OK... what version of vista are you using? and an s-video cable may be your best bet... that is what i use and i have no problems, so here is why I believe you get the flicker then no picture: The flicker is most likely your computer refreshing the signal, mine does the exact same thing yours is doing, except after the flicker it works fine.
FIRST RESTORE ALL DEFAULT SETTINGS regarding this issue
, make sure you undo any settings you changed before proceeding
1) Locate your "Windows Mobility Center"
and save a shortcut to the program on your desktop (easier access). Now before you plug anything into your computer open that window and find the "Connect Display"
option. (You may also want to have your "Display Settings"
window open, you might need to make a few changes.)
2) Now connect your S-Video cable and wait for the flicker, (does the computer still show a display after the TV does not? THIS IS VITAL!
3) Look at the "Windows Mobility Center"
window and check the status, if it says connected then you need to change your "Display Settings".
4) In the "Display Settings"
window select the correct "Monitor" from the drop down menu (since I can't really walk you through it, you will have to figure out which one this is). Although Vista SHOULD automatically choose the correct one for you.
5) After selecting the correct "Monitor" Click the ADVANCED SETTINGS option and then the "MONITOR" tab, there should be a check box that says "hide modes this monitor cannot display" MAKE SURE THIS BOX IS CHECKED!
(you must have administrator capabilities)
6) Open "Windows Mobility Center"
and select CONNECT DISPLAY
-- there should
be a window that pops up with options on how to view both displays; view duplicate monitor on both screens, view on external device only, or extend my display (this will show different parts of your screen on each display). SELECT THE DUPLICATE DISPLAY OPTION!!!
7)You should see a flicker and then your comp should be displayed on your t.v. and your set to go!!!
If this doesn't work for you... let me know at what step it went wrong and I'll be glad to assist you further!!!