How to Hook Up an HDMI Switch to a TV

When your HDTV doesn't have enough HDMI ports

What to Know

  • Easiest method: Run a cable from your switch's "output" port to the desired port on the TV.
  • Ensure the HDMI switch's output goes to the TV. After that, connect the rest of your devices to the different input ports on the HDMI switch.

This article explains how to set up an HDMI switch in your home entertainment system. Once complete, you will be able to connect multiple devices to a single port on your television.

How Do I Set Up an HDMI Switch?

If you already have experience connecting various devices to your television via HDMI, then you already know most of what you need to know to set up an HDMI switch.

  1. Find a good location for your HDMI switch near your television. You want it to be close enough so the cables you need to run can reach every device, as well as the TV itself. If your HDMI switch uses a remote control to switch between ports, make sure it's within the remote's range

    Often an HDMI's remote uses IR, so make sure you don't bury the switch behind items that can block the signal from the remote to the HDMI switch. If you can't see the HDMI switch, it's unlikely the remote can either.

  2. After placing the HDMI switch, begin setting up the devices you wish to connect to it. Ensure the cables you want to use are long enough to reach the device and the HDMI switch. Make a note of which device is connected to which port.

    Connecting an HDMI cable to a PS5
  3. Once all of the devices you wish to connect to the HDMI switch are connected, run an HDMI cable from the TV input you want to associate with the switch. Your HDMI switch will have a specific port labeled "Output" or "Out" connecting to your TV's port. Make sure you're connecting the switch to the correct TV port.

    Connecting an HDMI cable to an HDMI switch's output port
  4. If you're satisfied with the setup, use your television remote to select the HDMI port that your switch is connected to. Once there, begin testing the different connections you made by turning on the devices and switching to the appropriate port on the switch.

    Selecting an HDMI port on a Sony X900H TV.
  5. If there's an issue with your device's audio or video functionality after running through the HDMI switch, ensure all connections fit correctly. Also, make sure you've selected the correct port on the switch or the TV.

How Do I Get My HDMI Switch to Work?

For modern HDMI switches, nearly every model is plug-and-play, meaning it should work out of the box. As long as you make the correct connections between the device, the switch, and the television, it should work without any further work from you.

If you're still having problems, you may want to check how each cable sits in each port. A loose cable can cause connectivity issues, so ensure they're flush with the port. If all of the wires are snugly connected at all points, then you may have other issues to consider, such as a bad HDMI port or bad HDMI cables.

Once you've rectified any issues, all you need to do is either manually or remotely select a port and switch your TV over to the port that the HDMI switch is connected to. You should be able to begin using the Blu-Ray player or gaming console you connected.

How Do I Switch from HDMI to TV?

Switching from your HDMI switch to your television is the same way you typically switch inputs. Your TV remote will have an "input" button on it that you can use to flip back and forth between your live TV connection and the HDMI switch.

  • What's the difference between an HDMI splitter vs. an HDMI switch?

    An HDMI splitter takes one HDMI signal and splits it across multiple HDMI cables so that the video can be viewed on multiple screens. An HDMI switch takes multiple sources and lets you choose between them, sending one cable to your TV.

  • What is the best HDMI switch?

    The best HDMI switches overall include the Kinivo 550BN, the Cable Matters 4K 60 Hz Matrix Switch, and the IOGEAR 8-Port HDMI Switch. If you're on a budget, consider the Newcare HDMI Switch or the Zettaguard 4K.

  • Do you lose video quality with an HDMI switch?

    No. Using an HDMI switch or an HDMI splitter does not affect the quality of the video signal.

  • Do HDMI switches need power?

    Usually, HDMI switches don't have a power supply or a power button, although some models do. Check the specifications before you buy if you need one you won't need to plug into your wall.

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