Birch Street Computing -

about me

John M is a Linux fan in Lowell, MA.

I work at at a local company writing software. I fool around with Free and Open Source software for fun.

I am an avid user.

Nvidia in Black and White


I'm blogging this in case any one else has the same issue.

In my attempt to start building a multimedia/Home Theater PC I was trying to connect the nvidia card to a (smallish) CRT television. For a while it seemed like there were two options, no picture or black & wite only. I kept adjusting xorg.conf over and over trying to find the right combination of options.

I knew the card was working because the console printed color up until X started. It turns out it was a hardare problem though, with the cabling! I had an S-video to composite adapter pugged into the video card. The composite cable then connected the TV to the adapter. Nothing seemed to work until I found this post at Apparently, X is being too smart for its own good.

Once I set Xorg's TVOutFormat to COMPOSITE (the black screen when using the S-video adapter), I plugged in the "octopus" that came with my other nvidia card to the computer and connected the yellow composite cable to the blue connector on the octopus. Restarted X and everything began to work.

I'm glad my other card came with that adapter, but I wonder why the output seems to be so convoluted. It doesn't immediately come to mind that the component cable is sometimes used for composite output.

Hey at least I was able to watch my Matroska encoded Star Trek episodes on the TV. :-)

Every blog page or article on this site is available under the CC-BY-SA license unless otherwise noted.