How to Connect Your VGA Laptop to HDMI Monitor on the Show Floor

11/04/14 by EE Team

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The VGA to HDMI connection is the most common cross port connection I see right now on the show floor. Many older or company issued laptops still use a VGA 15 pin or D sub connection which it is sometimes called as the housing is shaped like the capital letter “D”. Many people also call it a 14 pin VGA as one pin is missing even though there are 15 pin locations on the plug ends. This is very normal and does not mean that the cable is bad.

When clients buy a new monitor or rents a consumer grade monitor they soon realize that the newer monitor does not have a VGA input port. Newer monitors are eliminating this port as the technology progresses to all digital equipment. Monitors are cheaper and lighter and this means that something has got to go, so no VGA.

A VGA output on your computer to an HDMI input connection on a monitor will require an active adapter or converter to convert the signal from analog to digital. A passive adapter that just changes the plug end will never work. It is extremely important to know that this conversion process starts as analog and finishes as digital. So when you are buying an active adapter (converter) make sure it says “VGA to HDMI” and not the other way around.

Here are some common things to look out for:

1. The price – VGA to HDMI converters are usually more expensive then HDMI to VGA. You would pay 2 to 3 times more for a VGA to HDMI converter. Expect to pay $70 to $100 for a good VGA to HDMI converter with sound.

2. Don’t expect to walk into your neighborhood electronics store to pick one up. These converters are not in high demand as they are more for temporary crossover connections. These temporary needs are more prevalent at trade shows since that is where you see more borrowed or rented equipment.

3. Most active VGA to HDMI adapters or converters are very short so you will need to have a cable to plug into one end to span the distance between the computer and the monitor.

4. If the product says VGA female to HDMI male don’t assume it converts the signal the way you want it to. Verify the direction and make sure that it is VGA output to HDMI input.

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