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How to Connect a Macbook Pro to a Panasonic Viera HDTV

Updated on February 10, 2012

Frustrated?

It is amazing to me how difficult it can be to do something that should be simple. Even hooking a computer up to a television can cause frustration. One would think that the necessary information would be in the owner's manual. But even if it is, it is written in such a way that only an engineer would understand it.

When I bought my Panasonic Viera HDTV I wanted to hook it up to my wife's Macbook Pro so we could stream movies from Netflix. The manual did nothing for me, but searching the internet I found some good general information. I wanted to be more specific and let people know how to specifically connect a Macbook Pro to a Panasonic Viera HDTV.

So, I'll start with the items required.

1. Panasonic Viera HDTV

2. Macbook Pro

3. DVI to HDMI cable

4. Audio Y Cable, 3.5mm to RCA

The DVI to HDMI cable will connect the video. The 3.5mm to RCA connects the audio.

You can purchase the cables at most stores that have an electronic department. I bought mine from Best Buy. Their cheapest DVI to HDMI cable was around $50, but they have a price matching policy, so when I showed them a similar cable on the K-Mart website they knocked the price down to $20. The 3.5mm to RCA can be purchased for under $10. Pictures of the cables are shown below.

Step 1: Making the connection

DVI to HDMI (Video)

When you have the two cables, simply connect your TV and Computer to each other. The DVI end of the cable is the bigger end and connects to your computer. The smaller, HDMI end will connect to your television. You can connect it to any one of the HDMI jacks, but just remember which one it was. They are all labeled: HDMI 1, HDMI 2 etc.

3.5mm to RCA (Audio)

The 3.5mm to RCA cable has one end that fits into the headphone jack of your computer. The other end is a "Y" with a red and white end. On the back of your television there are three jacks (Yellow, white, and red) that will receive the two ends of your audio cable. It's simple, connect the red to the red and the white to the white; the yellow is only for video and is used when connecting a device such as a DVD player. Just pay attention to the label on the jack that you choose. You will need to know which one it is when you are trying to get the audio to come through your television. The options are: component 1, component 2, video 1 and video 2.

Step 2: Bringing up the video

Now that you have everything connected, turn on your television and computer. Push the input button on the TV's remote and choose the HDMI number that coincides with the jack you chose when connecting the cable.

Step 3: Audio

At this point the TV should display what is on your computer. To get the audio, you will have to assign the audio jack that you chose to the HDMI jack that you chose. You do this by pushing the menu button on the remote and selecting "Audio". Next, select "Advanced Audio." In this menu, go to the HDMI option that you plugged the HDMI cable into. You will then be able to select the audio option that you chose for the 3.5mm to RCA cable. Once the correct options are correlated, all sound from your computer will be pushed through your TV.

If you have any questions let me know.


DVI to HDMI

DVI to HDMI
DVI to HDMI

3.5mm to RCA

3.5mm to RCA
3.5mm to RCA

Cabels connected to the computer

3.5mm to RCA on the left.  DVI to HDMI on the right.
3.5mm to RCA on the left. DVI to HDMI on the right.

DVI jack on computer

DVI jack on computer is the one farthest to the right.
DVI jack on computer is the one farthest to the right.

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    • profile image

      Rich 7 years ago

      Thanks. A Google search for "macbook pro dvi to hdmi" look at images led me to this site. Good job.

    • profile image

      James Barratt  7 years ago

      thanks alot, nice that someone took the time to do this. I have just bought a 58inch panasonic V Series and with my old macbook pro, cant believe the apple stor sold me a white lead but never used it, looking at it now - it appears to be a DVI to svideo but i dont care, showing the photo of you computer made it clear, it is exactly the same as mine. so thanks and now i know what to do. big thanks actually. Q cant you though stream the stuff using the internet function from the tv without having to buy the leads, so eaving the macbook in the office and whilst in the lounge using the tv view the hard disk on the mac to retrieve the files you want or videos, etc.

    • profile image

      pete in stl 7 years ago

      Thank you so much. I couldn't figure out how to get the audio to work.

    • Parker Brother profile image
      Author

      Parker Brother 7 years ago

      James,

      As far as I know, I can't stream anything from Netflix without using the computer.

    • profile image

      Becky 7 years ago

      Thank you for creating and posting these instructions! Using your directions and pictures, I ordered the correct cables online. I then followed the set-up instructions and everything worked perfectly, and only took a few minutes. Now I can play instant Netflix movies to the TV via the Mac. You were a huge help--thanks!!!

    • Parker Brother profile image
      Author

      Parker Brother 7 years ago

      Thanks for the comment Becky! I'm glad I could help.

    • profile image

      romina 7 years ago

      Hi Parker!

      Txs for posting this!!! But I need a little more help...According to my Panasonic manual looks like to connect a laptop to the TV, the cable for the video should be connected to the 'PC' jack (or whatever is called, the space that says 'PC' in the TV) in the TV. The HDMI space is used for satellite. And actually that is how it is in my TV, I have the space of HDMI connected to the satellite cable. Any ideas? What should I do??? I have a Panasonic Viera TV and a MacBook, if that helps.

      I would really appreciate a lot your help!! Many thanks!!

    • Parker Brother profile image
      Author

      Parker Brother 7 years ago

      Romina,

      If you have a panasonic Veira TV and a mac book, you should be able to follow the instructions exactly and be successful in connecting the two.

    • profile image

      Luke G 7 years ago

      There is no advanced audio option i can find anywhere to assign the audio on the P42G15A. Im stuck with either the visuals through the HDMI or the sound through the AV input.

    • profile image

      DavidH 7 years ago

      Greetings Parker,

      Thank you for sharing this information; however, I'm still have difficulty. Here's what I did:

      1) I have a MacBook Pro - purchased in the last 6 months

      2) I purchased a mini-DVI to DVI adapter

      3) Coupled that adapter to a DVi to HDMI cord

      4) Plugged the HDMI into my Panasonic Viera TH-50PX60U

      5) Set the Panasonic at HDMI 2

      THe laptop recognizes the Panasonice screen, which has turned a fuzzy blue. Every few seconds, the image on my MacBook pops up on the Panasonic for less than a second and then disappears. When it pops up, it looks like it's running through a blue filter. Under preferences, the MB identifies the display as "Panasonic TV" and defaults to 1080i

      Any ideas??

    • profile image

      Amruta 6 years ago

      Thank you!!!

    • profile image

      Christine 6 years ago

      Thanks! The audio bit was driving me nuts, you're a life saver!

    • profile image

      Goose 6 years ago

      I can't find the advanced options in the sound menu

    • profile image

      Paula 6 years ago

      Thank you so much! This was a BIG help!

    • profile image

      Alex 6 years ago

      Thank you!!

    • profile image

      Yiorgos 6 years ago

      Help!! I connected the dvi to hdmi and the 3.5mm to rca cable and the first time i had picture, and very good too but no sound. I read on a wensite that you should do a restart of the macbook pro as it's connected to the tv. I did that and now all i see, instead of the macbook's desktop and anything i do or watch on it, the mac blue screen that looks as if you are in space, you know, the one you see when installing major updates or when you install the snow leopard for example. Is this normal or do i start and worry now? It would be great if you could help. My tv is the panasonic viera tx-p42u10b. Thanks in advance.

      P.S. You can you my email to reply to me if you like

      yiorgoskatsikandarakis@hotmail.com

    • profile image

      AN 6 years ago

      You're amazing thank you so much!

      My hair is already falling out from new born baby, you saved me from pulling my hair out with this problem :)))) MANY THANKS

    • profile image

      Hugh  6 years ago

      Couldn't find a DVI to HDMI cord but the Mac guys sold me a DVI to SVGA cable that plugs into the PC port on the TV (instead of the HDMI port) and an audio cable.

      I get the computer image on the TV, but the icons are re-arranged, the picture blips every once in a while, and things such as safari don't fit on the screen.

      If I go to the set up you describe, will all be well?

    • profile image

      Jena 6 years ago

      Thank you for this! I have been so frustrated trying to figure this out!

    • profile image

      Mike J 6 years ago

      Very well done... how2.com advice was useless. After reading this page I was watching movies in 5 minutes.

      Thanks!

    • profile image

      kb 6 years ago

      Thanks!!! Very clear and exactly what we needed to know.

    • profile image

      Marjo 6 years ago

      I connect my 2009 macbook pro to my panasonic viera using a Mini Displayport Male and USB Male/Toslink Audio to HDMI Female Converting Adapter (http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id... which is then connected to the tv by an hdmi cable. Works great. (They have inexpensive HDMI cables too.)

    • profile image

      Joc 6 years ago

      I was having issues with the audio component, but this website was very helpful. Thanks!

    • profile image

      mike  6 years ago

      Thank you very much for taking the time to explain this stuff. I could not get the sound, never realized that there was such an easy fix.

    • profile image

      Joseph 6 years ago

      It definitely works! Thank you. However, every time i turn my tv off and on, the mac and tv seem to still be connected, but all I see is a standard desktop wallpaper that is not my computer's background. Also, there are no icons or anything showing on the tv-just a wallpaper. When the connection does work, my mac background changes to match the tv one, and all icons are present. How do I fix this problem? And what is causing it?

    • profile image

      Ellie D. 6 years ago

      I bought all the above leads as advised but I must say that there was no 'advanced audio' option on my Panasonic Viera TV so couldn't follow your audio instructions. However, after playing around with all the audio and HDMI sockets I finally found a way to make it work - I plugged the HDMI lead into HDM1 2 (ARC) and the audio y cable (red and white leads) into the AUDIO IN socket and it worked!!!

      It did not work any other way (with the HDMI 1 socket or the AV3 red, white and yellow socket)

    • profile image

      CC 6 years ago

      Hi. I got the cables you said I needed and the audio works, but the video does not work, even though I plugged it into the HDMI 1 slot and then selected that on the tv. It shows the main computer screen background but nothing else. Any suggestions?

    • profile image

      CC 6 years ago

      I figured it out. I had to hit the F7 button to change the screen from the laptop to the tv. I didn't see that in your instructions, so if it isn't there, maybe you could add that as a reason it isn't coming up on the tv. :)

    • profile image

      Howard, Brixham UK 6 years ago

      White Macbook, 5 years old, Panasonic Viera 10FE298 one year.

      I have been into the advanced audio options: the Mac acknowledges connection of a Panasonic TV but sends nothing to it. Pressing F7 causes Mac to display pale blue briefly, but that's all. The Mac does send pictures to my son's new LG plasma, no problem. Bah!

    • profile image

      Lynne  6 years ago

      I've read your info and am still struggling to get this to work. I have a current MacBook Pro, bought in 2010. I have a Panasonic Viera TV TC-L32X1. Best Buy sold me a mini DisplayPort to HDMI cable to plug into the computer, and an HDMI cable to go from that cable into the TV. I did not get separate audio cables as Best Buy said they would not be needed. We have turned on the MacBook Pro, turned on the TV, and selected the HDMI2 connection where we plugged this in.... no luck . Any ideas?

    • profile image

      Tom 5 years ago

      I've had the same problem as you Lynne. In this day and age!

    • Parker Brother profile image
      Author

      Parker Brother 5 years ago

      Lynne and Tom,

      I'm not sure what the problem is. It might be that the set up is just a little different for the newer tv's and computers. Sorry.

    • profile image

      ditlev 5 years ago

      can this be done with wifi at all?

    • profile image

      stephanie 5 years ago

      my macbook pro is 2 years old and looks different than yours. The right side of the computer only has a CD/DVD drive. The plugs are on the left - and do not include the large plug-in for the DVI. Is there another plug I can use instead of HDMI to DVI?

    • profile image

      Trevor 5 years ago

      I have the newest macbook pro.. and this new version does not have the DVI jack...

    • profile image

      Virginia 5 years ago

      what can i do if my macbookpro does not have a DVI jack?

    • profile image

      Nick Berry 5 years ago

      Thanks for figuring this out....BUT! I have a power bookG4 and a macbookpro 2010 and neither one has a DVI output jack like the one you show on it.

      So I guess I am back to square one.

      Thanks anyway!

    • profile image

      DJ Infuze 5 years ago

      Thank you so much. Having no audio to go with my hd was a heartbreak. You helped me rekindle my love once again.

    • profile image

      Buzz 5 years ago

      You only need audio jack with MacBook pro 2009, as 2010 model post April you only. Need mini display port adapter to HDMI to Tv, just make sure mini display port is for video and audio. For 2009 model the 3.5 mm audio jack is required.

    • profile image

      mike hudon 5 years ago

      whit macbook pro all you need is a mini display port to hdmi adapter like he says that's what i got I get sound you have to go to display sound and choose your tv audio and in settings make sure you choose 1080p or 1080i to get picture

    • profile image

      Max 5 years ago

      Thank you so much for taking the time to post this information!

    • profile image

      Katie 5 years ago

      THANKS SO MUCH!!!!!!!

    • profile image

      Joe 5 years ago

      Thanks for posting this! :)

    • profile image

      ben 5 years ago

      apple tv works well too?

    • Parker Brother profile image
      Author

      Parker Brother 5 years ago

      Sorry this is so late. I think you might need to drag whatever it is you want to view from your computer screen to your TV. The TV is now just a second monitor.

    • Parker Brother profile image
      Author

      Parker Brother 5 years ago

      Apple TV does work well. That is what I currently use. I bring up whatever media it is that I want to see on my Ipad and then use Airplay to see it on my TV.

    • profile image

      Mark H 5 years ago

      I am trying to connect my macbook pro 2011 to my phillips tv (26PFL3405H/05). When I turn my macbook pro on the tv just remains blank with the 'no signal' caption on it. What am I doing wrong? Can anyone help...on this please?

    • Parker Brother profile image
      Author

      Parker Brother 5 years ago

      You might need to change the input on your tv.

    • profile image

      dalia 5 years ago

      i did plug both in.. and i choose HDMI both nothing is working, i did it few month ago but i dont recall the steps on the macbook, can anyone help?

    • profile image

      lynwal 5 years ago

      You need to make sure your tv is set to the input signal i.e. av3 or hdmi 3,2 or whatever.

      Also you do not need an erphone to rca cable as you can get DVI to HDMI connecting cables that handle audio as well. this is called a mini Displayport to HDMI adapter that supports AUDIO. Simple

    • profile image

      dascavar 5 years ago

      problems here also. I had my machine (2011) plugged to my philips led tv and everything was fine. when i tried to plug my macbook pro 7.1 with display port and hdmi, the picture on the tv has black bars bottom and top, or right and left. It works fine only on 720 and to on 1080p as my mac mini did. Any thoughts?

    • profile image

      roddon 5 years ago

      I am trying to play my sirius/xm radio through one of the Component jacks in my panasonic viera 60". I have the output of the radio connected to the input of the Audio jack on the TV. I have the white to the white and red to red. There is a single input to the TV and single output from the satellite radio. I used the menu options to select the Component 1 on the TV and do not get any sound. I can play it through my Sony Bravia and it works fine. I did call panasonic help and they were no help!! Even there consierge help was no help!! I'll get back to you! They asked if the TV was on! The TV is a few months old and I want to make sure that the component jacks are not damaged and if so it's covered under warrenty. Any ideas on what I might be doing wrong?

      Thanks,

      Rod

    • profile image

      adriana 4 years ago

      Muchísimas gracias from Costa Rica!!! it was really useful! great!

    • profile image

      Rafael 4 years ago

      I have a Panasonic viera 32 inch. I connected my Hdmi to my Mac book pro (2010) with an adapter and nothing shows on my tv. It just says no signal and my Mac screen goes blue for a second. Help please!

    • profile image

      Sharron 3 years ago

      HOW TO CONNECT YOUR MACBOOK PRO TO THE 'PC' PORT ON PANASONIC VIERA TV. I used a mini DisplayPort to VGA adapter. I plugged one end into my macbook pro and the other into the port named 'PC' at the back of my panasonic viera TV. Press the AV on your panasonic remote and select PC. First it comes up with a blue screen whilst they sync but that is how to get the visual to work. Now for the audio I used a 3.5mm to RCA and plugged the black one into my headphone jack on my macbook pro and the red and white components at the other end are what you need to plug in to your TV for the audio to work - plug these into the red and white section of 'AV2 in' at the back of your TV and hey presto, your macbook comes through your TV with picture and sound! :)

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