What is the Difference Between HDMI, DisplayPort, DVI, and VGA?

What is the Difference Between HDMI, DisplayPort, DVI, and VGA?

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When it comes to televisions, HDMI is the most popular choice and a common connector. However, if you are wanting to connect a computer to your television set or if you have got a new computer monitor, your options may expand to various choices like HDMI, DisplayPort, DVI, and sometimes old-school VGA. Every connection has its own pros and cons, and maybe the best cable to use with your display medium is more than just what came with it.

Before we begin listing out the distinctions, you should note that with the exception of VGA, all other connections listed below are digital. The pixel resolution potentials in each of these may vary with each connection, the quality does not. The logical extension of this is that cables themselves not only make all the difference, but in terms of picture quality. Any cable capable of a specific resolution is either going to work or not work. Read on for the differences.


All television sets and most of the computer monitors have HDMI. It is convenient to use, the cables are cheap and the best of all, it can carry audio. If you are plugging your computer into a TV, your first choice should always be HDMI. It will save you a lot of hassle in the long run.

HDMI has its own disadvantages as well, and it is not always the perfect choice. For instance, your TV probably has HDMI 1.4 connections which are prone to max out at 3,820 x 2,160-pixel resolution at 30 frames per second. If you have the new 4K monitor, you are limited to 30fps. But if you have HDMI 2.0, you will be able to do over 4K HDMI at 60 fps. You will also require a new hardware, and probably a new TV.

So, in most of the cases, HDMI is a fine choice. But for really high resolutions and frame rate, one of these options might prove themselves to be better.


DisplayPort is a computer connection format. There is only one television set with DisplayPort, and you should not expect to see much further adoption on the TV side. It can display a 3,840 x 2,160-pixel resolution at 60fps, if you have at least DisplayPort 1.2 and the Multi-Stream Transport feature. If you are connecting your computer to a monitor, there exists no reason to not use DisplayPort. The cables are available at the same price as HDMI. Primecables displayport to VGA cable is also capable to carry audio.


The video signal over DVI is tantamount to HDMI. The maximum resolution potential is dependent on the equipment. Some cables and hardware or single link is capable of 1,920 x 1,200, while others or duel link can do more. DVI doesn’t carry audio, although it does vary. So, if you are using a TV, use HDMI for the best results. Since computer monitors don’t come with a speaker, this is not an issue.

VGA or PC-RGB, D-sub 15

This comes as a last resort. It is not common anymore and it is hardly ever found in TVs. It is not recommended to use VGA. While it is capable of high resolutions and frame rates but it is only an analog signal. You will not get a pixel-perfect image with the modern LCD monitors, this is why we use DVI.

Walter Minnie

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