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HTPC noob needs guidance (1 Viewer)

Timon Russo

Stunt Coordinator
May 10, 2000
Sorry if this comes up all the time. I have spent the last two days looking for a solution and I'm now as confused as ever.

I want to take my old PC (Dell 4600, XP) and make it into a HTPC. Essentially I want to use my HDTV as a giant monitor for playing games, viewing media, or just internet browsing.

My TV (mitsubishi 65" 2001 widescreen model) only has component inputs for HD. My current video card is an nVidia GeFroce 6800 AGP. I have a 4:3 LCD connected to it currently via DVI.

The basic question is, can I get better-than-svideo PQ on my HDTV using this current card? Ideally, I'd also have my LCD monitor hooked up. The card has an s-video and VGA output as well. Is there a VGA or DVI to component converter or would people advise against that? If I was to buy a new card, which one (two?) would support all the things I want? And perhaps have DVR capabilities as well?

There seems to be so much out there, my head is spinning and I hope someone can give me some hints as to what I should be looking at. Thanks.


Supporting Actor
Aug 13, 2003
Here is a link to a product that is a VGA to component break-out cable.

Amazon.com: 5.5Ft. VGA To Component Video Breakout Cable, HD15 M / RCA M * 3: Sports & Outdoors

You will just have to enable the second display on your video card.

In terms of quality, even if a TV has a VGA input on it per-say the vga signal is uncompressed data whereas component is. But, your TV is analog, like any TV. The component input is analog whereas the vga is digital that is then converted to analog, so there is a slight quality loss.

In the end to me they both look pretty much the same. So using componenet shouldn't result in not being able to play any HD-content. :-D

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