Knowledgebase: Miscellaneous
DVI Switch
Posted by Rick Shao on 13 November 2015 06:26 AM

If you're like most people who own a high-definition television (HDTV), you're probably not getting the best-quality picture possible. That's because the digital source (DVD player, digital cable box, satellite or computer) is not connected to the HDTV using a digital connection, but rather a trio of RCA analog connectors. Although these component video inputs deliver a much higher-quality picture than the traditional composite video input (the yellow RCA connector), they don't give you the kind of picture quality you get with a Digital Visual Interface (DVI) digital connection. When you use analog connectors to connect a digital source to your HDTV, it forces your source to first convert the digital signal to analog. When the signal gets to your HDTV it again is re-converted to a digital signal. This digital-to-analog-to-digital conversion inevitably introduces conversion errors, noise and signal loss, which can degrade picture quality.

The DVI Difference

DVI allows for digital monitors (like HDTV) and digital source devices with DVI outputs to be connected without the need for analog-digital conversion. DVI cable connectors and switch boxes transmit and process extremely high-bandwidth, uncompressed digital signals. In fact, currently DVI transmits digital signals faster than any other digital or analog format. A DVI digital connection transmits pure, uncompressed high-definition pictures up to 1080p (progressive-scan), whereas component video can only go as high as 1080i (interlaced). DVI also delivers up to UXGA (1600 x 1200) computer resolution on a digital computer display. When you use DVI connectors to connect a digital source to your HDTV, it keeps the signal in the digital domain all the way to your HDTV. In this way, you avoid picture degradation that can result from digital-to-analog conversion. Instead, what you get are pure, bright crisp images that jump off your screen. DVI digital connectors allow you to watch high-definition programs and DVD movies in all the scope and beauty of the original recording.

Phonic's Centro DVI Hub

The Phonic Centro DVI Hub has up to four integrated DVI inputs, and one DVI output. (The DS-410 and DS-210 also include audio inputs and outputs for each connector.) These let you connect up to four high-definition digital sources to your HDTV or other digital visual display. The Centro also has a built-in signal amplifier. Normally, if you connect a digital source signal to an HDTV with a cable longer than six feet, you will see “sparkles" or “blue screening" due to signal loss. However, the Centro incorporates a signal amplifier that allows you to transmit the source signal up to 65 feet (20 meters). Our switch also supports 720p, 1080i and all the way up to 1080p. Also, with four DVI inputs, you won?? have to keep plugging and unplugging cables. Connect up to four digital devices at one time (with audio) and use the infrared (IR) remote to easily and seamlessly switch from one source to the next. And if only one source is present the Centro intelligently selects and automatically displays it.

Even if your digital cable box or DVD player are not currently equipped with DVI outputs, it is still a good idea to buy a DVI switch box for your HDTV. More and more digital cable boxes, DVD players and other digital source devices are coming equipped with these digital outputs. And when you see the DVI digital difference, you'll wonder why you waited so long to make the switch.

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