The Digital Visual Interface (DVI) is a video interface standard designed to maximize the visual quality of digital display devices such as flat panel LCD computer displays and digital projectors. It was developed by an industry consortium, the Digital Display Working Group (DDWG). It is designed for carrying uncompressed digital video data to a display. It is partially compatible with the High-Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) standard in digital mode (DVI-D), and VGA in analog mode (DVI-A).
The DVI connector usually contains pins to pass the DVI-native digital video signals. In the case of dual-link systems, additional pins are provided for the second set of data signals.
As well as digital signals, the DVI connector includes pins providing the same analog signals found on a VGA connector, allowing a VGA monitor to be connected with a simple plug adapter. This feature was included in order to make DVI universal, as it allows either type of monitor (analog or digital) to be operated from the same connector.
The DVI connector on a device is therefore given one of three names, depending on which signals it implements:
* DVI-D (digital only)
* DVI-A (analog only)
* DVI-I (integrated, digital & analog)
The connector also includes provision for a second data link for high resolution displays, though many devices do not implement this. In those that do, the connector is sometimes referred to as DVI-DL (dual link).
The long flat pin on a DVI-I connector is wider than the same pin on a DVI-D connector, so it is not possible to connect a male DVI-I to a female DVI-D by removing the 4 analog pins. It is possible, however, to connect a male DVI-D cable to a female DVI-I connector. Many flat panel LCD monitors have only the DVI-D connection so that a DVI-D male to DVI-D male cable will suffice when connecting the monitor to a computer's DVI-I female connector.