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Home » Dictionary » Video

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Numeric

MDA
Author: Gabriel Torres Last Updated: December 27, 2005
Category: Video

Monochrome Display Adapter

First video card used on a PC, launched with the very first IBM PC. It didn’t allow graphics and colors, only text. It usually had a parallel port attached. After some time video card manufacturers started manufacturing ”dual“ video cards, which were MDA and CGA at the same time, selectable through a jumper and also allowing Hercules (HGC) mode. See the pictures below where we posted an original MDA video card and a ”dual“ video card. You can easily tell which one is which because of the size.

MDA video card used a 9-pin female D-shell connector.

Notice that you need to install a MDA video monitor together with a MDA video card. It doesn’t work with other monitor types, like CGA, EGA, VGA, SuperVGA, etc. MDA video monitor is different from CGA video monitors (different resolutions). Don’t think that a CGA video monitor will work on a MDA video card only because they use the same plug and because the CGA video monitor you’ve got is monochromatic.

MDA
Figure 1: Original MDA video card.

Dual
Figure 2: "Dual" video card, which is a CGA/MDA/Hercules combo.

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