How to connect an external monitor to a laptop
Working on a Laptop/Notebook computer for a long time is not recommended, due to the strain it puts on your neck ,shoulders and back
Bad posture and overuse of a laptop can cause many serious health issues which can cause serious side effects as we age. Correct posture is important. You must not spend too much time looking down or up to a monitor or laptop screen. Ideally your eyes should be level with the top of the monitor.
See this article on correct posture here.
A stand-up desk (see below) is an excellent option and can be used sitting or standing.
Purchasing a second or additional monitor is now a very affordable option with prices as low as $99 for a 20″+ monitor.
But before purchasing that monitor you need to know what your laptop is capable of connecting to, so take a look around the back and sides of the laptop to see available ports.
Most laptops and Notebooks have either a VGA or a HDMI connection but some ultra-thin notebooks may only have a USB port with a HDMI adaptor, or thunderbolt, mini display port or the new USB “c” connection.
Most commonly on older Laptops is the VGA connector
On more recent Laptops and Notebooks, this has been replaced with a HDMI connector which will connect to most recent TVs and Monitors
Depending on Which connector you have on your laptop or notebook may force you to choose a particular monitor.
Monitors will support any of the following combinations of input, so be careful that you purchase one to suit your laptops outputs.
Typical monitor connections.
VGA Connector (left) DVI (right)
HDMI (top) DVI (left) and VGA (right)
Thunderbolt and Mini Display Ports
USB “C” Port
Upon plugging in a suitable cable connecting the laptop to the monitor it is likely that their will initially be no picture on the monitor. You may need to select the “input Type” by pushing the button on the monitor. Select VGA, HDMI, DVI or whatever type of connection you are using.
Although it varies from laptop to laptop, some can turn on the external monitor by hitting the Function Key (Fn) plus the F5 key.
On the Toshiba, continually hitting Fn-F5 , skips between the various monitor options including screen duplication and screen extension.
In this example we choose to extend the screen to the external monitor
On Windows 7, a right-click on the desktop and selecting “Screen Resolution” will give you more options on what to display and on which monitor.
You can also extended your laptop to use two or duel-monitors by employing one of the various cables depending on your laptops available outputs,
USB Splitter to DVI and or VGA
There are many cables and splitters available from a few dollars to around $100
Need more help?
If you live in Western Australia, and you need any kind of computer help, please bring your computer to us at 315 Rokeby Road, Subiaco, Western Australia or call us out. You can contact us here or call: