DVI vs AGP: Difference and Comparison

The term ‘graphic card’ refers to an expansion card for the computer which renders images to the display. It resembles a smaller version of the motherboard- it comprises RAM, a processor, and other components.

They are responsible for generating high-resolution real-time 3D graphics. They are an essential component of graphics production as they process an immense amount of pixels on a real-time basis.

Key Takeaways

  1. DVI is a digital video interface that transmits high-quality video signals, while AGP is an interface for attaching graphics cards to a computer’s motherboard.
  2. DVI connectors focus on high-resolution video displays, whereas AGP is a dedicated high-speed graphics processing port.
  3. PCI Express has largely replaced AGP, while DVI still competes with HDMI and DisplayPort for video output.


The difference between DVI and AGP is that DVI improves video quality on all digital displays, such as digital protectors, panel LCDs, etc. On the other hand, AGP is an interface specification that allows the computer to communicate with the graphics card effectively. It improves the speed as well the look of the computer.


DVI refers to Digital Visual Interface made by the Digital Display Working Group. It mainly connects video sources with a variety of display devices.

Originally, it was created to act as the industry standard for transferring digital video content. It provides analog as well as digital signals.

AGP refers to Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP), a point-to-point channel. The end videos are provided at a high speed.

It connects a graphics card with a computer’s motherboard. It improves the machine’s speed of rendering graphics and 3-D images, making the process smoother and faster.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonDVIAGP
Full-FormIt stands for Digital Visual InterfaceIt stands for Accelerated Graphics Port
Type of connectionThe connection between displays and video cardsConnects mainboards with video cards
Type of specificationActs as a cable and plug specificationInterface specification connecting graphics card with mainboards
Main purposeHandles the signals for improving display outputsImproves communication between graphics card and computer
Way of improving performanceOptimizes digital displaysMakes the computer faster

What is DVI?

Digital Visual Interface (DVI) is a unique connector offering a distinct, sharper, and better picture, with the highest resolution being 2560 X 1600. It carries both analog and digital signals.

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It easily converts to other kinds of standards like VGA and HDMI. Three types of DVI are as follows:

  • DVI-A: This type of cable can transfer only analog signals. It connects a DVI card with a CRT monitor. The image produced is of a quality higher than VGA.
  • DVI-D: It transfers only digital signals. It hooks up DVI cards with LCD monitors. It has both dual-link and single-link formats. The data transfer rate and power are more in the dual-link format compared to the single-link one.
  • DVI-I: This cable can transfer analog as well as digital signals. Moreover, it is compatible with both analog and digital equipment. However, DVI-D output cannot be converted to analog.

Currently, it is the only video standard offering analog and digital signals in the same connector. Other standards are only digital such as FPD-Link and LVDS Display Interface.

Devices that utilize this connection include computer monitors and projectors. Though, with advancement, HDMI has taken over the market. In many television sets, DVI has been replaced with HDMI.


What is AGP?

Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) is an expansion card that attaches a video card to a computer system. It improves 3D computer graphics.

It succeeds PCI- type connections for video cards. It has both forward and backward compatibility. An AGP transaction starts with an address phase, wherein a 4-bit command code and an address are communicated.

Intel originally developed it in 1996 and launched by Slot 1 P6 Pentium II and Socket 7 Intel P5 Pentium. Chipsets like ALI Aladdin V were the first to use AGP. To use the features of AGP, Intel’s i740 was developed.

AGP’s characteristics include fast performance and high quality, a direct path to the computer’s main memory, providing graphics cards with two methods of assessing texture maps, and the port having a distinct brown color. Various applications of AGP are:

  • It helps in developing various new applications such as 3D CAD/CAM, user interfaces, etc.
  • It helps assess texture maps directly without using the graphics card to access them. It significantly reduces the extra work by helping the textures to remain in system memory.
  • It helps in the creation of 3D images. The CPU must perform various calculations for the same, which cannot be saved on the buffer card. It helps by allowing those calculations to be stored in the system memory.
agp scaled

Comparison Table Between DVI and AGP

  1. The full form of DVI is Digital Visual Interface, whereas AGP stands for Accelerated Graphics Port.
  2. DVI connects video cards with displays, whereas AGP connects mainboards with graphic cards.
  3. DVI is a cable and plug specification. On the other hand, AGP acts as an interface specification on graphics cards and mainboards.
  4. DVI handles display output in the form of both digital and analog signals, whereas AGP handles communication between the graphics card and the computer.
  5. DVI optimizes digital display. On the other hand, AGP improves the performance of the computer in terms of speed and output.
Difference Between DVI and AGP
  1. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1889/1.1833977
  2. https://users.cs.jmu.edu/abzugcx/Public/Student-Produced-Term-Projects/Computer-Organization-2004-SPRING/AcceleratedGraphicsPort-by-Patrick-Curtin-James-Dieteman-Christopher-Sanford-2004-Spring.doc
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Last Updated : 18 June, 2023

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8 thoughts on “DVI vs AGP: Difference and Comparison”

  1. An excellent explanation about AGP and DVI! The author has presented the information in a very clear and organized manner. I’m glad I found this article.

  2. The post provides a clear and detailed comparison between DVI and AGP making it easier for readers to understand the differences between the two.


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