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PC Won’t Connect to TV HDMI (Fixed) – Full Guide

Smart TVs tend to be expensive and even name brands like Samsung will add bloatware to their TV’s OS. In many cases, an HD TV used with a media center or a computer running Windows 10 will give you a better experience. You can use it to play games, watch movies and TV shows, and you can use it from just about any other computer.

PC Won't Connect to TV HDMI

A TV and a computer normally connect over an HDMI port. The TV itself may have a VGA or DVI port in addition to an HDMI port but modern laptops and desktops rarely have all three ports. 

An HDMI port is standard on a Windows 10 system regardless if it’s a laptop or a desktop, and whether you have a dedicated GPU on the system or not. Anything connected via HDMI will be plug & play because the display drivers are installed alongside the graphics drivers.

PC Doesn’t Recognize TV HDMI

Windows 10 can detect when a new device is connected to a port. In most cases, it will ready the device and set it up for use e.g., when you connect a mass storage device to your system, you will see a File Explorer prompt asking to open the drive. The same rule applies to a TV; once connected, Windows 10 will extend the desktop to it or duplicate it.

If your Windows 10 PC doesn’t recognize the TV HDMI, run through these basic checks and then try the fixes we’ve listed further below.

Windows 10 PC doesn’t recognize the TV HDMI

PC Won’t Connect to TV HDMI (Full Guide)

Basic checks

  • Make sure the HDMI cable isn’t coiled too tightly. It is best if the cable is not too long and is not wrapped. If you’re managing wire clutter by coiling the length of the cable, you should try something else.
  • Make sure the pins of the HDMI cable are not damaged. HDMI is incredibly sensitive.
  • Try using a different HDMI cable to connect the TV and the Windows 10 PC.

1. Enable projection mode

Windows 10 should automatically detect a new HDMI connection however, if it doesn’t, enabling it is easy.

  1. On the Windows 10 desktop, tap the Win+P keyboard shortcut.
  2. In the panel that opens, select either Extend or Duplicate.
  3. Windows 10 will start displaying on the TV.

2. Select input source from TV

Much like Windows 10 can send a video signal, the TV itself can receive one however because a TV is far more likely to have more than just one display port, it may not automatically detect the incoming signal.

  1. On your TV, access the settings panel. This panel may be accessible via the TV’s remote or by pressing a physical button on the TV itself.
  2. Look for the input sources menu and select HDMI.

3. Remove other connections, switches, and hubs

Many users like to connect multiple systems to a TV. They manage these systems using HDMI hubs and switches that allow a user to switch the input source i.e. computer by flipping a switch on the hub. They may cause problems. Try removing them and connect the Windows 10 PC directly to the TV with an HDMI cable.

If you have other ports in use e.g., the VGA or DVI port, disconnect it. Even if you only have a wire connected and the wire itself isn’t connected to a system, remove it. It may be interfering with the TV’s ability to detect input.

4. Update display drivers

Graphics drivers are generally up to date but if you’ve been blocking Windows 10 updates on your system, it is possible that the drivers are outdated and are preventing the TV from detecting a signal.

  1. Open Device Manager.
  2. Expand Display Adapters.
  3. Right-click the graphics chip and select Update drivers.
  4. Search online for drivers and install the ones that are available.

Note: If you have a dedicated GPU, update drivers for it as well.

5. Run hardware troubleshooter

Windows 10 has a built-in troubleshooter for general hardware and it may be able to detect and resolve problems with external displays which is essentially what the TV is.

  1. Open Command Prompt with admin rights.
  2. Run this command: msdt.exe -id DeviceDiagnostic.
  3. The hardware troubleshooter will open. Run it and apply all fixes that it recommends.

6. Install drivers in compatibility mode

This solution requires that you download the display drivers as stand-alone files. Normally, these files are EXE files that you can get from your computer manufacturer’s website. 

  1. Download display drivers for your Windows 10 system.
  2. Right-click the EXE file and select Properties from the context menu.
  3. Go to the Compatibility tab.
  4. Enable the ‘Run this program in compatibility mode for’ and select the Windows version that the driver is meant for i.e. Windows 8 or Windows 7. If Windows 10 is listed as an option, select it.
  5. Install the driver.
  6. Restart the system.


An HDMI TV should work with a Windows 10 system without any problems. In some cases, the TV may have a separate HDMI port for audio and video. In this case, you will need to use an adapter since Windows 10 systems generally only have one HDMI port that outputs both audio and video. Aside from this, your TV should work if you follow the fixes listed above.

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