Nintendo Switch (NS) has been a game-changer for the company. The Switch has created quite a hype and, most importantly, sold a record 55 million copies. It has made many gamers start to appreciate the handheld portable consoles, and even many non-gamers started buying this portable machine just for gaming.
The Switch has a great screen for a mobile device, customizable wireless joysticks. It also got an extensive game library, including many exclusive AAA games. But one more significant aspect behind the success was the Nintendo Dock. NS is an excellent choice to carry around, take it to work, functions, etc. and have a great time on the go.
But when at home, you can use The Dock to connect your Switch to your TV or Monitor and enjoy gaming on a larger screen comfortably. But again, many of us might not have a TV or Monitor, for a bigger screen, we might just have a laptop. So, can we connect Nintendo Switch to Laptop?
The Direct Answer
Directly, we cannot connect Nintendo Switch to the Laptop. The only way to connect Nintendo Switch to another device is through the Nintendo Dock. The Dock has an HDMI output port, and with the help of HDMI cables, the Switch is connected to TV or Monitors.
Unfortunately, the Laptop, too, has the HDMI output port. That means both Dock and Laptops can feed their data/screen to other devices that accept HDMI input, but they can’t take any input via the HDMI.
So, for connecting, we need something that can accept HDMI input and can transform it into USB output. Fortunately, with the help of our dear friend, “Game Capture Card,” we can still connect Nintendo Switch to Laptop or PC.
Things You Need:
The Nintendo Switch (Click Here)
It comes packed with the console, and it is the only way to connect and view the Switch on other devices, be it monitor or TV. But in case you have broken yours, or you wish to have multiple docks, buy it from HERE.
Game Capture Card
The Game Capture Card is initially made for streaming Consoles gameplay via PC. It basically acts as a connector with having both HDMI input Port, HDMI output port, and USB port as a means to transfer connectivity to Laptop’s OS. For a smooth, lag-free experience, a sound quality capture card should be used.
Elgato by Corsair is pretty much dominating this market. Their latest Elgato HD60 S is the single most selling capture card. It offers 1080P output at 60 fps. And with USB 3.0 type-C connectivity, it provides a smooth and almost lag-free experience.
But if your Laptop doesn’t have a Type-C port, you should opt for an older version. Perhaps the Elgato HD60, which uses almost similar technology except for the superfast type-C output.
One HDMI cable is needed for this operation. Luckily, one comes within the Capture Card’s box and one with the Switch. Both of these will work just fine. But if you do not have an HDMI cable with you, be sure to stock.
To work with the Laptop and control the Switch while docked, you will also need the software to use the capture card. You can download the software for free from the manufacturer’s website.
Procedures to Connect Nintendo Switch to Laptop
- Connect the Nintendo Switch to the Nintendo Dock. It’s pretty straightforward, you just have to plug in the cable of the Dock to the Type-C connector of the Switch.
- If you have connected the Dock with your TV or Monitor, unplug the HDMI cable from them.
- Connect the Nintendo Dock with the Capture Card via HDMI cable, and be sure to plug into the “HDMI in” port of the card.
- Open the Capture Software on your Laptop.
- Turn on the Nintendo Switch while docked.
- Take the USB cable and connect the Game Capture Card with your Laptop. And within a few seconds, you will find the Nintendo Switch’s Home screen displayed right on your Laptop.
- Use the Joy-Con to control the Switch on the Laptop. You can enter the full screen to enjoy the immersive big-screen experience, or stream live. Also, record your gameplay, enjoy back recording feature, or even chat and live commentary.
Moreover, you can take full advantage of your PC while gaming with the Switch. That is like a two in one feature, offering multi-tasking at its best.
Any Other option?
Well, up till now, this is the only possible way to connect and use Nintendo Switch on laptops directly. But the cost of the capture card alone is quite substantial. Many of the games are available in the Windows Store, try them out if you just want to play the games of the Switch.
Emulators also let you play the Switch games on the Laptop. But beware emulators are still far from stable. Thus, they result in extreme lags and many bugs to encounter. Go for either of these options to have a peek at the games.
The HDMI capture devices are a great way to connect Nintendo Switch to Laptop. With type-C functionality, it delivers almost a Lag-free experience. Still, there remains some.
The data is transferred from the Switch to the Nintendo Dock then to the Capture Device via HDMI then again converted to USB for transferring to the Laptop. It’s a long process, and thus a minimal lag has to be faced. Though most of the games run smoothly despise this, few are quite unplayable due to this minimal delay.
If you are ready to accept this and plan to play the Switch games a lot at your home on a bigger screen. Then you should definitely go for connecting your Nintendo Switch to the Laptop. Make sure to invest in a sound quality Game Capture Card. The rest of the steps are pretty straightforward, follow the guide, and you will be ready to experience it all in no time!