How to Connect a Macbook Pro to a TV | Complete Guideline Leave a comment

MacBooks are by far the most popular pcs in Australia. Apple has made changes to these machines over the years. The first change came along in 2013 with the first Macbook 12 inches with only a single Thunderbolt port. After that Apple made another bold move to remove all the ports in its Macbook Pro lineup and Introduced only USB-C type ports on those. Now, To connect a display you’ll need either a dongle or if you have an older MacBook and HDMI or you can use Apple’s Airplay to stream wirelessly on your Apple Tv. We’ll show you all these just bear with us till the end. So let’s get started.

Wired Connections

There are two types of Macbooks out there one is Pre 2013 and Post 2013 Macbooks. If you have the latter you only have an option to either go for a converter or USB C to HDMI Cables.
On the older models, there are dedicated HDMI ports for Display Outputs.

HDMI to HDMI (Pre 2013)

Step 1

You’ll find an HDMI port on the right side of your MacBook Pro. It’s a very distinguishable port in the middle between the USB port and the SD card slot and its labeling is visible. Locate the HDMI port on the back of your television, It’s identical to the one on the Macbook. There’s no right or wrong end for the cable you can plug either end to the ports.

Step 2

Plugin one end of the HDMI cable on the Macbook Pro HDMI Port.

Step 3

Find the other end of the HDMI cable to the Tv or Display. The Tv would detect the Macbook and Display its content to the Tv

Thunderbolt to HDMI (Post 2013)

Step 1

Depending on the model of your Macbook You’ll have two or four thunderbolt ports to the side of your Macbook. The thunderbolt ports don’t have right or wrong. The ports are symmetrical USB C type. You can connect to any Thunderbolt ports on your MacBook Pro. These newer models don’t have any MagSafe power port. Find an HDMI port on the back of your television.

Step 2

Plugin the thunderbolt side of the cable on the MacBook.

Step 3

Plug the other end of the HDMI-THunderbolt cable into the HDMI port on your television. Now the television will display your MacBook Pro desktop. You can choose the resolution preferred on your Macbook for the output on the Tv. The Macbook usually selects the Best suitable resolution for the output automatically.

Using Dongles and Hubs

You can choose to use dongles or a dock to get more ports for your MacBook pro. The Belkin or Corsair are the best ones out there in the market. YOu’ll get a range of ports from the Docks. For example the USB B types, HDMI ports, Ethernet, SD card slot and a lot more. The Thunderbolts are also used to hook up external GPUs for extra boosts whenever you need them. You can invest in these docks. These may seem expensive but they’re worth every penny.

Wireless Mirroring

AirPlay Mirroring

Airplay is Apple’s proprietary display mirroring technology compatible with Apple devices only. To Mirror your Macbook to the display, you will need an Apple Tv.

Step 1

Your Apple Tv has an HDMI port at the back of it. Plug in one end of an HDMI cable into the HDMI port on your Apple TV and plug the other end of the cable into the HDMI port at the back of your TV. Connect the provided power cable with the Apple Tv to power it up.

Step 2

Apple tv has both ethernet and wireless network support. You can choose to opt for either option. The Ethernet port is situated on the right-hand side when you face the back of the Apple Tv. If you choose to go wireless, connect to your home network while setting up the Apple Tv.

Step 3

From your Tv’s input menu select the Apple TV as the input device. YOu’ll find the Apple Tv’s setup page If this is the first time you connected the Apple TV to your TV or your network. Use the remote that came with the Apple TV to pass through the setup processes and then connect to your local network. Enter the login credentials of your network and log into it.

Step 4

Now Log into your MacBook Pro and connect to your local network on your MacBook Pro.

Step 5

The AirPlay button should automatically appear on the menu bar of your MacBook Pro. Look for it on the top right side of the menu bar. The button appears on all Airplay supported devices. After turning on the Airplay mirroring the button would turn from Grey to Blue. Click the button and select Connect AirPlay Display. The same settings are also available in the System Preferences. Select Displays then click AirPlay Mirroring or AirPlay Display and choose Apple TV. You’ll now be able to view your Mac’s display mirrored on your Tv set.

Google Chromecast

Though it’s not a conventional way, If you happen to own a Chromecast. You can mirror your content from Chrome browser to your Chromecast.

Step 1

Set up your Chromecast by plugging in your Tv and going through the set-up process and
connecting to your local network.

Step 2

Install Chrome Browser on your MacBook.Keep your Mac and the Chromecast connected to the same network.

Step 3

From the three-dot menu on the right-hand side choose the cast option. Now the browser will start looking for a Cast compatible device and rightly so it should find out your Chromecast. Now you can choose the device and stream your content on Chromecast.


You can choose any of the methods mentioned above. They’re easy and can be handy at times. Though different scenarios would need different solutions to be chosen. For example, if it’s just a movie or a video clip wireless options are much better and hassle-free. Go for the wired option on scenarios like working on the Tv or display as there can be a slight lag on wireless mirroring. Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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