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HELP! My DVD Player won't connect to my TV! DVD to TV hookup is very easy if your TV has yellow video and white/red audio input jacks. Most DVD players come with the cable to make this connection. However if your TV only has a RF input jack, you need to get an RF modulator or video switchbox to make the connection.

Video and Audio Inputs (Figure 1) are required on your TV set to directly hookup a DVD Player. If your TV has only a coax cable connector (Figure 2) for an antenna or cable TV hookup, then you will need an additional device to connect any DVD Player to your television. This device can be an RF modulator or a video switchbox.

Figure 1

Figure 2

An RF modulator can be used to connect a DVD Player to an older model TV that has only an Antenna / Cable input and no RCA Video or Audio Inputs. Simply plug the Composite Video and Stereo Audio cables from the DVD Player into the RF Modulator, and then use a standard coax cable to connect to the TV. This setup works like a VCR, in that the TV is then set to channel 3 or 4, depending on the output setting of the RF Modulator. The RF Modulator also acts as a pass-through for the TV's antenna or cable hookup.

It is likely that there will be problems connecting a DVD Player to the video inputs of a VCR due to the player's Macrovision copy protection. This is meant to prevent copying commercial DVD Movies to VHS tape. To connect a VCR and DVD Player to a TV with no Video Inputs, use the RF Modulator and hook both devices up to the unit's Video Inputs and then the output to the TV.

Hookup Diagram shows DVD and VCR connection to RF modulator and to TV.
For analog cable TV channels, you can use the VCR's cable ready tuner and you do not need a cable box. Cable TV providers are moving to digital cable TV channels which will require a cable box to tune digital channels. The hookup diagram below details the cable connections for this setup.

Digital Cable Box - Hookup Diagram with VCR, DVD and TV.

Tune cable TV channels on the cable box. Select channel 3 (or 4) on the VCR and the TV.
If cable box has no RF output, then connect yellow and white RCA cables from cable box output to VCR yellow and white RCA inputs and select the VCR's Line input using VCR remote control.
This RF Modulator from Amazon allows connection of an audio video component to a TV without a jack.

RF Modulator Recoton DVD647, available at major electronics retailers:

The RF Modulator is ideal for TVs not equipped with an A/V jack. It's used for connecting a DVD player, video game system, camcorder, or other A/V component that does not have an RF (coaxial) output to a TV which only has an RF input. It also features an RF input for connecting a cable TV signal or antenna signal.

The RF Modulator allows the use of DVD players, video game systems, camcorders, and other video components when your television is not equipped with audio/video jacks. The device combines audio/video line-level signals into an RF output signal (necessary for televisions with only a 75-ohm RF coaxial input). It offers a separate antenna/cable TV input that eliminates the need for switching cables back and forth; a channel 3 or 4 output selector switch that ensures compatibility with most televisions and an Auto sensing A/B switch that automatically switches back and forth between antenna and video source.

Current retail prices run $10 to $25 depending on model and are available at Radio Shack and the following online:

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