Re: HDTV-Ready TV getting HDTV

kbsrn <kslubdub@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

I have an older model (2000) Toshiba TW56x81 HDTV-Ready projection TV.
I recently upgraded my Comcast to a HDTV cable box. I really don't
see much difference when I switch from the regular digital channel to
the same channel in HDTV other than small black bears on top and

If you play dead, maybe they won't attack you. Oh, perhaps you mean
black BARS.

I'm wondering if getting different cables will make a difference. My
manual mentions Colorstream Video cables, but they don't seem to be
available and I'm not sure if it's for HDTV or just to work better
with the Toshiba Colorstream components like their DVD players.

Colorstream is just Toshiba's name for component video. 3 cables for
video, usually color-coded green, blue and red for the Y, Pb and Pr
inputs respectively. Any good set of component cables will do.

I see things like Monster cables and such, but not sure if they will even
work with our TV

They will.

or are even worth the expense.

They're not. For a run of a few feet you should be able to get a good
set for under $10 mail order or $20 locally. is a
good place to buy. I see they currently have a special on a 6'
component + audio cable for under $5.

There are S-Video and regular video inputs and also Colorstream HD1
and HD2 inputs that I use for the DVD player and DVR.

The Colorstream (component) inputs are the only way to get HD into
that TV. Since you're using both already I assume you're using either
composite (1 yellow video + red/white audio), S-Video (round 4-pin
connector for video + red/white audio) or (horrors!) RF to one of the
antenna inputs. None of those will give you HD, which is why HD
channels don't look any better than what you're used to.

As a test, disconnect the component cables from either the DVD or DVR
and connect them instead to your HD cable box's component output (if
it doesn't have component out, you'll need a different box from your
cable company). You may need to configure the box to use the
component output, or it may be active already. If you post the make
and model someone may be able to advise you on that. Once you get a
picture on that input, tune to an HD channel when you know the show is
in HD (for broadcast, most primetime scripted shows + Letterman, Leno
and Conan are in HD) and you should see a dramatic improvement.

The next problem is that you have more component sources than you have
inputs, so you'll need a component switch. They too come in a wide
range of qualities and prices, and the two are not necessarily
related. Some are switched manually, others with a remote. Some hifi
receivers have multiple component inputs; if you use one with your
system you could use that as your switch.

MonoPrice has a switch for under $25 that would probably be OK.
Perhaps other readers could chime in with their favorites.

I am a newbie to this forum and electronically-challenged, so if I
left out something important, please let me know. Thanks, Kathy

Too bad Toshiba went out of its way to obfuscate a generic connection

Del Mibbler