How to Set Up a Time Warner Cable Box for HDTV

By Shea Laverty

Connecting your Time Warner Cable set-top box to your HDTV doesn't take long, but it does require that you know what kind of connection you're using.

Things You'll Need

  • Set of HDTV cables
  • Set of RCA cables
  • 2 Set of A/V cables (optional)

You have a few options for connecting your Time Warner Cable set-top box to your HDTV, depending on the inputs and outputs on your TV and box. In most cases, HDMI will be your best bet as it offers the best picture and sound quality available. Otherwise, you can use a coaxial connection, a component or composite connection.

Initial Setup

Before your cable box can send signals to your TV, you need to set up the box itself so it can receive signals from Time Warner Cable.

Step 1

Connect one end of a coaxial cable to the coaxial outlet on the wall or floor.

Step 2

Connect the other end of the cable to the Cable-In post on the set-top box.

HDMI

HDMI transmits both video and audio in a single cable, which makes it a good choice if you have problems with cable clutter. It also offers the best sound quality of all available options, including up to 7.1 digital surround sound.

Step 1

Connect one end of the HDMI cable to the HDMI port on your set-top box. If your box has multiple HDMI ports, connect the cable to the HDMI-Out port.

Step 2

Connect the other end of the cable to one of the HDMI-In ports on your TV.

Step 3

Turn on your TV and the cable box, and switch your TV to the appropriate input channel.

Coaxial Cable

A coaxial connection uses the same type of cable that connects your set-top box to the cable wall outlet. Like HDMI, it transmits high-definition digital video and sound over a single cable.

Step 1

Connect a coaxial cable to the Cable-Out or To TV port on the set-top box.

Step 2

Connect the other end of the cable to the Cable or Cable-In port on your TV.

Step 3

Turn on your TV and the cable box and switch your TV to the appropriate input channel.

Component Video

Component video is another high-definition solution that serves as a decent alternative to coax and HDMI. Component offers high-definition video, but up to only 5.1 surround audio. Component cables feature five connectors on each end, the most of all four options presented here.

Tip

Component video cables have two red connectors on each end: one for video and one for audio. The best way to tell them apart is to check what they're bundled with: The red connector bundled with the blue and green connectors is for video, while the red connector bundled with the white connector is for audio.

Step 1

Connect the red, green and blue connectors on one end of the cable to their color-coded ports listed as Out-1, Component-Out or YPbPr.

Step 2

Connect the red and white audio connectors on the same end of the cable to the color-coded L and R Audio-Out ports.

Step 3

Connect the red, green and blue connectors on the other end of the cable to the color-coded ports on your TV, listed as Component-In or YPbPr.

Step 4

Connect the red and white audio connectors on the other end of the cable to the color-coded ports on your TV, listed as L and R Audio-In.

Step 5

Turn on your TV and the cable box and switch your TV to the appropriate input channel.

Composite Video

Composite doesn't transmit high-definition video, making it a poor choice if you enjoy high-definition television programming. However, in a pinch or if no other cables or connectors are available, it's a viable albeit less-than-ideal option.

Step 1

Connect the yellow connector on one end to the Video or Video-Out port on your set-top box.

Step 2

Connect the red and white audio connectors on the same end of the cable to the color-coded L and R Audio-Out ports.

Step 3

Connect the yellow connector on the other end of the cable to the Video or Video-In port on your TV.

Step 4

Connect the red and white audio connectors on the other end of the cable to the color-coded ports on your TV, listed as L and R Audio-In.

Step 5

Turn on your TV and the cable box, and switch your TV to the appropriate input channel.

Set-top Box Activation

Once your cable box is connected, you need to activate your device. To do so, call Time Warner Cable at 1-800-893-4357 or 1-855-704-4503 and enter the 10-digit phone number associated with your account. Say Activate my box or Activate when prompted and follow the steps over the phone to complete activation.

Tip

  • Allow the system about 10 to 30 minutes to complete activation. During this time, don't unplug or disconnect the cable box from the power outlet or the cable outlet.
  • Once your system is set up and activated, check your owner's manual for directions on programming your remote and your set-top box. Time Warner Cable uses devices from several manufacturers, and each works a bit differently.