Video Graphic Adapter (VGA)

Video Graphic Array card

This is an adapter that is converts the processed images from the PC processor to the computer monitor. In early PC the adapter was added into the computer as an expansion card, but today`s PC the VGA adapter is integrated into the motherboard.

video graphic card vga

Function of VGA adapter

The main function of the adapter is to convert the processed information from the PC processor to images that can be displayed on the connected monitor. It converts digital information into electronic signals that the monitor displays

Video Graphic Card VGA interface


For the monitor to display images it needs to be connected to the system unit of the PC, and that is achieve by use of a connector. It is used to connect to the analogue monitor. A DE 15 pin connector is the main VGA connector used. The VGA adapter comes with the female port while the cable has the male pins for connection. Below is the cable side of connector.

vga cable male part


This is another type of connector that is used to connect the monitor. It is the latest and it is only used on digital monitor only.

How to connect a VGA cable to the card

Since the cable has 15 pin which can be inserted in the adapter female part what you need to do is align the two parts and push in. Don’t force the cable because you may break the pins. If it is not getting in check and align until the pin moves smoothly in.

Using the screw in the cable side tighten the cable to the adapter to make sure it don’t move or get loose has you continue using it.

VGA adapter interface /types

For the adapters that are not integrated with the motherboard, they have different way that they can interface with the motherboard. On the most recent motherboard there are three slots that a VGA card can be interfaced. They include:

  1. PCI: these are absolute these days unless you have one of those old PC. It used to be divided into two sections, one section being longer than the other.pci interface
  2. PCI Express: these are the latest and they are the best. They look like the PCI but a bit longer and the longer and short sides are revised when you compare with the PCI. These will give you computer high video performance. Most motherboard with this slot has the name written on it (PCI EXPRESS) for identification.
  3. AGP: some PCs still uses these interface although again like the PCI they becoming absolute. They also have two sections like other but at the far end they have a hook which secure it to the motherboard. They are faster than PCI but not as PCI Express.

For the best and latest VGA card get the PCI Express if you PC support it, if not then it means you are unlucky and most likely you are using an old PC. Maybe it time to upgrade.

Factor to consider when selecting a VGA adapter

For those who may want to upgrade their VGA which are integrated into the motherboard one can buy a VGA adapter for upgrade. For basic computer use the integrated VGA is good but for the game lover one may need to upgrade to allow playing the latest video game which requires high resolution and other capabilities. The factors include:

  • The interface

As discuss early the interface matter. Select the VGA depending on which type of interface you PC motherboard offer. If you are lucky enough and it has all then choose the PCI Express has we have seen it is the best performing.

  • The monitor available

The VGA alone cannot give you the best video display that you want. The monitor resolution will also matter. Even if you get a high performing VGA adapter and then the monitor has low resolution or a monitor met for black and white display cannot display colour just because of the VGA. So best combined performance get a monitor that march the VGA that you want to use.

  • Work intended

The job you intend to do with the VGA card will determine the type of adapter to go for. For game PCI Express is the best, for other use get AGP but PCI is a no and again you may not get it in the market any way.

  • Manufacturer

If you have a favorite manufacturer then you can consider that also. When it comes to the manufacturers, check for one that offers longer warranty time. We don’t mean it will get defects, but it is an electronics device, you may never know.