DVI or VGA?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Holmes89, Jul 28, 2008.

  1. Holmes89 macrumors regular

    Holmes89

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    #1
    I have a 22" LCD screen that I'm planning on hooking up to a Macbook, which will provide the best quality, DVI or VGA?
     
  2. TEG macrumors 604

    TEG

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Location:
    Langley, Washington
    #2
    DVI will always supply the best quality. However, make sure the monitor is DVI-D and you connect it using a DVI-D Cable, as the Mini-DVI adapter only outputs DVI-D or VGA, but not DVI-A or DVI-I.

    TEG
     
  3. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #3
    If you use VGA, it will analog which means the video card will have to convert the video to analog, use VGA, then the monitor needs to reconvert the analog into digital.

    If you ripped a song too much you know how bad it will get; same thing with video.

    Direct no-conversion digital is better than multiple conversion analog.
     
  4. washer macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2004
    #4
    neither carries audio right? what is the best way to hook up a laptop to an lcd? DVI-D and audio out from the headphone port to the RCA left and right audio jacks? I have a MacBook Pro so does that mean I will need the included or another adapter as well, or just a DVI to DVI cable?
     
  5. TEG macrumors 604

    TEG

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Location:
    Langley, Washington
    #5
    We are talking about an LCD Screen not an LCD-TV. The DVI on an MBP is DVI-I which means it will do DVI-A, DVI-D, VGA, and S-Video/Composite. You connect to an LCD-TV throught DVI-I, DVI-D, or DVI->HDMI. For audio, you will need a stereo 1/8" (3.5mm) to RCA adapter.

    TEG
     
  6. KingYaba macrumors 68040

    KingYaba

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2005
    Location:
    Up the irons
    #6
    You will find the picture to be a little fuzzy with VGA.
     
  7. washer macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2004
    #7

    Thanks TEG,

    do you think it would be better to get a TV with a DVI input or use a DVI to HDMI cable? most of the TVs I'm finding on best buy have VGA and HDMI but no DVI. is there much of a difference?
     
  8. Holmes89 thread starter macrumors regular

    Holmes89

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    #8
    It's a 22" acer and I couldn't find if it's DVI-D the box says DVI and then below it it says HDCP..... I don't know what these mean. How do I find out if it's DVI-D?
     
  9. Anonymous Freak macrumors 601

    Anonymous Freak

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2002
    Location:
    Cascadia
    #9
    99% of the time nowadays, "DVI" means "DVI-D". I haven't seen an analog DVI monitor since 2002. (DVI-D means digital, DVI-A means analog, and DVI-I just means that the cable is capable of carrying both signals. In reality, no DEVICE uses DVI-I. Technically, the DVI port on your MacBook Pro is DVI-I because it has the native digital DVI-D signal, as well as having the analog VGA connection. If you were to plug into one of the rare DVI-A monitors, with a proper DVI-A or DVI-I cable from the time, it would work just fine on your MacBook Pro.)

    As for VGA "being fuzzy", only if you have a badly tuned monitor. A properly tuned monitor should be just as sharp over VGA as over DVI. DVI just has the benefit of not needing any tuning.

    For audio, you can use standard "computer speakers" plugged into the headphone jack, you can even use a digital optical audio cable to get digital audio out to a home theater receiver, or high-end computer speakers. (The plug in the MacBook Pro is called a "mini TOSlink", and uses optical fiber cable. The optical 'light' is at the very back of the headphone plug. You would just need a "mini TOSlink to TOSlink" cable to connect to the standard square-ish optical plug on most home theater receivers.)

    And "HDCP" means "High Definition Content Protection", it means that the monitor has DRM. There is no software in OS X that cares, but in Windows, HD DVD and Blu-ray playing software requires an HDCP connection to the monitor in order to play at full quality.
     
  10. TEG macrumors 604

    TEG

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Location:
    Langley, Washington
    #10
    In reality, HDMI is just an expansion of DVI to allow for HDCP, audio, and other things. It would be easier to connect to a TV with a DVI->HDMI cable, then use a headphone jack to RCA cable that I mentioned earlier to connect the audio.

    HDCP means that they have "closed the analog hole". That means that the monitor is capable of displaying video that has a DRM attached. Currently Mac's don't use this stupid DRM model, but Windows machines do for HD Content. It only works with DVI-D, so that means that your screen's DVI port is DVI-D. You only have to make sure that you are using a DVI-D compliant DVI cable, otherwise you may have problems with the mini-DVI to DVI adapter on your MacBook.

    Not quite true, as the OP was about a MacBook, whose mini-DVI port only outputs DVI-D, VGA, and Video, and has not ability to power a DVI-A screen, and may not work correctly with a DVI-I cable (depending on the model). Washer asked a similar question, but regarding an LCD TV, not an LCD Monitor, and he has an MBP, whereas Holmes89 is asking about connecting an LCD Monitor to a MacBook.

    Also, many computer monitors today have built in speakers. You can easily connect to those speakers by using a simple headphone jack to headphone jack cable. However, I would suggest investing in a nice 2.1 system, as they will be of much higher quality than monitor speakers.

    TEG
     
  11. Vaphoron macrumors 6502

    Vaphoron

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2004
    Location:
    Maryland
    #11
    I have 2 22" LCDs hooked up to my Power Mac G5 but one is connected thorough VGA and the other is DVI. When I first bought them I couldn't see a difference but after a little while I really started to notice a difference and it was clear as day. The VGA monitor definitely looks a little fuzzy in comparison and I would have to recommend going with DVI if you can.
     
  12. AllieNeko macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2003
    #12
    So much confusion in this thread, so little clarity.

    There's no such thing as "outputs DVI-I" or anything like that. That refers to CONNECTOR type.

    DVI-D has just digital DVI output and no analog VGA output.
    DVI-I has analog VGA and DVI digital output.
    DVI-A is an analog input on a device electrically identical to VGA but in a DVI-I connector. Pointless and not used (maybe on a few rare devices).

    The only reason a DVI-I cable is incompatible with a DVI-D output is because it has extra pins that won't physically fit in. You should always buy DVI-D cables because of this (you don't need the analog anyways - it doesn't get used), BUT you can always break off the extra pins.

    Personally, I think the DVI-D connectors (with no spot for the analog pins to go) should be eliminated as they physically prevent the use of DVI-I cables that would work just fine. The only reason the DVI-D connector exists is so DVI to VGA adapters can't physically fit (they wouldn't work in a digital only connector and if they don't fit it gives people a hint as to why it doesn't work).

    Anyways, DVI is always best and get a DVI-D cable. But if you have a DVI-I cable just break off the analog pins.
     
  13. Holmes89 thread starter macrumors regular

    Holmes89

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    #13
    It came with a cable in the box so I think I'm good, thanks for all of the help.
     
  14. slotcarbob macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2006
    #14
    It so doesn't matter. I have a PowerBook to which I had a Dell VGA, and now have an Apple Cinema hooked up. Both were beautiful. Check out various monitors, and select the one that suits you.
     
  15. james405609 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    #15
    monitor wont work with mac mini

    I have taken my mac mini to the USA from the UK, the problem I am having is the monitor which is a 17 inch flat screen will not work with the mac mini, I have tried various settings and also changed the signal from basic 60 htz - 85 htz. I have tried the same settings from the UK BUT NO LUCK I have asked apple but they assure me that it should work. can someone please tell me the solution or do i need another monitor
     
  16. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2005
    Location:
    Russia
    #16
    How about a new thread? Or a little Search?
     

Share This Page