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Identifying available connections
The first step in connecting your computer to a TV or projector is finding an identical port on both machines. Once the matching port has been identified (one that is the same on both your input device and output device), you need the appropriate cable to connect them. This section contains a picture of the back of an Epson projector and its available connection ports; as well as descriptions of each.
The HDMI connection is very popular among display electronics. In fact, nearly all modern televisions and projectors feature HDMI ports. Most laptop computers support HDMI and it is becoming more prevalent on both desktop as well; even without a high-end video card. HDMI is quickly becoming the standard for all electronic equipment for its high quality signal and ability to carry both audio and video signals. The image to the right is that of an HDMI cable.
The VGA connection is the most common among both desktop and laptop computers, is found on most projectors, and some TVs. The VGA cable has a 15-pin connector on each end that plugs into a VGA port on each device. Due to the fact that most televisions do not support VGA, we recommend using HDMI for their wider range of compatibility.
Tip:VGA cabling is universal for devices that support it. For example, the if your desktop monitor that uses a VGA cable it, that same cable can be used by a laptop to connect it to a projector.
Note: If you are using an Apple desktop or laptop you need a VGA adapter to connect a VGA cable to the computer.
The DVI connection is newer than VGA and it offers a sharper image. Although the DVI port is not shown on the Epson model above, it is still somewhat common for projectors, not so much for televisions. It is mostly found among desktop computers for monitors, but some laptops have DVI connections as well (Apple laptops are more commonly known to support DVI than any other brand of laptop). Since finding DVI on a TV or projector is more difficult, we again recommend using HDMI cables.
Tip: There are special cables that convert from DVI to VGA or DVI to HDMI and vice versa.
The composite video connection is quite common on a TV or projector, but it is nearly nonexistent on modern computers. This connection is the yellow female cable on what is normally a three bundle of red, white, and yellow. The only time you should see this setup is on older video cards for desktop computers.
The S-Video connection is also commonly found on TVs and projectors, but solemnly on a desktop or laptop computer. This connection is a small step up from composite video, but is nearing obsolescence.
Connecting computer and projector or TV
After you've identified what connections are available on both your computer and TV or projector, you're ready to connect the cables. If the same connections are not available for both the computer and TV or projector, you'll need to purchase a video converter cable that converts one signal into a compatible signal.
For a desktop, you simply need to plug the cable into the computer and output device. If you don't see an image, you may need to change the display using the following steps.
Press the Windows Key.
Type Adjust screen resolution and press Enter.
Find Display and click the down arrow on the right-hand side of the box.
If you're connecting a laptop computer to a TV or a projector you'll often need to "send" the video signal to the display device. The key sequence to do this varies depending on the laptop; but usually it's either: Fn + F3, F4, F5, F8, or F9. For example, pressing and holding Fn + F3 at the same time on my laptop sends the video signal to my connected TV instead of the laptop's screen. The corresponding key used with Fn may be labeled as CRT/LCD or have a picture of a monitor on or close to the key. Additional help and information with switching the laptop display can also be found on the link below.
Switching TV inputs
Finally, if you're connecting a computer to a TV make sure it has been switched to the correct input. For example, if you connected an HDMI cable to your computer and the "HDMI 2" port on your TV, you'll need to switch to the "HDMI 2" input. This action can be accomplished by pressing the input button on your TV remote until the correct image is displayed.
I'm assuming (because of the USB) that you wish to connect a computer to the projector. You will need a VGA cable connected to the Computer input on the projector and the VGA output on your laptop. If it is a laptop you may have to active the external monitor on your laptop. This is generally done by pressing the function key and F5. But this will depend on your Laptop and OS on the laptop. Look for a button amongst the F keys (at the top of the keyboard) that will do this on your laptop. An example of this is in the photo.
There are two things to try. One is on your laptop. Hit function 4 on your keyboard. You should pop into a screen that allows you to send signal out from your laptop to the projector. The other is to go into the menu on the projector and adjust it for either the port you are on or set it up for "auto-detect" When the menu comes up it should have a video section and then an input select. Your VGA inputs on the projector should be labeled something like VGA 1, VGA 2 or something like that identifying the ports. Then in the menu select that port. If these two things do not work give me another posting and we can get this fixed.
Have you tried the "Function and F key" trick? On most laptops it's the F6 key but on your unit look for a picture/graphic of a computer screen...or maybe text saying, "LCD/Monitor". To activate this function you must press and hold down the blue "function" key and also press the F6.
The F6 key has three states...1 - only laptop screen, 2 - only external monitor (video projector), 3 - both the laptop screen and the externally connected monitor and/or video projector.
The max resolution on the projector is 1024x768. But the problem you're having sounds suspiciously like the laptop not sending out a video signal...you have to *tell* the laptop to send out an image to an external display. On one of the function keys, like F4 or F8, there will be a small TV screen symbol. You have to press and hold "alt" and then press the key with the symbol. The initial setting is obviously for the laptop only. When you press the keys for the first time, you tell the laptop share the picture with an external display (your projector). Press the keys a second time, and the laptop ONLY displays an image from the projector. And, press the combination again, you're back to just the laptop.The DLP projector should have a menu selection for "auto" under the input menu...that is the easiest and most trouble-free setting. Whatever you connect to the projector, it automatically seeks out the signal and connects to it.---Rick
On your laptop you have the ability to toggle the external display on/off/both. On several laptops I see, it is a combo of teh Function Key+F4 (or F5). The key for your laptop (you did not provide type) should be marked with an image of a projection screed or a monitor in a color matching function key; often blue.
With everything connected, press these keys to toggle from Laptop Display Only to Projector Only to Both.
If the problem is not your laptop, then verify the input source that the projector is looking for via it's menus or a button on the remote. Toggle the source if required.
Composite video are yellow RCA jacks and are made for analog signals of standard definition video. If you are connecting a digital source or a high definition output, it may be beyond the capabilities of the projector. You may be able to find a VGA to composite adapter if you laptop or whatever has a VGA output port. VGA is along the same lines of composite (analog, standard definition).
What type of interface cable are you using to connect to the projector? 15-pin VGA? S-video?
Generally on laptops if you look at the keyboard on the function keys (F1, F2, etc.) you'll see little icons such as adjustment of volume, brightness, etc. Look for one that looks like a monitor or screen. Usually this is on the F5 or F6 key. If the icon is blue, look for the corresponding key on the keyboard (Fn key, CTRL, Alt, etc.) and then hold that when connected to the projector while you press the appropriate function key. This should alleviate your problem.
Of course, you'll also want to be certain that you're using the correct input function on the projector.