[Troubleshooting] Display Not Working Properly On Dual Screen Or Projector

by Rohit Khurana on February 8, 2013


This is one very commonly faced problem with many of us who have to connect their laptops to second screen, projector, or TV or any external display to present something, watch something streamed from the laptop or for entertainment purpose. Dual screen, or say multi-screen may be a tough nut at times, as the resolution, text size, display size etc. may get messed up at times. I will share some tips on how to troubleshoot most common problems while connecting to a display on projected or HDTV or external display.

Display Not Working Properly On Dual Screen Or Projector

Display Not Connecting:

If the display is not at all connecting, there may be some problems related to connection like:

  • Cable or connector problem – Make sure you are using correct type of cable and connectors are properly plugged into the computer and the external display which can be a projector, monitor or a TV. Most of the problems arise because of cable related issues.
  • Source not selected properly – Most monitors, projectors and TVs these days come with multiple input options, you need to select correct input source like VGA or HDMI or DVI depending on the input port you are using on the projector or external display
  • External Display Not Enabled From Laptop / Computer – Many computers or display’s don’t have plug-and-play projection. You need to enable projection or external display. Some laptops have special buttons near Function keys. In case there is no such button, in case of Windows PC, click on Windows + P to select the projection options.

Display Not Showing Complete Picture:


In case the display is not projecting complete picture or picture seems cropped, the reason maybe the resolution settings. Check the maximum supported resolution on the projector / TV / external display and adjust the resolution to or under the max supported resolution.

Some projectors don’t support the extended monitor mode, in such cases, its advisable to use the duplicate or projector only more, this way, the picture will be projected properly.

Display Showing Distorted Colour Tones:

This problem occurs mainly with VGA cables when they are either of bad quality or get worn out. The display tends to get too green, or too blue, or too red at times. This is because VGA use RGB kind of projection which is prone to colour distortion if the cable develops some fault. In such case, get a supported new cable and the problem will be fixed.

Display Showing Too Large or Too Small Text:

This is one more typical problem which is faced with projectors or external display. When the projector does not support the resolution used on the computer, your computer tries to alter the display resolution which may change the way text appears on the projector / external display or TV screen. To fix this problem, try adjusting the display resolution while the external display is connected and try and find a settings which suits you best.

We hope you find these tips useful. Please share your comments and suggestions below.

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