PSLS Help Desk – Use Your DualShock 4 to Turn on TV

September 1, 2016 Written by Chandler Wood

Turn on TV with Dualshock 4

This week’s PlayStation LifeStyle Help Desk is a simple but fun and time saving trick. It’s something I’ve had set up on my PS4 for ages. It’s actually possible to use your DualShock 4 to turn on your TV when you power on your PlayStation 4. Don’t worry about scouring for the remote anymore. Just find your controller and you’ll be good to go. How does this little trick work?

There are a few technical bits we need to get out of the way before we can get this functionality up and running.

Enable HDMI Device Link on PS4

HDMI is an interesting cable because it can send more than just the audio and video signal along it. HDMI device link allows your devices to communicate with each other via the HDMI cable. In this case, it will be your PS4 and TV communicating, as long as that’s where the HDMI cable is running.

Go to Settings > System > Enable HDMI Device Link and make sure the box is checked. 

Congratulations! It’s that simple. Now you’re ready to enjoy one less step to get into gaming.

What Does HDMI Device Link Do?

HDMI Device Link will now turn on your TV after your PS4 powers on, as well as swapping the selected HDMI input to the one the PS4 is on. This isn’t just limited to your controller. You can tap the power button on the console itself and it will turn on your TV and switch to the proper input, ready to go. This can also work in reverse, powering the TV off when the console powers down, but see below for more notes about that. 

Things to Note

  • Your TV must have CEC support in order for link to work. This stands for consumer electronics control and is a feature present in most all newer electronics. Check your TV manual if you are in doubt about your particular device’s compatibility. 
  • The power off does not always work. For my TV, it only works if it is not suspending a game. If I am closed out of all applications and I put the PS4 into rest mode, it will power off my TV, but as I often leave games running and do rest mode with suspension, I do have to turn the TV off manually. Your mileage may vary. 
  • Different TVs may function slightly differently with the link, and Sony does not guarantee full compatibility with all products. 
  • As an added bonus, the HDMI Device Link works in reverse too, allowing me to control certain PS4 applications with my TV remote. This is particularly handy for Netflix if I don’t want to leave the DualShock 4 sitting out where the cats will inevitably lay on it and fast forward to the next scene. Again, your mileage may vary, so activate the feature as listed above and test out what you can do with your TV and PS4 linked up!
  • I am not sure firsthand how this functions when the HDMI is running through a home theater system, though it can be assumed the HDMI device link would function the same through all electronics as long as they are CEC compatible. Again, it’s easy enough to enable, so there’s no harm in turning it on and testing it out.

Do you use the HDMI Device Link on your PS4? What do you want to see in the next Help Desk? Let us know via the comments or email us!

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