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Thread: USB video adapter
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USB video adapter
I'll soon be purchasing an external video adapter in order to expand my laptop main display ; you might have assumed, and rightfully so, that I try to avoid the on-board display. As my displays are VGA (> 2Mp) but I'd like to acquire a very cheap high resolution display one of these days (I don't foresee that anytime soon ; my CRTs cost me 10-25$), I searched for "usb vga dvi hdmi adapter".
I will keep Windows as I will be gaming from time to time. So I could, although would prefer no to, also reboot (to windows) when using the peripheral I'm shopping for ATM. I would actually save money by choosing a non-Linux-supported version but my main concern is not money but the complexity of using such device (on Linux).
I'm currently interested in [I used the URL tag here but it won't allow me to use it as it's my 2nd post] USB To HDMI DVI VGA Multi-Display Adapter Converter (eBay #120936000246) and knowing its content will be take off after 90 days, here's part of it:
[can't IMG tag yet]
This is USB to DVI-I/HDMI/VGA Multi-Display Adapter. With USB 2.0 Display Adapter, DVI to VGA Adapter, DVI to HDMI Adapter and USB-A to USB-B Mini 5-pin Cable, it enable you to connect one more monitor/LCD/Projector...to a computer. Thus, with this handy item, you can enjoy lots of benifits by the added-on monitor for mirroring or extending the computer's web pages. It operates up to high resolution: Full HD - 1920*1080.
100% brand new.
USB to DVI-I/HDMI/VGA Multi-Display Adapter.
With USB 2.0 Display Adapter, DVI to VGA Adapter, DVI to HDMI Adapter and USB-A to USB-B Mini 5-pin Cable.
Connect one more monitor/LCD/Projector...to a computer.
Support DVI/HDMI/VGA multi-display.
Mirror/extend computer's web pages.
Use little computer resource, high quality display without comprising computer's performance.
Hot plug--add/remove monitor without system rebooting.
Bus powered--no external power supply needed.
Support used via powered KVMP's or USB hub.
Support up to 6 groups of this assemble.
Windows 2000 SP4, XP 32-bit, Vista 32/64-bit and Windows 7.
Apple OS X-Tiger 10.4.11, leopard 10.5.x supported.
Ideal for video entertainment, multi-task doing, business presentations, marketing show, financial analysis, telecommuting with family, etc.
Size: 88x42x13 cm.
USB Cable length: 80cm.
A random color will be sent to you.
Note: NO Retail Box. Packed Safely in Bubble Bag.
USB 2.0 Display Adapter X 1
DVI to VGA Converter X 1
DVI to HDMI Converter X 1
USB Cable X 1
Driver CD X 1
User's Manual X 1
Thanks for your help and feedback
Last edited by DynV; 12-17-2012 at 07:34 PM.
12-18-2012 #2...but I'd like to acquire a very cheap high resolution display one of these days...
I mentioned I'm looking to expand my main display. That meant I use it most of the time when using my system ; including when I'm not watching a movie. I don't know for you but using a computer on a television is not so good unless one plan on only needing a 360p resolution. I also mentioned indirectly the displays are similar, in fact they have the same maximum resolution.
I don't plan on using any computer on a television any time soon.
Signal converters are tricky things. I was one of the original adopters of PC on TV back in '95/'96 (? I'm getting senile). Back when S-Video was in big swing and the only video cards that could put out S went for $300 and up (which was a whole lot more money back when dinosaurs roamed the earth) and converters were only $75.
Trust me when I tell you signal converters are a major pain in the rear. And I'm not sure how far the tech has come in 15 or so years simply because of the fact that there's not a lot of call for it.
And now days a monitor and an idiot box is pretty much all-in-one / the same thing.
If you don't want to drop $75 and have room for a jumbo box my last CRT was a 27" Mangnavox. It was 1080i VGA and they sell for $25 in the pawn shops now. And if you're paying $25 for old CRT monitors the you're getting ripped off. They sell for $5 at the thrift stores now.
Last edited by Steven_G; 12-18-2012 at 02:37 PM.
Modern TVs are nothing more than a computer monitor with a built in TV tuner. But, since you seem to be against them for whatever reason lets back this up a step. It doesn't really matter what you're trying to hook in to so long as it directly accept a signal your computer can generate without a converter in between them. What matters is what type of graphic card(s) (or chipsets) your computer has , how many video outputs your computer has, what type(s) they are, what you're OS is, what programs you have access to (free or paid) and if you're trying to achieve two truly separate and discrete video displays at the same time, trying "stretch" a single desktop instance across two displays, trying to stream media or trying to completely bypass a built in laptop monitor and display only on an external monitor / TV.
And yes, it is very quickly getting to the point where it is pretty much all about the TV. At least for home use. Most people don't want to drop the money on two displays when the can spend 1/2 the money or less for one device that will do everything they want, including stream movies wirelessly from a laptop or home server. So the capabilites of TVs are quickly out pacing stand alone monitors as businesses have no use for a lot of the really spiffy stuff and buy monitors.
I have a cheap laptop. It has a built-in display, like all laptops (I hope), and 1 VGA & 1 HDMI port and Integrated Intel® GMA HD for graphics. I don't know if the 2 ports work at the same time but I assume the HDMI would have an inappropriate signal for the CRTs anyway. Like the OP mention, I avoid the built-in and use the VGA port on a CRT. By myself, I use it (CRT) to watch BD (bluray disk) and it almost fit all without shrinking ; in fact I leave it as is and the little missing side are cropped. When I invite someone over, s/he had to get close to the CRT and it's a bit awkward ; thus I'd like to have the BD show on my 2 CRTs, perhaps at 150%. Let me be very clear: there would be a bar in the middle of the movie, the gap between the 2 displays of the CRTs.
Ok, so you have 1 chipset with two video outputs and want to stretch a single desktop instance across two monitors. The short answer is that you will not be able to do what you want.
The *default* operation for a single chipset on multiple monitors from multiple outputs (even with one output coming out of the USB instead of one of your two video outputs) is to just make multiple copies of the same desktop instance over and over again. You need special hardware (a video card that supports) splitting a desktop instance and stretching it over multiple monitors.
A USB signal converter will not help you achieve what you want if you only have one chipset to work with and it is not built with special features to support this mode of operation.
A second monitor will not help either, even if you pull one from VGA and one from HDMI. You'll just have the same movie running on two screens.
In so far as HDMI and CRT goes: If you can find a CRT that accepts the input it will work. But, I'm not 100% sure they make one. All of the HDMI CRTs I've seen have been "i" and and all of the laptop HDMI outputs I've seen have been "p". I'm not sure those two formats are compatible. But, with a little time on Google you should be able to figure that one out for yourself. Just pull the specs on your system, see what it's putting out (i or p), see if i and p are compatible and if they aren't and you're putting out p see if anybody makes a CRT that accepts p. But even that will not get you what you want. You'll just have the same movie twice.
Now the long answer is that you may still be able to pull this off. There may be paid or free software that will help you do this. I am not aware of any, but I've never looked for any either. You also may be able to hack something together. And that's the long part of the answer and well beyond the scope of this post. You'd have to study, research, experiment, increase your skill level and it probably still won't work.
And for the answer you don't want to hear which will actually solve the problem of stuff being too small for guest to see: Get a used big TV or big monitor that is 100% compatible with your signal output (either VGA or HDMI) and just have one screen big enough to watch movies with friends.
I would highly suggest you stay away from signal converters though. I haven't messed with them in a long time. But in an effort to help you I did a quick search for more recent information. They are still highly problimatic. And if you only have one chipset to work with they still won't do what you want without special software, special video card hardware or lots of hacking.
Oh and a VGA or HDMI splitter will not do it either. You'll still just have multiple copies of the same movie. The only video cards that I know of that can do what you want are built for desktops. If you're good with a soldering iron you can find plans on the net to build an external rig that will let you plug a desktop card in to a laptop. But it's neither in your price range nor for the faint of heart. And not really worth it unless you're trying to play games.
I still say your best bet is to shop the pawn shops for a used flat screen HDMI 1080p TV. I got mine for $75 and it has a killer picture. I got it cheap because it had a big scratch on the case. I got a plastic scratch repair kit for cars and fixed it. You can't even see the scratch. $90 and two hours labor and I had a $300 TV / computer monitor all-in-one.
Last edited by Steven_G; 12-19-2012 at 08:51 AM.
I didn't see a model # at ebay so I could not pull manufacturer specs on the device. Some of these unit claim they can extend a desktop and split it. But, their opperation is hit or miss. If you read the reviews for similar units they are running about 50/50 for those who say the units are plug and play / no brainer and those who say they can't get the units to work. Also, you keep going on about resolution. From looking around the web a lot of these units only put out fairly low res. See this review of a unit from a couple years on you tube.
With a two year old TV I'm running 1080p 1920x1080 with the BluRay unit in my puter and I can see Thor's pores in the Avengers. You'll end up spending about double what that unit would cost if you go with a good used TV. But it will work right out of the box (so to speak). If you get the unit and it's not compatible with your system you'll be able to return it to the ebayer who sold it according to the sellers page.
So I guess you have nothing to loose. But with no model # you're kind of buying a pig in a poke. Maybe it will work and you don't really have anything to lose if it doesn't. Personally I perfer to go with solutions I know will work when I can.