How to Convert HDMI to Composite Cable

by David Lipscomb Google

    More and more video sources employ HDMI as the only video output. Although HDMI outputs provide stunning high-definition signals, this presents a problem to those wanting to use the newest devices with older analog televisions or to archive various video formats. Converters and scalers take the output from an HDMI port, performing a process called transcoding to create an analog or composite signal. The converted video output is almost universally compatible with any video device with the most basic of inputs.

    Step 1

    Reset the unit back to a resolution less than 1080p if you have been using the device with a display that handles this resolution. Many converter devices cannot handle 1080p inputs. Access the user setup menu, choosing "Output Resolution" and selecting 1080i, 720p, 480p or 480i. Make sure you perform this action prior to disconnecting the unit from an HD display that can show all available resolutions.

    Step 2

    Connect one end of the HDMI cable into the HDMI output on the source Blu-ray, gaming system, satellite or cable box. Slide the other end into the HDMI input on the converter.

    Step 3

    Connect the red, white and yellow composite audio and video cables from the corresponding outputs on the converter to the matching inputs on the display or recording device.

    Step 4

    Plug in the converter's AC power adapter. Turn the source, converter, television and/or recording devices on. Look for a signal from the source to appear onscreen.


    • Some scalers and converters do not handle High Definition Content Protection. This means devices and software that mandate this protocol from the HDMI output will not pass a signal to the box.
    • Occasionally video scalers might slightly alter or downgrade the video signal. Possible effects of this process include picture shifting to one side or the other, outlines around objects or reduced color quality.

    Required Items

    • HDMI-to-composite converter
    • HDMI cable
    • RCA composite audio and video cables

    About the Author

    David Lipscomb is a professional writer and public relations practitioner. Lipscomb brings more than a decade of experience in the consumer electronics and advertising industries. Lipscomb holds a degree in public relations from Webster University.

    Photo Credits

    • Polka Dot Images/Polka Dot/Getty Images