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Can I Output My CRT Picture on an LCD TV?

written by: •edited by: Simon Hill•updated: 11/24/2009

It is possible, with the right equipment, to output images from a CRT to an LCD TV, but is it worth it?

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    CRT to LCD

    Watching TV on your computer monitor is usually a case of fitting your PC or Mac with a TV adaptor card or USB device but there might be situations in which this isn’t possible.

    If you have a traditional cathode ray tube (CRT) television and wish to view the images displayed on it through your LCD TV or monitor, you can only do this if you have compatible equipment and the right cabling.

    In most cases, the image from an LCD device will be superior to that of a CRT TV. As such outputting from a traditional TV or monitor to a flat screen LCD device makes sense if you wish to compare the two devices, or run a basic home theater setup from your PC.

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    Converting the Signal

    A video and audio cable adapter kit is useful sending a CRT signal via S-Video to an LCD display Achieving a successful signal conversion is a case of comparing your CRT and LCD devices and deciding if they are compatible or not.

    Check the rear and sides of your CRT television. You might be lucky enough to find that you can use RCA plugs (the white, red and yellow connectors that connect audio and video signals) to your LCD monitor.

    Alternatively, if you’re fortunate enough that both devices have S-Video then running a signal out of the CRT S-Video connector to the LCD S-Video connector would also produce the intended result.

    Finally, a combination of approaches might be possible if you are able to acquire a decent cable converter kit, these packs often include a range of cables and connector types, ideal for making this type of connection.

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    Drawbacks of this Method

    Converting CRT to LCD via cabling isn’t the most efficient or impressive use of either device. Beyond the economic and ecological considerations, it is likely that neither device will be outputting the intended image to the best of its capacity.

    Cutting out the CRT (your traditional TV or monitor device) is the only suitable way to take this setup further, perhaps introducing a more advanced home theater configuration?

    With the right equipment, converting CRT to LCD is possible and effective but it is clearly a short-term and unwieldy fix to a problem that can easily be fixed by spending a few dollars on getting your home theater set up properly.

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