reply to donoreo
Re: Dell Ultrasharp U2412M on sale, $289 Well, my video setup is probably more elaborate than most. I have two display devices (Epson 1080p home theatre projector, and a U2711), two sound sytems (Sony soundbar/sub for the projector, Altec Lansing ACS56 for the computer), and four input devices (360, PS3, Videotron, PC). There used to (and may eventually again) be a Wii in there, but it's analog so it's a special case. DSL_Ricer borrowed it, umm, years ago, and still has it.
So, all of these video input sources go into a MonoPrice 4x2 HDMI matrix switcher. That means that any input device can be sent to any of the two outputs (even both at the same time). Or from the other perspective, you can set any of your output devices to show any of your input devices.
The place where it can get tricky is audio... The way I do the home theatre audio is the output from the HDMI switch goes to the Sony AV receiver, and then from there to the projector. This means any audio on the HDMI will be intercepted by the Sony box to put to the speakers, even from the computer (can bitstream DTS or AC-3 or whatever). But what about the audio from the input being shown on the Dell U2711?
Well, for normal computer use I don't go through the mixer (I plug the computer right into the U2711, and the computer's optical audio out into a digital optical to digital coax adapter and into the speakers). But what about if I want to play 360, or PS3, or watch TV on my computer monitor? I generally prefer playing games on the U2711 when I'm alone, because I prefer being close to the screen for gaming.
So the problem then is audio. Luckily the U2711 can decode HDMI audio and output it to a headphone jack. But my speakers don't have a second input, and the audio level from a 360 is way too loud for headphones... So I run the audio from the U2711 to the computer's line-in, which lets it go out to the computer speakers.
The end result of it is that when I played through Halo 4 on my computer monitor/speakers, the path looks like this:
Video: 360 -> Monoprice matrix switch -> U2711
Audio: 360 -> Monoprice matrix switch -> U2711 -> Shuttle PC -> digital optical to digital coax adapter -> ACS56 speakers
It's complicated, but it works for me, I can put any input onto either screen... When I have a friend over, of course, I put the xbox or the computer or whatever onto the projector. Because Star Trek: The Next Generation blurays playing on an 80" screen is awesome
EDIT: But if I had a much simpler setup where I had no projector or home theatre system, if I only had my Dell U2711, and I wanted to have all my devices lik PS3 and 360 on it, how else would I play any sound without the audio decoding on the monitor? That's why even if I didn't have the home theatre system it would still be important.
For example, DSL_Ricer doesn't (or didn't) have a television, just his monitor, so he had the Wii's component connection going into his Dell monitor. If it didn't have analog inputs, he could not play Wii.
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