Why do I only see a screensaver when I connect my MacBook to my TV?

Colleen romano November 28, 2011

I’m connecting my MacBook Pro to my TV using a miniDisplayPort and HDMI cable. When I set the TV to HDMI input all I get is my screen saver. That’s the only thing I can pull up from my Mac to the TV. Help!

  1. sparkie
    April 1, 2012 at 7:44 pm

    why do i only see screensaver on tv from my hp laptop, is there more i can do from my laptop, i want to watch live wrestling, ty

  2. Mike
    November 29, 2011 at 7:34 am

    If I recall correctly you have to go into System Preferences > Monitor and uncheck "Mirror displays".

    • Pattgsm
      February 11, 2012 at 9:49 pm

      MIke, great tip! I had the same issue. I connected mac to TV via mini display port to HDMI adapter, but couldn't get anything to display other than the screen saver. After that  following your suggestion the only thing left to do was set the audio output to HDMI. Thanks for the info Mike. 

    • Rusthallpaul
      March 13, 2012 at 9:33 am

      Thankyou so much this worked for me :)

    • Leanne Jones
      July 30, 2012 at 9:12 pm

      Thanks Mike you just solved my problem too..... :)

    November 29, 2011 at 6:16 am

    Hello, if you have and adapter like the one shown on the following link:


    you could try the following, maybe it works for you:

    -- plug mini Display Port adapter to computer
    -- turn TV on
    -- connect HDMI cable into adapter

    You could also try unplugging the adapter and then plugging it back.

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