How to Use a Projector With a Mac Laptop

Written by brent watkins
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How to Use a Projector With a Mac Laptop
Connect your Mac laptop to a video projector. (projector ready for presentation image by Dmitry Goygel-Sokol from

Adding a video projector to your laptop is a great way to share presentations with larger audiences. You can use your laptop to play DVDs, or to show digital pictures or other multimedia presentations. A Mac laptop will automatically detect the projector as soon as you plug it in, but additional settings may need to be adjusted. If you are new to the Mac operating system, you may not be familiar with how easy making the connection to a video projector is.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Mac laptop running OS X (any version)

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  1. 1

    Turn on the projector prior to making the connection to the computer.

  2. 2

    Locate the VGA video adaptor port on your Mac laptop. For most Mac laptops, the port should be towards the rear of the laptop on the right side.

  3. 3

    Insert the VGA extension cable from the projector into the adaptor port on the laptop. The laptop should automatically detect and begin showing video on the projector.

  4. 4

    Click the display icon from the top menu bar, if video is not showing up on the projector. The display icon looks like a small video monitor. From the drop-down menu, choose "Turn On Mirroring." You should now see the video displayed on the projector.

Tips and warnings

  • Adjust screen resolution on the projector by again selecting the display icon from the top menu bar. Choose "Displays Preferences," then click the "Display" tab. Choose the native resolution of your projector. If you do not know what the correct resolution is, experiment by first selecting "1024 x 768 (SVGA)." If the resolution does not look as good as you think it should, try progressively higher resolutions until a more suitable image is found.

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