Whether you are at a conference, delivering an important presentation, or just enjoying some entertainment at your home, it is likely that your projector is used extensively. Connecting your laptop to the projector using Windows 10 gives you a big screen that you can use to display information on and entertain all who are watching.
Go back a few years and connecting a PC or laptop to a projector was a tiresome project. Now, Windows 10 works seamlessly with more projectors. Let’s take a look at a couple of the ways you can configure your projector to work with Windows 10.
Tip – most home theater projectors come with existing 1 click installs for different systems. Please look in the user manual before trying to configure these devices by yourself.
Manually Connect Using Cables
Before you are able to configure your projector to work with Windows 10, you will need to connect it to your laptop or computer. Most projectors have one or two of the following connections:
• VGA – Transfers video
• HDMI – Standard HDMI transfers video and audio
• AV – Audio and video are sent on individual cables
• Display Port – When display port is connected to HDMI, it includes video and audio
Your laptop or computer should include at least one of the two following connection modes:
You should be able to connect your projector using a VGA cable or HDMI cable. If these cables are not provided with the projector or laptop, you can purchase them at an electronics store or at most hardware stores. Connecting the cables is pretty straightforward. Insert one end of the cable into laptop and the other into the projector.
Laptop Connection Settings
After your laptop is connected to your projector, hold down the “Windows Key” while simultaneously pressing “P.” You will be able to toggle through the desired settings and choose from:
• Duplicate – Shows identical image on PC and projector screen
• Extend – Extends the primary display to include the second screen
• Second Screen Only – Image will only be shown on the projector screen
You may be able to use the “Fn” key in conjunction with the F3, F4, or F5 keys on top of the keyboard to choose how you want the image to display.
Configuring Your Laptop and Projector
Once the cable connections are made, you will need to select the appropriate source on your projector. Newer projectors will automatically scroll through source options until they identify the source that is producing the signal. If this does not happen, you may need to set the source on your projector to PC or laptop.
Changing Windows 10 Display Settings
1. Click on the Start icon that is in the lower left of your Windows 10 screen.
2. Click on the Cog icon that is on the lower left of the Start menu. It sits just above the Power icon. This will bring up your Windows Settings menu.
3. Here you will see the systems interface. Click on the Systems icon. This will bring up the Display Settings menu.
4. You will see a screen with two monitors. You will need to drag the two monitors to choose which monitor you want to set as number one. This is the display that will be seen on your projected screen. You will be able to make additional adjustments, including changing the resolution and the orientation of the screen, from this menu.
5. Once you have made the needed adjustments, click on Apply.
Your projector should now be set up to display movies and images from your laptop or PC.
Connect Your Projector to Your Laptop Wirelessly Using Windows 10
You can connect your laptop using wireless connectivity. For this to work, your laptop and your projector should support a cast technology. Thankfully, most projectors come equipped with this technology. Windows 10 has a section specifically to make it easier for you to connect your projector wirelessly. Here are the steps you can follow.
1. Hit the Windows key+I to launch the Settings menu.
2. When you are in the Settings window, click on the System icon.
3. On the left inside you will see the Display section. There you will have the option to Connect to a Wireless Display.
4. Once you click on this, a new search pane will appear on the right side of your PC. Here you will see a list of the projectors that are wirelessly connected to your laptop. Make sure that the Wi-Fi on your projector is turned on so that your laptop can identify it.
5. Select the projector you want to connect to. And enjoy your content.
What If the Connection I Want Is Not Available?
Some older projectors may not have a VGA port or an HDMI port. In that case you will need to purchase a converter that goes from the port that is on the projector to a compatible port on the computer or laptop. Most electronic stores sell these types of converters.
What If I Still Cannot Connect?
It is usually an issue of your laptop not knowing that the projector is connected or letting the laptop know that you want to see the image on the projector. To guarantee that your laptop knows that the projector is out there and wanting to display an image, you should turn on the projector first. To get the best results, wait until you see that the projector has completely powered up before you turn on your laptop.
When your laptop starts the operating system, like Windows, it is going to run through all of the devices that are connected to the laptop. As it does this, it loads the appropriate software needed to communicate with these devices. If your Windows operating system doesn’t know the projector is there, it may not activate the software needed to communicate with the projector.
If you have your projector and your laptop connected and you are not getting any image, we recommend that you power down the laptop and restart it. Ninety percent of the time, assuming that all of the other connections are made correctly, this will be enough to get your image displayed on your projector.
We would love to hear from you. Tell us about any experiences you have had connecting or configuring your projector and laptop to work together. Let us know in the comments section below.