How to Convert an HDMI to RCA

by C. Taylor

RCA connectors were developed by Radio Corporation of America in the 1940s and still persist today one of the most common analog audio and video connector types. However, the digital High Definition Multimedia Interface, or HDMI, connections available in modern equipment offer greater bandwidth and higher quality than RCA connections used by composite and component video. Pairing a HDMI digital signal with an RCA analog signal requires a powered converter box to make that connection. Converter boxes are available to convert HDMI to RCA or vice versa.

Purchase an HDMI-to-RCA converter box, specific to the type of RCA connection you require. You can recognize the type of connection by the color scheme. Composite RCA connectors are yellow, red and white. Component RCA connectors use red, green and blue.

Connect an HDMI cable to the "HDMI Out" port on the device you wish to connect.

Connect the other end of the HDMI cable to the "HDMI In" port on the converter box.

Connect an RCA cable from the "Component Out" or "Composite Out" ports on the converter box, making sure the connector and port colors match.

Connect the other end of the RCA cable to the "Component In" or "Component In" ports on the other device, such as a television. Match the colors on the connectors and ports.

Plug in the converter box. If the box has a separate power switch, turn it to the "On" position to complete the conversion.


  • Some converter boxes also have an "NTSC/PAL" switch. This applies to video sources. Turn this switch to "NTSC" to connect to a TV in the U.S.
  • Converter boxes are also available to convert from RCA sources to HDMI. Connecting these boxes works just like HDMI-to-RCA, except the "In" and "Out" sources are swapped.

Items you will need

  • HDMI-to-RCA converter box
  • HDMI cable
  • RCA cable

Photo Credits

  • Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images