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How Do I Hook Up... my Nintendo Wii? Newsletter Signup
February 9th, 2008 by Joe Chianese Page 1 Page 2Page 3

Hooking up the Wii to your TV


Connecting a Wii is actually quite simple. Let's go with the idea that you are not going to utilize surround sound. If you are, don't worry - I'll cover that next.

Placing the Sensor Bar

The Wii Sensor Bar is that long, skinny black bar with a really long cord attached to it. This reflects infrared light, allowing the Wiimote to sense movement. Its a simple thing, really, but all you need to do is position above or below your television.

Once you figure out where its going, make sure the cord is long enough to reach the Wii itself. You'll also need to go into the configuration settings once you have the Wii booted up and indicate whether the sensor bar is on top or below the TV.

Connect the Wii

With the sensor bar in position, you can connect go ahead and connect the rest of your Wii. Plug in your AC power adapter, the sensor bar wire, and your audio/video cable.

Which brings us to that in particular. Your Wii, by default, comes with composite video and audio cables. You viewed this cable on Page 1 of this How-To. On one end, there is a proprietary, blocky plug that connects to the Wii. On the other end, you have color coded red, white, and yellow RCA connectors. The yellow is video; red is left channel audio and white is right channel audio.

If you're going to stick with that cable, just connect the three RCA connectors (red, white and yellow) to a corresponding input on the back of your TV. For instance, "Input 1" might have a set of red, white, and yellow jacks on it for you to plug into. Note which input you use. That's the one you'll need to switch to via your TV remote when you want to play the Wii.

If you've given some thought to buying a component cable for the Wii than you will be connecting it slightly differently. Component Wii cables come with a set of two red, a green, a blue, and a white connector. You need to find a component video input on your TV and connect the set of red, green, and blue to the video inputs. The separate red and white pair go into the corresponding audio inputs for that particular input on your TV. Again, you will switch to this input when you want to play Wii.

Keep in mind that component video is better than the default composite video. It provides a cleaner, sharper picture and is noticeably better.

And don't forget: You can use the inputs on the front of your TV if you have them. Most TVs have front or even side composite inputs while some even have component. Use whatever is easier for you, but if you're going to be leaving the Wii connected for a long period of time, I recommend sticking with the inputs on the back of the TV. It won't affect the quality of the audio or video either way.




Wii Memory Cards and Wireless Adapters

The last couple of things to worry about: memory cards and wireless adapters. The Wii's internal memory should be sufficient for a while, but if you play a lot of games or have multiple people using the console, you may want to add a memory card.

Do yourself a favor and pick up a 2GB SD memory card. You can get them for dirt cheap, and 2GB should be more than enough for all your Wii save game and classic Nintendo downloads.

If you don't know what the heck I'm talking about, I'm referring to the fact that you can buy and download classic Wii and Sega games from the online Wii Store directly from the Wii. Games like Gunstar Heroes and Mario, among many, many others, are available from $5-$10. These can take up more space than save games, so if you plan on doing some downloading, definitely consider a memory card.

The only other consideration is a wireless USB adapter. You can buy them for about $20. You'll want one to connect to your home's wireless internet connection so you can play games over the internet and utilize other features like the Wii Store, News, and other online services. It's the only way you're going to get internet on the Wii.



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