Apple Component AV Cable: initial thoughts

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Galley

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My cable arrived via FedEx this morning. The cable consists of a component video cable one on end, with a dock connector on the other. A USB cable extends from the cable. It appears that the cable requires power to operate. From my initial testing, I'm not all that impressed. This is my first experience with video output from an iPod. Most of the purchased TV Shows that I watched looked terrible, with over-saturated colors, especially red. The only thing that looked pretty good was Kellie Pickler's "I Wonder" music video, which is 640 x 480 @ 1600kbps. I didn't have any self-encoded video to test with it at this time, but from what I saw, anything less than 640 x 480 is gonna look bad. I couldn't get it to work with my dock. WTF? My goal was to be able to control playback with the remote that came with my MacBook. It doesn't output audio at all when listening to music. :(

Test equipment:
19" Samsung HDTV (model LN-T1954H)
Apple Universal Dock (previous generation)

Pros:
The cable has a nice design, and a good build quality
An Apple USB power adapter is included, but not a USB-only cable

Cons:
It's $49 freaking dollars!
May require the most recent generation of dock.
 

djones18

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Thanks for your first look. I was about to purchase this A/V component cable kit after determining my new 3G nano would output 480p video. However, after reading your initial impressions and other threads on this new A/V component cable kit I'm going to wait. While your oversaturation problems might be fixed with adjustments to the color control, other problems persist.

Apple needs to do some exhaustive testing and publishing of tech details. USA standards of video transmission and video presentation are in flux. Add to this iTunes download video standards and great consumer confusion can result. For example, iTunes carries TV, movie, and other video programming. These are in various aspect ratios, letterboxed, non/letterboxed, HD widescreen conversions, anamorphic widescreen, old style 4:3 format, etc.

Apple has not helped by labeling their iPod video output processing functions in unusual ways. Additionally, they have not provided enough processing options to match the video source material to television types.

Add the fact that TVs range from square 4:3 display devices to widescreen HD 16:9 sets, differing methods of processing component 480p signals, and it is no wonder both iLounge reviewers and consumers are confused.

Apple appears to be setting the stage for improvements to iPod output video, perhaps moving to high definition eventually. The new component A/V cable kit is a good step in that direction. But Apple must do more testing and reporting to consumers on device and signal matching.


Cheers
 

Galley

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After doing some more testing with the 1.0.2 firmware update, all video output issues have been corrected. I demonstrated the cable last night at a Mac Users Group meeting on both my iPod and a 3G nano. Both output good-looking images. :)
 

djones18

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I'm really glad to hear you got the cable to work. I think I'll go ahead and order a set and start testing. Thanks for your update.


Cheers.
 

LIIpod

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Is the surprise that the new cable comes with an AC adapter?

That is why they charge $49 for this.

The new universal dock comes with the remote also for $49


I just purchased them both.

And they work great!!!
 
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