Picture of Very Simple Component Video Switch Box
What's going on here, Intarwebs?

This Instructable is just a simple little device I came up with over the past couple days to alleviate a problem I have with my entertainment system: my projector only has one Component Video Input, but I have two devices that I wanted to connect to it, my HD Cable box, and my XBox 360.

I'm not going to cover the basics like soldering, or how to measure accurate holes in things, there are Instructables for all that just a click away!

Step 1: Gather the parts...

Picture of Gather the parts...
Alright, time to get everything together...

Parts bought:

From DigiKey, I purchased the switch and Component Video Jacks, and from Radio Shack, I bought the Project Enclosure.

CP-1446-ND - This is the part number for the Component Video Jacks.  Component Video colors are Red, Green, and Blue. bit.ly/9xFmbG

- This is the part number for the 3PDT Switch.  3PDT means Three-Pole, Double-Throw. This means the switch switches three things at once, with a center-off position. bit.ly/cvIgvt

270-1803 - This is the part number for the Project Enclosure from Radio Shack. This seemed about the smallest size enclosure that I could use and still make it convenient and easy to stuff all the coaxes in to. bit.ly/bnNBlN

Parts scavenged:

Mounting screws
- I've got a couple nitro-R/C cars, so digging up some small screws was easy. Don't have any? Tear something apart MAKEr style! Or, they should only be a few cents at your local hardware store.

Mini-Coax - I work in the electrical construction industry, so this was another easy thing to come by. However, in a pinch, cut up an old set of cheap RCA cables.  Whether they be audio (Red/White), audio/video (Red/White/Yellow), whatever, that will work just fine. What you need is for the coax to be of the 75-ohm variety, which audio and video cables just happen to be! You could also use TV coax, though that would be much more difficult to work with.

Tools Needed:

Drill bits - Pictured are the drill bits I used. Use the recommended sizes for the jacks and switch that you get, sizing info should be on the data sheets that are available with the parts. Also, a Uni-bit is handy to do the final reaming out of the jack holes, really helps to clean up the holes.

Soldering Iron - I used a little Weller 23-watt pen iron. You really don't need anything serious here, these are just small wires and parts.

Solder - Just some fine 60/40 will work great.  I suppose you could use silver solder if you wanted for a little stronger mechanical and electrical join, but it's really not necessary.

Screwdriver, wire cutters - These are pretty self explanatory, I should hope!

Vise Grips
- I used these in lieu of a proper vise, worked fine for me to grab on to parts and hold them steady.

lemonie5 years ago
This is almost exactly the same sort of problem I had, your build looks nicer though, but I guess is should since you actually bought things.
Good job!


kc7eph (author)  lemonie5 years ago
Thank you for the comment! I remember when you posted this, and thought to myself, "crap, I'm going to need one of these one day." And then I re-did my entertainment setup to include a second TV tuner, and here we are.

I used the coax instead of the wire that you did since I'm switching HD signals. On my first test build, I didn't solder all 9 of the shields together, and sure enough, the Blue channel didn't survive the trip from the XBox 360 to the projector.

In retrospect, I think the next time I do this, I'll use shorter lengths of coax, should be easier to fit in the enclosure.  Maybe also try to find a mini-coax with a stranded center conductor, though I don't think I'll find one I like that's any smaller then RG-8/M (Series 8/M), and that would be too tough to cram in such a small space.

Thanks for checking it out, and I'm glad you like it!