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3 Ways To Connect Roku To TV Without HDMI (2023 How-To)

How To Connect Roku To TV Without HDMI

Many old TVs don’t have an HDMI port. 

But this doesn’t mean they’re no longer compatible with modern streaming devices. 

So if you want to know how to connect your Roku to a TV without HDMI…

Then I’ll be glad to teach you the easiest methods to do so. 

Continue reading to learn:

  • 3 uncomplicated ways to use Roku on a TV without HDMI ports.
  • Which Roku model can directly connect to older TVs without HDMI. 
  • The 2 different types of converter boxes you can choose for this process. 
  • And much, much more… 

How to connect Roku to TV without HDMI?

To connect Roku to TV without HDMI, use a converter box. This turns HDMI cables into RCA connectors. Which can be plugged into TVs without HDMI ports. You can also use the 2018 Roku Express+ device. Because it’s the only Roku model that can directly connect to non-HDMI TVs.

3 ways to connect Roku to TV without HDMI

#1: Use the 2018 Roku Express Plus model

Let’s start with the easiest method to connect Roku to a TV without HDMI ports. 

And it’s by using the Roku Express+ model from 2018. 

See, you don’t need to buy any converter box to plug this device into your non-HDMI TV. 

Because this Roku already has RCA cables already built into its unit. 

“Wait. The what cables?”

Let me explain. If you’re not familiar with what RCA cables are yet… 

Essentially, you can think of them as the ancestors of HDMI cords. 

See, like HDMI…

The role of RCA cables is to relay audio and video signals from a device to your TV screen. 

However, HDMI replaced them over the years. That’s since HDMI is more efficient. 

With that being said, if your TV model doesn’t have an HDMI port…

That means it uses RCA connections instead. And you’d need RCA cables to connect to it. 

Now, since the Roku Express+ model from 2018 is already equipped with these cables…

You can directly connect it to your non-HDMI TV.

With that in mind, here are the…

Steps to connect 2018 Roku Express+ to a TV without HDMI

Step 1: Grab the RCA cables

These cables come in a set of 3. 

And they’re color-coded as:

  • Red.
  • White.
  • Yellow. 

Now, your Roku Express+ already has these RCA cables inside its box.

So simply take them out and then…

Step 2: Connect the cable to your Roku device

Your Roku’s RCA cables will have 3 connectors on 1 side.

And a single black connector at the other end. 

So grab the single black cable you see, and plug it into the composite port on your Roku.

“Where can I find that?” 

It’s located beside the HDMI slot. And it’ll look similar to a headphone jack. 

Once you’ve connected this side of the cable, you need to… 

Step 3: Plug the RCA connectors into the TV

Your TV will also have color-coded ports that are identical to the color of your cables.

With that… 

Plug each cable into the port that matches its color. 

And ensure that all 3 connectors are correctly inserted into the TV.

Step 4: Turn ON your Roku 

Plug your streaming device into the power source. 

And once it lights up…

Step 5: Turn your TV ON

Once your TV is ON, you need to change its input to TV/AV.

Now, the exact steps differ depending on your TV model.

But generally, this is how you do it:

  1. Tap Input/Source on your remote. 
  2. From the list, tap TV/AV.
  3. Confirm the action if needed. 

And just like that, you can now stream on your Roku.

Need a visual guide for connecting this Roku Express+ model to your TV? Watch this video:

You might also want to know: Do I Need A Roku For Each TV? 5 Simple Workarounds

#2: Through an HDMI to RCA converter box

Now, if you have a different Roku model on hand…

Then you need to use an HDMI to RCA converter box to connect it to your TV. 

Not familiar with what this device is? 

Fret not. Because I’ll explain what it is and how it works before I teach you how to use it. 

Now, as mentioned earlier…

Older, non-HDMI TVs use RCA or analog signals to get information from external devices. 

While modern streaming devices, like Roku, use HDMI or digital signals. 

You can think of it this way: 

Your TV and Roku are using completely different languages. So it’s to be expected that they can’t understand each other.

However, this is where a converter box comes in.

Because it’ll be the translator between your TV and Roku. So they can communicate and relay information to each other. 

And this way, you can make your Roku work on any TV, even if it doesn’t have HDMI. 

Fancy, right? But rest assured that using a converter box will be simple and easy. 

With that being said, here are the steps to… 

Connect Roku to a non-HDMI TV using a converter box: 

Step 1: Ensure that the converter box is in good condition

To be completely honest…

Converting HDMI signals to RCA makes your audio and video quality go down a little. 

But fortunately, if you have a good-quality converter box, this won’t even be noticeable.

So as a key component of this connection….

You have to ensure that the converter box works correctly.  

With that, double-check that your device’s connectors are dust and debris-free. And that it doesn’t have any physical damage. 

Step 2: Plug the HDMI cable into the converter box 

Grab the HDMI cord that came with your Roku.

Then, plug this into the HDMI slot of the converter box. 

Note: If you have a Roku streaming stick, plug the device directly into the HDMI slot. 

Step 3: Connect the free HDMI connector to your Roku device

Take the other end of the HDMI cable and insert it into your Roku’s HDMI port.

Make sure that it’s snug and well-fitted. Then… 

Step 4: Prepare the RCA cables
Prepare The RCA Cables

You’re already familiar with these, right?

As mentioned, there are 3 RCA cables, and each of them is in a different color. 

Now, if the converter box didn’t come with these already… 

Then you need to buy these RCA cables separately. 

And once you have them all set and ready to go… 

Step 5: Connect the RCA cables to the converter box and TV

Now, insert each cable into the RCA ports in the converter box.

Simply plug each connector into the port that has its color. 

And once you’ve plugged all 3 cables into your HDMI to RCA converter… 

Plug their other ends into the TV by following the same pattern. 

For example, ensure that the red cable is plugged into the red RCA port on your TV.

And do the same for the other colors. 

Once you’re done… 

Step 6: Turn ON your devices

Now, you need to turn ON your:

  • TV.
  • Roku.
  • Converter box. 

So plug each of them into their respective power sources.

And press and hold your TV’s power button.

Once your TV screen boots up… 

Step 7: Set your TV input to TV/AV

To give you an example of how to do this…

Here are the steps to change the input settings of Samsung TVs:

  1. Click Source on the remote control. 
  2. The list of available inputs will appear. 
  3. Select the TV/AV option. 

So use this as a guide to change the input of your specific TV model as well. 

Once you’ve selected the correct input source… 

Step 8:  Enjoy watching on your Roku 

You can now stream on Roku using your non-HDMI TV.

Easy, wasn’t it? 

You might also be interested in: Roku TV No Sound: 9 Simple Steps To Fix It Today

#3: Use a converter box with built-in cables

It’s worth noting that some converter boxes already have the cables attached to their bodies.

So the exact steps of connecting it to a Roku device will vary from the previous method. 

With that in mind, I’ve crafted a separate guide for… 

Connecting Roku to non-HDMI TV using a converter box with built-in cables 

Step 1: Ensure that the converter box is in good condition.

Check the connectors of all of its cables. 

And ensure that it doesn’t have any physical damage. 

Step 2: Connect the HDMI cable to your Roku

Find the built-in HDMI cable, and connect it to the HDMI slot of your Roku. 

Once you’ve connected the 2 devices… 

Step 3: Insert the RCA cables into your TV

Align the colors of the cables with the colors of the port. 

And double-check that none of the connectors are loose. 

Step 4: Plug your Roku and the converter box into their power sources

Connect both devices to their respective power cables.

Then plug their adapter heads into the wall outlet. 

Once you see an indicator light on both devices… 

Step 5: Turn your TV ON

Press and hold the TV’s power button. And wait for its screen to light up. 

Once it does… 

Step 6: Set your TV’s input o TV/AV

Simply open up the Input/Source settings of your TV.

And select TV/AV from the list.

Once you do, you’ll see Roku’s welcome page on your screen.

So simply follow the on-screen instructions to proceed with watching your favorite shows.