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How to Connect Your CCTV DVR to a Monitor

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Muhammad Baballe Ahmad, Mehmet Cavas, Sudhir Chitnis, and Zhen-ya Liu.

✓ Verified & Tested Information

It’s easy to connect your CCTV DVR to a monitor with the right cables and adapters. Follow our step-by-step guide and you’ll be up and running in no time.


Setting up a Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) system may seem like an intimidating endeavor, but with the right knowledge and tools, it can be simpler than it appears. This guide will take you step-by-step through the process of connecting your CCTV DVR to a monitor.

This guide is written for users who have already purchased and set up their hardware, so first we’ll quickly run through what hardware you must have before getting started. You will need a CCTV DVR (digital video recorder), power supply, monitor, BNC cables with plugs, security camera(s), and either coaxial cable or Cat5 cable depending on the distance between your camera(s) and DVR.

Once you’ve got all of your items in order and ready to go, you can begin connecting your equipment for optimal monitoring performance!

What You Need

Connecting your CCTV DVR to a monitor is not difficult if you have the right equipment. You will need a monitor with the correct video port and a video cable to connect the DVR to the monitor. You will also need a power cord to power the DVR, and a DVR or NVR with the correct video output ports. Let’s look at the equipment you will need for this connection in more detail.


A CCTV DVR, or digital video recorder, is a device used to record and store video footage from a surveillance camera. Today’s DVRs are capable of recording in high quality resolution and storing vast amounts of footage for extended periods of time. To view the footage, it is necessary to connect the DVR to either a monitor or TV set. The following steps will guide you through the process of connecting your CCTV DVR to a monitor.

Before beginning this process it is important to check that all equipment is available:
-A power cable
-An RCA cable
-A monitor
Once these items have been located and checked it is time to begin connecting your CCTV DVR to the monitor. Here are the steps needed:
1. Connect one end of the power cable into either an electrical socket or a UPS (uninterrupted power supply). The other end should be connected securely into the back of your CCTV DVR.
2. Select one end of your RCA cable (that has red, white and yellow plugs) and connect it into the corresponding audio/video outputs on your CCTV DVR unit. The other end should be connected into any available spare ports on the back panel of your television or monitor; often labeled ‘AUD’ or ‘VID’ with red, white & yellow ports inside them respectively.
3. Once everything has been connected correctly you should then see the pictures being transmitted through onto your screen without any delay; just remember to have press ‘input select’ on your TV/monitor dependant on where you have plugged in your RCA cables!


A monitor enables you to view the footage your security cameras capture in real-time. This will allow you to monitor what is going on in the monitored area and aid with analyzing footage should something occur. The type of monitor used will depend on its purpose – whether it be for viewing live recordings or playing back pre-recorded images.

When selecting a monitor, there are several important factors to consider:
-Compatibility: ensure that the monitor is compatible with your CCTV DVR (Digital Video Recorder).
-Size: if used for surveillance purposes, a larger monitor should be used for greater visibility of the scene. For playback, a small one can suffice.
-Type: most CCTV DVRs use either VGA or HDMI connections; choose depending on device compatibility and required quality/resolution.
-Resolution: higher resolutions mean better image quality, so aim for HD or 4K resolution if possible.
-Brightness & Color Saturation: check specifications carefully to ensure clarity and richness of colors in dark scenes are depicted accurately.

HDMI Cable

To connect your CCTV DVR to a monitor, you will need an HDMI cable. HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) is a type of cable that is designed to provide the highest-quality video and audio signals over a single cable connection. It is the commonly used method for connecting devices such as Blu-ray players, televisions and computer monitors. An HDMI cable will allow you to view the images from your CCTV DVR on your monitor in high definition resolution.

When shopping for an HDMI cable there are certain features to consider such as length, gold plated connections (should be labeled “High Speed” or “Category 2″/ “Category 3”) or Active Cables for higher resolutions and longevity of use.. If possible, it is best to have one with Ethernet capabilities so that a network connection can be established if desired but this depends on the specific model of the DVR and the port slot on the back of the monitor. It is often wise to buy more than one because they are highly affordable and parts could be replaced with ease in case of accidental breakage.

Finally, it is important to pay attention during installation as improper positioning can cause problems with picture quality such as blurry images or flickering screens. Although it may seem complicated at first, once you have reviewed all of these elements it should become much easier!

Power Supply

When connecting your CCTV DVR to a monitor it is important to remember that the power supply must match your LCD TV or monitor. To do this, you need to check the back of the LCD or monitor for its voltage and amperage requirements. The power supply should be able to provide at least 1A or 1000 mA at the required voltage which is usually 12V DC (Direct Current). Additionally check the polarity of the power jack of your monitor as it may require a center positive plug while some PCs use a center negative plug. Make sure you get the correct plug type for your monitor/PC.

Connecting the CCTV DVR

Connecting your CCTV DVR to a monitor is not a difficult task and can be done within minutes! The process involves using cables to connect your DVR to the monitor and then setting up the system to display the video feed from the DVR. Knowing how to do this properly is important for making sure that your CCTV system is working correctly and efficiently. Here are the steps for setting up your CCTV DVR with a monitor.

Connect the HDMI cable

Connecting your CCTV DVR to a monitor is an essential step in setting up and maintaining your security system. A high-resolution monitor helps you to make out minute details on your video footage and recordings, giving you peace of mind that your home or business is being monitored properly. To get started with connecting the CCTV DVR to a monitor, begin by connecting the HDMI cable.

HDMI cables are the most commonly used connections for connecting a CCTV DVR to a monitor; they deliver incredibly clear audio and video quality and rarely require additional software or drivers. Carefully plug one end of the HDMI cable into the HDMI port on the CCTV DVR unit, usually located on the rear panel. Plug the other end into a corresponding HDMI port on either your existing TV or HDTV monitor; many monitors now come with a dedicated input for HDMI connections. Make sure that both ends are plugged in firmly and securely before powering on your unit.

If you don’t have an HDMI cable handy, some older model CCTV DVRs may also be compatible with VGA cables. A VGA cable transmits both audio and video over one coaxial line but requires extra hardware to be used with most modern HDTVs; check your user manual for compatibility information before investing in any additional VGA hardware. Once connected properly, power up both devices and set up any necessary settings within their menus as per their instruction manuals; this will usually involve configuring resolution settings so that they match each other accordingly.

Connect the power supply

To power your CCTV DVR, you will need to connect it to a power adapter or power outlet. Usually, the CCTV DVR comes with a power adapter that needs to be connected to a nearby wall outlet. However, if your camera system has been installed into an existing surveillance network, then the CCTV DVR may already be connected to an unlimited source of power and no additional connections are necessary.

Once the power supply is connected, you can plug the monitor into the video output port on the back of the DVR using an RCA video cable or HDMI cable depending on what video output option is available. Make sure that both ends of the cable are firmly and securely connected in order for your CCTV system to work – any signal interference due to loose cables will impair quality drastically.

Next, make sure all related setting for both input and output are properly configured. For example, some DVRs require you to switch from TV menu mode (entering cable channels) to PC mode before connecting a monitor; if not selected in advance manually within these settings, your TV screen may simply display static instead of showing any live footage.
Finally turn on both devices – once everything has been set up properly you can boot up both devices by pressing their respective Power buttons which should enable you view live feed from each individual CCTV camera in real time.

Setting up the Monitor

Clicking through video feeds on a small DVR screen can be challenging and time-consuming. To take advantage of the features offered by your CCTV DVR, you should connect it to a monitor. Doing so will allow you to enjoy the full benefits of your CCTV system, including easy viewing and navigation of video feeds. In this section, we will discuss the steps to setting up the monitor for your CCTV DVR.

Set the display mode

Before you can start configuring your CCTV DVR, you must first set the Display Mode of the Monitor. You should set the display mode to match the input signal that you will be passing through the DVR. Most monitors can be configured to accept either an analog (VGA) or digital (HDMI/DVI) input signal. Depending on what type of connection your monitor has available, choose an appropriate display mode setting and connect one end of your video cable from the output port of your DVR towards the video input port in the back of your monitor.

Once this is done, power up your DVR and monitor to check for compatibility between them. Note that some newer displays may require a digital input device such as a Blu-ray player or gaming console to get them to automatically configure their settings to match with that device’s native resolution, allowing for higher dynamic range images and richer colors.

If everything is compatible, proceed with setting up any additional settings on both your monitor and DVR such as brightness/contrast adjustment, HDMI/DVI selection, multi-view modes and speaker volumes. When you have completed all these steps successfully then double check all settings before turning everything off and connecting any external cables or accessories such as microphones and cameras for full functionality with your system.

Adjust the resolution

When setting up the Monitor for your CCTV DVR, resolution should be adjusted to the manufacturer’s recommended settings. The resolution setting for each monitor is usually a combination of vertical and horizontal lines. A high-resolution monitor will have more pixels horizontally and vertically than a low-resolution monitor. If a picture appears blurry or distorted on your screen, this is usually caused by an incorrect resolution setting on your monitor.

To adjust the Resolution on your Monitor:
1. Select Display Settings from the Control Panel of your computer or laptop.
2. Click Advanced Settings to access video graphics settings.
3. Next, select the Adapter tab to make changes to the resolution settings of your Monitor.
4. Select one of the supported resolutions recommended by the manufacturer and click Apply to save changes and exit this window.
5. Finally, restart your Monitor so that all changes will take effect
By adjusting the Resolution of your Monitor properly it will ensure you get optimal performance when connecting to CCTV DVR systems or surveillance equipment


Troubleshooting is a key step when connecting your CCTV DVR to a monitor. This is because the incorrect connection of wires and cables can cause problems in the functioning of the system. It is important to understand the basics of troubleshooting and to know how to tackle any issues which might arise. This section will look into the various troubleshooting techniques that can be used to resolve any problems.

Check the connection

When connecting your CCTV DVR to a monitor, it is important to make sure the connection is secure and compatible with the DVR. The DVR will connect to either a composite video or VGA port, depending on the type of cables used. Before you begin, check that you have all the necessary cables and adapters for your set-up.

For composite video connections, connect one end of the composite video cable to your DVR signal output jack and plug the other end into your selectable input port (input 1 or A/V). Your DVR should have an RCA style signal output jack that is red, white, and yellow in color-the two audio cables being red and white while the video cable will be yellow. Once all connections are in place, switch your monitor’s selector knob to view that input port-Composite 1/A/V if applicable.

For VGA connection types, you will need to use a “BNC To VGA Adapter”. BNC stands for Bayonet Neill-Concelman. This adapter converts BNC connectors into standard VGA connectors so that you can use a computer monitor for display purposes with your security camera system instead of a dedicated CCTV monitor.Once all connections are in place, switch your monitor’s selector knob to view that input port-VGA if applicable.

If connections are secure but there is still no picture on screen-or if the picture isn’t clear-try adjusting contrast and brightness parameters on either the display device or related menu screen settings until you get optimal viewing results. It might take some trial and error before everything looks clear and sharp on screen; take caution not to overtweak settings as this may cause damage to components of the system itself!

Check the power supply

Before you start troubleshooting, it is important to ensure that your power supply is working. Check the power supply by plugging it into a power source and verifying that the red indicator light on the power adapter comes on. If the light does not come on, your issue may be the result of a faulty power supply. Once you have verified that your power supply is properly connected and functional, move on to further troubleshooting techniques.

Next, determine what type of connection you are using; this will help you identify which cables are required for connecting to a monitor. Make sure all necessary cables are firmly connected between the CCTV DVR and monitor and securely seated in their ports. If needed, try a different cable to verify that all connections are working properly. Double-check all interfaces for proper installation; snugly pressing each connection should provide secure connections without causing any damage. Finally, reboot both your DVR and monitor to ensure all necessary drivers and settings are activated before proceeding with further steps in troubleshooting your connection issue.

Check the settings

Verify that the output resolution on the DVR is set to match the input resolution of the monitor. Many DVRs have multiple output resolutions; make sure you select one that matches or exceeds the monitor’s specifications. You can typically check the settings either on your computer screen, or directly from your remote device – such as a smartphone or tablet – using a connected app.

Additionally, some DVR models will require a converter to translate between resolutions; if you are getting an error message or no signal, this should be one of your first checks. If a converter is needed, make sure it is compatible with both your DVR and Monitor.

If none of these steps are working, try resetting either the Monitor’s settings or the DVR. To reset your Monitor’s settings, power cycle it (unplug the power cord and wait 10 seconds before plugging it back in). To reset some brands of CCTV DVRs, you will need to press and hold down certain buttons (usually 0 and 1) while turning on power supply.

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