Connecting a Laptop to a TV

10:54 AM Katy 12 Comments

 I may be an engineer, but there is a big difference between a gadget/tech guru and someone like me, who does structural stuff. You wanna know how many banners you can attach to that light pole before it shears off and kills someone? I'm your girl.

You wanna know the latest gadgetry and audio-visual possibilities?  derrr..... 

So here I am, with a new flat screen TV that I managed to run new wiring for and install in my living room. Except that the picture is still fuzzy when we play DVDs. I can't figure that out.

I have Netflix. I want to be able to connect my laptop to the TV, so that I can "stream" a movie or cartoon from Netflix to the stupid flat screen. I am not frustrated at all.

This is the "VGA" port on my laptop:

And Best Buy salespeople sold me 3 different cable combinations that didn't work. I gave up on them and I'm trying to figure this out online.  Nightmare.

I was told that Monoprice is the place to go. But so far I can't figure out what I need.

To be continued....

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  1. You don't by any chance have a Wii do you? You can stream netflix through that and if you have a wireless router you don't have to do any wiring, it just picks it up

  2. Are there more inputs on the back of the TV? like one with Red,blue, green (may be 5, red, blue, green, red, and white)

  3. yes we have a wii! Now what does that mean Mollie? I just hook the wii up to the TV and ...what? (yes i have a wireless router too!)

    that's exciting...if I can figure out how to make it happen ;)

    I will have to take the TV off the wall and investigate the ports on the back -- I remember there were more..

  4. Netflix has so many options for streaming. Even with increased prices, I don't think I'll ever get rid of this convenience. There are only two people in our house, but have 6 ways to watch netflix. Completely ridiculous.

    For Wii, you just get a order the disc from Netflix, mine was free, pop it in and follow instructions. You may have to enter your wifi code in the Wii setup if you haven't already.

    Or most new bluray players come equipped to stream netflix too.

  5. but i don't wanna order the disc...i wanna do the live streaming off their website.... or both. or EVERYTHING! :) It's still cheaper than cable

  6. okay maybe I should have been more detailed about this, I hardly know what I'm talking about :(

    I already have a DVD player hooked up. The issue is being able to live stream stuff directly from the laptop to the computer.

  7. I'd have to go look at my system, but first thing is you set your wii to wireless- I'd have to sit in front of it to remember how to do it but it's under settings or something. Then go to Netflix and on their site they will walk you through setting it up. I'm very technically challenged and did it pretty easily- it's just been a while since I did it. Very first thing though is to change your wii to wireless. (Once it's hooked up the internet you can also go buy the original super mario brothers for $5- plus a bunch of other old school games!)

  8. If I weren't dashing off, I'd try to photograph my laptop to tv set up. Your best option for that is to hook the tv up using the video monitor port.

    Or do the wii thing, it's easier.

  9. You can set up your system a few different ways. The easiest ways are to use a VGA or S-Video cable; neither of which transmit audio.

    I would advise using an S-video cable if your laptop has an S-video output. I say this because the picture you put up show an easily accessible S-Video port.

    In addition to the S-Video, you will need to attach an audio cable. You can buy cable that will plug into your speaker output on your laptop and split into L/R RCA cables (the red and white ports).

    This option will give you audio and video. You will need to adjust your video output to correspond with your screen size.

    Another option includes purchasing a USB/HDMI converter. Something like this will work fine for both audio and video.

    Hope this helps.

  10. I agree with @it rhymes with finest - the S-Video cable will work if there is an S-video output on the laptop.

    You did post a picture of the TV's S-video. You'd then hook up the audio to the TV by getting a cable (Radio Shack?) that has a headphone jack on one end, and the Red/White RCA plugs on the other.

    But, I must agree that hooking up the wii and streaming Netflix from the wii is A BILLION times cooler/faster!

  11. You don't need to order the disk anymore - you can download the Netflix app from the Wii Shop Channel.

    This page tells you everything you need to know to get going:

    BTW, love your blog!!

    Ed T.

  12. Katy- did you figure out how to hook up Netflix through Wii? Do you need help?


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