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2010 Mac Mini HDMI handshake issues

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
So, I picked up one of the new 2010 Mac Mini's yesterday and I seem to having a unique problem (at least insofar as I haven't been able to find a person online with the same issue).

Okay, here goes:

I have my Mac Mini hooked up to an Anthem D2 processor via HDMI. If I turn on my tv (Pioneer Kuro) and processor and then the Mac Mini, everything is hunky dory, audio and video come through over HDMI, clean as a whistle.

If I switch inputs on my processor, though, and then switch back to the Mac Mini input, the screen is black and (using VNC) I can see that the Mac's display options no longer register the D2 as a detected display like it does when everything is working.

If I put the Mac to sleep before switching inputs, then switch back and then wake the Mac, I have the same black screen. I tried (again, using VNC) switching the audio output to Optical from HDMI and that comes through fine, even if there is a black screen. This makes me believe I have an HDMI handshake issue going on.

When I reboot the Mac, even if I leave everything else on, it works fine again. It's just a bit of a hassle to have to power down and up every time I want to use the mac. I had an older Mac Mini hooked up for years, with an HDMI-DVI cable to the same setup and never had an issue of this kind.

Basically, I'm hoping that someone has any kind of idea that might work for me that I could use to perhaps force a new handshake or any other interesting theories.

I am prepared to buy an HDMI Detective because at this point I'm figuring that will solve my problems, but before I drop $130, I thought I'd pick the brains of the community at large. Any ideas/theories are welcome.
post #2 of 24
Quote:


Basically, I'm hoping that someone has any kind of idea that might work for me that I could use to perhaps force a new handshake or any other interesting theories.

Make sure you read through the thread Ultimate (Dennis) started, it's titled "2010 Mac Mini + Samsung HDTV = problems" but it's really about problems with the new HDMI port:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1262770

He's connecting directly to an HDTV, but a few users have reported success sending HDMI through an AVR first. It would probably help all of us if everyone with an HDMI connection issue posted on that thread, or this thread, rather than starting their own. That way we might get a better handle on which models and external devices are most commonly affected.

I can't be of any help to you since I didn't buy an HDMI mini.
post #3 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by chefklc View Post

Make sure you read through the thread Ultimate (Dennis) started, it's titled "2010 Mac Mini + Samsung HDTV = problems" but it's really about problems with the new HDMI port

Feel free to rename that thread to something more appropriate.

Dennis
post #4 of 24
I have a 2010 Mini connected via HDMI to a Denon 4310 which outputs video to a pioneer kuro display.

I have not experienced the handshake issues, when switching between the mini and other inputs.
post #5 of 24
Dennis / Tim

For what it's worth, I'm experiencing the same handshake issue. My setup is the same as Tim...Anthem D2 connected to a Pioneer Kuro. Just wanted you to know that it's not you imagination!

Tony
post #6 of 24
I have an AVM 50 connected to a Panasonic Plasma. Looks great but when exit a game or a movie I get a blank blue screen. I have to reboot to get back to my mac mini. mac Mini is connected to AVM 50 via hdmi. Any suggestions?
post #7 of 24
Some, like PSU Lion, have solved this issue with a Gefen HDMI Detective. Dennis seems to have solved his handshake issue over HDMI by making sure iTunes is closed before switching away. That's it for the ideas so far.
post #8 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by chefklc View Post

Some, like PSU Lion, have solved this issue with a Gefen HDMI Detective. Dennis seems to have solved his handshake issue over HDMI by making sure iTunes is closed before switching away. That's it for the ideas so far.

I have a similar problem, but slightly different problem.

I have the 2010 mac mini connected to a Rotel RSX-1560 and the mac min has trouble detecting the Rotel at times. Even conducting a rescan does not detect the Rotel some times. After several re-boots it detects the Rotel.

In addition I used TightVNC to control the mini on a PC laptop and when it does detect the Rotel through the HDMI it rescales the video display from 1080P to maybe 480P on my VNC connection.

Any thoughts?
post #9 of 24
ERAU23,

I have a rotel 1570 processor. I have been thinking about purchasing a Mac Mini as a media server however the handshaking errors on the web have me frankly, a little scared! Rotel has never been a HDMI leader either!

Have you considered routing HDMI directly to your TV for video and routing audio through digital toskink to the Rotel for audio?
post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradise_newf View Post

ERAU23,

I have a rotel 1570 processor. I have been thinking about purchasing a Mac Mini as a media server however the handshaking errors on the web have me frankly, a little scared! Rotel has never been a HDMI leader either!

Have you considered routing HDMI directly to your TV for video and routing audio through digital toskink to the Rotel for audio?

That's what I've done with my 2009 Mini because of handshake issues I had when connected directly to my Denon AVR. But I guess this is a different problem with these 2010 units and built-in HDMI ports.
post #11 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradise_newf View Post

ERAU23,

I have a rotel 1570 processor. I have been thinking about purchasing a Mac Mini as a media server however the handshaking errors on the web have me frankly, a little scared! Rotel has never been a HDMI leader either!

Have you considered routing HDMI directly to your TV for video and routing audio through digital toskink to the Rotel for audio?

I called Apple and they confirm that the Mac Mini is operating per design. That is, they never intended the unit to be use solely as a music server direct to a AVR via HDMI without a display being active in the path.

I wanted the HDMI of the MAC Mini direct to my Rotel to act as a high resolution (192Khz) music server without having my plasma display on (headless) and controlled via an Ipad or Ipod touch.

As it is, the best possible output is 96khz in a headless configuration is via the optical output of the MAC Mini. I believe the the only constraint for getting 192khz out of optical output of a MAC is the internal sound card that Apple currently uses. I'm hoping that Apple will make an improvement in the sound card in the coming releases and updates to the products.

I currently have two configuration. One using the MAC Mini HDMI and Plex to the Rotel and on the Plamsa for high resolution using Itunes. Another configuration using the MAC Mini Optical out and both sound great.

The only issue that most people should be aware of is Rotel's MUX / De-mux configuration and the need to properly sequence your configuration. For instance I have my MAC Mini HDMI configured as video 1 on my Rotel 1560. Therefore for the MAC Mini to conduct the HDMI handshaking with my Plasma I need to have video 1 selected on the Rotel before the MAC Mini starts the handshanking precedure otherwise the MAc Mini will revert to other output configurations. So using my Harmony remote, I just make sure the set-up has the Rotel turning on first with Video 1 selected and then power on the Mac Mini. In this way the Mac Mini works everytime without the need to go into Midi Audio Set-up. I also have the Mac Mini SPDIF optical output into Video 2 on the Rotel which does not need the handshaking that the HDMI needs so sequencing is not important.

So, don't let this small issue stop you from getting the new Mac Mini, it's great. It really does changes the way you listen to music.
post #12 of 24
Quote:


I called Apple and they confirm that the Mac Mini is operating per design. That is, they never intended the unit to be use solely as a music server direct to a AVR via HDMI without a display being active in the path.

I wanted the HDMI of the Mac Mini direct to my Rotel to act as a high resolution (192Khz) music server without having my plasma display on (headless) and controlled via an Ipad or Ipod touch.

ERAU23, first, I want to say it's impressive to read how you solved your problem, and second, it seems to me like a Gefen HDMI Detective could also have solved that problem for you, fooling your Mac into thinking it is still actively connected to your display...you could leave your Mini on 24/7, wouldn't have to re-establish a "handshake" when you switched away each time, and that way you could run everything over HDMI, get rid of the optical cable, run headless when you want and control all via an iOS device. But the downside, as you're probably already aware, is that iTunes won't switch AudioMIDI settings for you on the fly when you do want to play those high res audio files instead of 16/44.1 or AC-3/DTS--hence why expensive niche third-party software programs have popped up to do just that for you (without having to close iTunes, change MIDI settings, then re-open iTunes.)

Now that you've done the hard work--setting up both optical and HDMI into your AVR and programming the two configurations with your Harmony--you might not want to consider the Gefen, but in my house I keep our main HT Mac on 24/7 and basically never turn it off. In your setup with the Harmony you have to boot it up and shut it down every day, right?
post #13 of 24
I'm currently using a 160GB apple TV as a media server. It simply works all the time.

I also want to use a Mac Mini headless with iTunes running all the time. However, I also wanted the ability to rip my DVD collection and watch movies periodically. I think I may wait until a newer version of the mac mini is released. Then again, is this really's apple's fault? I debugged HDMI issues with my older Rotel 1069 and now 1570 processor for weeks with an Oppo bluray player and a KURO 141FD monitor.

What I did discover was that certain mass-produced brand name products like Pioneer Elite and high-end Yamaha receivers were less prone to HDMI handshaking issues than "boutique" brands like NAD, Rotel or Arcam. So, I think I should avoid this for the time being.

Thanks for your response however. I really appreciate it!
post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by chefklc View Post

ERAU23, first, I want to say it's impressive to read how you solved your problem, and second, it seems to me like a Gefen HDMI Detective could also have solved that problem for you, fooling your Mac into thinking it is still actively connected to your display...you could leave your Mini on 24/7, wouldn't have to re-establish a "handshake" when you switched away each time, and that way you could run everything over HDMI, get rid of the optical cable, run headless when you want and control all via an iOS device. But the downside, as you're probably already aware, is that iTunes won't switch AudioMIDI settings for you on the fly when you do want to play those high res audio files instead of 16/44.1 or AC-3/DTS--hence why expensive niche third-party software programs have popped up to do just that for you (without having to close iTunes, change MIDI settings, then re-open iTunes.)

Now that you've done the hard work--setting up both optical and HDMI into your AVR and programming the two configurations with your Harmony--you might not want to consider the Gefen, but in my house I keep our main HT Mac on 24/7 and basically never turn it off. In your setup with the Harmony you have to boot it up and shut it down every day, right?

To your point, yes the Gefen would solve my problem. I have considered it in the past and may reconsider in the future. I just have a little bit of an aversion to a "Kludge" solution. It's my own hang-up so to speak and it has to do with having a clean and neat install.....The best solution is a set it and forget it solution on the Mac Mini or have two configurable HDMI (Like what the new Oppo BD-90 will have) than allows one for audio and one for video or as I mentioned in my previous post Apple could upgrade the sound card such that SPDIF / Optical could output high resolution / defintion audio.

With the Harmony remote I can configure it to leave the Mac Mini on all the time as well like what I do with my Fios HD cable box so that it can record shows 24/7. However, the MAC Mini checks the HDMI line often to ensure it is still has an active connection. So I would have to keep the MAC Mini, Rotel on and selected the video 1, and the Plasma all on 24/7 for this to work.

I wait Apple to solve this issue by changing the design requirement. This seems reasonable (but, maybe not likely) given how many people are using the Mac as media servers of some sorts.

Anyways, thanks for the feedback and perspective, these fourms are a great source of this type of information.
post #15 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by ERAU23 View Post
To your point, yes the Gefen would solve my problem. I have considered it in the past and may reconsider in the future. I just have a little bit of an aversion to a "Kludge" solution. It's my own hang-up so to speak and it has to do with having a clean and neat install.
I am having the same issue with my iMac and I couldn't have agreed more and said it better myself. Totally feel you on this.

I ended up going with the Monoprice adapter that doesn't have the handshake issue and ordered 50ft optical toslink cable for audio. On a side note, Monoprice do not carry a 40ft or 45ft optical toslink and since I was trying to match the length of the hdmi cable, I was unsuccessful. So much for a clean install
post #16 of 24
Erau23:

I have a few questions re: your Rotel setup. You seem knowledgable and you have a very similar setup to me. I'd love to be able to order a MacMini before Christmas. I'm questioning why I would go down this HDMI troubleshooting road again since the Apple TV works flawlessly connected directly to my TV through component video and through toslink audio to the Rotel 1570.

Re: your HDMI direct to the Rotel setup:
You must be experiencing the 2-3 sec HDMI audio delay that Rotel's are experiencing when using HDMI audio? In other words, the first few seconds of a song is cut as the receiver attempts to lock onto the digital signal.
Are you experiencing this?

If I connect the HDMI directly to the TV and use toslink audio direct to the Rotel, will I still be hampered with handshaking issues? I'm only interested in a max of 96Khz audio transfers. Will iTunes correctly switch the audiomidi settings using this connection method? I would like the ability to operate iTunes without the monitor using the Remote app for my iPad. But, would also like to use flex for watching DVD images.

Thanks again for all your help!
post #17 of 24
I took the plunge and ordered a MacMini today with HDMI.
I want to rid my life of optical discs. This could indeed be a project with the HDMI wonky standard. However, I'm going direct to the TV with the video and audio will have to go to the Rotel via toslink.
post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradise_newf View Post

I took the plunge and ordered a MacMini today with HDMI.

Let us know how things work out. I'm seriously considering buying the new Mac Mini.
post #19 of 24
I will for sure. Let's hope for the best!
post #20 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradise_newf View Post
Erau23:

I have a few questions re: your Rotel setup. You seem knowledgable and you have a very similar setup to me. I'd love to be able to order a MacMini before Christmas. I'm questioning why I would go down this HDMI troubleshooting road again since the Apple TV works flawlessly connected directly to my TV through component video and through toslink audio to the Rotel 1570.

Re: your HDMI direct to the Rotel setup:
You must be experiencing the 2-3 sec HDMI audio delay that Rotel's are experiencing when using HDMI audio? In other words, the first few seconds of a song is cut as the receiver attempts to lock onto the digital signal.
Are you experiencing this?

If I connect the HDMI directly to the TV and use toslink audio direct to the Rotel, will I still be hampered with handshaking issues? I'm only interested in a max of 96Khz audio transfers. Will iTunes correctly switch the audiomidi settings using this connection method? I would like the ability to operate iTunes without the monitor using the Remote app for my iPad. But, would also like to use flex for watching DVD images.

Thanks again for all your help!
Yes, I'm experiencing the dreaded Rotel delay and it drives my wife made when she is listening to our system. This is despite the fact that Rotel put out a firmware update to fix this issue. I have to say that in the beginning I did have my system configured in such a way that highlighted the problem even more. Now it's less noticeable but still there. Rotel is generally responsive to customer feedback and will further improve this issue.

In the configuration that you suggest, HDMI direct to a TV and toslink to your Rotel you will not experience the handshaking problem. Itunes will not switch the audio midi settings, however there are a few Apple scripts floating around on www.Computeraudiophile.com that will (with various levels of success) switch. Plex has this capability, but has not work out all of the bugs in the latest release. In fact Plex has a nice iPad tool that I understand works great for doing exactly what you're looking for. I have not tried it yet because I'm waiting for the 2nd generation iPad.

I think you're going to really like the MAC Mini and all of its capabilities and reliability. Plex is stable, but everything is not fully implemented and a few features are not working correctly yet. But, the ability to stream Netflix, Hulu, iTunes and others with a really nice looking and stable GUI is exciting.

I have my MAC Mini hard wired to my local network via CAT6A on a gigabit switch and sharing my iTunes library with another computer. I did this as an experiment just to see how robust it would operate. My plan is to go to a server / NAS on my local network which will be a little cleaner. But I have to say the shared iTunes works great without a problem (Not sure about a wireless network shared iTunes).

Good luck and let us know when you get your new unit and walk us through your experience.
post #21 of 24
Only problem I've run into with Panasonic P54G10 is losing audio when the TV is turned off. Plex is set to use HDMI, but if the TV gets turned off while playing a movie, it switches to the internal speaker. The only way I've found to get it back is exit out to the plex menu, and then resume the movie. Normally this would be no big deal, except we have a 3 year old who likes to turn the TV off when he no longer wants to watch what we're all watching :-) Other than that, no issues with changing TV inputs or turning TV on and off. I should note that I'm not using iTunes at the moment, so its still possible that could cause problems.
post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by timchisholm View Post

So, I picked up one of the new 2010 Mac Mini's yesterday and I seem to having a unique problem (at least insofar as I haven't been able to find a person online with the same issue).

Okay, here goes:

I have my Mac Mini hooked up to an Anthem D2 processor via HDMI. If I turn on my tv (Pioneer Kuro) and processor and then the Mac Mini, everything is hunky dory, audio and video come through over HDMI, clean as a whistle.

If I switch inputs on my processor, though, and then switch back to the Mac Mini input, the screen is black and (using VNC) I can see that the Mac's display options no longer register the D2 as a detected display like it does when everything is working.

If I put the Mac to sleep before switching inputs, then switch back and then wake the Mac, I have the same black screen. I tried (again, using VNC) switching the audio output to Optical from HDMI and that comes through fine, even if there is a black screen. This makes me believe I have an HDMI handshake issue going on.

When I reboot the Mac, even if I leave everything else on, it works fine again. It's just a bit of a hassle to have to power down and up every time I want to use the mac. I had an older Mac Mini hooked up for years, with an HDMI-DVI cable to the same setup and never had an issue of this kind.

Basically, I'm hoping that someone has any kind of idea that might work for me that I could use to perhaps force a new handshake or any other interesting theories.

I am prepared to buy an HDMI Detective because at this point I'm figuring that will solve my problems, but before I drop $130, I thought I'd pick the brains of the community at large. Any ideas/theories are welcome.

timchisholm I have the AVM 50 and I am having the same problem. I have contacted Anthem. They provided me a beta firmware upgrade which did not solve the problem. By chance did you find a solutions?
post #23 of 24
post #24 of 24
I would like to know what the term Handshake issues mean,is this the same has aback hander.
Briefly I started off with a 2007 ysr old Mac Mini, and that`s what i am using now.
Since 2007 i have been through 3 brand new iMacs. The screen has been replaced 8 times,and the Graphics card once.
I thought great now i can buy a reliable computer. "WRONG"
I have done all the homework on this computer,and evan two editor`s said wait till the problem is fixed,and they evan said wait till the next version comes out.
This is ridiculous How can Apple sell these two computers has new.
I have never heard about this situation in the Consumer World.
My Dell Packard LCD 19" is just next to me,and I bought it with Mac Mini,and it`s still same has i bought.
I am Typing this on Samsung HDMI Monitor which is hooked up to the Mini via VGA To VGA
The Monitor cost me only £250 I went with a guy who was technical,and it did not take him 5 minutes to pick it.
Then after telling me all the tech stuff he said i would buy it.
To tell you the truth i can`t tell the difference between an Apple monitor.
So i am just going to take the two editor`s advice and wait till they announce the next Mac Mini.
Once they have got your money they use all the dirty tricks in the book to keep it.
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