How to switch camera from laptop to monitor

Last Updated: Feb 13, 2024 by

In today’s world of remote work and virtual meetings, having a good quality camera is essential. However, not all laptops come with the best built-in cameras. This is where using an external monitor with a better camera can come in handy. But how do you switch the camera from your laptop to the monitor? In this article, we’ll explore the steps you need to take to switch your camera from your laptop to a monitor.

Why Switch Camera from Laptop to Monitor?

There are a few reasons why you may want to switch your camera from your laptop to a monitor.

Better Quality Camera

As mentioned earlier, not all laptops come with the best built-in cameras. By using an external monitor with a better quality camera, you can improve the overall video quality of your virtual meetings and calls.

More Flexibility

Using an external monitor with a camera also gives you more flexibility in terms of positioning. You can adjust the monitor to get the best angle and lighting for your video calls, which can make a big difference in how you come across to others.

Multiple Monitors

If you have multiple monitors set up, switching your camera to one of them can allow you to use your laptop for other tasks while still being able to participate in a video call or meeting.

How to Switch Camera from Laptop to Monitor

Now that we’ve discussed the benefits of switching your camera from your laptop to a monitor, let’s dive into the steps you need to take to make the switch.

Step 1: Connect Your Monitor

The first step is to connect your external monitor to your laptop. This can be done using an HDMI cable, VGA cable, or USB-C cable, depending on the ports available on your laptop and monitor. Once connected, make sure your monitor is set as the primary display.

Step 2: Check Your Camera Settings

Before switching your camera to the monitor, it’s important to check your camera settings on your laptop. Make sure your camera is enabled and that the correct camera is selected. You can usually access these settings through your laptop’s system preferences or settings.

Step 3: Open Your Video Conferencing Software

Next, open the video conferencing software you will be using for your call or meeting. This could be Zoom, Skype, Microsoft Teams, or any other platform. Once the software is open, go to the settings or preferences and look for the camera options.

Step 4: Select the External Monitor Camera

In the camera options, you should see a list of available cameras. Select the camera from your external monitor. This may be listed as the brand or model of your monitor, or simply as “external camera.” Once selected, you should see the video feed from your external monitor appear in the preview window.

Step 5: Test Your Camera

Before joining a call or meeting, it’s always a good idea to test your camera to make sure everything is working properly. Most video conferencing software will have a test feature that allows you to see how you look on camera and make any necessary adjustments to lighting or positioning.

Step 6: Join Your Call or Meeting

Once you’ve tested your camera and everything looks good, you can join your call or meeting. Your camera should now be switched to the external monitor, and you can use your laptop for other tasks if needed.

Tips for Using an External Monitor Camera

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when using an external monitor camera:

Lighting is Key

Having good lighting is essential for looking your best on camera. Make sure you have enough light in the room, but avoid having bright lights directly behind you, as this can create a glare or make you appear dark on camera.

Positioning Matters

The angle and positioning of your camera can make a big difference in how you come across on camera. Make sure the camera is at eye level and that you are centered in the frame. You may need to adjust the height or angle of your monitor to achieve this.

Use a Quality Camera

While using an external monitor with a camera can improve the quality of your video calls, it’s important to choose a monitor with a good quality camera. Look for monitors with high-resolution cameras and good low-light performance for the best results.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

If you encounter any issues when trying to switch your camera from your laptop to a monitor, here are a few troubleshooting tips:

Check Your Connections

Make sure all cables are securely connected and that your monitor is set as the primary display. If you’re using a USB-C cable, make sure it is plugged into a compatible port on your laptop.

Update Your Drivers

If your camera is not being recognized by your laptop or video conferencing software, it may be due to outdated drivers. Check for updates and install them if necessary.

Restart Your Laptop and Monitor

Sometimes a simple restart can solve technical issues. Try restarting both your laptop and monitor and see if that resolves the issue.


Switching your camera from your laptop to a monitor can improve the quality and flexibility of your video calls and meetings. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can easily switch your camera and make the most out of your external monitor’s camera. Remember to check your camera settings, select the correct camera in your video conferencing software, and test your camera before joining a call or meeting. With these tips and troubleshooting advice, you’ll be able to switch your camera with ease and have more professional and effective virtual interactions.

Gulrukh Ch

About the Author: Gulrukh Ch

Gulrukh Chaudhary, an accomplished digital marketer and technology writer with a passion for exploring the frontiers of innovation. Armed with a Master's degree in Information Technology, Gulrukh seamlessly blends her technical prowess with her creative flair, resulting in captivating insights into the world of emerging technologies. Discover more about her on her LinkedIn profile.