How to Use TV Speakers As Center Channel Speakers

Updated February 21, 2017

You can use the speakers on your television as centre channel speakers for home theatre applications, either as a permanent solution or a temporary fix while you shop around for a new centre channel. The centre channel speaker of a home theatre delivers the dialogue from movies and television programming. The speaker is usually positioned on top of or wall-mounted over the TV to anchor the dialogue to the image on screen. Quality centre channel speakers can cost more than £195 as of 2009, so replacing a damaged speaker may not always be an immediate option. Some TV speakers are better than others, depending on the quality of the set, and they are really not designed to handle the wattage a home-theatre amplifier can produce. Still, in a pinch, virtually all television speakers can be used as a centre channel with an audio cable connection. Don't crank the volume too loud, and your TV speakers can substitute for your centre channel until you can buy a replacement.

Check the available audio jacks on the back of the television. You want to use the left and right "audio in" jacks for input 1. If the jacks are being used by another device, such as a video game console, you'll need to disconnect that equipment to use the TV speakers as a centre channel.

Locate the RCA audio out cables for the centre channel on the back of your home theatre amplifier or receiver.

Run the centre channel audio cables from the amp or receiver to the audio in jacks on the back of the TV.

Plug the red cable into the right audio channel on the TV and the black cable into the left audio channel.

Set the TV to the appropriate input for the centre-speaker connections. If the cables are jacked into input 1, use the remote control to set the TV to input 1.


TV speakers are designed to handle small power loads. Many can take only 20 watts (or less). Bear this in mind when jacking an amplifier into your TV speakers, and keep the amp volume low, or else you risk blown speakers.


Disconnect the electricity before connecting audio/video equipment.

Things You'll Need

  • RCA audio cable.
  • Receiver or amplifier
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About the Author

James Clark began his career in 1985. He has written about electronics, appliance repair and outdoor topics for a variety of publications and websites. He has more than four years of experience in appliance and electrical repairs. Clark holds a bachelor's degree in political science.