| |

Xbox 360 HDMI Conversion Kit Review

When the Xbox 360 launched, Microsoft promised the HD Era (their words, not mine). Yet funny enough, the system lacked HD cables with all systems or even an HDMI port on any of the first models. This oversight was not addressed until the company released the Xbox 360 Elite and subsequently included a HDMI port on the Xbox 360 Premium.

For early adopters, though (i.e. anyone who bought a console before July 2007), HDMI was not an option. This is why Mad Catz developed an alternative solution. If you have a Xbox 360 without HDMI support, the Xbox 360 HDMI Conversion Kit will convert the analog signal to a digital HDMI stream by plugging an adapter in the AV Output on the back of the system. This will allow your Xbox 360 to output HD resolutions up to and including 1080p. You then connect the included HDMI cable from the adapter to your television and you now have 1080p resolution for compatible games.

Disclosure: We may earn a commission from links on this page

The kit also comes with a Digital Optical cable. This will allow you to output digital audio to an alternative source than your television. This means that if you have a separate surround sound system from your television, you can connect it directly using the included cable connected to the Xbox 360 HDMI Conversion Kit adapter on the back of your system. I was unable to test this as I do not have a surround sound system hooked up. The HDMI, however, works fantastic.

I should note that if you do not own a Xbox 360 and are looking to buy one, if HDMI is something you want, just buy the Xbox 360 Elite. It makes more sense to get the 120GB hard drive, HDMI port and cable than it does to get a Premium for $80 cheaper, only to spend $90 for the Mad Catz HDMI Kit. This kit is mainly for those 10 or so million Xbox 360 owners who are currently without HDMI support. The bottom line: if you want to play your Xbox 360 games enjoying the maximum audio and picture quality, you need this kit. It is available across the U.S. for $89.99.

Pros: Easy to setup, includes HDMI and optical cables, supports 1080p, fantastic picture quality
Cons: Price
Overall: Highly Recommended