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VGA

VGA Video Graphics Array

VGA video connector

VGA has for many recent years been the standard for computer video signals. It uses a trapezoid shaped connector with three rows of five ofset pins. When found on computers and monitors it is often colored blue and indicated by a small image of a monitor.

The VGA connector can be called HD15 or DB15 When used in home theater type applications it can also be labeled RGB.

Quality

VGA is an analog signal originally (in the late 1980’s) supported resolutions of 640 x 480 then SVGA (Super VGA) supported 800 x 600. Later upgrades include resolutions of 1024 x 768, 1280 x 1024 and sometimes even up to 1600 x 1200.

Better than

The VGA standard originally replaced the old EGA (black and green) monitors, the resolution and the added color was an improvement, and later revisions increased both resolution and color depth. If you are trying to get the best signal for your home entertainment system VGA (RGB) is better than S-Video, Composite RCA and Component RCA.

Not as good as

Many of the newer comptuers are now shipping with DVI ports, which is an improvement over VGA, in resolutions and response time, besides the fact that DVI is digital (less conversion) In home entertainment both DVI and HDMI will have a clearer uncompressed digital signal, however if your display does not support digital, you will get the best signal from a VGA/RGB connection.

Applications

  • Computers
  • Monitors
  • Projectors
  • TV’s (Esp High Definition)
  • Home entertainment Set top boxes
  • Game consoles (X box 360)

Conversions

Since VGA is used for many different types of applications, there are some stipulations to the conversions that are possible. What will work in one instance, might not work in reverse.

Simple conversions reqire only a passive adapter or cable, there is no active conversion simply differetn pinouts of the same signals.

Complex conversions require active circutry to convert the signal, to change it to the new signal. These often only work one-way.

Simple

  • DVI-A to VGA DVI-A (analog) is primarily used to maintain support for VGA monitors, the two signals are interchangeable. But you will need to make sure that you are using a DVI-A or DVI-I device (like a computer graphics card or a projector) DVI-D (digital only) to VGA is not a simple conversion click here for more information about DVI
  • VGA to Component In Home theater the VGA or RGB signals are largely interchangable with the Component RCA connections, so for instance a VGA port on a big screen TV can be connected to the Component RCA ports of a DVD player. Computer graphics cards in some instances, can work with VGA to component cables to use a TV as a monitor. For this to work the computer must be sending TV compatible signals. (YPbPr, synch on green)

Complex

Complex conversions for VGA displays
  • DVI-D to VGA Digital to analog conversion boxes that will convert a digital only souce to analog VGA like our SW-4687 or SW-4141 or one designed specifically for home theater SW-4486
  • USB to VGAthis converter will connect a VGA monitor to a USB port on your computer, but the quality is arguable
  • PCI/PCI Express/AGP to VGA You likely know that these are video cards, but the concept is correct–you can connect a monitor to one of these ports, with a VGA graphics card.
  • PCMCIA to VGA Not as many people know that this is possible, but our VT Book will add a VGA port to a PCMCIA slot (also known as PC card slot or cardbus slot) on a notebook computer.
  • VGA splitters Video Splitters will take one VGA output and actively boost and output to many displays. It is perfect for presenting both on a local machine and a projector or having a simultaneous displayed in many locations, for example conference rooms, courtrooms, or a video display. VGA splitters show only a mirrored display (Same thing on all screens) with a few exceptions like the Matrox Dualhead 2 Go and the VT book Dualhead cable.
  • VGA Switches Switches will let you share one display between multiple sources. They can be a KVM switch and share a mouse keyboard etc. as well or switch VGA only
  • Composite to VGA, Coaxial to VGA, S-Video to VGA You can use a standard TV connection to a VGA display with a TV Tuner. Essentialy turning your monitor or projector into a TV. The standard tuner (USB or PCI) runs through your computer, but there are also Standalone varieties, that connect directly to the VGA port of the display.

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