7 Easy Ways to Connect a Laptop to a TV Using USB, HDMI, VGA, DVI, etc.

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In this guide, we will walk you through different ways and the practical steps to connect the laptop to a TV. You can watch TV shows, movies, games, and other exciting content on the bigger screen. There are several ways to achieve this connection, but we will cover the seven most successful and practically simple methods.

Choosing the right method depends on many factors. However, the most important factor in deciding the selection is the availability of ports on laptops and gaming TVs.

Let’s get started.

Method 1: How to connect a laptop to a TV with an HDMI cable?

connecting a laptop to a tv using HDMI cable

The HDMI cable is your best bet to connect a laptop to the TV. It can handle both audio and high-resolution video, which means you’ll be able to stream all of your favorite shows on Netflix with crystal clear resolution.

If you have a laptop and TV that both come equipped with HDMI ports, all it takes is an HDMI cable to connect them easily. Once connected, turn on your devices and select the correct HDMI input on the TV from your remote control for easy usage.

Think about the size of your HDMI port before you buy a cable. Some laptops have both micro and mini HDMI ports, so you’ll need to get an adapter or use an existing one that’s compatible with the input/output port on your TV. You can find these micro HDMI to HDMI and mini HDMI to HDMI adapters to best suit your needs.

Set up Instructions

  1. Find the right HDMI cable for the connection between TV and laptop. (PowerBear is the best 4K HDMI cable).
  2. Connect the devices with the cable.
  3. Turn on the laptop and TV.
  4. Wait till both devices start, then select the input as HDMI from the TV using the remote.
  5. Wait for the connection to establish.

Usually, the connection is self detected and easy to set on both devices. Sometimes it needs manual settings. To do this, go to System/Settings/Display and then check if “TV” is selected. Once you selected the output source, adjust the resolution according to the TV specifications.

Now you need to duplicate the laptop screen on the TV. For this, press “Windows Key + P Key,” From the given options, select “Duplicate.”

Advantages

  • Less input lag with high picture quality
  • Supports higher resolutions like 4K
  • Best suited for gaming needs
  • Reliable and stable connection

Downsides

  • Needs wire management to avoid clutter
  • Range is limited

Related: Best Cheap Laptops Under $300-$400


Method 2: How to connect a laptop to a TV with a VGA cable?

procedure to connect a laptop to a tv using VGA cable

VGA is popular display input/output on older TV and Laptops. If you happen to have these ports on both laptop and TV, you can connect those using VGA cables. These cables are relatively cheaper, and you can find the best VGA cables from the market.

However, they are not good compared to the HDMI cables due to their resolution difference. The HDMI cables have better and high-quality resolution than the VGA. Another thing that you may notice is VGA inability to transfer audio signals while carrying only video signals.

Set up Instructions

  1. Find the VGA port on both TV and laptop.
  2. Connect these two devices with the VGA cable.
  3. Now it’s time to turn on both devices.
  4. Using remote, either select RGB or PC input from the TV settings.

In this way, the connection between the devices can happen automatically. However, you may need manual settings on the laptop if it does not connect automatically. Go to Settings/System/Display and then select TV.

Once you achieve the connection, you can set the resolution from the laptop to match the TV output. Now press “Windows Key + P Key” to set the screen to the “Duplicate” option.

Advantages

  • Best for settings up a connection where TV lacks HDMI connection
  • A good option for older TVs and laptops
  • Cables are cheaper and readily available

Downsides

  • Only viable for older TVs
  • Quality may reduce due to non HD support

Method 3: Connecting a laptop to a TV using DVI

In some rare events, you may encounter a DVI port with 29-pin to connect the laptop to the TV. Although this is a rare event, you may need mostly to connect the PCs to the TV. Some graphics cards have DVI support which needs output connection as DVI to connect with the other source.

Set up Instructions

  1. Locate the DVI ports on both TV and Laptop.
  2. Use a DVI cable to connect to them.
  3. Turn the devices on and let the connection detect itself.
  4. You can use the settings as we have done in setting up VGA to connect the DVI interface.
  5. After setting up the connection, press “Windows Key + P Key” and select “Duplicate from the options.

Advantages

  • Can transfer relatively higher resolutions
  • Readily available for the connection

Downsides

  • Need mini-jack or RCA setup for audio transfer.

Method 4: Using converters to connect the laptop and TV

If you have a laptop with only an HDMI port and your TV has old VGA ports, then the best thing for you to do is buy yourself one of those handy little converters. They are not expensive and only cost few bucks. You can find cheap HDMI to VGA converter online from Amazon.

HDMI to VGA converter to connect a laptop to a TV

Once you have the converter, plug your HDMI cable into the laptop and a VGA cable for TV properly at both ends. Next, find which input on your TV corresponds to PC or RGB with remote control before connecting both ends of cables at the last step.

Set up Instructions

  1. Get a reliable HDMI to VGA converter from Amazon.
  2. Now plug in the HDMI cable of your laptop to the port.
  3. Take the TV VGA cable and plug it into the corresponding port.
  4. Now take the converter and attach it to cables from both devices.
  5. Turn on the TV and laptop to verify the connection.
  6. Now use the PC or RCB input method on the TV using the remote.

If you detect the connection establishment, then go on and enjoy the content on TV. Otherwise, go to the Settings/System/Display, then select the TV within the computer. You can use the “Duplicate” screen method to display the laptop screen now on the TV.

Advantages

  • Good for the setup where TV and laptop has different ports
  • Cheap alternative against replacing the hardware

Downsides

  • It may require finding the best converter for HDMI ports

Method 5: Connect a laptop to a TV with USB-C

If you have a USB-C port on your laptop, there are only two options for connecting it to the TV. One option is with an HDMI cord, but if you don’t have one around or want something more high-tech, try using a USB-C cable and connect both devices instead. Remember that not every device can carry video, though, so make sure before buying any cables.

using USB-C to HDMI adapter to connect a laptop to a TV

The second option is to purchase a USB-C – HDMI adapter that will allow you to connect your laptop directly with an HDMI cable. (Uni USB-C to HDMI adapter is the best choice for up to 4K displays.) Plug the USB-C end of the connector into your computer and plug in one side of an HDMI cable to the TV. Now use the USB-C to HDMI adapter to connect both cables. To finish off this connection process, select “HDMI” on the TV’s input menu, so they are matched up correctly.

Set up Instructions

  1. Connect both devices with the USB-C cables. (Buy it from Amazon)
  2. Use USB-C to HDMI adapter if one of the devices is not compatible with the connection.
  3. Now it’s time to turn the laptop and TV on to check the connection.
  4. Use the TV remote to find and select the right input method. In this case, select HDMI.
  5. Wait for the projection of the image. If it doesn’t appear, use the “Duplicate” screen methods to connect the TV.

Advantages

  • Fast and reliable connection
  • Good connection for the latest devices

Downsides

  • Cable management issues
  • Need an adapter for non-compatible TV

Method 6: How to connect the laptop to a TV wirelessly?

Connecting your laptop to the TV wirelessly will make it an absolute breeze. You need a media streaming device (either Google Chromecast or Roku Streaming Stick Plus) and Android TV with built-in Chromecast Support, or another option that has what you’re looking for: wireless connectivity without cables.

Chromecast may look like a better device in this situation as it has the solution for your streaming and movies needs without connecting to the HDMI or VGA cables. It may cost more than the cable price, but you can get the best Google Chromecast starting from $30.

Set up Instructions

  1. Get the Chromecast and plug it into the TV set.
  2. Now open Google Chrome and click on the upper right menu corner.
  3. Using the “Sources” drop-down menu, select the content that you want to cast.
  4. Let the things work, and it will start casting on the TV in no time.

Advantages

  • Relatively inexpensive technology
  • Easily stream content like web pages and videos
  • It supports higher-resolution like 4K
  • No need for the cable management

Downsides

  • Limited support and integration than Android devices

Method 7: Using a USB flash drive

If you’re looking to watch your vacation photos or a movie on TV now and then, don’t bother with cables. Use USB flash drives instead of using a laptop or any other digital media.

USb USB flash drive connected to a laptop

If you’ve got a TV that’s not compatible with your laptop, it might be time to invest in an adapter. By plugging the USB into the port on your TV and selecting “USB” as one of its inputs, you’ll find yourself able to transfer content from any device without having to buy another computer or download anything special.

Set up Instructions

  1. Get a USB device from any reputed manufacturer.
  2. Now transfer the desired videos and images from the laptop to the USB drive.
  3. Put the USB drive into the port on the TV.
  4. Use the TV remote to play the media and navigate the files.

Advantages

  • Do not need any wireless connection or cable management
  • Easier to setup

Downsides

  • There is no live connection
  • Need pre-set media for streaming

Verdict

This article was about connecting a laptop to your home TV set, which we know isn’t possible without using some cable because both TVs and laptops only come equipped with either HDMI and VGA cables. After reading, it doesn’t seem as complicated as originally thought to be once you figure out the right method.

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