Reading the config.txt docs, I found this:

These values are valid if hdmi_group=1 (CEA)

hdmi_mode=1 VGA

Does this make the output on my HDMI port be VGA? I have a cable that with a VGA and an HDMI ports, but no converter. Would I be able to use a VGA monitor with that cable and the Pi outputting VGA? Or is this something completely different?

  • That you "have a cable that with a VGA and an HDMI ports, but no converter" sounds unusual. Normally a cable will have the same kind of connectors, both HDMI or both VGA, unless it is a converter cable. There are two main types of converter cables. One type converts electrically similar but physically different connectors such as a gender mender or a USB cable with type A on one end and type B on the other. Other type converts electrically different connectors such as an HDMI to VGA converter cable. HDMI and VGA use connectors that are physically different and electrically different. Oct 29, 2017 at 13:43
  • This cable here doesn't convert, you need a graphics card that can output VGA signal through the HDMI connector (or vice-versa, im not sure)
    – BlueMoon93
    Oct 29, 2017 at 15:34
  • The title uses the phrase "Video Converter Adapter" however the actual images do not appear to have a VGA/HDMI converter. The cables I have seen and used for VGA and HDMI conversion have a fairly large connector at the VGA end which encloses the converter hardware. This cable you linked to appears to have just a standard VGA male connector. And the price seems to be too low at $4 as if it is just a cable. Prices for VGA/HDMI converters are around $10 on US Amazon. Oct 29, 2017 at 16:34
  • @RichardChambers Exactly. I made the mistake of buying it, but it's just a sucker's knock-off.
    – BlueMoon93
    Oct 29, 2017 at 16:37
  • Oh my. I am sorry to hear that. I hope you can return it for a refund or perhaps register a complaint. Good luck on that. Oct 29, 2017 at 16:44

1 Answer 1


As noted in the documentation you linked:

hdmi_mode defines screen resolution in CEA or DMT format

In this case, VGA would seem to be referring to the resolution, rather than the VGA connector. As noted by Wikipedia:

Through widespread adoption, the term has also come to mean either an analog computer display standard, the 15-pin D-subminiature VGA connector, or the 640×480 resolution characteristic of the VGA hardware.

Converting HDMI to VGA is actually rather more complex than just flipping a setting, as HDMI is a digital protocol and VGA is analogue. You typically need an active converter, like this, to make it all work properly.

See also: Can a simple cable convert HDMI output to VGA?

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