Input Jacks on Your HDTV - dummies

By Danny Briere, Pat Hurley

Part of HDTV For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Input jacks only receive broadcast signals and programs from your audio/video devices so you can watch them on your HDTV. You’ll probably see most or all of the following audio/video input jacks on your HDTV:

  • ANT-IN: Two or more ports for

    • NTSC analog and ATSC off-air signals

      These ports work for ATSC only if you have an HDTV with a built-in HDTV (or ATSC) tuner.

    • Analog and digital cable-TV signals

      These ports work for digital cable only if you have a DCR (digital-cable-ready) HDTV with a built-in QAM tuner.

  • HDMI In: Most HDTVs today have at least one, if not two, HDMI inputs, which can accept the output of an HDTV set-top box or receiver, an up-converting DVD player, a Blu-ray or an HD DVD disc player, and some other devices (such as game consoles). HDMI handles both video and audio over a single cable, so you don’t need a separate input and cable for the audio portion of these signals.

  • DVI-D/HDCP IN: A digital-video input, usually teamed with two R/L inputs for audio.

    DVI-D/HDCP ports can’t plug into cables that are connected to a PC’s (similar) DVI-I connection. Nothing will blow up, but you won’t see a picture either!

  • Video In: Typically these inputs are in sets with

    • Composite-video and S-video inputs

    • Standard audio inputs

    In most cases, these inputs are connected to composite or S-video

    Your HDTV might require you to tell it whether you’re connecting to the composite-video or S-video jack. (Check your owner’s manual.)

  • Component Video In: Component-video plus standard-audio inputs for accepting signals from component-video systems such as Blu-ray players, HDTV set-top boxes, and gaming consoles.

  • PC inputs: Usually divided into

    • PC Audio Input: These audio jacks connect to the audio output ports on your PC.

    • PC Video Input: These video jacks connect to the video output port on your PC.