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Monitor Cable Types Guide

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Updated June 27, 2022

Monitor ports are an integral part of its performance, governing the way signals are transferred from a source to a display. There are different monitor cable types and cable standards, including the analog-standard VGA (older equipment) to newer connections such as DisplayPorts that may not be available on older monitor technology types like a CRT monitor (check out this guide if you’re wondering what is a CRT monitor). Keep reading to learn more about the most common monitor ports in your favorite computer monitor, as well as the types of monitor ports needed based on application.

What are the Most Common Monitor Cable Types?

The most common monitor ports are VGA, DVI, HDMI 1.4, and HDMU 2.0. Each has its own distinctive uses and strength as it pertains to the strength of audio and video connection between your device and computer monitor.

DVI is known for its versatility, allowing for HDMI and VGA compatible analog signals, which you can learn more about DVI by visiting our resource on what is a DVI cable. However, one drawback is a larger than average connection size and limited standards, with a lack of support for different color spaces.

In terms of new standards, HDMI 1.4 is one of the most common monitor port types around. It can support multi-channel audio, ethernet data, different video formats, and a wider range of colors. You can maintain color accuracy on your monitor if you know how to calibrate the monitor. One knock on it is the lack of a locking mechanism and limited 30 Hz 4K resolution or wide 21:9 aspect ratio support.

Warning: One knock on it is the lack of a locking mechanism and limited 30 Hz 4K resolution or wide 21:9 aspect ratio support

Its immediate upgrade, HDMI 2.0, addresses all of the drawbacks of HDMI 1.4 minus the locking connector.

One last common monitor port is DisplayPort 1.2, which does support 60 Hz 4K resolution, multiple video streams, and 21:9 aspect ratios. Recently, DisplayPort 1.3 has been released, which supports 8K at 60Hz resolution for even greater firepower, and makes it easier to connect your PS4 to a monitor.

What Monitor Cable Types Do I Need?

It all depends on the type of application you plan on supporting. For the highest fidelity, color range, and support possible, we recommend Displayport 1.2 or DisplayPort 1.3. If you are a simple email, spreadsheet, and web multi-tasker with no professional video, audio, or photo editing obligations, then HDMI 1.4, HDMI 2.0, or DisplayPort 1.2 is more than enough. After learning about the types of monitor connections, consider reading about how to fix input lag on a monitor in case you run into this while using your display.

STAT:

According to extron.com, the specification for HDMI 2.0 includes support of increased bandwidth up to 18 Gbps, resolutions up to 4K @ 60 Hz, simultaneous delivery of two video streams and up to four audio streams, 32 channels of audio, as well as other key enhancements.

Sources:

https://store.hp.com/us/en/tech-takes/what-monitor-ports-do-i-need#:~:text=HDMI%2C%20DisplayPort%2C%20and%20USB%2D,to%20connect%20to%20older%20devices.

https://www.xenarc.com/different-types-of-monitor-ports.html

https://www.eizo.com/library/basics/displayport_to_d-sub/

*https://www.viewsonic.com/library/tech/monitor-ports-and-usb-c-a-comparison-of-display-connections/

https://www.expertreviews.co.uk/accessories/pc-monitors/1404476/hdmi-vs-displayport-vs-dvi-vs-vga-every-connection-explained

https://www.techopedia.com/definition/8413/monitor-port

https://www.pcworld.idg.com.au/article/343389/visual_guide_display_cables_dvi_d-sub_adc_more/

Types of Monitor Ports and Connectors Guide FAQ

What are monitor ports?

Monitor ports allow peripherals to be connected with your computer monitor and facilitate the transfer of data, signals, and information such as an audio or video picture. Many types of monitor ports vary in terms of strength and versatility, including HDMI, DisplayPort, USB-C, VGA, and DVI.

What monitor ports are most common?

The most common monitor ports are HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB-C, followed by VGA and DVI.

What monitor port types do I need?

It all depends on the application you are using it for. For high-intensity audio and video applications, we recommend Displayport 1.2 or DisplayPort 1.3. For simpler applications, HDMI 1.4, HDMI 2.0, or DisplayPort 1.2 will work well.