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No Sound on TV through Laptop

November 2015

Modern day laptops provide users the flexibility to share their pictures and videos on a TV . To connect the laptop / computers for this purpose, users can either choose to connect via an HDMI/DVI connector or use VGA composite or s-video connectors. In the case of non-HDMI sound, one may have to use headphones or S/PDIF jacks to extract the same from the computer. One important point to note is that all of these connectors provide one-way connectivity from computer to TV, and not the other way around. To achieve a TV to laptops connectivity, the user would have to use a video convertor box.

No Sound on TV through Laptop


I am wondering whether anyone can help. I have plugged a VGA cable from my HP laptop into my television which is fine and transmits the picture. However, when I have tried to put an RCA cable from my laptop into my television (via a phono convertor), the sound still comes out of my laptop and not the TV speakers. Can anyone help?

Thanks in Advance.


Computers have two separate systems - one for video and one for sound.

The only computer (or laptop) connection that carries both video and sound is HDMI. If you do not have an HDMI/DVI connector on the back of your computer, then you will have to use the VGA-composite or s-video connectors to display your PC's output on an external monitor like an LCD TV.

On both my HP and Dell laptops the display settings (Start/Control Panel/Personalize/Display Settings) allow two modes - single or dual monitor mode. Single monitor mode allows me to switch between any one of three possible video outputs - VGA-composite, S-Video or laptop screen, or a split-desktop (display spread over two separate monitors). Dual monitor mode allows the same display on any two of three possible video outputs.

Switching is performed using the fn keys on the keyboard (fn key plus the F2, F8, etc. function key with the display marking). Use single monitor mode until you figure out what you are doing. Select VGA-composite or S-Video.

Non-HDMI sound to your TV monitor or sound system must be obtained from your laptop's Headphone or S/PDIF jacks. Headphone is stereo and S/PDIF is 5.1 surround sound. Headphone is electrical, but S/PDIF may be electrical or optical (laser light). You must set the sound jack that you intend to use as the default on the PC Control Panel (Start/Control Panel/Sound).

None of these connectors is two-way in the context of an LCD monitor - your PC cannot record a TV picture or sound from the external monitor. To accomplish this you must purchase a video converter box that converts cable TV or video + sound inputs to USB format usable by your laptop. Do this and you can turn your laptop into a Tivo recorder/DVD burner using Beyond TV, Sage TV or a variety of other software packages.


Thanks to felinis for this tip on the forum.
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Published by aakai1056. - Latest update by Jeff
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