How to Connect a PC to an HDMI TV

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There’s a good chance that some day you’ll want to connect your computer to your big-screen TV to make it easier to share either photos you’ve taken or Internet video with guests. HDMI has become the standard type of high-definition connector found on modern TV sets, and many new computers include an HDMI output. The problem is that older computers don’t feature HDMI. 

We’ll approach this problem with two assumptions: one, that you have a desktop computer; and two, that you have a notebook computer.

If you have a desktop computer that does not have an HDMI output, you can install a new graphics card that has an HDMI output. But things will get complicated if the new graphics card doesn’t have an output that matches your monitor (presumably VGA), in which case you’ll simply be swapping one problem for another. To avoid the problem, you’ll have to find a graphics card that has both HDMI and VGA outputs, and preferably an inexpensive one. Because if you set your sights on an expensive graphics card, and if you have to pay someone to install it, you might be better off just buying a new desktop system that already has an HDMI output.

Another way to connect an older desktop computer to the HDMI input of a TV is with an adapter. If your computer has just a VGA output you’ll need a VGA-to-HDMI converter. This type of converter combines a VGA input and a stereo audio input into a single HDMI output that’s compatible with your HDTV set. To use this converter, you’ll need a male VGA to male VGA cable and an audio cable; either a male stereo mini to male RCA or a male RCA to male RCA, depending on the output of your sound card. Of course, you’ll also need an HDMI cable to connect the adapter to your HDTV. If your computer has a DVI output you’ll need a DVI-to-HDMI cable; either that or a DVI-to-HDMI adapter and a standard HDMI cable.

Your options are more limited if you have a notebook computer that doesn’t have an HDMI output because you can’t change the graphics card, and even if you could, you wouldn’t be able to add the HDMI output to the notebook’s chassis. So, your only options are to use a converter as discussed above, or to simply buy a new notebook computer.

177 Comments

I just bought a brand new 2 in 1. It says it is compatible with Bluetooth, WIFI, and HDMI. It even has a HDMI port. I went to Walmart to buy the HDMI cable hookup I needed because I want to hook my 2 in 1 through my TV so I can use it to watch movies and tv shows. When I hookup the HDMI cable to the HDMI port on my 2 in 1 and then hook the other end up to the back of my HDMI compatible TV it says :no input".  or "No Signal". what does this mean? My 2 in 1 is brand new I just bought it. The box says it is compatible for WIFI, Bluetooth, and HDMI it even has an HDMI port on the side.  My TV is also Compatible for WIFI, and Bluetooth, and has an HDMI port on the back of it. when I hook the HDMI cable to both my 2 in 1 and my TV why is it not working? What am I dong wrong? Unfortunately, My 2 in 1 did not come with an owners manual which I find odd it did come with instructions on where I could find everything that is on the computer itself. But says nothing about where I can go for the HDMI settings. I did go to my settings looking for the HDMI  but it is not there. In my settings it does show Bluetooth and Wireless WIFI. how come it does not show HDMI in my settings but I do have an HDMI port on the side. I also went to my input on my TV and tried both HDMI 1 and 2 and it still is not working. can someone please help me. ASAP. thank you.

Sorry to hear the frustration you're experiencing.  For technical support, please contact our PC team by e-mailing pc@bhphotovideo.com.

Hi!

I have a PC monitor and i want to use it as a tv, with a tv tunner. I tried to connect it with a hdmi vga adapter but it doesn't work and the screen display " no video input". I have another pc monitor used as a tv and it works and i don't get why the other doesn't works, though i did the same thing.

It is possible that if this is working with one of your PC Monitors but not the other one, the one that is not working simply is not compatible.  It could do with the age of the monitor, the resolutions it accepts or any number of different factors.  For additional assistance feel free to email us directly at askbh@bhphoto.com.

Thanks!

Tried Posting will try again..

Have HP 110-016 JUN 2013. WIN10(x64). Runs like a Champ. Have Tower OUT VGA/DVI Plugs (just plain DVI no A/1/2/D) SPECS: Supports DVI-D / VGA. Will the DVI to HDMI Adapter suffice and my Tower "play well" with it. I've read yes. I have Audio hooked to AMP/Speakers for years, no problemo. Shopping for Monitor UPGRADE with HDMI/VGA Ports. That Windows Photo 3D Effects doesn't work here because WMP only does 1 sec. Playback. Should I get a 3D Monitor, or is that a Tower Hardware problem?

RAM MEMORY. Have 1 4G Stick, other slot empty. Want the sweet zone of 16G no 32G. Specs: Type DDR3 Runs at PC3-10600. **DUAL Channel Memory NON ECC Memory Only. Supports up to 16G on (x64) Systems. Shouldn't I REplace the 4G Brand and MATCH the 2 sticks I want to equal 16G? HP says NO mix/match. Is the 4G slot and other Parallel or Additive to maintain ONLY 16G? ie. Buy a 12G stick=16G OR have to buy TWO 16G stick(s) to Parallel Match? Remember Voltage(Additive in Series/Parallel Highest same?) Why HP says stick to only HP I understand, if not, a sales pitch.

Specs : Interface SATA Rotational Speed 7200 RPM It came with 500G H/D. Want to UPgrade to 1T. I suppose a person has to yank out the 500G and REplace with 1T Drive ?? (My old Presario had FOUR Memory slots).

Lastly. Many have said " Just go get a GTX 750 TI Force Graphic Card and change out the Ports(HDMI/VGA) and don't worry about the other stuff." Sounds corny. Motherboard worries maybe. Ok I'm done. You help, I buy. Want to do the right thing on my UPgrade.

You can purchase a DVI to HDMI cable or adapter and the image will come out just fine.  Just note that DVI doesn't transmit audio so when you convert to HDMI, you're only transmitting video.

According to the HP site, your computer can support a max of 16GB.  It would not be possible to upgrade to 32GB.  Also for most computers, performance is better when both slots have the same memory.  Like in your case 2 x 8GB.

I can't tell how many 3.5" bays your computer has but if it only has one then you'd have to remove the current 500GB drive if you want to upgrade to a larger disk.

The Power Supply Unit that comes with your computer would not support a GTX 750Ti card or most cards on today's market.

I have an LG OLED 65" TV that I would like to connect to an older HP notebook that has only VGA output.  The TV has only HDMI input.  I have purchased a VGA to HDMI adaptor with a sound cable to permit audio to be transmitted as well as video.  The audio works fine, but the video image is too large for the output screen- the right hand portion and bottom portion of the image on the computer screen don't appear on the TV screen.  The resolution for the TV is 3840 x 2160 so I don't think that it is a resolution issue.  I'm guessing that the problem is in the adaptor.  Does anyone have any suggestions? My adaptor is a FOINNEX.

Check your TV video settings to see if there is any auto-format or auto-scale feature.  Most TVs should have this and would automatically resize the image to a proper fit.

So my Monitor is VGA only but my PC is HDMI only. Is there a way I can use an HDMI adaptor to connect my Monitor to my PC?

Hello Barry,

You can easily connect your computer and monitor using an HDMI to VGA adapter like this one:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1012112-REG/xcellon_hdmi_vga_hdmi...

hi I need help my pc tower only has  vga port and my smart tv only has hdmi....   so I bought a vga  hdmi adaptor plugged the hdmi into the tv and the vga into the tower and put the tv on hdmi channel and its not worked how do I get it to work 

Hi Robert - 

VGA is video only and will not carry an audio signal.  You would need this type of cable:

B&H # COHDHHARPM12 

i have a cpu with a graphic card which has a vga output and my tv has a hdmi input. As you told i bought a vga to hdmi converter and connected my vga cable to the converter and connected the converter's hdmi output to the tv. But i am not getting any response from the tv which says the signal is either weak or not connected properly

Hi Harry - 

The error that you are receiving may be accurate.  Many  newer televisions, when connected via an HDMI cable, will not accept a non-HDCP   signal from a computer.  You may also be using an inferior cable or one that is too long.  Please contact us via e-mail if you have additional questions:: askbh@bandh.com    

hi sir my computer have hdmi also my tv but i can not connecting them

i made factory reset to the tv and install a new windowes for the laptop but no result can you help my to know what is the problem

note i used to connect them togethere

this problem is new

Sir!

I have an doubt!!

I am purchasing Onkyo reciever 7.1.2.

I already have hts 3500 it is running with my PC. It is giving me great 5.1 surround !!

My desktop model is Acer veriton core  i3 .

Can hdmi converter can help with Onkyo reciever 7.1.2. for this PC??

Hi Salvaji - 

A converter must be able to convey a multi-channel audio signal for it to work in the fashion you suggest.  Your computer must also have a multi-channel sound card installed.

I am having the same problem connecting my HP PC to a new Samsung Smart TV. If I turn on PC with the HDMI connected it won't boot up. If I turn on the PC with the HDMI connected the PC won't boot. If I disconnect the HDMI cable the PC will boot. Then I reconnect the HDMI and it works. I will go to a PC or TV store and see if they have any ideas.

Pete F wrote:

I am having the same problem connecting my HP PC to a new Samsung Smart TV. If I turn on PC with the HDMI connected it won't boot up. If I turn on the PC with the HDMI connected the PC won't boot. If I disconnect the HDMI cable the PC will boot. Then I reconnect the HDMI and it works. I will go to a PC or TV store and see if they have any ideas.

Hi Pete - 

This is not unusual with HDMI, TV, and a PC. I suggest using this connection in the manner which works.  Do not boot the computer while it is connected to your TV.

I installed 7.1 ht omega eclaro . 

The sound card does not have HDMI port. I purchased Onkyo thx 9800 av receiver now say how do I connect 7.1 analog. 

Hi Salvaji -

This particular sound card offers just one digital output via their proprietary CA-1 ACCESSORY CABLE.  It is a 2 pin to digital coaxial (RCA male) cable, compatible  with HT Omega sound cards with built-in 2 pin connection ports.

Thanks for reply. But

The eclaro has only VGA to 7.1 analog, spdif 5.1.  Head phone.

My Av receiver does not have VGA port, 7.1 analog connection.

Now say how can I listen 8 channel audio?

I have old PC and new TV. Using a VGA-HDMI converter works but only if iI plug it in after PC switched on. If cable left in place PC won't turn on. Any ideas?

I am having the same problem connecting my HP PC to a new Samsung Smart TV. If I turn on PC with the HDMI connected it won't boot up. If I turn on the PC with the HDMI connected the PC won't boot. If I disconnect the HDMI cable the PC will boot. Then I reconnect the HDMI and it works. I will go to a PC or TV store and see if they have any ideas.

Hi Pete - 

This is not unusual with HDMI, TV, and a PC. I suggest using this connection in the manner which works.  Do not boot the computer while it is connected to your TV.

Hi Patrick - 

This is not unusual with HDMI, TV, and a PC. I suggest using this connection in the manner which works.  Do not boot the computer while it is connected to your TV.

Hi, I have an old desktop that I have had upgraded but has VGA output and I would like to connect to newer TV. I have a VGA- HDMI adapter and have installed but the TV tells me there is no signal. What am I doing wrong. Thanks

Hi Sue!

If your desktop is a bit dated and it only has a VGA output then a VGA to HDMI most likely wouldn't work.  It's because VGA is analog and HDMI is digital and the adapter wouldn't convert the signal.  You would either have to 1) upgrade the video card on your computer with HDMI output or 2) use a VGA to HDMI converter like the one below.  With the converter, you may not get the best picture quality though.

https://bhpho.to/2sBkpPU

Hi, I just connected my old clonker PC to my lovely new full HD TV using a standard VGA to hdmi conversion kit. It works great, streams HD video, gives good picture and sound. Would there be any noticable improvement if I bought a new hdmi graphics card and hdmi cable so the connection is straight through digital to digital ? ie..... is there any loss of quality from the existing graphics card converting from digital to analogue, and then the converter converting back to digital ? By the way the existing graphics card runs HD, so no issues there. Any advice appreciated. Thanks.

Hi Martin - 

You might notice some improvement.  But depending upon the cost, you might consider putting your funds toward a new TV.  There's almost always some degree of signal loss or degradation with most conversion products.

Hello Mark, or someone else, I was wondering how to connect my PS3 Dualshock 3 controller to my monitor. I plugged in my PS3, and it appears on my screen. But I'm not sure how to connect the PS3 controller. Please help a brutha out.

Hi Bob -  

This wireless controller cannot be connected directly to a monitor.  The USb connector is for charging only.  It does not carry any data.

Hello, I have a Gateway smart pc, model # ZX6971, 64-bit with HDMI. I have a smart VISIO TV with hdmi. I purchased the hdmi cable, plugged into pc and tv and changed tv input settings and the only thing I get on my tv is "no signal". Please help me.

Hey Deborah!  Regarding your inquiry, please send an e-mail to pc@bhphoto.com and our tech team will be able to assist you better.

I stopped reading you when I got to
" Because if you set your sights on an expensive graphics card, and if you have to pay someone to install it, you might be better off just buying a new desktop system that already has an HDMI output."

Anyone needing help to plug cables or cards is too dumb even to read your atricle and should see a psychiatrist before trying anithing of the sort.

Or even spell article.

Or even spell anYthing...

Let me remind you Andrew...if I may...that not everyone is so bright as you...

Hello i have a 5 year old PC with with only VGA and DVI outputs. I recently purchased a Samsung Full 1080p LED Monitor but realized my PC does not have HDMI out. If i purchase a VGA or DVI to HDMI cable, will i be getting full HD graphics on my monitor?  

Hi Vic -  

You will get the maximum resoluton that your PC is capable of outputting to the monitor.  If the monitor has up-scaling capabiity than you may be able to view images near the full 1080p that the monitor is capable of displaying.

Good source of information most of their technicians are well trained and they sell you the right stuff for your needs. Thanks

Hi I have an older desktop and bought a vga to HDM1 cable.  I plugged in to where my monitor would be plugged into and it into the television with no response. Can you tell me what I need to do?  Thank you

karen

Hi Karen - 

You might need to choose the propoer output from the control panel of your PC and the proper HDMI input port with your remote control for the TV.

Hey. I have a Samsung TV with hiding but my MSI notebook laptop has vga. I have connected them using an vga to converter but it seems not to work. What am I doing wrong please...

Hey. I have a Samsung TV with hmdi but my MSI notebook laptop has vga. I have connected them using an vga to converter but it seems not to work. What am I doing wrong please...

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Hi Keren - 

You may be doing nothing wrong at all.  Today's televisions employ a digital copy protection scheme that may be wrecking havoc with your connection.  You also need to recheck your connections and cables. On your computer, make sue the video output ans audio output are being sent out the VGA connection by accessing your Contol Panel settings on your PC.

Please contact us via e-mail if you have additional questions:  AskBH@BandH.com

I have PC with HDMI output can I connect to Samsung TV HDMI

Hi DannyMac:

You sure can.  If the HDMI port on your PC is the full size "A type" you can use this type of cable:

http://Pearstone High-Speed HDMI to HDMI Cable with Ethernet - Black, 6' (1.8 m)

If your PC uses the smaller HDMI mini  "type C":

Pearstone High-Speed Mini HDMI (Type C) to HDMI (Type A) Cable with Ethernet - 6.0' (1.8 m)

 I have a picture but no sound, can you help me to fix that problem.

Dannymac.

Hi DannyMac - 

This is probably a Control Panel setting. Make sure your PC embeds audio with the video content.  If you continue to have issues, send us ane-mail to:  AskBH@BandH.com

Thank you Mark. 

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