How to Hook Up a Mini HDMI Camera to a Laptop

By Todd Bowerman

HDMI is a digital lossless signal.
i Ethan Miller/Getty Images News/Getty Images

The first step in editing or sharing your home movies is importing them to your laptop or PC. Once the video has been moved to your hard drive, you are free to perform whatever technical wizardry you want with your video editor of choice. While some video cameras and smartphones allow sharing to a television or monitor via a mini HDMI port, most laptops do not have an HDMI “in” port. Instead, you will need to use the camera's USB port and a USB cable.

Step 1

Inspect your camera for a USB or micro USB port. Mini HDMI ports are for real-time sharing, but the device will have a USB or micro USB port for data transfers.

Step 2

Connect the USB cable to your camera or smartphone. Connect the USB cable to one of your laptop’s USB ports. Your camera likely came with the correct cable for this connection; if not, you'll need a USB to micro-USB cable to connect the two devices. If your camera has a full-sized USB port, any USB cable will do.

Step 3

Set the smartphone or camera to data mode (your device manufacturer should provide exact instructions for enabling this on your device).

Step 4

Run the appropriate import software on your laptop. Some devices come with software designed for importing and organizing video, while others assume you will use solutions you already have installed. You can also use Windows Explorer (Windows) or File Explorer (Mac) to simply drag and drop the files onto your hard drive or desktop.