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Can I View Pictures From PC On TV With A USB Cable?

Wednesday, March 27th, 2013 by | Filed Under: TV Tech
 
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Len from Maryland Upper Shore writes:

I want to connect the USB port on my PC to the USB port on my TV. I have a 6 foot USB extension cable and need an adapter from the extension cable to the USB port. Will the Targus product #7285 you sell act as a jumper between the extension cable and the USB port on my TV? My purpose is to look at pictures I have in my PC on my TV.

Answer:

Well, I’ve got some good news and bad news for you. The bad news is you can’t connect a computer via a USB cable to a TV. The USB port on televisions are designed to load pictures and movies from a USB flash drive. You could copy the movies or pictures to a USB flash drive, then plug the drive into the USB port on the TV and then view them using the TV’s  software. Check your TV’s manual for a list of compatible file formats to make sure your videos and pictures will work.

The good news is there are some simple ways to connect your PC to your TV and use the TV as a big screen monitor. You should start by looking on the back of your computer to see what video-out ports you have. You can use our handy guide (click here to view our generic port guide) to identify your video ports. Your monitor is probably plugged into one of the included VGA, DVI or HDMI ports, but there may be additional ones.

Now, look on the back of your TV to see what types of video ports are available. Most flat screen TVs will include one or more HDMI ports and may also have a VGA or DVI port. If you want audio to play through your TV, you’ll also need to look for a 3.5MM audio port if you’re going to use the DVI or VGA port.

Once you connect the PC, it should automatically detect the new display, but you may need to change the display resolution to match the suggested resolution in your TV’s user manual. The most common resolution settings are 720p TV 1280×720 and a 1080p TV 1920×1080. You can change display settings by right-clicking on a blank area of the desktop and clicking screen resolution or display settings.

Once you’ve located the ports on your computer and TV, you can use the information below to select the cable(s) you’ll need to connect the two devices.  

  • VGA port on computer + VGA port on TV: You need a VGA 15 pin male to male VGA cable to transmit video and a 3.5MM male to male audio cable to transmit audio.
  • VGA port on computer + DVI port on TV: You need a VGA 15 pin male to DVI male adapter cable to transmit video and a 3.5MM male to male audio cable to transmit audio.
  • VGA port on computer + HDMI port on TV: You need a VGA 15 pin male to HDMI male adapter cable to transmit video and a 3.5MM male to male audio cable to transmit audio.
  • DVI port on computer + VGA port on TV: You need a DVI male to VGA male adapter cable to transmit video and a 3.5MM male to male audio cable to transmit audio.
  • DVI port on computer + DVI port on TV: You need a DVI male to DVI Male cable to transmit video and a 3.5MM male to male audio cable to transmit audio.
  • DVI port on computer + HDMI port on TV: You need a DVI male to HDMI male adapter cable to transmit video and a 3.5MM male to male audio cable to transmit audio.
  • HDMI port on computer + VGA port on TV: You need a HDMI male to VGA male adapter cable to transmit video and a 3.5MM male to male audio cable to transmit audio.
  • HDMI port on computer + DVI port on TV: You need a HDMI male to DVI male adapter cable to transmit video and a 3.5MM male to male audio cable to transmit audio.
  • HDMI port on computer + HDMI port on TV: You need a HDMI male to male cable to transmit both video and sound.

-Tim

P.S. If you’ve got multiple ports, the best connection to use is a HDMI cable. HDMI cables carry all digital video and audio signals and are the simplest to connect. WorldStart has 12 foot HDMI cables available by clicking here.

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3 Responses to “Can I View Pictures From PC On TV With A USB Cable?”

  1. Tripper says:

    Will this work with an old analog tv?

  2. John Fowles says:

    ERR UMM,Stevo Timo et Al Whatever happenned to the most useful “Printer Friendly” links that should allegedly be featured on all tips pages??

    • cynthia says:

      John, the printer-friendly version of this article can be found by clicking on the printer icon just below the headline of the the story on WorldStart.com. That should display the printer-friendly version that you print by clicking “Click here to print” at the bottom right of the article.

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