Connecting your computer and television couldn't be easier.
Short & Simple
If your computer and your HDTV have HDMI connectors, that single cable will connect both video and sound.
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If both your computer and your television have HDMI connectors, HDMI cables offer the best quality and easiest connection. Most recent HDTVs have HDMI inputs, and many PCs now come with HDMI outputs. Macs do not have HDMI outputs, but many have DisplayPort, DVI or other outputs that can be used with adapters to HDMI. You can also find video cards for PCs and Macs with HDMI outputs.
HDMI connections give you a digital signal from the computer to the HDTV. Usually sound is included in the HDMI signal, so an audio cable is not required. However, some TVs do not support sound over HDMI, and sound is also not transmitted with a DVI to HDMI cable. In these cases, you will need a separate audio cable.
Component cables transmit analog signals between your computer and your HDTV. These are high-quality signals and can support HD resolutions. Component cables come bundled as three color-coded cables: one red, one green and one blue. They do not carry audio signals, so you will need separate audio cabling.
While HDTVs often have component inputs, computers usually do not carry component outputs. Adapters and cables can connect DVI outputs to component inputs, but it is important to note that computer DVI systems typically output RGB signals, rather than the Y/Pb/Pr format used in TVs. For this reason we do not recommend any DVI to component solutions unless you are certain your video card supports the right format.
VGA cables transmit analog video signals from your computer to your HDTV. VGA outputs are common on PCs, and VGA inputs are common on HDTVs. However, some TVs do not provide HD resolutions from VGA input. There are a wide variety of adapter cables and converter boxes available for VGA. VGA cables do not carry audio, so you need separate cables for audio.
We do not recommend S-video for connecting your computer to your TV. S-video is an analog video signal that is lower quality than HDMI, component or VGA. S-video cannot support HD resolutions, and it does not carry audio.
We do not recommend composite video for connecting your computer to your TV. Composite video cables transmit lower quality signals than any other type, and do not support HD resolutions. They do not carry audio, but a composite cable may come in a bundle with two audio cables, with one yellow connector for video, and red and white connectors for audio.
If your sound is played through the speakers in your TV, use a cable to link the computer audio output to the TV audio input. If you use a separate sound system, you will need to connect your computer output to your sound amplifier input. Depending on your TV, you may need to manually adjust the audio source on your amplifier. Some HDTVs provide audio passthrough, so when you make your computer the video source, your audio will come from the computer as well.
HDMI, optical (also known as TOSLINK) and coaxial cables can carry the highest quality audio signal that computers typically support.
HDMI can transmit audio and video in a single cable. Some TVs don’t support sound over HDMI, so check the TV manual to find out whether you need an audio cable in addition to the HDMI cable.
Optical audio cables (TOSLINK) use the S/PDIF standard to transmit a digital signal from your computer to your HDTV. Many Macintosh computers have an optical output embedded in the headphone connector. In this case you will need a mini-TOSLINK cable or adapter.
Coaxial cables also use the S/PDIF standard to transmit a digital audio signal from your computer to your TV. This type of cable is color-coded orange.
Stereo cables transmit analog signals between your computer and your TV. Connectors are often RCA-style coaxial, colored red (right channel) and white (left channel or mono). Most computers use a 3.5mm mini stereo connector that carries both channels.
After connecting your computer’s audio output to your HDTV or home theatre amplifier, check your computer’s sound settings. Be sure the sound is not set to mute, and set the volume to a level high enough for your TV system, typically around 80%. Setting it to 100% could cause distortion and is usually unnecessary.
Computer mice are designed for use with a screen that is two or three feet away, but a TV is more likely to be viewed from at least six feet away. The Scoop pointer is the only in-air remote designed to control a TV while retaining the simplicity of a traditional desktop mouse. The Scoop uses Hillcrest Labs’ patented Freespace® technology, so you do not need to point directly at the screen, or even hold the pointer right side up. When you gesture to the left, the cursor moves to the left. You don’t need to learn precise pointing skills because the software compensates for natural hand tremor and keeps the cursor steady on the screen. There are no issues regarding placement because the Scoop pointer and antenna connect via radio frequency, not with infrared sensors. You can put your computer behind a closed cabinet door and still control your system from as far away as 30 feet.
A computer mouse will work also, and one that is wireless will be more convenient. Many computers have built-in Bluetooth wireless connectivity, and there are a wide variety of Bluetooth mice. This connection may not have the range necessary for large rooms, depending on the computer and mouse design specifics. Many mice must be used on a flat surface. Logitech makes a mouse specifically designed to work well on uneven surfaces, like your couch (Logitech Couch Mouse M515).
To enter text, such as search terms, you need a keyboard. The Kylo browser includes an onscreen keyboard specifically designed for this purpose. You can also add a wireless keyboard such as the Logitech diNovo Mini. You will need two free USB ports to handle both a wireless keyboard and the Loop pointer unless you use a Bluetooth keyboard and a Bluetooth-capable computer.
Choose the input
Make sure your television’s input selection is set to display the signal from your computer. For example, if you connected with HDMI, there will be a choice to select the appropriate HDMI input. Consult your TV’s manual to find out how to adjust this setting.
Setting the resolution
Resolution refers to the number of pixels displayed by a screen. It determines the clarity of the image as well as its size. In computer monitors, it is expressed with two numbers that represent the number of pixels in a line, and the number of lines on the screen. For example, 1024 x 768 means that each line across the screen contains 1024 pixels, and there are 768 lines from top to bottom. Your computer can output a variety of resolutions.
In televisions, resolution is expressed with one number and one letter, such as 720p or 1080i. The number refers to how many lines there are from top to bottom, and the letter refers to the way the picture is scanned on the screen, with “i” representing “interlaced” and “p” representing “progressive.” Interlaced scanning means that the picture is updated in two passes. Every other line is updated in the first pass, and in the second pass, the missing lines are filled in. With progressive scan, the lines are updated in order, working down the screen. Computer monitors only use progressive scan, but many TVs are capable of both.
With the Kylo Browser, we recommend 720p settings as the best balance between online video formats and typical broadband speeds. However Kylo supports full 1080p resolution also. Try a few combinations to find the one that produces the best picture.
● To set resolution for a Windows PC, open Control Panel and select Display, or right-click on the desktop and select Properties. With Windows 7, right-click on the desktop and select Screen Resolution. Advanced video cards may come with their own setup applications. Consult the manual for your video card in that case.
● To set resolution for Mac OS X, open System Preferences and select the Displays pane. Select among the resolutions available, or select Detect Displays.
● Set your computer resolution to the proper pixel count for 720p or 1080p standards.
Common TV standards
Typically you want your computer resolution set to the pixel count highlighted below for 720p or 1080p standards.
|480i or 480p||720 x 480||4:3||Traditional TV, Standard Definition, NTSC
Not sharp for fine text and small items
|720p||1280 x 720||16:9||High Definition TV, HDTV, WXGA
More typical on projection HDTVs
|720p||1366 x 768||Approx 16:9||High Definition TV, HDTV, WXGA
This variation is typical on LCD HDTVs
|1080i||1920 x 1080||16:9||High Definition TV standard, HDTV
Used in some HDTVs
|1080p||1920 x 1080||16:9||Best High Definition TV standard, HDTV
Common on newest and high-end HDTVs
Adjust computer settings for color, contrast and brightness
The color profile for your TV screen may be very different from the color profile for your computer monitor. Try setting up a color profile on your computer for the TV, or making manual adjustments.
● For Windows, advanced color profiles are available for some video cards. Open Displays under Control Panel or right-click on the Desktop and select Properties > Settings > Advanced. Options available depend on your video card.
● For Mac OS X, use the Displays pane in System Preferences to check whether there is a profile designed for your TV. If not, create a new profile using Calibrate.
Minimize video post-processing
Many HDTVs have special features that modify video signals automatically. These may reduce the quality of computer video output. Try turning off features such as:
● Noise reduction (DNS or digital noise reduction)
● Auto color sensing
● Contrast enhancement or correction
● Black level and white level enhancement or correction
Enable 1:1 pixel mapping
Some TVs have a mode where all video postprocessing is eliminated, and every pixel of the image output is placed on the screen. This is called 1 to 1 pixel mapping or dot for dot mode. The AVS Forum maintains a master list of TVs that can be set to this mode. Consult your TV manual to find out how to set this mode, and which connectors enable it.
Turn on the TV before the PC
This enables the PC to detect the display and adjust output to match. You may have to wait a few moments before the computer display appears on the TV screen.
Change the input
If your TV displays a “no signal” message and there is no picture, your TV may be tuned to display input from a port that is not in use. Change the input to the one that displays the signal from your computer.
Mac laptop: Close the lid
Some Mac laptops enable external video output mirroring only when the lid is closed. In this mode you can use a Mac remote, a Loop pointer, or an external keyboard to control the computer.
Large TVs may require dual-link DVI connectors
DVI cables and connectors come in several styles, most of which are interchangeable for the purposes of connecting PCs and TVs. Very large screens may require a dual link DVI cable. If you connect via DVI and see no picture, check your manuals to see whether dual link is necessary.
High-Bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP) may prevent content playback
Certain computers and operating system setups may check for HDCP compliance when the user attempts to play back DVDs, music, and other content over DVI and HDMI. HDCP stands for High-Bandwidth Digital Content Protection, a copy protection system. If playback fails, ensure that your TV is HDCP compliant.
Graphics Cards With Breakout Cables
Many computer video cards come with breakout cables, custom connector and cable sets that typically support the high-definition standards required to connect your computer and television. Check the video card user’s manual for specifics on connection type and need for an additional audio connection.
Update graphics drivers or reload the drivers
Updating the drivers for your graphics card may add capabilities needed to connect successfully to your TV. Check the card manufacturer’s website for driver updates. Even if there is no update, reloading the drivers may clear up problems.
Update your TV firmware
Some TV manufacturers update the TV firmware periodically to correct problems, improve performance, or add features. Check with the manufacturer, and follow instructions carefully.
Menu bars or other information at the edge of the computer screen not visible
Overscanning may result in menu bars or other information at the edges of the computer screen being invisible. These steps may help:
● Disable or reduce overscanning using the TV overscan setting.
● If the menu bar or window title bar is not visible, use the TV controls to resize the computer image and place it at the center of the TV screen.
● Within the Kylo browser, use Adjust Screen to scale your screen properly. This setting will only apply while you are using Kylo.
Picture but no sound
HDMI can carry both audio and video, but if you connect the DVI output on your computer to an HDMI input on the TV, you will need a separate audio cable. Also, some TVs do not support sound over HDMI. Often the TV includes an extra audio input, but you may need to connect your computer’s audio output to a set of speakers.
Sound is coming from the computer instead of the TV
You may have to change the sound output selected on your computer, so that the sound comes from the TV. For Windows, go to Control Panel and select Sound. For Mac OS X, go to System Preferences > Sound and change the output to correspond with the port you connected to your TV.
Note: Due to the vast variety of PCs, Macs and TVs we cannot provide individual support for connecting systems. This guide is offered as help and represents our recommendations only. We disclaim any responsibility for your specific results. This guide is aimed at the U.S. consumer market and does not discuss many of the extended standards and needs of professional systems.