How to Hook Up a Surround Sound System to a TV and a Cable Box

By James Clark

Hooking up a TV cable box to a surround sound audio-video receiver makes it possible to enjoy subscription television programming in multi-channel audio for shows that are presented in surround sound. As a hub for managing the different components connected to it, the AV receiver hooks up in-between the cable box and the TV with standard AV cables. The cables terminate on each end in color-coded plugs that match the colors on the jacks at the back of each piece of equipment, for fast connections.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 sets of component RGB cables

Step 1

Disconnect any coaxial cable that may be hooked up already between the cable box and the TV. Turn the coupler on each end of the cable counter-clockwise to unlock and remove the cable.

Step 2

Connect the red, green and blue plugs on each end of the component AV cable from the color-matching AV output jacks on the back of the cable box to any available set of video input jacks on the rear of the surround sound receiver, for example, "Video 1."

Step 3

Insert the white and red audio plugs into the matching audio outputs on the cable box, then plug the other ends into the audio inputs on the receiver that are paired with the video inputs used in step 2. For example, the five jacks labeled on the receiver for "Video 1" will have three jacks for the video connection and two for audio.

Step 4

Hook up a second set of component video cables from the video output jacks on the surround sound receiver to the video input jacks on the back of a TV. If the TV has more than one set of video inputs, make a mental note of which set is used to connect to the receiver.

Step 5

Attach a second set of audio cables from the audio outs on the receiver to the audio inputs on the TV. The white plug connects to the left jack. Red connects to the right.

Step 6

Plug in the power cords and turn on the equipment, then press the "Source" or "Input" function on the television remote control to connect with the surround sound receiver. Press "Video 1" on the receiver remote to connect with the cable box (or press the button for whichever set of jacks is used to connect the cable box to the receiver).

Tips & Warnings

  • Disconnect all electronic equipment from the electrical outlets while hooking up AV cables.