How To: Fix Aspect Ratio when connecting Android via HDMI

Connecting devices like tablets and smartphones to external monitors or TVs through HDMI is very popular. Whether it’s for presentations, media consumption, or extending your screen, the ability to use your tablet or phone on an external monitor is extremely helpful. However, one common issue many users face is dealing with the different aspect ratios of their devices and external displays, leading to frustrating black bars or distorted images.

Tablets and phones often come with aspect ratios that differ from the standard 16:9, which is found in external monitors and TVs. For example, the Xiaomi Pad 6 has a 16:10 aspect ratio. When you connect such devices to an external display via HDMI or USB-C dock, the mismatch in aspect ratios becomes apparent. Often, black bars are displayed left and right of the image. Thankfully, there’s a solution to this problem:

Fixing the Aspect Ratio Problem

SecondScreen is an open-source app available on Google Play and GitHub that allows you to manually set the resolution, dpi, and aspect ratio of your screen.

How to fix the aspect ratio of your tablet when connecting to a TV or external monitor:

  1. Set up SecondScreen

    Install the SecondScreen app on your device.

  2. Connect the Tablet to your PC and configure SecondScreen

    The first time you use this app, you have to configure it on your PC. This needs to be done only once. Follow the instructions displayed in the app.

  3. Connect Your Device to the External Monitor or PC

    Use an HDMI cable or USB-C dock to connect your tablet or smartphone to the external monitor or TV.

  4. Launch SecondScreen

    Open the SecondScreen app on your device.

  5. Adjust the aspect ratio.

    Within SecondScreen, you can now change the resolution, dpi, and aspect ratio. Select a resolution that matches your external monitor or TV. For most cases, setting it to 16:9 will ensure compatibility with the majority of displays.

  6. Apply Changes

    Once you’ve made the necessary adjustments, apply the changes within the app. Your device’s display should now be properly scaled to fit the external monitor or TV without any black bars or distortion.

  7. Restore Native Resolution

    After disconnecting from the external monitor or TV, reset the app to its default settings. To avoid black bars on the tablet screen.

Different aspect ratios among devices can present challenges when connecting to external displays. With the free Android app SecondScreen, you can fix display issues originating from differing aspect ratios between your device and external displays. Whether you’re giving a presentation, streaming, or extending your workspace, the free app can help you fix incompatible aspect ratios and resolutions.

How to fix mismatching aspect ratios when connecting an Android Tablet to a TV

You can manually set the aspect ratio and resolution of your Android device with an app called SecondScreen.

Why do aspect ratio issues occur when connecting tablets to external monitors?

Tablets and phones often have aspect ratios that differ from the standard 16:9 found in most external monitors and TVs. By manually overriding the aspect ratio or resolution of your tablet, this can be fixed.