Step-by-Step Guide: How to Switch HDMI on Laptop

Table of Contents


Switching HDMI on your laptop can be an essential skill, especially if you want to connect your laptop to an external display for watching movies, giving presentations, or simply to extend or mirror your desktop to a larger screen. In this article, we will guide you on how to switch HDMI on your laptop without any technical difficulties, allowing you to get the most out of your devices. We will start by checking your laptop and cables, followed by configuring your laptop’s display settings, connecting the HDMI cable, switching the input on your TV, and finally, troubleshooting common issues.

Checking your laptop and cable

1. Check laptop ports

Before you can switch HDMI on your laptop, ensure that your laptop has an HDMI port. Most modern laptops have this port, but if it’s an older model, it might not have one, or it might have a different type of video output port, such as VGA or DisplayPort. In that case, you may need an adapter to convert the signal to HDMI.

2. Check HDMI cable

Inspect your HDMI cable to make sure it’s in good condition without any visible damage, such as bent or broken connectors. A damaged cable can cause connectivity problems or even damage your devices if used. There are different types of HDMI cables, like standard HDMI, high-speed HDMI, and ultra-high-speed HDMI. Ensure you have the correct cable for your devices to guarantee the best performance.

Configure your laptop display settings

Depending on your operating system, the steps to configure your display settings will vary.

1. Windows 10

In Windows 10, right-click on your desktop and select Display settings. Under the Multiple displays section, choose either Duplicate these displays to mirror your laptop screen or Extend these displays to expand the desktop area across both screens. Click Apply and then Keep changes to confirm.

2. Mac OS X

On a Mac, click the Apple icon in the top left corner, and then select System Preferences. Choose Displays and go to the Arrangement tab. Here, you can either check the Mirror Displays box to mirror your laptop screen or leave it unchecked to extend the desktop.

3. Chrome OS

For Chromebooks, click on the bottom right corner of the screen, and then click on the settings icon (gear icon). Scroll down to the Displays section, and click on Manage display settings. Here you can choose to Mirror built-in display or extend the desktop by dragging the display icons to arrange them.

4. Linux

In Linux, the steps to configure your display settings will vary depending on the distribution and desktop environment. Generally, you can find the display settings by searching for display or monitor in the settings application. Look for options to mirror or extend the display and arrange the screens as needed.

Connect the HDMI cable

1. Locate HDMI port on your laptop

Find the HDMI port on your laptop, usually located on the side or back of the laptop. It will be marked with the HDMI logo or simply labeled HDMI.

2. Connect the HDMI cable to your laptop

Plug one end of the HDMI cable into the HDMI port on your laptop and the other end into the HDMI input on your TV, monitor, or other external display device.

Switch the input on your TV

1. Finding the input button on your TV remote

Locate the input button on your TV remote, which is usually labeled Input, Source, or TV/Video. This button allows you to cycle through the available inputs on your TV.

2. Select the HDMI Input

Use the input button on the remote to switch to the HDMI input that corresponds to the port in which you have connected the HDMI cable. If you’re unsure which input is correct, simply cycle through the inputs until you see your laptop screen displayed on your TV.


If you’re experiencing issues, try the following troubleshooting steps:

1. Check the HDMI cable and connections

Ensure that the HDMI cable is securely connected to both your laptop and the external display. If the issue persists, try using a different HDMI cable.

2. Update drivers

Ensure your laptop’s graphics drivers are up to date. Visit the manufacturer’s website for your graphics card and download the latest drivers available.

3. Test on another device

If you are still experiencing issues, try connecting your laptop to another HDMI-compatible device to determine if the issue lies with the laptop or the external display device.


Now that you’ve learned how to switch HDMI on your laptop, you can enjoy a seamless connection between your laptop and external display device. Remember to check your laptop’s ports and cable for compatibility, configure your laptop’s display settings, connect the HDMI cable, and switch the input on your TV. Troubleshoot any issues as needed, and embrace your newfound skill in connecting your devices with ease.


What if my laptop does not have an HDMI port?

If your laptop doesn’t have an HDMI port, you may need a video adapter that converts your laptop’s video output (e.g., VGA, DisplayPort, or USB-C) to HDMI.

Can I use my TV as a second monitor for my laptop?

Yes, you can use your TV as a second monitor by extending the desktop to the TV (see Configure your laptop display settings section).

Can I connect more than one HDMI device to my laptop?

If your laptop has multiple HDMI ports, you can connect more than one HDMI device. If not, you may need an HDMI splitter or a docking station with multiple HDMI outputs.

Does HDMI carry both video and audio?

Yes, HDMI can transmit both video and audio between connected devices.

Do I need a special HDMI cable for 4K or HDR content?

For 4K or HDR content, you will likely need a high-speed HDMI cable, which can handle higher bandwidth requirements.

How do I adjust the screen resolution for my TV when connected to my laptop?

Refer to the Configure your laptop display settings section for your specific operating system, and look for an option to adjust the screen resolution.

Can I connect my laptop to a TV wirelessly instead of using an HDMI cable?

Yes, some laptops and TVs support wireless connections or casting via protocols like Miracast or Chromecast. Check your devices for compatibility and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for setting up the connection.