How to Connect a Flat Panel TV to a DVD Player

Flat-screen TVs are sophisticated pieces of equipment, and the sheer number of outlet jacks on their back panels can be extremely intimidating. Not to fear, however. The actual process of connecting a flat panel TV to a DVD player is extremely simple. The trick is to identify which cable outlet is right for your equipment and to know which input jack will get a signal from your DVD player. Once you know that, it's as simple as connecting a single cable or group of cables to the TV and the DVD.

Couple Watching DVD Movie
How to Connect a Flat Panel TV to a DVD Player
credit: Mike Watson Images/moodboard/Getty Images

Step

Check the back of your DVD player. It will have up to three different types of outlet connections enabling it to be linked to the TV. The most ideal is an HDMI connection, which is a thin rectangular outlet marked "HDMI." It provides the highest quality signal to your flat panel TV. If your DVD player doesn't have an HDMI outlet, you can also use a standard RCA outlet. This consists of three round cable jacks labeled with a color coding. The yellow jack is for the video signal while the red and white jacks are for audio signals. Some DVD players may have an S-video outlet as well. It will be a circular jack with a number of holes. While not as effective as the HDMI jack, it provides a clearer picture than the RCA cables.

Step

Look at the back of your flat panel TV for a series of "In" jacks corresponding to your DVD player. There may be a number of them under different labels (Input 1, Input 2, HDMI 1, HDMI 2 and Component Video are common). All of them work, however, and all can carry the DVD signal into your TV. Simply select an "In" jack that matches the DVD outlet you have selected and note the precise label.

Step

Connect the "In" jack from the TV to the corresponding outlet on the DVD player, using the proper cable (RCA, HDMI or S-Video).

Step

Turn on the TV and press the input button to select the jack connected to the DVD player. (The exact label for the input button will vary by model. Some will say "Input," while others will say "TV/Video" or "Signal.") A menu should pop up onscreen giving you a list of jacks in the rear of the set. Select the jack connected to the DVD player. The name of the player brand should appear on your screen.

Step

Place a DVD in the player and watch as normal.