How to Find the Best HDMI Adapter for Your Wii
So you dust off the old Wii for a few rounds of Wii Sports, only to realize your TV has no 3-RCA slots, only HDMI ports. How can you connect the console to your modern television? Will the image be crisp and clear? And what about the audio? Can you play Wii on a computer monitor?
In this article not only will you learn how to connect your Wii to a TV or monitor, but also how to get the best resolution on your displays.
What is 3-RCA?
3-RCA are the color-coded cables (green, white, and red) that you use to connect devices to your display. One cable transfers the image (green), while the other two (red and white) are for audio. For example, DVD machines, old consoles, and other devices use these cables. The cables were the standard, but now HDMI is the standard, so most new displays don’t have those ports.
Connecting Wii to HDMI TV
Bought a new TV that only has HDMI ports? No need to worry. Even though WII doesn’t natively support HDMI cables, there are plenty of Wii to HDMI adapters that will work. But there are some things you should know.
First of all, not every adapter is created equal. Most of the time, the cheap adapters will work, to an extent, but may introduce graphic artifacts or horizontal black lines across the screen.
As you know, those issues can be quite bothersome when you’re trying to game. So it’s worth spending a bit more money on a quality Wii to HDMI adapter.
You could also consider getting a 3-RCA coupler and then a 3-RCA adapter for VGA, which is usually the cheapest option. However, with this method you’ll have to sacrifice the audio, as the audio can’t be transferred through these cables.
And yet another option would be to get a 3-RCA to HDMI converter. These are usually better quality than the little adapters. But if you choose to use external speakers, you’ll need another cable, which we’ll talk about in the audio section.
RCA to HDMI Converter
Since Wii was launched in 2006, the hardware is a little dated, and only outputs a max resolution of 480p. The problem is that most new displays support much higher resolutions, with 1080p being the most common.
Before you panic, most of the time, the TV will blow up the resolution to fill the screen, a process called resolution upscaling. If the display doesn’t do this automatically, then you might have to enter the TV’s settings and choose Letterbox as the resolution. With Letterbox (stretches the resolution to fit) the image should look decent on your display.
There are upscaling devices that will take a lower resolution and increase it, although those devices tend to be quite expensive, and not worth the hassle to install.
Chances are you’re not interested in buying an upscaler that costs almost as much as a new generation console. The sad truth is you won’t be able to have a true 1080p experience with the Wii console because the hardware just doesn’t support that resolution. The maximum resolution is between 480P to 576I.
Connecting Wii to a PC / Computer Monitor
To play WII on your computer’s monitor, first check what type of ports the monitor has. Most modern monitors will have at least one HDMI port, but some models only have VGA or DVI input.
Does your monitor have built-in speakers? If it does, then the HDMI adapter should transfer the audio over. But as we know, monitor speakers are not the best quality, so you’ll probably want to use external speakers.
If it doesn’t have built-in speakers (or you prefer not to use them), then you’ll need a WII adapter that has a 3.5 port for your audio.
One little adapter I found that solves the problem is an HDMI to 3.5 audio converter. This tiny little adapter converts WII’s standard output to HDMI and it also has a 3.5 audio port for speakers or headphones. Very useful.
HDMI to 3.5 audio converter
Getting back to the 3-RCA audio issue, two of those plugs are responsible for transferring audio over from the Wii to display, usually the red and white ones. So what you need is a 2-RCA to 3.5 mm adapter. These are really cheap and can be found online, or at any hardware store.
Just plug the 2-RCA audio cables into the 3.5 mm adapter, and the third one into the 3-RCA to HDMI converter. Next, insert the 3.5 mm jack from your audio device into the 2-RCA adapter, and everything should work. Of course, you can avoid all this if your display already has built-in speakers.
Getting the Wii to work on your displays can be a bit tricky because there are quite a few adapter options. But once you have the right adapters, you won’t have to worry about it again.
So now you can get back to those nostalgic rounds of Wii sports whenever you want. Thanks for taking the time to read this article and hopefully now you know how to connect your Wii to an HDMI device. Have fun!