Why was the VGA port discontinued

HDMI, DisplayPort & Co. - the video connections on the monitor explained

Who can see through that? DisplayPort, HMDI, DVI or Thunderbolt. There are currently hundreds of devices with a wide variety of connections on the monitor market, but not every connection supports all resolutions or refresh rates, for example. So that you don't lose the overview, we have broken down for you in this guide which connection fits which application.

You have read through one guide after the other. Now the decision has been made after much back and forth. A new monitor was needed. No matter if office, gaming or multimedia. The new one should be suitable for every purpose and has a lot of different connections. Your old notebook only has one VGA connection. The gaming PC at least has HDMI and DisplayPort. And the projector? Is that a DVI connection?

Who does not know it? Connections have evolved over the years. Much has allegedly become easier and standards were supposed to reduce the connection chaos. But many older devices are still in use. Are the connections compatible at all? And which cable do I actually need to display WQHD at 144 Hz refresh rate? Our table explains.

The most relevant video connections

Connection typeExplanation
DisplayPort / Mini DisplayPortTransmits image and audio signals and can be mechanically locked at the connection. The first version was published in 2006. Similar to the HDMI connection and compatible with Mini DisplayPort, HDMI, DVI and VGA via a suitable adapter. Suitable as a transmission type for fast monitors with 144 or 240 Hz and Full HD or WQHD resolution from version 1.2. FreeSync and G-Sync can only be used with DisplayPort. From version 1.4 HDR is supported.
DVI-DThe DVI standard was adopted in 1999 for the transmission of video signals. DVI is the successor to VGA and stands for Digital Visual Interface. There are different types, which depend on the pin assignment. Most relevant for PC monitors is Dual Link DVI-D. This means that resolutions of up to 2560 × 1600 pixels at 60 Hz can be reproduced. DVI-D is also suitable as a transmission path for 144 Hz monitors with Full HD resolution and is compatible with HDMI 1.0 and VGA using an adapter. DVI is increasingly being replaced by DisplayPort and HDMI, which enable higher resolutions and greater color depths in a more compact design.
HDMIStands for High Definition Multimedia Interface, is the successor to DVI and has been (further) developed since 2002. Transmits video and audio signals and can be found in a wide variety of entertainment electronics. Version 2.1 will be available on the market from 2019. Different resolutions are supported with HDMI, depending on the version, and 120 Hz can also be reproduced via HDMI version 1.4 or higher. HMDI 2.0 is suitable for the current common resolution of 3840 × 2160 pixels at 60 Hz. From version 2.0 the 21: 9 format and from 2.0a HDR is supported. Devices with the new 2.1 standard will probably not be officially available until 2019.
ThunderboltIs an interface that combines DisplayPort with PCI-Express and was officially introduced in 2011. It should function as a universal connection and is downward compatible with mini DisplayPort connectors without an adapter. Thunderbolt 3 was presented to the public in 2015 and has a USB-C connector with the specifications of USB 3.1. Thunderbolt 3 bundles all image, sound, energy and data transmission channels in one interface and also allows large ranges by means of optical transmission. With an adapter, it is also compatible with DVI, HDMI, and VGA displays and supports up to 240 Hz.Thunderbolt 3 is not very widespread due to high license fees, but should supposedly become license-free in 2018.
VGAStands for Video Graphics Array and is an analog transmission standard for image signals. VGA was adopted in 1987 and is meanwhile - “surprise” - out of date. Actually, Intel and AMD decided in 2010 that VGA would no longer be produced from 2015 and should be replaced by DisplayPort and HDMI. Nevertheless, the outdated connection is still built into cheap notebooks and office monitors today.

These five connections are at least currently the most widespread. There are numerous different versions of almost all interfaces, which are detailed in the next table. The newer versions mostly support higher resolutions and higher frame rates. With gaming monitors with more than 60 Hz, you are on the safe side, at least in the Full HD range with DVI-D and DisplayPort. For all higher resolutions and if you want to use FreeSync or G-Sync, you should use DisplayPort.

Connection / resolution1920x1080p2560x1440p3840x2160p5120x2880p7680x4320p
VGA (1987)60 Hz
Dual Link DVI-D (1999)144 Hz60 Hz
HDMI 1.4b (2011)120 Hz75 Hz / 120 Hz **30 Hz / 75 Hz **
HDMI 2.0b (2016)120 Hz120 Hz60 Hz / 120 Hz **30 Hz / 60 Hz ** / 30 Hz **
HMDI 2.1 (2017)120 Hz120 Hz120 Hz60 Hz / 120 Hz *30 Hz / 60 Hz * / 120 Hz *
DisplayPort 1.2 (2009)240 Hz165 Hz / 240 Hz **75 Hz / 120 Hz **30 Hz / 60 Hz ** / 30 Hz **
DisplayPort 1.3 (2014)240 Hz240 Hz120 Hz / 240 Hz **60 Hz / 120 Hz **30 Hz / 60 Hz **
DisplayPort 1.4 (2016)240 Hz240 Hz120 Hz / 240 Hz * / **60 Hz / 120 Hz ** / 144 Hz * / 240 Hz ***30 Hz / 60 Hz * / ** / 144 Hz ***
Thunderbolt 3 (2015)240 Hz240 Hz120 Hz60 Hz

With DisplayPort and HDMI, higher frame rates can also be achieved using Display Stream Compression (DSC) and color subsampling in the YCC color model. However, you should use the bold value as a guide. If you really want to use HMDI, you can reproduce a maximum of 120 Hz with this connection. You should also know exactly which HDMI version is installed on your monitor. As already written: I recommend DisplayPort for fast (gaming) monitors.

There are of course a variety of other connections. However, many of them hardly play a role nowadays. Should you be missing connections or are there any ambiguities? Then write to us in the comments section.

If you are still looking for a new monitor, our guide will help you choose. Have you finished connecting the monitor, but encountered problems in the menu? Then have a look at our lexicon of monitor terms. Have you set everything to your satisfaction, but problems setting up in Windows? Then take a look here. Then pay attention to the correct posture and off you go. We hope you enjoy your new monitor and look forward to your feedback.

Monitors in our shop

via 144hz-monitor.org, wikipedia 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, datapro

* Possible via DSC (invisible, but lossy compression of high-resolution image signals).
** Possible via YCbCr color model and color subsampling (chroma subsampling) in the ratio 4: 2: 2 or 4: 2: 0.
*** Possible via DSC and YCbCr color model and color subsampling (chroma subsampling) in the ratio 4: 2: 2 or 4: 2: 0.

Status: 10.12.2018