Using ATI HD4850 X2 display card on WinXP in Theater mode


B

Bob F

I am currently using Catalyst Control Center ver 8.561, an older version that
should still operate in theater mode with XP as I understand it.

I am trying to get this to work, but cannot figure out how to set it into dual
display mode so it will switch into theater mode.

Using the advanced CCC window, it shows the PC monitor in the left box under
"Desktop and Display Setup" on the Displays Properties screen. I enabled the Tv,
a plasma connect to the card with a DVI to HDMI cable, and it shows as "Graphics
Adapter 2. The windows blue desktop color shows on the TV, and clicking Identify
on it shows the #2 on the screen.

I would expect the TV to show up in the box to the right of the "Main" box for
my monitor, but I can find no way to get it there.

The "Attached displays currently disabled" box never shows anything, even if I
disable the TV by right clicking on it and unselecting enabled.

Going to the "Avivi Video" screen, it shows " Single display mode" and says
"Theater Mode requires Dual Display". The Second Display and "Select Theater
Mode overlay" areas are dimmed to be inactive, as is the :Theater Mode Settings"
box below that.

I cannot figure out how I would switch this into the necessary Dual Display
mode. The help pages provide no useful information.
 
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B

Bob F

Bob said:
I am currently using Catalyst Control Center ver 8.561, an older
version that should still operate in theater mode with XP as I
understand it.
I am trying to get this to work, but cannot figure out how to set it
into dual display mode so it will switch into theater mode.

Using the advanced CCC window, it shows the PC monitor in the left
box under "Desktop and Display Setup" on the Displays Properties
screen. I enabled the Tv, a plasma connect to the card with a DVI to
HDMI cable, and it shows as "Graphics Adapter 2. The windows blue
desktop color shows on the TV, and clicking Identify on it shows the
#2 on the screen.
I would expect the TV to show up in the box to the right of the
"Main" box for my monitor, but I can find no way to get it there.

The "Attached displays currently disabled" box never shows anything,
even if I disable the TV by right clicking on it and unselecting
enabled.
Going to the "Avivi Video" screen, it shows " Single display mode"
and says "Theater Mode requires Dual Display". The Second Display and
"Select Theater Mode overlay" areas are dimmed to be inactive, as is
the :Theater Mode Settings" box below that.

I cannot figure out how I would switch this into the necessary Dual
Display mode. The help pages provide no useful information.

I tried setting it to force TV detection, then connecting a SVideo cable to the
TV, and that works correctly. So it seems I need a way to tell Catalyst that the
plasma TV is a TV when connected via the DVI-HDMI cable.
 
B

Bob F

Bob said:
I tried setting it to force TV detection, then connecting a SVideo
cable to the TV, and that works correctly. So it seems I need a way
to tell Catalyst that the plasma TV is a TV when connected via the
DVI-HDMI cable.

It seems the Catalyst drives aren't as smart as my previous Nvidea 7950 drivers.
What I had to do was "Force Component Video detection" on the Displsy Options
page. It now works.
 
B

Bob F

It seems the Catalyst drives aren't as smart as my previous Nvidea
7950 drivers. What I had to do was "Force Component Video detection"
on the Displsy Options page. It now works.

Nope. I got confused a different input on the TV. I still can't get it to work.
 
B

Bob F

I can add, after I force Catalyst to enable the TV display, it shows the monitor
as "SDM-P234" and the TV as "LG TV". There seems to be no way to clone the SDM
P234 to the LG.
 
P

Paul

Bob said:
I can add, after I force Catalyst to enable the TV display, it shows the monitor
as "SDM-P234" and the TV as "LG TV". There seems to be no way to clone the SDM
P234 to the LG.

I started with some hints here.

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/265836-45-catalyst-theater-mode-extended-desktop-windows

And ended up reading this. Note - archive.org is slow
right now, so be patient. You might have to wait five minutes
for this to show up (partially because some disclaimer at the bottom of
the page didn't get archived).

https://web.archive.org/web/2012012...indowsVistaTheaterModeSettingsNotWorking.aspx

*******

The history of monitor detection, includes stuff like this.

1) Single head video card (just a frame buffer).
Available since around 1985 or so (when I built mine).
Doesn't care whether display is connected or not.

2) Dual head video, unequal resolution limits.
Doesn't care whether display is connected or not.

3) Dual head video, three faceplate connectors.
Video channels only enabled when a display is detected on the connector.
Impedance sensing is used on VGA (tested here, I have a fake VGA
connector, to cause a VGA channel to be enabled, and I put 75 ohms across
R to GND, G to GND, B to GND). Impedance sensing on
Composite and S-Video (4 pin mini-DIN) is unreliable, possibly
because of the capacitive coupling inside the TV set or something.
YPbPr component, may be a bit more reliable. Again, depending on
the coupling used on the TV end.

4) Enter DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort. Detection options here include using
the serial EDID on the cable. Or, impedance sensing can still be used,
as each diff pair has something like 100 ohms across it, when the monitor
is connected to the cable. In testing here, the detection is very sensitive,
in that the driver will "glitch" if a blank (unwired) connector is connected.
Implying it can detect some stray capacitance even.

The other history to be aware of, is the introduction of DMCA, Protected Video Path
and the like. HDMI introduced HDCP, a means of encrypting digital data so
it could not be copied. Around the same time as DMCA came in, a loose
interpretation would suggest the display should not be "mirrored". And
perhaps having a Theatre mode was a bad idea. (Pirates could record "perfect
copies" from the mirrored video screen.)

By "punting" the responsibility to the application developer (i.w. WinDVD),
the video card company hopes to not get snared in any DMCA issues.

In the later OSes now, it's up to the application to make two copies of
the video you want to see, and put them on the two screens. Or at least
that's what the above links suggest.

I would have hoped, that the "half-broken" policy on WinXP, would be
maintained up to the end of support. In that, it's fully broken
on Nvidia, and half-broken on ATI.

I haven't a clue what magic incantation you could use, to convince
the computer to do what you want. Getting around it at the hardware
level, may depend on how old the video card is, and whether it has
a mini-DIN with component (YPbPr) output. That might allow a
mirror mode operation. (Connect the modern TV via YPbPr coax.)
And avoid any issues the various software parties might have, with
doing the right thing on DVI/HDMI/DisplayPort.

It would be oh-so-helpful, if just one of these companies was honest
about what it was avoiding, and what the other companies thought of
their legal exposure. *Something* is going on here, but finding
an evidence trail written in plain English is very hard.

Paul
 
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B

Bob F

Paul said:
I started with some hints here.

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/265836-45-catalyst-theater-mode-extended-desktop-windows

And ended up reading this. Note - archive.org is slow
right now, so be patient. You might have to wait five minutes
for this to show up (partially because some disclaimer at the bottom
of the page didn't get archived).

https://web.archive.org/web/2012012...indowsVistaTheaterModeSettingsNotWorking.aspx

*******

The history of monitor detection, includes stuff like this.

1) Single head video card (just a frame buffer).
Available since around 1985 or so (when I built mine).
Doesn't care whether display is connected or not.

2) Dual head video, unequal resolution limits.
Doesn't care whether display is connected or not.

3) Dual head video, three faceplate connectors.
Video channels only enabled when a display is detected on the
connector. Impedance sensing is used on VGA (tested here, I have a
fake VGA connector, to cause a VGA channel to be enabled, and I
put 75 ohms across R to GND, G to GND, B to GND). Impedance
sensing on Composite and S-Video (4 pin mini-DIN) is unreliable,
possibly because of the capacitive coupling inside the TV set or
something. YPbPr component, may be a bit more reliable. Again,
depending on the coupling used on the TV end.

4) Enter DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort. Detection options here include using
the serial EDID on the cable. Or, impedance sensing can still be
used, as each diff pair has something like 100 ohms across it,
when the monitor is connected to the cable. In testing here, the
detection is very sensitive, in that the driver will "glitch" if a
blank (unwired) connector is connected. Implying it can detect
some stray capacitance even.
The other history to be aware of, is the introduction of DMCA,
Protected Video Path and the like. HDMI introduced HDCP, a means of
encrypting digital data so it could not be copied. Around the same time as
DMCA came in, a loose
interpretation would suggest the display should not be "mirrored". And
perhaps having a Theatre mode was a bad idea. (Pirates could record
"perfect copies" from the mirrored video screen.)

By "punting" the responsibility to the application developer (i.w.
WinDVD), the video card company hopes to not get snared in any DMCA issues.

In the later OSes now, it's up to the application to make two copies
of the video you want to see, and put them on the two screens. Or at
least that's what the above links suggest.

I would have hoped, that the "half-broken" policy on WinXP, would be
maintained up to the end of support. In that, it's fully broken
on Nvidia, and half-broken on ATI.

I haven't a clue what magic incantation you could use, to convince
the computer to do what you want. Getting around it at the hardware
level, may depend on how old the video card is, and whether it has
a mini-DIN with component (YPbPr) output. That might allow a
mirror mode operation. (Connect the modern TV via YPbPr coax.)
And avoid any issues the various software parties might have, with
doing the right thing on DVI/HDMI/DisplayPort.

It would be oh-so-helpful, if just one of these companies was honest
about what it was avoiding, and what the other companies thought of
their legal exposure. *Something* is going on here, but finding
an evidence trail written in plain English is very hard.

Paul

The video card I'm working with is a Saphire HD4850 X2, which has 4 DVI outputs
and an Svideo. It's on a Win XP PC. I previously used a Nvidia 7950, which had
no problem handling the same screens in "full screen" mode.

MY Home theater program is BeyondTV.

It also seems to be unable to play video on the seondary monitor. If I move the
BeyondTV window to the secondary monitor, the video on the secondary monitor is
black - no video. I just tried Media Player Classic, and it will indeed play on
the secondary monitor. Unfortunately, that loses me the 'commercial skip'
feature of BeyondTV.

Looking at the second reference, where it says to set the theater mode, mine
shows "Single Display Mode" and "Theater mode requires Dual Display" when
operating with my monitor and plasma TV, even though both devices are listed
under "Graphics Adapter, and both can be used for windows displays.

I can find no way to set extended mode or clone mode anywhere without using
either a Svideo TV or forcing Component video detection. But that won't get
anything to my HDTV. I need to figure out how to set my two monitors into "Dual
Display".
 
P

Paul

Bob said:
The video card I'm working with is a Saphire HD4850 X2, which has 4 DVI outputs
and an Svideo. It's on a Win XP PC. I previously used a Nvidia 7950, which had
no problem handling the same screens in "full screen" mode.

MY Home theater program is BeyondTV.

It also seems to be unable to play video on the seondary monitor. If I move the
BeyondTV window to the secondary monitor, the video on the secondary monitor is
black - no video. I just tried Media Player Classic, and it will indeed play on
the secondary monitor. Unfortunately, that loses me the 'commercial skip'
feature of BeyondTV.

Looking at the second reference, where it says to set the theater mode, mine
shows "Single Display Mode" and "Theater mode requires Dual Display" when
operating with my monitor and plasma TV, even though both devices are listed
under "Graphics Adapter, and both can be used for windows displays.

I can find no way to set extended mode or clone mode anywhere without using
either a Svideo TV or forcing Component video detection. But that won't get
anything to my HDTV. I need to figure out how to set my two monitors into "Dual
Display".

In terms of the video render plane, there are several options.
Sometimes playing with that option, makes a difference as to
how many videos can be rendered at once. Or on more than one screen.

"Overlay plane" used to be limited to handling one video window.
The Microsoft DirectX has options called VMR7 and VMR9 (Video Render Mode),
which may use other facilities for rendering which aren't hardware
limited.

Check the preferences on each movie application, to see how many options
are available. There might be even more options by now.

*******

See, aren't video cards fun ? I could spend
the whole day and not run out of interesting links.
Could I answer your question ? Not so much.

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/...-display/aa64f645-310d-4f25-892c-4f49b16a3f5c

http://www.sevenforums.com/graphic-cards/1895-nvidia-drivers-tv-out.html

http://www.ngohq.com/ngo-nvidia-opt...isplay-in-dualview-when-tft-power-is-off.html

Paul
 
B

Bob F

Paul said:
In terms of the video render plane, there are several options.
Sometimes playing with that option, makes a difference as to
how many videos can be rendered at once. Or on more than one screen.

"Overlay plane" used to be limited to handling one video window.
The Microsoft DirectX has options called VMR7 and VMR9 (Video Render
Mode), which may use other facilities for rendering which aren't
hardware limited.

Check the preferences on each movie application, to see how many
options are available. There might be even more options by now.

That was a truely useful suggestion. BeyondTV has 3 different "Preferred MPEG-2
Decoder" choices on my system. Snapstream Basic Decoder, Snapstream Video/SP
Decoder, and NERO DVD Decoder. Only the second one does not display on the
second monitor. I'm not sure yet if they would perform differently in high
definition.
 
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B

Bob F

Bob said:
That was a truely useful suggestion. BeyondTV has 3 different
"Preferred MPEG-2 Decoder" choices on my system. Snapstream Basic
Decoder, Snapstream Video/SP Decoder, and NERO DVD Decoder. Only the
second one does not display on the second monitor. I'm not sure yet
if they would perform differently in high definition.

I finally figured out how to get it working. I disable the HDTV in CCC, then
power the PC down, unplug the TV, and Power the PC up again. After checking in
CCC that my monitor is the only display, I plug in the HDTV. It comes up as a
clone in the 2nd display box, with a clone display of the monitor. When I play
video on BeyondTV on my monitor, it comes up full screen on the HDTV. The TV
seems to display everything fine, although maybe not quite as sharp as the
monitor. I guess the TV must be converting the monitors 1920 x 1080 resolution
to its native 1366 x 768.

Paul, thank you for your informative suggestions.
 

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