How to Activate/Deactivate your PC's External Video Output (VGA, S-Video)
While your PC always has a primary display enabled when you start your computer, your secondary PC output jacks (VGA, S-Video) are not usually enabled. So each time you restart your PC, you will have to enable your secondary output jack if you wish to connect your PC to your TV. It's easy once you figure out how to do it.
There are many different computer manufacturers, television manufacturers, operating systems and graphics controllers. These instructions are general in nature and may vary based on your equipment brand and/or model. Please refer to your computer and/or TV documentation as required.
NOTE: If you have a tube television, your output device will be "Television." If you have an HDTV, your output device will be "Monitor."
There are several ways to activate/deactivate your PC's external video output:
1. Right-Click Method (our preferred method)
3. Via your Control Panel (Start >> Control Panel; then look for Graphics Properties)
4. Other ways that might work depending on your specific computer and operating system:
- You may have a monitor icon on the lower right side of your screen. Right-click on this icon to see what options are available. Or left double-click to quicky access your Graphics Properties
- If you have Intel graphics, you may be able to quickly access your Graphics Properties with the following hot-key combination: CTRL+ALT+F12.
From the Graphics Properties dialog box you can save various "schemes" for easy access from the monitor icon. For example, once you figure out the best settings for a Notebook + Monitor (HDTV) combination, you can name and save this configuration. If your computer supports a higher resolution than your PC and HDTV combination, you can save a "Notebook Only" scheme to quickly reset your computer's resolution after you disconnect your HDTV.
How to access your Graphics Properties:
After you activate your PC's external video, you may wish to make adjustments to your Graphics Properties. Follow these steps:
Hold down <CONTROL> and <ALT> at the same time, then press <F12>. This may open your Graphics Properties dialog box.
Or you access your Graphics Properties like this:
1. Right-click on your desktop and select "Properties"
2. Click on the "Settings" tab.
3. Click on the "Advanced" button
You will see a tab with the name of your graphics controller. There are three popular brands: Intel, NVIDIA and ATI. We will walk through the setup for the Intel graphics controller here; if you have the NVIDEA controller, click here for detailed instructions. If you have an ATI Catalyst Control Center, click here for detailed instructions (select HDTV Users Guide link on left).
4. Click on the tab for your graphics controller; for example "Intel Extreme Graphics 2 For Mobile"
5. Check the box to "Show Tray Icon." This will place a little icon on the lower right side of your screen which will make accessing your graphics properties easy.
6. Click the "Graphics Properties" button.
Your Graphics Properties dialog box is now open. On the left side you will see tabs labeled Display Devices, Display Settings, Color Correction and Hot Keys. The Display Devices tab should be selected.
7. If your PC has an S-Video output jack you will have the option to select "Multiple Display" and "Dual Display Clone." If you don't have an S-Video output you will only have this option after a VGA cable is connected between your PC and TV. NOTE: If you don't see the "Dual Display Clone" option, close the dialog box, make sure your cable is securely connected, and try again.
8. Always set the Primary device to "Notebook."If you are using an HDMI or VGA cable set the Secondary device to "Monitor". If you are using our S-Video cable set the secondary device to "Television." Your HDTV is a large monitor for your PC, not a television. Then click on the "Device Settings" tab.
If you have have selected the "Multiple Display" option under Display Devices, you will now have several Device tabs at the top of the Graphics Properties dialog box. For example, Notebook, Monitor, or Television. Click on each Device tab to configure that device.
9. If you are using an S-Video cable set the Screen Resolution to 800 x 600. For an HDMI or VGA cable start with an initial Screen Resolution of 1024 x 768. Set the Refresh rate to 60 hz and Display Expansion to "Full Screen." For a Televison in North America, set the Video Standard to "NTSC_M." NOTE: If you are connecting an HDTV your PC's resolution must match your HDTV's resolution. Refer to your HDTV's documentation to find the supported resolutions. Usually your PC will communicate with your HDTV and only offer you resolutions that are supported by both.
10. After making changes always click on the "Apply" button to activate your selections. You should now have a clone of your PC on your TV or HDTV.
Windows Vista or Windows 7
1. Hold down <CONTROL> and <ALT> at the same time, then press <F12>. This may open your graphics properties dialog box.
Or you can access your graphics properties like this:
1. Right-click on your desktop.
2. Depending on your computer, select one of the following:
- NVIDIA Control Panel. Then click the "Set up multiple displays link" on the left side. Refer to your NVIDIA documentation.
- ATI Catalyst Control Center. Then refer to your ATI documentation.
- Personalize. Then click on the "Connect to a projector or other external display" link on the left side under "Tasks." Follow the instructions or refer to your computer's documentation.
- Graphics Properties. This will bring you to the Intel graphics controller setup. Follow the instructions above starting with Step 7.