The Nintendo Wii console is usually connected to a television. However, if you don’t have a TV or if you are traveling, an alternative is needed to connect and use the console. One way to connect and play your Wii is to use your laptop screen. There are a few different ways of doing this, however, we are going to focus on the two main ones (HDMI and Wireless Connection).
Connecting Wii to a Laptop Via an HDMI Input
You’re going to need an HDMI input port If you want to connect the Wii to your laptop in the traditional sense. The bad news is that 99.99% of laptops only come with an HDMI output. The only laptops we have seen with an HDMI input belong to the Alienware series. If you try to make a connection, an output (from your Wii U) on an output (from your laptop) will result in nothing.
So unfortunately, you won’t be able to use your laptop as a monitor unless it supports HDMI input, which is extremely rare. There is however another way you can still achieve a connection. Let’s jump into that right now.
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Connecting Wii to a Laptop Wirelessly
The only viable way of connecting your Wii console to a laptop is wirelessly through the internet. This also allows you to multiple things such as running updates, browsing and other things you would normally do online.
- Once you have your console switched on, using your remote, go to the Channel Menu and hover over the Wii logo on the screen, remember that you have to press the “A” key to select. From there you need to follow this: System Settings > Wi Settings > Internet > Connection Settings (click on the first connection).
- Now you need to look for your connection, so go to the Search for an Access Point option and select your Wi-Fi connection and enter the password.
- That’s it! Go ahead and save your settings once you get the prompt, and then press Ok to do a Connection Test.
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Connect the WiiMote to Your Laptop Using the Built-In Bluetooth Driver
It is often assumed that connecting a Wii controller to your laptop requires a purchase of Blue Soleil drivers. I want to get rid of this misconception by explaining in a few steps how you can connect your WiiMote to Windows with the standard drivers without having to spend money for new software. Here is how you do this:
- Right click on the Bluetooth tray icon in the lower right next to the clock and select “Add Bluetooth device”.
- Then press 1 and 2 on the WiiMite to turn on the controller. Your WiiMote should now appear in the list of devices.
- Here you select the Nintendo RVL-CNT-01 (I do not know whether every WiiMote is called that) and click Next. If the WiiMote stops flashing, you have to press 1 and 2 again immediately so that it stays on and can still be found by the Bluetooth device! It is best to press the two buttons every few seconds.
- Click Skip and then choose Nintendo RVL-CNT-01, check the box and click on Finish.
- If your Bluetooth symbol in the system tray signals a connection with a green-blue symbol, you have done everything correctly and can now use the WiiMote with your laptop.
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Play Wii Games on Your Computer with Dolphin
If you’re just looking to play Wii games on your laptop then a hassle-free way of doing this is through the Dolphin Emulator. The Dolphin Emulator is an open source software which enables you to play a majority of the latest Wii games on your computer. You can easily run your games at 1080p on a new laptop and 480p for older machines. The best thing about this emulator is that the installation process is pretty straight forward! It’s not very technical so anyone wanting to run Wii games can easily do so.
Dolphin does run into issues sometimes. You may experience a buggy interface while running some games. To combat this problem, Dolphin has excellent community support available on their forums, and new releases come out often where all of the previous bugs have been fixed.
Dolphin runs really well on machines that are equipped with discrete graphics, even some built-in ones will do just fine but you’re going to have to explore and test that. When you run Dolphin on a laptop, your performance does suffer, it’s not as smooth compared to the original Wii. However, you want to take into account that these consoles are much older, especially compared to the latest gaming laptops. This is why, in most cases, you’ll be able to run games without any issues.
The thing I like the most about Dolphin is the option to play games with any controller, regardless of the console. That’s right, you can use controllers from other gaming consoles to play Wii games! And if you feel like ditching the controller, you always have the keyboard! All in all, this is an excellent free option to experience Wii games on your laptop!
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