Thursday, August 16, 2007



Q: Is it possible to turn my regular TV into a computer monitor so I can watch movies that I downloaded into my laptop?

A: With the proper type of cable to connect the two, it's certainly possible to pipe the video files you download from the Internet from your laptop computer to your television set.

These days, RCA (also known as composite or phono plugs), S-Video, DVI (digital video interface) and, the latest, HDMI (high-definition multimedia interface) are among the many types of connectors used between computers and televisions. With so many standards in use, start by inspecting both your laptop and your TV for what connection is offered. To identify what's back there, Microsoft has an illustrated field guide of common cable connectors at Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005: TV Connection cables

An easy-to-follow guide can also be found at How To Connect a Computer To Your TV:

You will find HDMI ports on new HDTVs, sometimes two or more of them. S-Video is commonly found on many laptops and slightly older TV sets. If you have the S-Video option on both sides, connecting them with an S-Video cable (less than $20 at most electronics stores) is easy. You will probably need to adjust your laptop's display control panel to send the video image to the TV screen. Video cards, video-card drivers and other settings may complicate matters; check your manual or manufacturer's Web site for your laptop's video-out settings and options


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