What is a SCART to HDMI Converter?
A SCART to HDMI adapter is a device that allows you to connect a SCART-enabled media source to a modern HDMI-only TV.
Back in the day, SCART connectors were the standard, especially in Europe. It is a 21-pin connector that can carry analogue audio as well as video.
The connector was designed in the 1970s and was the standard connector for TVs and other devices all the way up until the invention of HDMI. Nowadays, since HDMI became the new standard, SCART is exceptionally rare.
SCART to HDMI adapters are particularly useful for people who have older equipment (VCRs, Playstation 1, Xbox, and other consoles) and want to connect them to their TV.
So if you have an older device with SCART output and your TV only has HDMI ports, then you’ll need a SCART to HDMI adapter. There are quite a few to choose from, and most are budget-friendly.
Our recommended adapters are below.
Our selection of the best SCART to HDMI converters
Recommended product if you’re looking for an HDMI to SCART conversion:
Converting SCART to HDMI guide
Struggling to get your old media player or console working with your TV? Frustrated with the lack of good quality tutorials and converters out there? We’ll briefly run through some of the most important things that you need to know about converting SCART to HDMI.
First things first, older generation devices use a type of signal called analogue, while modern TVs use digital. The SCART to HDMI converters need to convert analogue to digital, therefore they require a power supply.
Keep in mind, SCART is an old technology, created back in the 1970s. Although it does carry audio too, the audio is usually limited to stereo and mono audio, and the maximum resolution is 560P. In other words, it doesn’t natively support HD.
Back in the day, that was more than enough. Nowadays, not so much. Most of the SCART to HDMI adapters can upscale the resolution to at least 1080p, which is the most common resolution on displays today. Make sure you choose an adapter with the upscale feature!
Even so, the upscale can only do so much. What it does is essentially blow up the smaller resolution to fill the screen on your TV. If you don’t use a converter with a resolution upscale feature, the image will be in letter-box mode.
In other words, it won’t fill the entire screen, which can be bothersome.
Can you use a SCART to HDMI cable?
When researching how to convert SCART to HDMI you have probably come across a SCART to HDMI cable. The problem is most of these cables do not work. Since SCART does not support HD, you’ll need an adapter that can upscale the resolution, and to do that, the adapter needs a power source.
Although buying a cable might seem like a cheaper and easier solution, it doesn’t work, so it’s much better to invest in a good quality converter, such as the ones mentioned earlier in this article.
Multi Scart Adaptors:
Do you have more than one old-school console? One way to hook them up to your new TV would be to use a multi-Scart adapter. These will allow you to play multiple console games on your TV.
Bear in mind, it will only work with one active device at a time, the others can be connected but must be powered down. You might also need to attach one end to a Scart to HDMI converter.
Are SCART to HDMI Adapters Backward Compatible?
No. Scart to HDMI adapters can only work in one direction, SCART input to HDMI output. It won’t work in reverse. Most converters require external power too.
Can You Play Retro Games on New TVs?
Yes. To play retro games on new TVs, you will need either an RGB or SCART to HDMI converter. However, converters that upscale the resolution often introduce noticeable input lag which can be frustrating.
There are several devices designed to not only upscale retro games but also reduce input lag as much as possible. The problem is they are usually very expensive, such as the Framemeister XRG, OSSC, and Gscartsw, which often cost as much (or some times more!) than a modern gaming console.
Another simple way to reduce input lag on retro games is to enable your TV’s game mode. For the average consumer, a basic 1080P RGB or SCART to HDMI converter should do the trick.
Will a Smart TV Upscale Picture Output From a VCR or DVD Player Connected with Scart?
Most Smart TVs will automatically upscale video signals. If the end result is too pixelated, you can either adjust the aspect ratio of your TV, decrease the resolution, or disable some post-processing effects. In most cases, there will always be lots of pixels when upscaling retro games on new TVs, it’s unavoidable.
Converting HDMI to SCART
You’re probably wondering if it’s possible to convert HDMI to SCART. In other words, use an HDMI-device as the input, and SCART as the output (SCART-enable monitor, TV, etc). The answer is yes it is possible.
To do that, you will need the same kind of converter, but with reverse input and output. Remember, the switcher also needs to have an external power source. I would avoid the HDMI to SCART cables, as they rarely – if ever – work.
What kind of practical uses does this product have? Maybe you have an old VHS or DVD player lying around. Or you want to play some retro games.
Dreamcast, Xbox, Playstation 1 & 2, Sega Saturn, Gamecube, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo 64, and other consoles, support SCART. If you want to take a trip down memory lane, then you’ll need a SCART to HDMI converter.
These converters make it possible for you to connect your modern devices with your old ones, even if they don’t have nearly the same specifications or features. Overall, a very handy gadget, and well worth the investment.
How to Use a Scart to HDMI Converter?
Most Scart to HDMI converters are plug and play but you do need to connect the USB power cable to a socket that can provide enough electricity, a USB wall charger is ideal. Usually, the converter will have an LED light that indicates if there’s enough electricity.
Can I Get a SCART to HDMI Cable?
Yes, but they usually don’t work. If they do, the image quality is not the best. HDMI to Scart requires a signal conversion, which is not possible without a proper power source. Cables don’t have a power source.
Can I Get an HDMI to SCART Converter?
You can convert HDMI to SCART but you will need to find the right converter. Look for converters that have HDMI as input and SCART as output.
Does a Scart to HDMI Converter Work with a VHS Player?
Yes, most SCART to HDMI converters will work with VHS players. It’s one of the most popular reasons people buy this converter.
Will a SCART to HDMI Converter Work on a DVD Player?
Yes, a SCART to HDMI will work with any SCART device, including DVD players. In fact, it’s the main reason people buy these adapters. Many people have VHS and DVD combo players that are a little dated, and they need a way to connect them to their TVs. These converters will do the trick.
Where to buy?
In the UK, these converters are available in a variety of shops online and on the high street. Argos and Asda also sell these. Maplin has a selection of products including the Maplin SCART to HDMI Converter Adaptor 1080P/720P includes 5V Power Supply, cablesdirect.co.uk also has a wide variety, but probably the most obvious place to buy yours will be amazon.co.uk.