How to Connect a Laptop to RCA Jacks (6 Steps)

By Spanner Spencer

Typically, a laptop's headphone port is colored green. The pink port is for a mic input.
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Connecting your laptop to a stereo system can be useful for a variety of applications. You may want to play a game or video through your home cinema system or play music stored on your laptop through your stereo's speakers. Although laptops have a headphone output that can connect to your stereo system, this is typically a 3.5 mm jack rather than the RCA phono connectors that are standard for a stereo's input. This difference in connections can be overcome by using conversion cable equipped with a 3.5 mm stereo jack on one end and twin RCA jacks on the other.

Step 1

Insert the cable's 3.5 mm jack into the laptop's headphone port.

Step 2

Turn your stereo system off and connect the cable's RCA phono jacks to a spare audio input. Take note of the color coding, ensuring the red RCA jack is in the red RCA connector on the stereo and the white jack is in the white connector.

Step 3

Click the speaker icon in the taskbar on your laptop's desktop. A volume slider control appears. Reduce the volume setting to approximately half.

Step 4

Turn your stereo on and select the audio input to which your laptop is connected.

Step 5

Begin playback of your music, game, video or other multimedia content on your laptop. Its audio is routed through your stereo to your speakers.

Step 6

Gradually adjust the laptop's volume until the audio is clear and free from distortion. Once the laptop's audio level is correct, increase or decrease the volume using the stereo's controls, rather than the laptop's.