Tutorial: How to Connect MacBook Pro to High Definition TV (HDTV)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Themegamacman, Apr 23, 2012.

  1. Themegamacman, Apr 23, 2012
    Last edited: May 1, 2014

    Themegamacman macrumors member

    Mar 27, 2012
    I've been seeing this question quite a lot lately, so I thought I'd jump in with a tutorial of how to connect any Mac laptop with a Mini Displayport to an HDTV. This allows for both video and audio from one output, the Thuderbolt/Mini Displayport. It is very simple.

    What you will need is a Mini Displayport to HDMI adapter. I've listed a few options with links below:
    All listed should work the same, the only thing that may vary is build quality. I've listed what I found to be the best. The links are for Amazon.com because it is far cheaper than the Apple store.

    And an HDMI Cable (Almost any will do since they're all essentially the same if they work, being as the signal is digital, not analog.)

    Now all you have to do is plug the adapter into your MacBook Pro or Air and the HDMI cable into the adapter and into your HDTV. Once you've put set the TV to the correct input the MacBook should automatically detect the TV and adjust (it will go to a blue screen as it detects the new display and adjusts). If it doesn't and something's not working, see below.

    If the picture isn't how you want it, adjust settings here: Navigate into System Preferences>Displays

    If your audio isn't working: Navigate into System Preferences>Sound>Output and adjust accordingly.

    If your video isn't working correctly: Navigate into System Preferences>Displays and click on Detect Displays. You can then choose the "mirroring" option and your computer screen should now be displayed on your TV. If you have any other problems, please let me know.
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
  3. Themegamacman thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 27, 2012
    Saw that, but thought it might be a little too complicated for some people, so I wrote a simplified version that is a little more straightforward and less technical so that people who don't have time to spare can figure out how to do it quickly. Sorry if this counts as double posting, I only meant to help. :)
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    No problem. I just didn't know if you were aware of that guide.
  5. shyam09 macrumors 65816


    Oct 31, 2010
    and of course, make sure your HDTV input is set to HDMI lolz :D
  6. blueroom macrumors 603


    Feb 15, 2009
    Toronto, Canada
    I'm waiting for Mountain Lion so I can mirror to an ATV3.
  7. jdwagner888 macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2011
    Great tutorial!

    You can also use the Mini-display to VGA connector. But doing this would require an extra wire to be run from your headphone jack to the TV aswell.

    This is what I do with my Henge-Docks setup and it works pretty good, although an HDMI would be much cleaner of an install.
  8. JoshGlzBrk, May 5, 2012
    Last edited: May 5, 2012

    JoshGlzBrk macrumors 6502a


    Aug 27, 2009
    Never thought this was such a big deal?

    Buy this: http://www.amazon.com/Mini-DisplayP...6LWM/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1336279633&sr=8-1

    for $4...

    Hook it up to your tv, when you switch your tv to that hdmi input you will notice, then just change the output res on the displays settings. Either set it to output as a separate display, or choose mirroring. And if you want audio set hdmi as the default audio device in audio midi setup.

    Although it sucks for people with macbooks prior to the 2010 version :p
  9. jdwagner888 macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2011
    Never saw that before. I might have to order one to cleanup my current setup.. Plus the bulky connector on the apple adapter is a tight fit in the henge dock.
  10. rault18 macrumors member


    Dec 13, 2011
    Las Vegas, Nv
    Josh I just ordered one of those cables u posted ..
  11. ezramoore macrumors 6502a

    Mar 20, 2006
    Washington State
    Also, not all Macs output audio over the MiniDP. Started with some 2010 models, if I remember correctly.

    Also good to note, some MiniDP to HDMI adapters don't support audio, even if the Mac does.

    This guide is pretty useless since it is so incomplete.
  12. rault18, May 10, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 26, 2012

    rault18 macrumors member


    Dec 13, 2011
    Las Vegas, Nv
    woot!! Best 9 dollars I've spent this year

    Fyi I bought it off eBay not amazon
  13. rault18 macrumors member


    Dec 13, 2011
    Las Vegas, Nv
    Also in getting audio as well. One question. Is if I change it to 1080 I get the black bars on the side ..so I'm running at 720
  14. mfuchs88 macrumors 6502

    Nov 26, 2011
    I'm not completely sure what you're asking but I may be able to help, as I've been using one of those adapters for quite some time. Are you having trouble with audio? And the black bars are probably because the aspect ratio of your TV is different from the aspect ratio of 1080p, but I don't know much about resolutions and stuff like that so I could be terribly wrong. Hope this helped a little bit and maybe the OP can chime in with a better answer.
  15. FastEddiebags macrumors 6502

    Jun 1, 2012
    Monoprice has some pretty good prices on cables too.
  16. ixodes macrumors 601


    Jan 11, 2012
    Pacific Coast, USA
    I've been using the source below for cables.

    They have a wide variety & several choices of quality & prices. From STD to high end. Great customer service, fast order fulfillment & shipping.

  17. simsaladimbamba, Aug 25, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 26, 2012


    Nov 28, 2010
    Since there is also the Mini DVI interface for pre-unibody MacBooks, you might specify that in your post (what model you have).
    Anyway, the other guide is quite thorough, and I even added some additional information to it. If that is too complicated for some people, I don't really know, how they can operate a computer successfully, though many don't, otherwise this place would be quite empty.

  18. Blackberryroid macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2012
    Last time I checked, HDMI is stuck on 16:9 aspect ratio. That's why I stay with VGA.
  19. Nezben macrumors newbie

    Jul 19, 2012
  20. Themegamacman thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 27, 2012
    Of course! Glad I could be of help!
  21. kwrigh macrumors newbie

    Oct 30, 2012
    Setting up multiple laptops to use the same TV Monitor

    I have a macbook pro and an hp laptop that I would like to connect to the same tv monitor and work using a shared screen. Can you tell me how/if this can be done?
  22. baummer macrumors 6502a

    Jan 18, 2005
    Southern California
    I responded to your new thread on this, but I'll echo my comments here for the benefit of others. No you cannot use two devices on one display at the same time. You can use only one device at a time per display.
  23. Themegamacman thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 27, 2012
    Thanks for helping out, I've not been online lately. :) Best wishes.
  24. nyrblue35 macrumors member


    Mar 7, 2010

    I'd like to add a question to this thread. I bought an iAdapt V2 mini display to HDMI cable for my macbook pro but i cannot get an image on my TV. I have tried two different HDMI cables as well as both ports on my tv to make sure.
    The macbook turns blue but the tv although it seems like it might be getting a signal doesnt show an image. The cable i bought was this one:


    My macbook pro was manufactured in February 2010 if that info is needed.
    I assumed this would work with my laptop but does 2 months make a difference? I just noticed that this ebay auction it says video/audio for APRIL 2010. :confused:

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