be shopping for features wise on a sound card - links would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!
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post #26 of 53 Old 02-19-2012, 10:50 PM
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But why? What happened when you ran the PC through the Yammy and then to the tv? Have you cycled power on them since?
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post #27 of 53 Old 02-20-2012, 09:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Hornfeck View Post

But why? What happened when you ran the PC through the Yammy and then to the tv? Have you cycled power on them since?

Well I tried running this:

1) HTPC (HDMI) ----> Yamaha (HDMI 3) ----> Samsung DLP (HDMI 3/DVI named as PC)

This setup works fine for the HTPC but for the other stuff it is not the best picture quality I felt (not talking about resolution), the STB, Roku and PS3 has much brighter and better picture, again not resolution, when connected to the HDMI 1 port, I felt. But resolution wise it served the purpose of filling the screen, so that worked but I don't want to sacrifice the quality of other components for that!

I tried this as well, as vladd suggested:

2) Turing the Video Processing - Off and turning it On but leave both Aspect Ratio and Resolution as Through from the on screen GUI! This was while the devices were connected as mentioned above, but it did not change anything! Then I switched to my old connection, (HDMI 1 on the Samsung instead of HDMI 3) and turned Video Processing Off but it did not work either!

Yes I have cycled power for all devices while doing this (but not sure whether I did it each time) I can try again if you want and check if that changes anything!

But can you also suggest a few video cards based on what Andrew said here -
Quote:


If you can't work out that problem, I would recommend buying a cheap HDMI video card capable of bitstreaming HD audio ($50 max) and run one to the TV and one to the receiver.

what outputs other than S/PDIF would I be looking for on that card - any links would be very helpful!

Thanks!
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post #28 of 53 Old 02-20-2012, 10:06 AM
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Acutally it was vladd who'd mentioned that - I have confidence in the A6-3650 APU with the HD6530D graphics section to do a very good job! Adding a $50 video card, while capable for HTPC, would be less capable than your current GPU. YES, I realize he was trying to offer a simple alternative to your conundrum... but that aside you couldn't run both HDMI output... or could you? Really, I think they'd not operate simultaneously although they may combine to function at a higher level albeit with a single output. I don't think that's a reasonable option given your current HD6530D's capabilities.

I looked and your mobo does have a SPDIF header on the corner near the SATA headers. You could buy/build a 2-pin cable and attach an RCA jack to provide coaxial SPDIF connection... again, totally unnecessary when you run the PC to your Yammy (on to HDMI-3 on the Samsung), right?

I don't think you have an issue with everything connected - you haven't mentioned they don't all play well together (picture and sound when selected on the Yammy), just that you believe the image brightness is sharper on the consumer boxes through the Samsung HDMI-1, right? This may be due to the TV settings, or theme the Samsung has set for HDMI-1... often there's a "store" mode which cranks up the brightness & contrast to compete in a brightly illuminated store environment. This is NOT how anyone should watch their set at home!

I'd suggest you take a close look at these devices, what their native output resolution is (it may be the TV is having to scale them on HDMI-1 which makes HDMI-3 seem to have a worse image)... recall above I mentioned this about scaling your video devices in the Yammy if they didn't natively output 1920x1080p... it seems there are many models of Roku, many don't support 1080p, PS3 does if you have it configured correctly and your STB** could be a switch on the back or in a setup menu.

**STB - have you looked into renting a CableCard from your provider, buying a HDHomeRun Prime (or Hauppauge 2650) to ditch the STB and use your new HTPC for all your TV viewing and PVR functionality that Windows Media Center would afford?
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post #29 of 53 Old 02-20-2012, 10:22 AM
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You should be able to add a discrete GPU like a Radeon 6450 and use the HDMI output simultaneously along with your onboard graphics. As long as you disable Crossfire in BIOS, they should present as two separate video adaptors in Windows. With AMD graphics, you will only be able to send audio through one HDMI adaptor do you would set that one to be the one connected to the AVR.

That said, I completely agree with Andrew that it is unnecessary to do that (and you would be making things more complicated). As he mentioned, it just sounds like you need to do some calibration for connecting to HDMI 3
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Oh I totally missed the point that vladd was suggesting (yes it was vladd who suggested that) adding another VIDEO card, I was thinking SOUND CARD all this time (even when I typed video card above), sorry about that.

Yes, I was asking for a Sound Card which would let me connect the HTPC to the AVR to pass HD audio to it, so I can hear the sound out of my speakers! I was thinking S/PDIF would be the next best option for this since I am using the HDMI for the video on the TV! Is that right? Should I get something like this for that and pass audio through the optical connector to my AVR? How bad would be the overall quality compared to HDMI, would I still be able to get 7.1 channel sound effectively?

I am perfectly happy with the A6 APU (Llano) and its i-GPU for the needs I have from this glorified media player (HTPC)! I don't game on this or do anything that requires a discrete GPU (I have a OC'd i7 based rig for all that)! So video card is not what I was shooting for, it was a sound card!

But your suggestion is very helpful vladd, I did not not know that you could add a discrete GPU and pass only audio through that! That is great to know, but would the AVR have problems with that setup, using it for only audio through HDMI!

@ Andrew - To answer your questions, yes I have calibrated my display to be different than the in-store settings! It has been toned down, it is set to how we like it! Except for the STB everything else is 1080p quality video, the STB is on 720p for some reason, will check that switch if it has one! I have a Hauppauge 1213 WinTV-HVR-2250 PCI-E x1 Dual TV Tuner for my OTA channels till recently, I got the cable just a week back when I switched from Comcast to AT&T U-verse! I am not very keen on spending more on a Cable card tuner like Ceton, because we are not big TV viewers anyways, we stream the content we need! But I did ask the guy who came to install U-verse about a cable card and he said that they don't provide one, I'm not sure about that though! So I would stick with this STB!

Another reason why I did not keep the HDMI3 for all the components is that the screen is not completely filled there is a small (tiny, hardly noticeable) black bar on the left side of the screen which is fine with me when it comes to HTPC viewing as this is much better than the strech/shrunk view that I used to get before, but I do not what to ruin it for the other stuff!
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