How to Connect an iMac to a Television


While modern televisions and computer monitors share many design similarities, televisions aren’t always equipped with a bevy of computer-specific input ports. Apple’s iMac series of computers also relies on a unique port type known as “Thunderbolt,” but you will not find this port on non-Apple products and thus cannot use the port to connect an iMac to a non-Apple output source without an adapter. Once you have an adapter in-hand, though, connecting your iMac to a TV is the same as connecting any other device. You can also connect to an Apple TV device over your wireless connection.

Things You'll Need

  • Thunderbolt to HDMI adapter
  • HDMI cable
  • Apple TV

Thunderbolt to HDMI

  • Plug the Thunderbolt to HDMI adapter into your iMac’s Thunderbolt Port.

  • Connect one end of an HDMI cable to the Thunderbolt adapter. Connect the other to one of your television’s HDMI ports.

  • Set the television to the correct HDMI channel using the “Input” button on the remote control or the television itself.

  • Click the Apple icon on your iMac and select “System Preferences.” Choose “View,” then click “Displays.”

  • Click the “Arrangement” tab to see how your iMac monitor and television are set up together. Drag the displays to change the layout.

IMac to Apple TV

  • Click the Apple TV icon on your iMac's navigation bar. It's a small rectangle with a triangle at the bottom.

  • Click "Connect AirPlay Display" if the connection is not already established.

  • Select either "Mirror Built-In Retina Display" or "Extend Desktop," depending on your needs. The first option shows the same content from your screen on the television, while the second treats the television as a second monitor.

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  • Photo Credit Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images News/Getty Images
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