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How to extend your display with an HDMI cable

There are numerous times when you may wish to enlarge, expand or duplicate a static PC display onto another screen with the use of an HDMI (High-Definition Multimedia Interface) cable. Thankfully, with the right know-how, this can be done quickly and easily.

First, one end of the cable will need to be plugged into the relevant HDMI port on the laptop or other personal computing device. The other end must then be entered into the HDMI portal on the external display. Activate both units and choose the appropriate source from the menu on the external display. The manufacturer or user's manual may need to be consulted in order to determine this source.

Once the source is selected, both screens may flash briefly or an icon could appear. Note that this will depend upon the currently installed software. Then, a handful of different options will appear. Again, these choices can be worded differently and there may be some variants; nonetheless, the common selections that can be chosen are:

  • Second screen only: the PC image is displayed on the external screen.
  • PC only: Only the computer screen will display the image.
  • Duplicate: both screens provide the same imagery.
  • Extend (or mirror): ONLY the desktop image, the icons and the wallpaper will be shown on the external unit.

Of course, your choice of options will depend upon the desired use. Once an option is selected, both screens may once again flash briefly. It is important to note that the resolution of the external display could need to be adjusted to accommodate for the larger image.

Changing this resolution will vary depending upon the manufacturer of the laptop or personal device. These are the primary steps that are necessary to extend your display onto a larger screen with the use of an HDMI cable. This is a very useful tool for giving presentations, teaching a class or even enjoying your favourite movie.