Can I Connect Apple TV to a Monitor?

With the introduction of very smart laptops, computers, and smartphones in recent times, the need for TV is almost waning. Most people nowadays prefer to use these devices for their digital entertainment rather than TVs. Although TVs are also becoming smarter, the use of computers or smartphones for TV viewing is very much on the rise.

A moderate approach for most people who wish to ditch their TVs for computers will be to connect their TVs to a computer monitor.

So, is it possible to connect a TV like the Apple TV to your monitor? Yes. You can connect your Apple TV to monitor and watch content on your monitor as long as your monitor is HDCP protected. If your monitor does not have the HDCP, then you’ll not be able to watch videos on your monitor even if you connect the Apple TV. 

Watching the TV on your monitor can be a convenient move since you’ll be able to access other stuff with your computer while watching the TV with it at the same time. In this article, I’m going to explain to you the conditions under which you can connect the Apple TV to your monitor and how to also connect the two. So, read on. 

Can I Connect Apple TV to a Monitor

How Do TVs Work With External Monitor?

Well, before I discuss Apple TV and computer monitors, let’s look into how TVs in general work with external monitors. 

Basically, if you want to transmit audio and visual signals between a TV and another device, you are likely to use HDMI. 

This is because HDMI is more or less the standard for video and audio transmission nowadays.  

However, when it comes to HDMI transmission, there is the possibility that digital content can be pirated without any restrictions. Think about how easy it is to record the TV’s content on your computer after you connect the computer to the TV. 

To ensure that digital content is protected from piracy of this sort, Intel introduced the High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection simply put HDCP, which works on almost all HDMI-enabled devices like computers, laptops, projectors, and TVs. 

The HDCP feature comes into play when you connect your TV to a computer monitor via an HDMI cable. If both devices feature the HDCP, most likely they can work together successfully, otherwise, you are going to have some problems with the content transmission. 

So, the connected TV will only work on your monitor if both the HDMI ports on the TV and the computer are HDCP protected. 

Does Apple TV Work With External Monitor?

When it comes to Apple TV, the situation is no different. The HDMI ports on Apple TVs have the HDCP feature and so the Apple TV will only be compatible with devices that have the HDCP feature as well. 

In essence, an Apple TV will only work with an external monitor if the HDMI ports on the Apple TV and external monitor are HDCP protected. 

If you connect your Apple TV to a monitor that is not HDCP protected, the external monitor will not be able to detect the Apple TV’s screen. What you are most likely to see is an error message that will be displayed on your monitor. 

Even if your external monitor is able to detect the Apple TV, you will not be able to play any content on the monitor and you’ll see error messages as well anytime you try to play a video. 

How Do I Know if HDMI Port is HDCP Protected?

Now that you know HDCP and the role it plays in digital content transmission, you should know how to identify it on your device as well. 

If you have an external monitor and you wish to find out whether or not it has HDMI HDCP-protected ports, you can simply look for something like HDCP 1.4 or HDCP 2.2 around your HDMI ports. 

HDCP-protected devices usually have the HDCP label written close to where the HDMI ports are, so if you find a label like the HDCP 1.4 or HDCP 2.2 in those areas, then your device is HDCP protected. 

Once you get to know that your monitor has the HDCP and is compatible with Apple TV, you can go ahead and connect it to your Apple TV. 

However, not all external monitors have speakers, so you may need to connect an external speaker as well after connecting the monitor to the TV. 

How Does the HDCP Affect Video Content 

Apple TVs have very good video resolutions such as 1080p and 4K. However, just because Apple TVs support HDCP-protected monitors does not mean that you can achieve the same video resolution as your Apple TV on different monitors with different HDCP. 

By this, I mean that the version of HDCP on your external monitor will affect the video quality on the monitor. 

When you consider the HDCP 1.4 and HDCP 2.2 versions, HDCP 2.2 produces clearer images than HDCP 1.4. This is because the HDCP 2.2 was designed to protect 4K video content while the HDCP 1.4 was designed to protect 1080p videos.

If you have an Apple TV HD, you can connect an external monitor that has HDCP 1.4 or higher version to it and you will be able to watch your videos of 1080p resolution without any problems. 

However, for an Apple TV 4K, using the HDCP 1.4 monitor may cause some problems. 

Since the maximum resolution of the HDCP 1.4 is 1080p, your monitor may not be able to detect the Apple TV 4K if you connect it to the TV. You may see an error message on the screen if you do that. 

If you are lucky and the HDCP 1.4 monitor is able to detect the Apple 4K TV, you still will not be able to watch the 4K videos on your monitor. The videos’ resolution will be reduced to 1080p. 

How Do I Connect My Apple TV to an External Monitor?

So, after selecting your external monitor and your Apple TV, let’s see how you can connect the Apple TV to the external monitor. 

Connecting the Apple TV to an external monitor is very easy. In fact, as easy as ABC. You only need to plug the ends of an HDMI cable into the ports of the Apple TV and monitor. 

But before you do that, you need to ensure that you have all the necessary devices and equipment for the connection. 

You’ll need a fast HDMI cable, an HDCP 1.4 or 2.2 monitor depending on the type of your Apple TV – whether HD or 4K and some external speakers if your monitor doesn’t have in-built speakers. 

First of all, plug the ends of the HDMI cable into the HDMI ports on the Apple TV and the monitor. After that, turn the power of TV and the monitor on. 

Next is to connect Apple to the internet. You can use either an Ethernet cable or a WiFi router. Simply plug the Ethernet cable into the Apple TV or connect wirelessly using the WiFi. 

Once you are through with that, follow the onscreen instructions and login with your correct Apple ID and password to set up the TV on the monitor. 

At this point, you should be able to watch the Apple TV on your external monitor. But if the speakers on the monitor are not powerful enough, you can connect external speakers to the TV. 

How to Connect Bluetooth Speakers to the Apple TV 

Using external speakers after you’ve connected the Apple TV to the monitor will boost the audio of your content. 

To reduce cords, you can connect a Bluetooth speaker to the Apple TV or monitor. 

To connect a Bluetooth speaker to the Apple TV, simply put the Bluetooth speaker in pairing mode. For most speakers, you’ll have to press a Bluetooth button or just turn it on and leave it switches automatically to that mode.

With the Bluetooth on your Apple TV turned on, your Apple will search for available nearby Bluetooth devices. 

Next, go to Settings on your Apple TV and select Bluetooth Devices. Select your Bluetooth speaker once your Apple TV is able to detect it and you’ll be good to go.


The practice of watching TVs on external monitors by TV lovers has gone a step further from just having fun to actually being the trend. 

Nowadays, most TV lovers prefer to watch their TVs on an external screen rather than a traditional TV screen. 

The HDCP feature is something that comes into play when you want to connect your TV to an external monitor. The TV and monitor must be HDCP protected for a successful HDMI transmission. 

If you have an Apple TV that is 4K, you should even go the extra mile of getting an HDCP 2.2 external monitor because your monitor may not work with Apple if the HDCP version is lower.

For Apple TVs that are HD, using an HDCP 1.4 external monitor will not cause any problem so you can get your HDMI cable and connect the two devices whenever you want to join this trend of watching TV on monitors.


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