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Video Graphics Array (not "Adapter").
This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (


(Video Graphics Array) VGA is an analog interface between a PC and monitor that was widely used prior to DVI, HDMI and DisplayPort. VGA was introduced on the IBM PS/2 in 1987, replacing the previous digital CGA and EGA interfaces, which had lower resolution and fewer colors. New LCD monitors may include a VGA port for legacy PCs, and PCs may have a VGA port for legacy monitors. See DVI, HDMI and DisplayPort.

Lots of Variants
VGA debuted with 640x480 pixels and 16 or 256 colors. This is still the mode PCs boot into, and it is also used in Safe Mode with the display driver disabled (in case the driver is the problem).

In a short time, non-IBM vendors boosted resolution and colors, calling them "Super VGA" (see SVGA). IBM later introduced XGA (1024x768), and over the years, more resolutions were added that were fractions or multiples of the total number of pixels in VGA and XGA resolutions. See IBM PS/2, screen resolution and XGA.

VGA on a Laptop
The VGA port (middle) was commonly found on Windows PCs, and the same socket was used with all the VGA variations. This laptop has the modern DisplayPort interface (left), but VGA is provided for legacy monitors.

Three Legacy Ports
Using D-sub sockets, VGA, serial and game ports were commonly found on the back of PCs for more than a decade. See D-sub connectors.

Screen Resolutions
Modern PC graphics cards support a variety of SD and HD resolutions. This illustration compares the viewing area for several of them.

Screen Resolutions
Modern PC graphics cards support a variety of SD and HD resolutions. This illustration compares the viewing area for several of them.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Media storages are through CF+ slot (CompactFlash Type II), which can take more than 5000 pictures in VGA mode, or store more than five hours of MP3 music using Pretec 320MB CF card or IBM Microdrive, the smallest hard disk in the world ( microdrive).
The burst mode, allows up to 10 continuous pictures in VGA mode (640 X 480) resolution.
All ColorBook models feature a dual-scan STN color monitor, displaying 256 colors in VGA mode, 4MB of RAM (upgradeable to 20MB), 3.5-inch floppy drive, trackball and 80MB to 170MB removable hard drive.
With its 2 Meg of RAM, this card can easily support up to 16.7 million colors in VGA mode and with super VGA (SVGA) it can display 1024 x 768 pixels with 65,000 colors or 1280 x 1024 pixels with 256 colors; any limitation is in the monitor.
The ATI FirePro V3700 graphics accelerator features 256 MB of frame buffer memory, two dual-link DVI connectors and VGA mode support on all display outlets, while the ATI FirePro V5700 features 512MB of frame buffer memory, dual link DVI and DisplayPort connections.
With 1,280 x 1,024, 2.8[micro] x 2.8[micro] pixels, the sensor is capable of 15 frames per second (fps) at full 1,280 x 1,024 pixel SXGA (super extended graphics) resolution, and 30 fps in 640 x 480 pixel VGA mode.
A picture-in-picture function allows any of the composite video or Y/C inputs to be inserted into one another or into the VGA input display when operating in analog VGA mode. The monitor accepts NTSC and PAL signal formats and power supply voltages from 90 to 264 VAC.