How to Hook Up AV Cables

by Andrew Todd

A/V cables allow you to connect components, such as a cable box or DVD player, to your television. The most popular A/V cables as of 2010 are HDMI, component and RCA cables. When an HDMI cable is used, no other cables are necessary as the cable carries both audio and high-definition video. Component cables carry high-definition video, but require RCA cables to transmit the audio. RCA cables are capable of carrying both audio and standard-definition video, the latter of which is typically used on standard-definition televisions.

Plug one end of the HDMI cable into the HDMI output on the device that you would like to display on your HDTV. Plug the other end of the HDMI cable into the rear of the HDTV. Once the two cables are connected, turn on both the device and the HDTV, and set the HDTV to the input channel that the HDMI cable was plugged into, which will be listed on the port.

Plug component cables into the component output jacks on the rear of the device that you are connecting. The component cables will be labeled with three colors: red, green and blue. Ensure that each cable is plugged into the same color output jack. Plug the red and white RCA cables into the color-coded RCA audio output jacks on the device, beside the component outputs. Plug the other end of the component cables into the corresponding, color-coded input jacks on the rear of the HDTV. Plug the RCA audio cables into the RCA inputs beside the component inputs. Ensure that all of the cables are plugged into the correct color jack. If you have red and black RCA cables, plug the black cable into the white input and output jacks.

Plug the red, white and yellow RCA cables into the matching RCA output jacks on the rear of the device that you would like to connect to your television. Connect the other end of the RCA cables to the RCA inputs on the rear of the television to complete the connection.

Connect a second set of red and white RCA cables to the audio output jacks on the rear of the television, if you are connecting a home theater system to the television. Plug the other end of the red and white RCA cables into the RCA inputs on the rear of the home theater receiver. Set the receiver to the input channel to which the RCA cables were connected to hear the television audio play through the home theater system's speakers.

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About the Author

Andrew Todd has been writing since 2006. He has written for the Consumer Search website and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Florida. Todd has a Bachelor of Science in criminal justice from the University of Central Florida.

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