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Radio Shack has a pushbutton audio/video switch (4-1) for about $20 that works perfectly for me. I've got two HD receivers and my progressive scan DVD player running through it. Can't beat the price, and there is no noticeable signal degradation.


Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks. Can you give me the part number? I can't find it on the rs web site, unless you're using a switch with 3 rca jacks, 2 audio and one video, as your component connectors. If so how well does it work?

Brian
 

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Let me understand this right. This switcher was made for analog video and stereo audio? So does this mean you are running your 3 component video cables into 1 video and 2 audio inputs for each signal, and then going from the video out and stereo audio out into the display?


I didn't think those things could handle the bandwidth necessary for HD.


Bernhard
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by bb1987:
Let me understand this right. This switcher was made for analog video and stereo audio? So does this mean you are running your 3 component video cables into 1 video and 2 audio inputs for each signal, and then going from the video out and stereo audio out into the display?


I didn't think those things could handle the bandwidth necessary for HD.


Bernhard
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I used the audio side of a cheapo radio shack switch for component video and it worked fine for HD. Of course, I needed 2nd switch for audio.


Mopey
 

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Yes, I am using the L/R audio, and the video, to switch component connections. It works great. There is no bandwidth limitation (at least not that affects HDTV reception) with the pushbutton switcher...it just changes contacts. It's comparable to having an RCA female-female connection....where are you going to lose signal?


If there is any signal degradation, I don't see it. I'm watching plenty of 1080i and some 720p programming on a 56" HDTV, and it looks awesome.


Chris
 

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To use the inexpensive RadioShack and other video switchers (must have both composite video and S-video connections):


Use an S-Video breakout adapter and you can use the S-video input to switch the left and right audio channels along with the componet video.


Inexpensively purchased from a2zcables.com.


S-video mini 4 pin to two BNC females. Then use BNC male to RCA female adapter and then can use with any RCA male terminated stereo cable.
 

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I have to agree with the Rat Shack switcher. I am very particular about picture quality. I bought a Rat Shack 2 way manual switch (15-1952)because I thought that for $15 it was worth a shot. I was going to go with the Audio Authority 954 for $250 but I wanted to try the $15 solution first. I had the wife go behind the TV and switch the cables between the switch and straight into the TV. The testing was blind on my side. (I didn't know which type of connection was showing up) I could not tell a difference between the two. For 1/2 hour (after the set had been warmed up for an hour) I had her switching back and forth. By the way we were using an RCA DTC-100 as the source.


I too questioned the bandwidth argument on these types of switches. I agree with R8der in that the connection is a "dumb" connection. It is just a coupling of the cables. I know that there is some signal loss when you couple cables but I could not distinguish the difference.


Dino



[This message has been edited by DinoT (edited 03-27-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
So what is the point of spending $250-$500 for a switch?

Am I missing something here.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by bmel:
So what is the point of spending $250-$500 for a switch?

Am I missing something here.
The benefit of the expensive switches is that they either switch automatically or via remote control. The cheap switches are manual. I suspect that the contacts on the cheap switches may wear out after a lot of use, but at $20 who cares.


Jay
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by bmel:
So what is the point of spending $250-$500 for a switch?

Am I missing something here.
Some people feel better when they spend more, and some people have so much money they always buy the most expensive product available. I'm not Christopher Reeves, so my legs work....$20-30 is a pretty decent buy in my book. Yes, I have to get up to switch from one STB to another or to switch from an STB to a DVD. So far it hasn't been a problem, and I ended up having enough extra cash to buy myself the new Pronto.


Chris
 

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I pursued a similar strategy in order to switch 4 sources. I needed to switch not only component coming out of my DVD player and 6000 STB, but also RGBS coming out of 2 game consoles. I used a 4 into 1 printer switch that I had lying around. I just picked out 4 pairs of contacts on the rs-232 ports on the back of the switch and attached RCA cables. It took an evening to do all of the soldering and crimping, but I am very satisfied with the results. Like the RS switch, mine is mechanical, so I don't believe that there is any problem with bandwidth. I compared HDTV going thru the switch and going directly into my projector and could not detect a difference in the image.
 

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So what's the point of expensive component video cables?


I'm currently trying an expensive Monster Ultimate 3 to see if my HD setup can make my jaw drop. So far it has not, although it does look great, larger (16:9) and better than SD DTV, but not so unbelievable as I've often read about here. So I'm trying this cable, and so far do not see any difference vs. the one that came with my STB which looks visually just like any audio cable I ever got with every stereo component I ever bought. Sounds to me like you could twist some baling wire together (I'm thinking of square bales here) and do just as well as the most expensive cable on the market.


What is the maximum bandwidth demanded of component video cables, in the most demanding application?
 
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