Can HDMI Be Converted to USB?

In the event that you need to convert your HDMI signal into a USB connection, you may have been hoping for a straightforward solution. With this form of relationship, things become a bit more difficult. While an HDMI-to-USB converter may seem to be all you need, this isn’t the case for a variety of reasons.

There is no way to convert an HDMI port to a USB port. When compared to USB connectors, HDMI ports are limited to sending video and audio to a display. Connecting an HDMI capture card to one of the computer’s USB ports is the only method for capturing live video from an HDMI port and saving it to the computer.

Customers wanted an HDMI-to-USB converter that was quick and easy to use because of the growing popularity of video game live-streaming. HDMI’s constraints made it difficult to make a straightforward connection. The Elgato Cam Link Capture Card, for example, can’t convert an HDMI stream using just USB (on Amazon).

HDMI-to-USB and Vice Versa – Which Works and Which Doesn’t?

Can HDMI Be Converted to USB?

HDMI-to-USB converters have been difficult to come by in the past. When employing two monitors, the requirement for high-quality HDMI-to-USB converters simply wasn’t great enough to justify the cost. Adapters, like this USB to HDMI Adapter (available on Amazon), make it relatively easy to add an HDMI connection to your PC. They let you to connect your computer to another HDMI-enabled device.

Isn’t it possible to flip the roles? Let’s imagine you wish to connect a video camera to your PC. It may seem that the identical adapter stated above will suffice; after all, doesn’t it contain the appropriate connections? It’s not quite that straightforward, as it turns out. HDMI, unlike USB, can only be used in one of two ways: either out or in. As a result of this limitation, using an adapter like the one shown above is pointless.

To get around this, you’ll have to find a different solution. A capture card, as I indicated at the beginning of the essay, is ideal in this situation. Capture card technology has advanced greatly in recent years. HDMI-to-USB capture cards like the UCEC GAM Live Pro Capture Card (available on Amazon) can handle live video transmission rapidly.

One of the many helpful functions of a capture card is its ability to convert HDMI to USB without introducing any latency in the data transfer rate. A capture card is only necessary if you want to send a live video stream across a computer network.

If you need to transmit data, you may not be able to utilise HDMI-to-USB in this circumstance, depending on your requirements. The only way to transmit data between two computers is if you have an HDMI out on one of them. In this setup, the two technologies are incompatible.

Why Would You Need HDMI-to-USB Conversion?

There are various scenarios when an HDMI-to-USB connection may be advantageous. Keep in mind that just because the link exists doesn’t imply you can get them to operate. Here are a handful of circumstances when this type of relationship simply doesn’t work.

Display with only a USB input

Devices like point-of-sale terminals seem to need merely a USB connection. Despite the fact that an adapter may be used to connect, the signal cannot be processed without a computer.

Trying to use an HDMI as a USB

In the event that you lack ports, you may assume that an adapter will suffice. You can’t utilise an HDMI port instead of a genuine USB port since the specifications for USB and HDMI are so different.

As long as you’re using USB 3.0, you’re going to run across these problems. They don’t get along well enough to be able to operate together in this fashion. If you have a limited number of USB ports, you may want to look into purchasing a high-quality USB hub.

The HDMI-to-USB adapter may be used if you want to capture live video. Either a video camera or an HDMI game console stream may be used for this. The use of a computer is required for this technique to operate. The computer is required to process the signal, and the software is required to manage the produced signal..

Capturing Live Video

With an HDMI-to-USB connection, you’ll need a computer, a good capture card (like the Elgato HD60, available on Amazon), and screen recording software like OBS, which is probably the most widely used (and free).

HDCP, which we briefly discussed in our post on extending a picture to two monitors, is an important concept to grasp before employing a capture card. This is a standard that HDMI employs to secure its content. When you use a capture card, it prohibits you from stealing copyrighted material. So if you want to record video from streaming sites, you’ll have to settle with a poor quality video.

An HDMI-to-USB connection may be used in this case (while attempting to convert live video). However, it only works in this limited context. In other cases, you’ll have to come up with an alternate plan of action. Extending the number of USB ports you have through HDMI is a typical scenario. It’s not working, but there are still fixes you can use in the event of a breakdown.


It’s not that simple to convert an HDMI stream to a USB. It may not even be feasible in your scenario. With a capture card, your computer can process the live video data you’re attempting to send over this connection. You may be better served by using a docking station if you are looking to expand your port selections.

However, despite their appearances, these two cabling systems are not interchangeable. Understanding this may assist you figure out what your system needs. When you need to record live video, such as a video game broadcast or a live camera feed, you’ll most likely require this form of connection. It’s fortunate that a capture card can fix this issue.

Bryan V. Root
Bryan V. Root
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