How to Connect A Receiver to Your TV Using RCA Cables
As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases made on our website. If you make a purchase through links from this website, we may get a small share of the sale from Amazon and other affiliate programs. You can read our complete affiliate disclosure/TOS for more details.

A receiver sends the video to your TV and the audio to the decoder, allowing your home theater system to give you the best watching and listening experience. You can use the HDMI cable to connect your TV to your receiver. However, if your TV or receiver lacks an HDMI jack, you can use your RCA cables. In this article, we explain how to connect a receiver to your Tv using RCA cables.

To connect a receiver to your TV using RCA cables, plug the white output of the RCA cable into the white RCA out port on the TV and plug the red output into the red out RCA port. Plug the other end of the cable into the RCA ports on the back of the receiver, while matching the colors. 

Connecting a receiver to your TV using RCA cables is one of the easiest ways to connect your receiver to your TV without an HDMI cable. For example, it’s one of the ways we cover in how to connect an Onkyo receiver to a Samsung smart TV.

How to Hook Up My Receiver to My TV Using RCA Cables

Before you start connecting your television to your receiver, try to figure out the types of RCA cables that you require. Check the ports available on your devices to make the right decision. Once you have acquired the ideal cable, you can start the connection process by following the steps below.

1. Power on Your Receiver and Your TV

Ensure your home theater is connected correctly to the correct power outlet. Press the power buttons or use your remote to power these devices on. If the power light is on, everything is most likely okay. So, you can move on to the next step.

2. Plug Your RCA Cables In

Plug your cables into matching inputs. These inputs are typically labeled ‘Audio,’ ‘Component,’ or ‘Composite.’ To avoid making costly mistakes, use the color codes to guide you where to plug in your RCA cables. Plug the red end of the RCA cable into the red port and the white end into the white port.

How to Hook Up My Receiver to My TV Using RCA Cables

3. Change Your Television’s Default Speaker to Your Connected External Speakers

The exact steps that you should follow to change the default speaker to the connected speakers depend on your TV model and make. However, in almost all cases, you’ll be able to make the changes by going to your TV’s sound section.  

You navigate to the main settings and then change the default speaker to the external speaker. That’s all.

4. Test Your Home Theater Setup

Using an RCA cable is one of the easiest ways to connect a home theater to tv with a basic cable. Now you’ve successfully connected your television to your receiver for the most entertaining audio experience. Nonetheless, you need to test whether everything is in the proper working order before sitting down to enjoy your favorite content.  

To test the setup, turn the TV volume up and determine whether you can hear the dialogue or music from the video you are playing. If you can, you’ve confirmed that you successfully made the connection. You’re good to go.

Receiver to Your TV Using RCA Cables

In addition, if you are connecting to a cable box, please follow our guide on how to connect your home theater to your TV and cable box

Are there Different Types of RCA Cables?

Yes. As already mentioned in brief, there are different types of RCA cables, and you should pay close attention to how yours works. This will help to determine whether you successfully connect your receiver to the TV using the cable or not. Here are the different types of RCA cables and all you need to know to benefit from them:

1. Basic RCA Audio Cables

These cables come with two connectors, the white and red connectors. The color code shows that the wires are designed to transmit audio-only.

If you want to use the basic RCA audio cable, ensure you connect the TV to your receiver via the RCA jacks. To ensure nothing goes out of hand, all you need to do is match up the white and red cables to the white and red jacks.

2. Composite Video Cables

These cables have the classic white, yellow, and red connection connectors. They come with yellow RCA connectors and red and white RCA analog audio connectors. As the name suggests, the yellow cable will help you to receive video signals.

3. Component Video Cables

Unlike the composite video cable, this one uses multiple cables to transmit video signals. The green, yellow, and blue cables are designed for this purpose. So, you can use this component video cable with three components and get high-quality video.  

However, it’s not the best option if you want to transmit audio from your TV to your receiver. In this case, you need the component video cable with 5 RCA components. Other than the green, red, and blue cables, this cable comes with color-coded white and red audio connectors.

What are Red, Blue, and Green RCA Cables For?

We’ve mentioned that the red, blue, and green RCA cables that are part of the component video cable transmit video signals. However, that’s not all. Each of them has been designed with a specific purpose in mind.

The green cable, also commonly referred to as the Y cable, is designed to transmit brightness signals. At the same time, the red and blue cables, also known as Pr and Pb, respectively, transmit the red and blue components of the image’s color. A combination of three signals infers the green components.  

Due to this specialization, you are likely to get the best image quality if you connect your receiver to your TV using component video cables than the rest.

How to Connect External Speakers to Your TV

When connecting your receiver to your TV using RCA cables, you’ll likely need external speakers to get the desired sound effect.  

You have several ways to connect these speakers to your TV. Some of these are using 3.5mm analog cables, HDMI cable, optical cable, RCA cable. If you’re using older devices with no HDMI, you may still connect them using the last option. RCA cables offer you one of the simplest ways to do this. You can use the red-and-white cables that carry stereo sound to do this.  

Ensure the cables go from the white and red ports at your TV’s back to the input ports on one of your subwoofer units or speakers.

Note: If you have difficulty knowing where these ports are precisely located, please refer to your TV’s user manual.  

Once you’ve connected your TV to the external speakers using this method, you can follow the receiver-TV connection steps above and successfully connect your television for the high-quality home theater experience you deserve.

Summing Up

Now you have all the reasons to expect quality entertainment whether your TV or receiver has a modern HDMI jack or not. You can use the simple tips we’ve shared in this article to connect your TV to your receiver and achieve the kind of experience you want.