Only One RCA TV Input? No Problem.




My TV only has one RCA input, but I have 4 devices that use RCA.  I didn't want to buy parts to build a switch box or buy one, so I came up with this.  It is a really easy project to do, it was free for me because I had the spare parts laying around, and it took me about 20 minutes.

NOTE:  Turning on more than one device at a time might cause problems, I'm not responsible if anything gets ruined.  I doubt it would cause problems, but I wouldn't try it.

Step 1: Materials

-Spare RCA cables

-wire cutters/ wire strippers

-electrical tape

Step 2: Start Strippin'

Cut the RCA cords you need and strip them.   This part was actually the most time consuming for me.

Step 3: Connecting

Now just match the colors (red to red, white to white, yellow to yellow) and the ground wires. Once all the wires are connected together, wrap with electrical tape. Just plug in your RCA devices and the TV and your all done. (:

Step 4: Videos

I took 2 vids of me trying it out.  My DVD player, Nintendo 64, and Playstation 2 are all hooked up to it and they all worked.  Sorry they aren't good quality, I took them with my phone.



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    6 Discussions


    7 years ago on Introduction

    You are 100% correct in telling people to not turn on more than one device as who knows what that could do to any of the devices attached.

    There are switch boxes for a few bucks that only allow one device to be connected at a time. More expensive ones have a remote, but when you think about it, having to get up to turn the switch isn't such a bad thing when one has been sitting on one's butt all day playing COD anyway. Getting up to flip the switch might be the only thing keeping one's feet from atrophying and allow blood flow to return to one's buttocks.

    Be that as it may, one approach I've thought of for full automation is to have a relay (or transistor/switch) on each output before the TV input. The relays/switches would be configured to allow signal through by default, but cut it off if any other output has signal. Use a high-impedance rectifier on each console output to detect when video signal was present. If so, this would dis-engage all the other relays except the one with signal. If more than one output has video, it they would disengage each other's relay so neither would get through. So if you have no video, it would probably mean you have more than one console turned on.

    If this sounds like an interesting instructable I'd be happy to assist someone with design/construction issues if they took it on but unfortunately can't take it on myself at this time.

    1 reply

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    That would be a really good idea, thanks for the input!
    I sold most of my game systems after modding them however so I don't use this anymore. It was more of just a temporary solution


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Only for the ps2 cord because I had a spare, but other than that, the red and white cord plugs into my dvd player, and I plugged my N64 and PS1 into the input cords. Then I plugged The other RCA plug that I spliced them all to into my TV


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    ah alright cool, i was worried a bit that if you cut up the cables straight from the source, then if you ever needed to you wouldn't be able to plug it into a different tv


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Yeah that wouldn't be good, but it is pretty much just a big cord. you plug one end into the tv and the other ends to your devices