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Difference between DVI-D, DVI-A and DVI-I

Most of current graphics display cards feature a Digital Video Interface (DVI) connector for connecting to LED monitor or projector. For every graphics display card that features a DVI connector, the number of pins and layout of the pins on the DVI connector will vary depending on what type of DVI connector is found on the graphics card. There are currently three prominent types of DVI connector:

  • DVI-D (digital only, single link or dual link)
  • DVI-A (analog only)
  • DVI-I (integrated, combines digital and analog in the same connector; digital may be single or dual link)

Dual link DVI has more pins and allows for a higher resolution and faster refresh rates. Single link can display up to 1920×1080 @ 60 Hz and dual link can display up to 3840×2400 @ 41 Hz.

Female DVI connector pins (view of plug)


A DVI-D connector on a graphics card sends out a digital signal only, while a DVI-I connector can send out a digital signal as well as analog signal (for older displays such as a CRT monitor) using a DVI to VGA adapter. The graphics card shown in Figure 2 which shows a DVI-I connector contains more pins than the DVI-D connector shown in Figure 1. The extra pins on a DVI-I connector carry the analog signal which the DVI-D connector does not have.

Figure 1. DVI-I
Figure 2. DVI-D


Graphics display cards which carry a DVI-I connector are fully compatible with LED monitors which typically have DVI-D cables. The DVI-D cable will read only the digital signal from the DVI-I connector on the graphics card and ignore the analog signal.

If your graphics display card features two video out connectors (ie VGA + DVI), it does not necessarily mean that it will support dual monitors at the same time. Some graphics display cards will look similar to Figure 2 which features a DVI-D connector as well as a VGA connector. These cards generally will only support a single display at a time – not dual monitors. The reason for having two different types of connectors is to allow you to connect either an analog or a digital display to your PC.

DVI to VGA converter is available to purchase at our shop at RM18. Compatible with HDTV, digital CRT displays / projectors / LCD Monitors and Panels with VGA connector.

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