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At Last: A VGA to ADC Converter!


Originally posted 5/24/02

Updated 7/15/02 -- Although I was notified by a reader of a problem on July 4th with the Formac Gallery 1740 connected to a PowerBook 550, I am assured by the owner of Gefen (Hagai Gefen) that it should work fine with that setup. The readers unit might be defective. They are looking into the problem. Mr. Gefen also informed me that the 15" LCD which did not work in May is now compatible.

Many of you have sent me email asking the displays with ADC (Apple Display Connector) could be hooked up to a VGA graphics port. Up until recently, the answer was, "no way."

Now the answer is, "way, dude." Gefen, who was one of the first to come up with a DVI to ADC converter, is now the first to offer a VGA to ADC Conversion Box.



The Gefen VGA to ADC Conversion Box is very useful for at least three scenarios:

1. Connecting a second ADC display to the VGA port of a dual display adapter like the GeForce2MX or ProMax DHMax on a Power Mac.

2. Connecting an ADC display to a G3 or G4 PowerBook with VGA port.

3. Connecting an ADC display to the Maxtox RTMac card's VGA port.


1. The price. It's $399. Ouch! If you are using a Power Mac, it would be cheaper to purchase a $120 Radeon 7000 PCI card with DVI port and a $150 Apple DVI to ADC adapter. However, if you are using something like Pro Tools with your Power Mac, you don't want a PCI graphics card sucking any bandwidth from your PCI bus. So from a performance standpoint, you need to bite the bullet.
And if you have a PowerBook with a VGA port or are determined to use that port on your RTMac, the Gefen adapter is the only way to connect either to an ADC display.

2. The Gefen adapter does NOT work with all ADC displays. The VGA to ADC converter DOES work with the Apple 15" LCD, 17" LCD, the 22" Cinema LCD, and the 23" Cinema HD LCD.

But the VGA to ADC adapter does NOT work with the Apple 17" CRT with ADC connector.

Let me repeat. If you have one of those beautiful Apple 17" CRT's with the ADC connector, it will not work with a VGA to ADC converter. Nor will it work with any DVI to ADC converter. Gefen says it's Apple's fault and they have no way to kludge it into working.

Although the web site says it works with the Formac Gallery 17" LCD display, one reader reported to me that it does NOT work with his PowerBook G4/550 VGA port. Gefen is looking into the his problem. More later.

3. The Gefen does not work with all resolutions. It supports only four: 1024 x 768, 1280 x 1024, 1600 x 1024 and 1920x1200. In other words, it only supports the "native" resolution of the ADC flat panels. Don't be trying to run Quake3 at 640x480.



Order direct from Gefen.

© 2002 Rob Art Morgan
"BARE facts on Macintosh speed FEATS"
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