how to connect notebook to HDTV?
October 26, 2006 9:48 PM   Subscribe

how to connect HDTV to notebook to display video streaming content from notebook?

I have a Dell Latitude D600 notebook and a Pioneer PDP-4214HD HDTV. My goal is to connect the notebook to HDTV to display streaming video on the big HDTV screen. Both notebook and TV have s-video connections. I bought a s-video cable, but the TV does not pick any signal from the notebook. Am I doing something wrong or missing something? Please help.
posted by dy to Computers & Internet (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Try a "VGA to Component" cable. That will let you plug the notebook's external monitor port into your TV's component input.
posted by krisjohn at 10:41 PM on October 26, 2006

Make sure your TV's input is set to that s-video connection (it'd be Video 3 on my panasonic plasma, which has about 6 inputs).
posted by mathowie at 11:00 PM on October 26, 2006

Does your TV have a DVI port in? You might be able to get a VGA to analog DVI cable. The quality is going to be better than sVideo
posted by Good Brain at 11:16 PM on October 26, 2006

You need to mess around in the Display properties to enable the S-video out to work. It might be hiding in the advanced section of the properties tab & usually the s-video cables have to be hooked up for it to be available. Barring that this converter might help.
posted by psychobum at 12:39 AM on October 27, 2006

Response by poster: To mathowie, yes, it was set to S-Video 3. I can see the s-video 3 option is light up when I plug in the cable, but the TV just does not pick any signal from notebook. I'll try VGA to Component as recommended by krisjohn. Thanks everyone.
posted by dy at 9:47 AM on October 27, 2006

Best answer: Make sure that the s-video cable is properly connected and that the TV is not only turned on, but the s-video input is selected.

Go to your computer.
Open the control panel.
Open "Display" or "Display Properties"
Click the "Advanced" button in the lower right.
Select the "Displays" tab.
Look for the little button circle with a vertical line next to (or above) the picture of the TV. Click it.
Click "Apply"
Click "OK"
Click "OK" again.

You should see the image being displayed on the TV, though you may need to leave all the cables conected and reboot your computer. Now you'll see that the NTSC conversion that takes place inside a laptop is utter crap, and the picture that is displayed will be fuzzy and dull.

Now you should take the advice of krisjohn and purchase an inexpensive VGA (HD15) to Component adapter. Note that you will likely have to set your computer's resolution to one of the types that your TV will be expecting to encounter when set to it's component video input. The one you'll want to use is 1280x720. If you can't figure out how to do this, search for and download a little shareware program called Powerstrip.

Ignore the advice suggesting you get a VGA to Analog DVI cable. That's probably won't work. In fact, I would be utterly shocked if it did. Only the most specialized DVI *inputs* also accept analog signals.

The type of converters (generally) used to convert VGA signals to standard video signals (NTSC or PAL) are called a "Scan Converters" or "Transcoders" and can be found all over the internets, but generally don't come cheap. Expect a lower-quality image if you spend less than $150.

Alternatively, Dell has kickass docking stations (if you have a business laptop, which you do). You can buy a used docking station on ebay after you make sure that it has a DVI out port of the back. NOW you can use a DVI cable to connect your laptop to your HDTV, and once you get things setup correctly, dipslaying video or images (or games) from your laptop will be incredibly quick easy, and the resulting image will look far better than any other solution. If your time is valuable, your patience is limited, and you aren't broke, this is the preferred solution.
posted by terpia at 9:56 AM on October 27, 2006

Response by poster: My Dell docking station has a DVI connection. I found a DVI-to-HDMI cable from Fry's, which only costs me $4.99 (what a bargain). Now it works beautifully on my big TV screen. Thanks everyone. :)
posted by dy at 9:02 PM on October 27, 2006

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