Can a keyboard be connected to a monitor?

If there’s any own downside to owning a modern PC it’s the number of cables snaking across, around and underneath your desk.

So the average user (you) is looking for ways to reduce the amount of desk clutter they have to deal with.

Which is why you just Googled, “Can a keyboard be connected to a monitor”?

So let’s get to answering that question for you.

Can a keyboard be connected to a monitor?

Yes, a USB keyboard can be connected to a computer monitor so long as the monitor is also connected to the PC with a USB cable to allow the keyboard to communicate with the input/output hardware inside the PC.

This feature is often found only on high-end monitors or older screens from a time when manufacturers were putting USB ports on everything.

types of usb ports

Pass-through USB connectivity

This type of connection is where your monitor acts as a USB hub featuring one or more USB-A connections.

Your keyboard can be connected directly to the monitor but the monitor also needs to be connected to a functioning USB port on your PC. This is typically done with a USB-B connector on the monitor to a USB-A connection on the computer. Although USB-C connections seem to be taking over here, which makes sense from a bandwidth point of view.

Otherwise your keyboard will receive power from the monitor’s USB port but your keystrokes won’t be sent to Input/Output controller on your PC – which is a fancy way of saying that nothing will appear on screen when you depress a key on your keyboard.

But you can also use this extra USB port with a wireless USB keyboard or mouse. You can do this by plugging your USB dongle into the USB port on the monitor instead of into the back or front of your PC. 

Or a USB flash drive or external hard drive.

Again, the monitor will need to be connected to a USB port on the PC for this to work. But it’s a great way to expand the number of USB ports available to use on your PC.

Or you could simply use the USB port to charge your phone instead – it puts out the same 2.5V as the ports on your PC.

Pros

  • You don’t have to snake cables around or under your monitor and to the USB ports on your PC
  • Frees up USB 2.0/3.0 ports on your PC for peripherals that have a high data transfer rate

Cons

  • Sometimes it can be difficult to wake your PC from hibernation or standby mode with this setup – your monitor will need to be also left in constant standby for “wake-up” to work
  • You’re adding another connection layer to your setup, which means there are more things to potentially go wrong
  • There will be a marginal response time delay when compared to a direct USB connection to your PC
  • Expect connectivity problems

Wrapping it up

So the short answer to this question is, “Yes, you can connect your keyboard to your monitor” but only as long as the monitor is also physically connected to a USB port on your PC.

With that said, not every monitor will have a spare USB port included, but there are plenty of them on the market.

That’s why you should always check the specs before you buy.

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