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Subject: Re: Video Monitor Cable

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Date Posted: 17:05:58 04/20/04 Tue
In reply to: Frankk Denk 's message, "Video Monitor Cable" on 10:31:38 03/15/04 Mon


My Commodore 1084S also has a similar cable. What I usually do is just include the yellow RCA plug for the video, and the red RCA plug for the audio. The other two additional plugs (for luma and chroma) can be left alone. You should still receive a fairly good picture on the television (although not nearly as good as on a regular 1702/1084 monitor). The four video inputs are useful because they separate the video signal into four distinct signals and a video monitor (such as the 1702) is optimized for such sharp video signals.

There was a Question and Answer column originally published throughout the publication of the Compute!'s Gazette which occasionally addressed similar questions to the one that you are asking. In fact, from the May 1985 issue in the Q&A page on Page 66, we find the following information:

"Q: Some TV sets coming out lately have audio and video input jacks on the back. The advertisements claim these TVs can be used as computer monitors. Are they really as good as a real computer monitor?

A: They're very close. Simply speaking, the video input jack bypasses the TV tuner circuitry and feeds the incoming video signal directly to the picture tube. (The jack can accept video signals from a home computer, a videogame machine, a videocassette recorder, or a videodisc player.) Bypassing the tuner circuitry nearly always results in a much sharper image than when the computer is connected to the antenna terminals.

Here's why: When you hook up a computer to antenna terminals, the TV is expecting to receive a signal which resembles a normal broadcast transmission. So the computer simulates a broadcast by converting its pure video signal with a device called an RF (radio frequency) modulator. When the TV receives the RF-modulated output through its antenna connections, it treats the signal like a regular broadcast. The TV tuner section converts the signal back into the original video and feeds it to the picture tube. Inevitably, some quality is lost during the double conversion process -- a process that is eliminated when you tap into a TV's video input jack.

Because the circuitry of a computer monitor can be optimized in various ways for computer use, it's still superior to a TV set with video inputs. In practice, however, the difference may not be too noticeable. One exception is when a Commodore 64 (or Atari 800) is hooked up to the rear connections of a Commodore 1701/1702 monitor. By separating certain parts of the video signal, this arrangement produces an extremely sharp image that is pretty hard to beat."

This is probably more information than you needed, but it illuminates the differences between regular TV reception and that of a monitor. Hopefully, this information will prove useful to you. :)


Paul Allen Panks (a.k.a "Dunric")
Phoenix, AZ (USA)

>Our Amateur Radio Club wants to use a Commodore 64 to
>with a cartridge they have to help teach Morse Code.
>I have everything they need except the cable from the
>C64 to the monitor. They want to input the signal
>into a TV with Audio/Video jacks, and all the cables
>that I have are for the 1702 type monitor with
>separate luminence & chroma outputs. Do you just
>connect them together, or do you tie them together
>through resistors??
>Thank you,

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