The Best Way to Connect a PS2 to an HDTV

Updated April 17, 2017

One way to get the most out of your PlayStation 2 is to connect the console to a high-definition TV. This will improve the graphics for most games. Some newer games can run "progressive scan" mode, which improves graphics even more. In addition, doing so will improve DVD playback noticeably. While you will need to buy a specialised cable, setting up the PlayStation 2 to an HDTV is quite easy.

What You Need

To connect a PlayStation 2 to an HDTV, you will need a component video cable. Most PlayStation 2s come with a cable that contains a yellow composite video cable and a red and a white audio cable. You will need to buy a new cable (available inexpensively in most game stores) that has three video cables (red, blue and green) in addition to audio cables. Before buying the cable, read the packaging carefully to make sure that it will work with your PlayStation 2 and TV. Some cables may be designed to work for multiple consoles or multiple video formats and thus may have a large number of plugs, but, as long as the plugs you need are there, you will be fine.

Connecting the Wires

One end of the cable should fit into one of the ports on the back of the PlayStation 2 console, just as the cable you are currently using. Connect the audio plugs into your TV just as you did with your old cable, matching the red plug to the red port and the white plug to the white port. Now look for three ports on your TV that are red, green and blue (they may be labelled as component video ports). Plug the three video cables into the matching ports on your TV, matching the colours. You should now be able to turn on your PlayStation 2 and have it work with the TV.

Configuring the PlayStation 2

Your PlayStation 2 games will probably look significantly nicer just as a result of changing the cable, but it is possible to get an even larger improvement. Go to the PlayStation 2 menu (by starting the console without a game or DVD in the disk drive) and go to the options menu. There you can enable progressive scan mode and change the screen aspect ratio, both of which should improve your system's graphics. Some PlayStation 2 games (especially newer ones) may also have a progressive scan option in the game options menu. Enable that as well.

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About the Author

Abe Robinson has been a freelance writer since he graduated from college in spring 2009. He has written for a variety of websites and has provided content for the University of Chicago's "Ceremonial Words – Ritual Acts." He also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from that university, receiving honors for his B.A. Thesis "Anglo-American Perceptions of Japanese Imperialism in Taiwan."