I have a Mac Mini connected to a Sony W755C TV by HDMI. If I put "Set display to sleep" on the Mac, the TV goes to black but displaying a very unsightly OSD text "HDMI 1 (Clock) No input. Check your cables, etc." which stays on forever, until I power the TV off manually. I can't find any menu items in the TV to remove the OSD, which just looks ugly on the huge TV in my living room.

So I tried to use the TV's own "standby if inactive for n hours", but "inactive" for the TV means not fiddling with the remote, which I only use for ON/OFF. The TV is oblivious to what's going on on the Mac. So it will suddenly suggest to sleep in the midst of a movie, which is obviously annoying.

Is there any way I can make the TV either a) go to standby modus without any OSD text, or b) soft-power off (same as pressing OFF on the remote -- which is not full power off, mind you...)

  • I’ve removed the part of this question that speculates about Sony and asks about other TV sets. We’re a good place to ask if you are missing a MacOS or cabling option - the answer there is likely to be a “no - you either get a signal or you need to automate a way to send an infrared or HDMI command to the TV to shut itself off if your TV doesn’t have a way to handle a sleeping connection. – bmike May 6 '18 at 14:56
  • @bmike: Is there a utility for sending HDMI commands? I'm completely unfamiliar with this, but it sounds very interesting if it could be done on the command line like "hdmitool --standby". Infrared sounds too complicated at least for my living room setup, as it would require some piece of strategically placed hardware, and possible hardware customisation which is out of my knowledge area. – forthrin May 6 '18 at 15:13
  • Why not ask / search how AppleTV turns on some tv over hdmi. I don’t know the details of the protocol but My suspicion is you need extra hardware not some utility. It’s a good questionn though for a new thread rather than trying to Morph this question to a new one now that there are answers. – bmike May 6 '18 at 15:20
  • Good answers here might also apply there and here – bmike May 6 '18 at 15:36

The message "HDMI 1 (Clock) No input. Check your cables, etc." is apparently generated by your TV. The first place I'd look is in the TV's menu system. See if there's any way to change what is displayed when there is no incoming HDMI signal.

If you can't find anything there, you can look at the Sony website. Note that there's a firmware update available for you TV as well. There's a chance you'll be able to control the "no input" message more easily after the update.


But, what you really want, I think, is to set up the Mac Mini so that it shows a blank image as its screensaver.

Set Screensaver to show your photos, then provide blank photo.

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  • Showing a black image is a funny outside-the-box idea I didn't think of. However, I don't find it an optimal solution because 1) My TV is not OLED and black is not black, thus I suspect the TV will still be emitting some light, which may be extra noticeable at night (I don't know if even OLED TV's are "identical" showing a black image / in standby / soft-powered off either) 2) The TV will draw power around the clock. (I don't know if they draw less power when showing black pixels...) PS! The TV updates its software on a regular basis. Unless "Firmware" is different from the regular updates? – forthrin May 3 '18 at 4:44

Another way to approach this is to try (again?) to set up the TV to shut down when the HDMI signal goes down. It may not be possible with your model, and I see where some Sony TV owners are complaining about that. I did find an answer that has a chance of working for you, but I found it through an archive of a forum page, so I'll just copy and paste the (paraphrased) excerpt:

There is a setting on some Sony TVs called Auto Shut-off wherein the unit will turn off when no input signal is detected for 15 minutes. To access the Auto Shut-off setting follow these steps.

  1. Press the Home button on the supplied remote.
  2. Press the Right or Left arrow button to go to Settings.
  3. Under Settings select Preferences.
  4. Under Preferences select Eco.
  5. Select Auto Shut-off then set it to On.
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  • I have Settings > Power > Eco, then "Power saving" and "Idle TV standby" (Off, 1h, 2h, 4h, 24h). The former I suppose dims pixel intensity slightly to save power. The latter is what I currently use to turn the TV off after 4 hours. But this obviously has no clue what I'm using the Mac for and will suggest to shut down at the most improper moments. Furthermore, 15 minutes of that ugly OSD text is 15 minutes too much. – forthrin May 6 '18 at 15:20
  • If “Power Saving” doesn’t do it, it seems like your remaining option may be to change to a programmable remote that can control everything the way you want it controlled. Wirecutter has good reviews: thewirecutter.com/reviews/the-best-universal-remote-control – Bob Bobaloobob May 9 '18 at 11:51
  • Another remote with hundred buttons? No thanks. Actually, I think buying a CEC adapter would be the best thing if they'd cost less than ten bucks. I'll just have to admit defeat and power off the TV manually like an old gran. – forthrin May 9 '18 at 13:13

If you have your Mac mini go into "display sleep" after n minutes (System Preferences > Energy Saver), almost all TVs will automatically go into standby mode once they stop getting a video signal.

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