DVI vs VGA Cables: Which One Should You Choose?

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DVI vs VGA Which Should You Choose

Most video devices have multiple ports, and people don’t know what they are for.  Curious people may look at the various ports and see that they each are made for different plugs, but that doesn’t answer the question about what those different ports are for, and what kind of cable is best for them in their situation.

Various ports are indeed for different cords or connectors that are used to transport video from a computer to some video devices such as a monitor, a television, or a projector.  That is simple enough, so why do they complicate things by having different ports in the first place?  In part, they probably do it that way because they can and because they’ve always offered multiple ports on devices. Let’s look at DVI vs VGA cables and see which are best.

VGA – The Analog Signal

First of all, to simplify things, the VGA or Video Graphics Array has a connector that is blue.  VGA signals carry an analog signal to the monitor.  The signal that a VGA cable sends to the monitor can vary greatly in quality.  The cable is capable of transmitting a higher frequency, and it is possible to have a  good resolution picture. In part, the difference in analog signals is dependent on the quality of the cord itself.

Often things recorded in analog are less expensive.  The signal can move around on the wave; therefore there can some interference from other noise or ambient noise.  This is why when digital was first introduced; it was heavily advertised as an improvement over analog.  However, often the picture or sound from analog is superb.

DVI – The Digital Signal

DVI is considered to be the successor to VGA, but it’s still not available on all newly manufactured monitors.  This is something to keep in mind, especially if you are focused on a more clear sound or picture on your device.

For devices that have DVI ports, it is important to remember that there are multiple DVI ports, therefore, multiple DVI cords to link to the monitor.  There is the DVI-D, which has a flat blade on one side of the connector.  The DVI-D is the only DVI cord for digital video.

The DVI-I looks a lot like the DVI-D, but there are some differences.  The DVI-D is great for people who need their monitor to carry analog and digital signals. It is important for someone who is new at connecting a monitor to their computer or another device that there is a difference between the cords of the DVI-D and the DVI-D.  If you believe you will be watching both analog and digital media on the device, the DVI-I is the proper cable, for digital only, the DVI-D is best. When connecting the cords, DVI cables, and their ports are white.

Analog vs. Digital Signals

A digital signal is more precise in where the sound or picture is created, so it picks up less interference from outside noises when compared to analog. Another option is to use an ADC or an analog to digital converter that allow a microcontroller to connect and read the voltage being used in analog.  There is another option of using a digital analog converter, although this technology is harder to find.

In today’s world, most work is completed using digital media.  Many people who have older, analog materials are going through the process of converting that material to digital.

Should You Spend More Money on Cables?

You’re in a store and there are two DVI cables that are exactly the same, other than one is $20 and the other is $50.  Which do you buy?  Generally speaking, the answer is that the expense of a cable makes no difference.  People still spend more money than necessary on cables because back in the old days the quality of a cable could make a big difference.  Those were the days of VHS cassettes.  Those days are gone, but there are still plenty of people willing to spend extra money, but the average person cannot tell the difference.

The most important thing to do when you want to connect your computer to a television or a monitor is to ensure what sort of port each machine has.  Then, decide how picky you are about clarity and quality of the picture, and once you’re sure about the choices you have, go for it and enjoy.

 

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