How To Connect a VCR Player to a Computer Monitor

In most cases, a computer monitor is essentially the same as a TV. Whether your monitor is an LCD or CRT, it will be very similar to an LCD or CRT TV. The main difference, though, is that a computer monitor does not have a tuner for listening in to TV or video signals. A computer monitor will usually have inputs for VGA, and in some cases DVI meanwhile, higher-end computer monitors might also have S-video input.

A good workaround for viewing videos from your VCR on a computer monitor is with the use of a TV tuner or adapter box, which can be acquired online at reasonable prices. Here are some tips on connecting your VCR to a computer monitor.

  • Some computer monitors already have a built-in tuner, which lets you plug in devices using a standard RCA jack. If your monitor doesn’t have this functionality, you will have to equip it with a tuner/adaptor. You can search for a VGA-to-RCA orVGA-to-S-Video adaptor on eBay, for instance. These devices will usually cost $30 or less.
  • If your computer monitor comes with an RCA port or S-Video port, then you’re in luck. You will simply need to find the right cable or adaptor for this to work. Newer computer monitors have DVI inputs, which make it easier to connect to a VCR. You will only need to get an HDMI to DVI adaptor, assuming your VCR has HDMI output.
  • You can also purchase a TV tuner, which will input from an RCA or Coaxial source, and output to VGA. This can be useful if your computer monitor is old, and only has VGA input.
  • Connect your VCR to the TV tuner through either the Composite A/V cables or a Coaxial cable. The RCA cables are usually marked yellow, white and red, with the yellow being for the video, and the red and white for audio channels.
  • Connect the TV tuner to the monitor using the 15-pin VGA connector.
  • You will need to connect the tuner box’s audio output to a speaker, so you can hear the audio output from the VCR. If the tuner box only has the yellow video input, you can directly connect the red and white audio channels to the AUX input of your component or home theater system.
  • Power up your devices, and insert a tape in your VCR.
  • Play the tape. It should output video onto your computer monitor.
  • If you connected the audio jacks to your component or home theater system, audio should be coming out from there, as well.

The reason computer monitors are popular for use with VCRs and other video equipment is that these are practically free. Even old 15” monitors can be excellent for use as extra TV sets in the kitchen or garage. Connecting these with a $30 adaptor can be an inexpensive way to add an extra screen to your home without much fuss or cost.


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