Connecting a PC to your TV opens up tons of possibilities, but getting the two devices to play nicely together isn’t always easy. Follow our simple guide, and we’ll show you how its done, and the benefits to connecting your two most prized high-tech possessions!
Hook up with HDMI
If your laptop has a HDMI connection, you’re in luck. This is the simplest and fastest way to connect a laptop to your TV. All you need is a single cable between the two – assuming your TV has an HDMI connection too.
HDMI cables transfer sound and pictures with one wire, so there’s no mess and no confusion. Even the connectors on each end are the same, so you can’t plug it in the wrong way!
Once it’s hooked up, head to your display settings by right clicking on the Windows Desktop. Here you’ll be able to choose which screen is used to display what. You can watch a movie on the big screen, while continuing to work on the laptop, or set the TV to mirror what’s shown on the laptop’s screen, letting you run presentations.
Lastly, make sure your sound driver is set to HDMI under Windows sound settings in the control panel. This will make sure all your audio is sent to the TV’s speakers, letting you enjoy the very best in HDMI home entertainment!
Share pictures with PC Input
Most TVs have a PC Input connection. It’s actually a VGA connection, and is simple to hook up to your laptop or desktop computer. Just use a standard VGA cable, and you’ll see the desktop appear on the big screen as soon as you change to the right channel.
There are several downsides to using the PC Input connection instead of a HDMI hook-up. For a start, it won’t provide the simple high definition pictures of a HDMI connection, and you’ll need a separate cable running from the laptop’s headphone socket to the TV’s red and white audio connections to audio too.
You’ll also find there are fewer options for displaying pictures on the TV, with most systems simply mirroring what’s shown on the main laptop screen.
However, if you’re giving a presentation, enjoying photo slideshows, or simply want to demonstrate websites and applications to a large group of people, PC Input is a simple and relatively foolproof option.
Use next-generation WiDi
Some of the latest laptops, such as our Satellite A660, come with Intel’s Wireless Display, or WiDi, technology built in. Hook up an adapter box to your TV, connect it to your home Wi-Fi network, and you’ll be all set to send pictures from your laptop to the big screen without any cables at all.
WiDi adapter boxes hook up to your TV’s HDMI connection, and act as a bridge between the television and your home network. Once it’s up and running, you simply need to load the Wireless Display application from the PC’s start menu. You’ll instantly see the computer’s display on the big screen, and it’ll send sound to the TV too, making sure it’s perfectly in sync with the pictures on-screen.