HDMI (High-Definition Multimedia Interface) and DVI (Digital Visual Interface) are the two most popular video cables that are used to connect your device with Television. Today, they are the main digital connectors used with entertainment systems and computers. The traditional VGA and Composite video cables only transmit analog signals that work good with CRT screen, but new LCD/LED screens work with digital signals so HDMI or DVI cables are needed. Whenever you go to an electronic store you often get confused between varieties of available video cables.
Here, we are discussing the most commonly used two important video cables: HDMI and DVI. This discussion will give you an idea of which cable to choose and why.
What is DVI?
The Digital Visual Interface (DVI) is most commonly used and popular video display interface used to connect a video source such as LCD monitors or any display devices to a video display controller. It is an industry standard for transmitting uncompressed digital video content. The DVI connector is very similar to a VGA connector, with up to 24 pins and it supports analog as well as digital video. The DVI connector comes in three varieties depending on the signal it implements which are:
- DVI-A (analog only)
- DVI-D (digital only)
- DVI-I (both analog and digital)
These connectors are available in two types: Single Link and Dual Link. The single link DVI can support 1920X1200 HD video and the dual link with additional pins can support up to 2560X1600 HD video. The DVI is both backward and forward compatible with different types of another connector such as VGA and HDMI. Due to its compatibility, it is intensively used in many desktop computers, television sets, video game consoles and CD/DVD players. The main problem with DVI is that it doesn’t support audio, so a separate cable is needed for that. It also does not support HDCP encryption, so you may not be able to play full HD Blu-rays and other HD contents.
What is HDMI?
The High-Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) is one of the latest popular video/audio interfaces that are used to connect the HDMI-compliant resource to a computer monitor or digital television. It can transmit compressed/ uncompressed audio and uncompressed video between the connected devices. HDMI is fully compatible with DVI and no signal conversion is needed while using DVI-to-HDMI adapter. The HDMI cables are capable of streaming audio and video contents simultaneously on the same cable, so there is no need to have a separate cable for both. There are five types of HDMI connectors depending on video capacity, resolution and color spaces, which are:
- HDMI Type-A (19 pins, supported in SDTV,EDTV, and HDTV)
- HDMI Type-B (29 pins, used for high-resolution display)
- HDMI Type-C (19 pins, used in portable devices)
- HDMI Type-D (micro-USB connector with 19 pins)
- HDMI Type-E ( Automotive Connection system with locking tab)
HDMI supports HDCP encryption so you can view full High Definition Blu-rays and other HD content using it. It can support up to 1920X1200 HD video and 8 channel audio along with consumer electronics control. HDMI cable is a standard digital cable that can be used for almost all purposes with an easy connection.
Which is the best?
Although, DVI and HDMI have same electrical configurations but they differ in numerous key ways. HDMI is latest audio/video interface of the electronic industry but it is not VGA compatible and can’t transfer analog signals. On the other hand, DVI does not support HDCP encryption for HD videos and audio transfer. DVI supports only RGB color model whereas HDMI can support YCbCr color spaces with more color options.
If you are using new devices than HDMI cable would be best to choose but, if you are still using some older devices and want to connect them with newer ones then DVI could be a good choice. You can also use DVI-to-HDMI adapters that can convert the analog DVI input to HDMI-complaint digital content easily.
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