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Mac-mini with hdtv

Time:October 11
I have a new mac-mini and I have it hooked to my pioneer viera th-42px600u tv. The native resolution on the tv is 1024x768. I would love to use the mac to replace my dvd player and also use it to play videos. I have ripped some dvd's to vob and then used autoGK to convert to avi (using the xvid encoding). Couple things... First, I would love to just put the videos on my mac and use front row to watch them. But, I get no sound. When I open quicktime and play the file, I still get no sound, but I get a message saying I am missing a quicktime component and I can click on the link that takes me to a sight with the component I am missing. But, there are like 8 different components listed on that site, with no idea which one I need to get the sound. How can I figure out what I need.
Second, the video quality is, well, not good. I have played around with the different resolutions and haven't been able to get anything that looks good. I can play the file on my pc using my flat screen monitor and I know that that isn't exactly an apples to apples comparison, I would expect that the quality of the video would be better than it is. I am using a DVI to HDMI cable to use the HDMI input on the tv. And, has anyone had any luck with video that has HD content? Also, even if I stick the DVD into the DVD drive on the MAC, the DVD player software won't even give me a full screen. That picture is ok, but it looks like I can only get a picture that uses about 70% of the screen area on the TV (where if I just use my DVD player I get a full screen picture).
Any help with any of this would be greatly appreciated. I have found lots of old forums where people talked about having to download utilities to give the mini different resolutions, but that problem appears to have been solved out of the box (I even see a color profile named 'Panasonic TV' if I try to mess with the display stuff).
Thanks in advance...
I did some research (yes, I decided to read the manual). My mistake was that I was trying to choose a resolution from the mini that closely matched the native resolution of the TV. The manual for the TV stated that if I was using the HDMI input, it only works for input resolutions of 480, 720 or 1080. So, I switched the resolution of the mini to 720 (instead of the 780 or whatever I had settled on) and it made a big improvement in the quality of the picture.
Go figure. Who'd a thunk that the manual would have useful information...
Hamish, I hope that helps.
On an unrelated topic, I'm now in the process of trying to convert movies that I own and have presently ripped to VOB's into some other format suitable for playing in QT on the mini (I would love to just have .avi files or whatever sitting in the Movies directory and fire up Front Row and watch movies that way, instead of having to mess with the DVD drive). Any ideas? I have tried playing with autoGK, but it uses an encoding that doesn't match a codec in QT so I don't get any sound. I have played around with trying to install the DIVX codec, but that doesn't do me any good. Have you ever tried this?