Good and EVOHacks

Great strides being made in HDMI mirroring hack for HTC EVO


If you don't know it yet, then commit the name orrebmas to memory right now. That way, when you see it in skywriting, you'll know immediately that the HTC EVO 4G just got even better.

For about the past month, orrebmas has been working very hard to get full HDMI mirroring working on the EVO so that your big screen can display everything being shown on your little screen. As is/was the case with SD card transfer rates, 3G speed, and previous graphics performance, HTC has crippled the phone's HDMI function, limiting it to outputting personal recordings, photos, and only a few apps.

Fortunately for everyone who wants to be able to do much more when connecting the EVO to their HDTVs (e.g., play games, watch movies, surf the web), orrebmas has been making an astounding amount of progress in the past few weeks.

He's had to reverse engineer the HDMI chip's drivers to output pixels without the help of a register or programmer's manual . . . and he's pretty much done it.

A few weeks into the project, he was able to mirror a screen from his EVO (running the Sense-based Fresh ROM) to his TV at 720p HD resolution. Soon after that, he got audio working, increased the refresh rate by 10x, and figured out how to get the drivers to fully initialize the HDMI chip.


His goal is for the HDMI output to average around 35 fps average, which he says is "ambitious in itself since there has to be scaling and rotating to get the right display on the TV." The next milestone, he says, is to package everything he has into an .apk that people can test on their EVOs and then begin improving functionality.

Some people have expressed concern over how open orrebmas has been about his progress, citing competitive attention and premature excitement as reasons for him to keep more details to himself. In response, he said:

This project's goal is to enable everybody to use HDMI out like it's supposed to be used, so being secretive only hurts this project as it limits the input from community on how to improve and ideas to implement.

However, the main project thread at the xda-developers forum was closed over the weekend and one of orrebmas's YouTube videos is now marked private. His other one (below) is still live at the time of this writing, but there's no telling when that might change.

He seems to be very dedicated to this project and is devoting as much time to it as he can, so while I know we're all very excited for the first release, it's better to wait patiently (and quietly) for his next progress report. Bumping old threads or creating new ones for the sole purpose of asking for updates will only take away time that orrebmas and other devs (Shinzul, of 4G on CyanogenMod fame, has his eye on this) could be spending on the hack.

When there's something to be shared, it will be shared. Sit tight and get your donations ready in the meantime!

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Jenn K. Lee

Jenn K. Lee is the founder of Pocketables. She loves gadgets the way most women love shoes and purses. The pieces in her tech wardrobe that go with everything are currently the Samsung Galaxy Note II, Sony Tablet P, and Nexus 7, but there are still a couple of vintage UMPCs/MIDs in the back of her closet.

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24 thoughts on “Great strides being made in HDMI mirroring hack for HTC EVO

  • I have been looking forward to this, However, it will hurt most of us that aren’t rooted if and when it becomes available. Hopefully the .apk will be routed to Vendor for non rooted phones, I have tried and tried to see what info i can find because i want to watch movies i paid for on a big screen when i am not on the road.

  • Avatar of Jaymoon

    So take 5 mins and root your phone…

    There’s a lot of confusion about rooting an Evo. I’ve heard that you have to erase your phone to root, you HAVE to install a new ROM once you root, or that the rooting can’t be reversed… All of which, are totally not true.

  • Avatar of skbgiants

    @Jaymoon. Couldn’t have said it better myself. Root it! YOU own the phone, not Sprint or HTC.

  • Avatar of djn777

    Agreed with all, Root that phone and unleash the possibilities!!! I am running Fresh so i am looking forward to the day i hit this site and see this apk listed!

  • “…it’s better to wait patiently (and quietly) for his next progress report. Bumping old threads or creating new ones for the sole purpose of asking for updates will only take away…”

    It drives me crazy to scroll through 386 pages of posts of ansy people that just create “noise”. The threads are for contributing to dev. I can’t imagine what it would be like to be working on such a huge project and trying to respond to all the nonsense posts!

  • “nonsense posts”…ha! no pun indended.

  • Can’t wait.

    I have an HDMI cable for my EVO 4G, but it’s all but useless. A friend asked if she could have it.

    Thankfully, I kept it. I didn’t expect anything quite this cool to come of it, but it’s definitely exciting—-thanks for posting the story.

  • I put my HDMI cable to good use…… I download movies on my phone then HDMI it to my 50 inch plasma. Movies look pretty good…… :)

  • Avatar of robisthename

    i never understood why htc and sprint limited the use of these phones especially the evo…wish i knew what i was doing when it comes to rooting…f- sprint & htc.

  • Avatar of Mike Devo

    I haven’t blown $30 on a micro HDMI cable for my Evo yet. And i won’t till this comes out.

    -Hackers: fighting the good fight against evil electronic overlords since 1985.

  • Avatar of Stormer

    other than free wifi hotspot and now the possibility of this hdmi out, I see no reason to root? What benefit does it provide other than this? I see a lot of risk for not much…benefit? I don’t even need the wifi hotspot. I’ve got pda-net and can usb tether it. Heck, I found when using the wifi hotspot (when I first got the phone I paid the 30.00 for it) that I had to have that thing plugged into usb on my laptop anyway because I could literally see the battery draining before my very eyes!. (4g/wifi hotspot = dead battery in a few hours). Now I have the 3500mah battery so that shouldn’t be too much of a problem now, but still… root? I’m just not seeing much of an incentive to override the risk yet.

  • Even once this is out, I’d still advise against spending $30 on a cable. You can get a micro-HDMI to HDMI cable for under $5 from Amazon, and probably other places.

  • Rooting your EVO is so easy! I rooted mine with Unrevoked 6 months ago and have never looked back. Just takes a few minutes and you’re all set. I’m an IT guy so being able to have full control and do whatever I want with my phone is perfect for me. Rooting does require some upkeep to get current updates and some software so if you just want a powerhouse device without the maintenance then rooting may not be right for you. It’s all a matter of what you would like to accomplish with the phone.

    As for HDMI cable – I got mine on eBay for $6, shipping included. Works perfectly. I also bought replacement batteries from eBay for $7. Why pay $40 in a store??

  • Thanks for everyones input, I have been rooted and was, up until the latest software release and could not proceed, had to go back to out of box stock shipped rom to get back on track and what a chore that was, s-on/s-off, preload image from shipped and eventually went to a shipped rom site,RUU is a great thing for newbs. if unrevoked is still current when the project is in beta phase i will Root.

  • @ Wayne, did this not work for you?
    It looks like all you had to do was flash the deodexed version.

    It was also posted here at good and evo:

    Don’t ever update using the one htc and sprint pushes to your phone. Wait until someone on xda takes that version and makes it rooted first. In fact, that link to the rooted update was available 4 days before sprint pushed the update to my phone(I didn’t use it though because I wasn’t rooted back then)

  • Not applying OTAs while rooted is also untrue and way over hyped. If you do the research there are ways to apply the OTA updates and keep root especially if you have s-off.

  • Why was the original thread closed on the XDA forums? I want there to be a specific place to look for updates, but right now the project is invisible.

  • Avatar of James

    i will wait for this, just for the reason that it makes him develop the app to its greatest potential, btw im so donating!!!!!!

  • Avatar of kevin

    Its not invisible it was moved to android central because of drama at xda.
    YOU DO NOT need to root to use the hdmi app BUT AS OF RIGHT NOW without the root you dont get full screen, thats one of the things the op is trying to iron out.
    the project is is its final beta and they are shooting for a two week release date.
    Any one interested can follow the thread/project here

  • Avatar of franklin b

    Your EVO will play your movies on a big screen tv no problem. Just download handbreak(Google it) and convert your movies to 2.54 H and then transfer your new converted movie into gallery widget on your SD card and enjoy movies on big screen via hdmi out from your EVO.


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