The PS3 is both a game console and a computer. Game consoles traditionally output to TV screens, computers traditionally output to computer monitors. TV screens and computer monitors have very little in common. The PS3 can output to both, and can also output to High-Definition (HD) TV screens. Since this involves several completely different sets of standards, things can get complex. This HOWTO includes various tips and tricks that could help you get the best display out of your PS3.
Tips and tricks
If you have a VGA and DVI monitor that does not support HDCP (most LCD computer monitors match this description) it is worthwhile plugging in a HDMI to DVI cable AND using a component to VGA transcoder. The image will be shown via the VGA connection, but there will be an initial handshake via the DVI connection that lets the PS3 know which video modes the monitor really supports. Often this will help make KBoot readable, even if it ends up being purple. Some monitors will automatically switch to the DVI input, you will have to manually switch back to the VGA input.
Most of the video modes are wide screen resolutions. These may not display well on non wide screen monitors. Sometimes the picture will be stretched vertically to get it to fit the screen. On LCD monitors this usually results in less than optimal displays.
CRT based televisions are typically the only monitor type that can show interlaced modes well. Others will do some sort of conversion to display interlaced modes, and a lot of these conversion methods don't work well with typical computer displays. If you end up with ugly, hard to read fonts, you may be suffering from this problem. Best to stick with the progressive scan modes.
The choice between YUV and RGB will only affect the colours. If the colours are all weird when you try the default YUV, try changing to RGB.
The choice between overscan and fullscreen doesn't actually change the resolution. The default overscan mode will restrict all output to the central part of the display, with black borders around all four edges. Fullscreen mode uses all of the display. The problem is that televisions often only show the central part, which makes overscan the better choice for those televisions. Computer monitors usually can handle fullscreen. A big problem is that the overscan region is not exact, some adjusting of your televisions horizontal and vertical controls will be needed to get the best result.
It may be that you need to try any particular video mode using the GameOS first before it will work with Linux. This is still being investigated.
Advanced : the variations are set by the upper bits in the mode number that is actually sent to the graphics hardware, and there are some undocumented bits. While they didn't seem to have any affect during our testing, they may work for you. DVI is bit 0x0040, and HDCP_OFF (ps3-video-mode -H) is bit 0x1000.
This HOWTO was written by David Seikel, Terra Soft Solutions.