Jump to content

VGA to DA-15 (Not the other way around) Adapter


Recommended Posts

Say, hypothetically, that I'd stumbled upon a shrinkwrapped ATI Radeon Mac Edition in a local shop that'd been collecting dust for many, many years.

Hypothetically, I got a whiff of that pre-RoHS 'New electronics' smell I've not experienced in a decade or so, but that's hypothetically neither here nor there.

It appears that my hypothetical purchase has a hypothetical VGA male to DA-15 female adapter that allows an Apple monitor to be plugged into basically anything- could someone give me a general idea of the scarcity of such objects?

(This sample of my book, 'How to Ineffectively Beat Around the Bush' brought to you by ATI Technologies)

Link to post
Share on other sites

They are less common simply because most people use Apple displays on Macs and many mac display cards have Apple display ports. And most people with PCs don't use Apple displays. But for cards with standard VGA ports, etc they were needed so they were made. I think I might even have a few on hand but never used them.

Link to post
Share on other sites

As a word of caution, I'm pretty sure that those things only work "trivially" with a subset of Apple monitors, mainly the "Multiple Scan" ones made in the latter half of the 1990's. Those monitors support VESA standard video modes and I believe they also support VGA-compatible DDC/EDID signaling. The older fixed-frequency monitors that use the old hardwired video mode selection lines are less successful.

Link to post
Share on other sites

As a word of caution, I'm pretty sure that those things only work "trivially" with a subset of Apple monitors, mainly the "Multiple Scan" ones made in the latter half of the 1990's. Those monitors support VESA standard video modes and I believe they also support VGA-compatible DDC/EDID signaling. The older fixed-frequency monitors that use the old hardwired video mode selection lines are less successful.

I'll be honest, I've got no intention of using anything other than an old Mac with such low-resolution monitors in any case.

That said, I could see it coming in handy should I ever come accross a first-generation LCD Studio Display.

Link to post
Share on other sites

This is the Apple adapter:

da15apple.jpg

 

It came with several Mac models, in different colours (platinum, black, transparent)… Like the BW G3s and G4s.

 

This was also Apple's headless solution.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The adapter FinkMac pictured is Mac SVGA Female and PC VGA Male. Basically, as the post said, it came with a variety of Macs to let you use AppleVision, Multiple Scan, and Studio displays with newer Macs that only had VGA ports. (PowerBook G3s often had VGA ports, a bit ahead of the rest of Apple's product line, for example, for reasons of both physical space and practicality (projectors in meeting rooms.)

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 years later...

I’m really sorry for necro-ing this post, but I’m after one of these adapters so I can plug one of my hefty multiple-scan Apple monitors into the VGA port on my MDD G4 or my 8600’s Radeon 7000 (or even *gasp* to test on my gaming PC). Has anyone had any luck sourcing these recently?

 

I found this random site selling what looks like the kind of adapter I’m after, but I’m not sure if it’s legit:

 

http://www.cablesonline.com/hdvgamaltodb.html

Edited by LazarusNine
Link to post
Share on other sites

There are a handful on ebay right now:

 

(the one that came with some PowerBooks)

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Monitor-DB15-Female-to-HD15-Male-VGA-adapter-590-1118-A-G3-G4-PowerBook/143537020383?hash=item216b791ddf:g:UREAAOSw~QVeTZ48

 

(the one that came with some Multiple Scan/AppleVision/ColorSync displays)

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Vintage-Mac-to-VGA-DB15-female-to-HD15-male-Adapter-589-3022-A/174182672446?epid=1601814201&hash=item288e18a83e:g:-ZwAAOSwjateOzHH

 

I'd search your local eBay or other preferred auction or deals site (or even put a WTB up here) for Apple db15 to VGA adapter and these popped up among the typical "use a VGA monitor on a Mac" solutions. For whatever reason, the black ones, 590-1118-A seem to be selling for a little less than the gray ones, 590-0332-A.

 

(I scrolled down more, this one's in the UK)
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Monitor-DB15F-to-HD15M-VGA-adapter-590-0322-A-grey-G3-G4-PowerMac/163910711135?hash=item2629d6f75f:g:L4EAAOSwffRdqhYh 

 

 

 

EDIT: I don't remember whether I was using it this way back in 2015, but these adapters do work well with the multiple scan displays for this purpose. I have a Multiple Scan 20 I use on various PCs with this adapter.

 

Old Lore holds that AppleVision/ColorSync displays need something special to work on other computers, but I don't have one and I don't know how true that really is.

Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, Cory5412 said:

There are a handful on ebay right now:

 

(the one that came with some PowerBooks)

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Monitor-DB15-Female-to-HD15-Male-VGA-adapter-590-1118-A-G3-G4-PowerBook/143537020383?hash=item216b791ddf:g:UREAAOSw~QVeTZ48

 

(the one that came with some Multiple Scan/AppleVision/ColorSync displays)

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Vintage-Mac-to-VGA-DB15-female-to-HD15-male-Adapter-589-3022-A/174182672446?epid=1601814201&hash=item288e18a83e:g:-ZwAAOSwjateOzHH

 

I'd search your local eBay or other preferred auction or deals site (or even put a WTB up here) for Apple db15 to VGA adapter and these popped up among the typical "use a VGA monitor on a Mac" solutions. For whatever reason, the black ones, 590-1118-A seem to be selling for a little less than the gray ones, 590-0332-A.

 

(I scrolled down more, this one's in the UK)
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Monitor-DB15F-to-HD15M-VGA-adapter-590-0322-A-grey-G3-G4-PowerMac/163910711135?hash=item2629d6f75f:g:L4EAAOSwffRdqhYh 

 


That’s really helpful. Thanks for the links. Yes, it’s strange that the black ones are selling for less than the grey ones, given that they’re essentially the same. Will pick up one of the offerings from the UK.

Link to post
Share on other sites

This adapter should let that work, presuming the card is old enough and it's the Mac version of the card and you're using it in a Mac. (I've been meaning to try this with vtools  and/or my tibook and the  Macintosh Color Display 14/16 or AudioVision 14).

 

As far as I know, there aren't versions of these with DIP switches.  The regular VGA monitor on old mac adapters with DIP switches are for using multiscan  monitors and non-mac monitors on macs that expect certain sense pin configurations. (Mac II stuff, early LCs, that kind of thing.)

Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, Cory5412 said:

This adapter should let that work, presuming the card is old enough and it's the Mac version of the card and you're using it in a Mac. (I've been meaning to try this with vtools  and/or my tibook and the  Macintosh Color Display 14/16 or AudioVision 14).

 

As far as I know, there aren't versions of these with DIP switches.  The regular VGA monitor on old mac adapters with DIP switches are for using multiscan  monitors and non-mac monitors on macs that expect certain sense pin configurations. (Mac II stuff, early LCs, that kind of thing.)

The one I linked was VGA Computer --->  DB15 monitor, not vice versa, and it does have DIP switches.

 

I should have looked more closely at what I linked, however, as the last photo shows a table with DIP settings - which begs the question, what do the completely "passive" (ie no DIPs) adapters lack that the DIPed adapters provide...

s-l1600.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah, my bad, I missed that link entirely.

 

None of those modes is for a 12-inch adapter.

 

The thing that I think lets the passive pin adapters work is that newer multiscan macs can still recognize the sense pin configurations of the older monitors. In general this worked with video cards that were for Macs, and I've seen success with that kind of adapter on, say, the portrait display and an early-mid powermac g4. (I don't remember the model, mac84 on twitter was showing it off at some point last year, and I thiink it's in one of their videos.)

 

That's why you need a Mac specific card from an era when that compatibility was still expected to be present to do it, and why the old fixed-sync displays are, as far as I know, never going to work with modern computers or generic PCs. (Even though using an MCD16 or so would be great as a putty sideboard.)

Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, Cory5412 said:

Ah, my bad, I missed that link entirely.

 

None of those modes is for a 12-inch adapter.

 

The thing that I think lets the passive pin adapters work is that newer multiscan macs can still recognize the sense pin configurations of the older monitors. In general this worked with video cards that were for Macs, and I've seen success with that kind of adapter on, say, the portrait display and an early-mid powermac g4. (I don't remember the model, mac84 on twitter was showing it off at some point last year, and I thiink it's in one of their videos.)

 

That's why you need a Mac specific card from an era when that compatibility was still expected to be present to do it, and why the old fixed-sync displays are, as far as I know, never going to work with modern computers or generic PCs. (Even though using an MCD16 or so would be great as a putty sideboard.)

I have seen examples of the fixed sync displays working with a modern Mac, however, you have to design a (very simple) active adapter to make it work - here is an example in French.

 

I imagine that there must be at least one DIP configuration that is functionally identical to the passive adapters, no? Thus making the DIP adapter worth the extra $6, maybe.

 

OTOH, if I can purchase a cheap passive adapter, would rather just do that. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Wild, but, if it was going to work at all that kind of work would be the thing that would make it happen.

 

What video card are you looking to use it with? Is it the AGP Rage128 or another one? I've been meaning to test the MCD16 with the passive Apple adapter on my G4, mostly because it would be convenient to free up my MS20 for different computers.

 

One other thing to note is that the 12-inch monochrome  monitor on the French page takes 640x480, the 12-inch color monitor expects 512x384. Mac OS 9 and OS X even from the OSXPPC era will switch (begrudgingly) to that res (I ran a small TV off my tibook that way as a chat window for a while) but I don't know if anything on intel will.

Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, Cory5412 said:

Wild, but, if it was going to work at all that kind of work would be the thing that would make it happen.

 

What video card are you looking to use it with? Is it the AGP Rage128 or another one? I've been meaning to test the MCD16 with the passive Apple adapter on my G4, mostly because it would be convenient to free up my MS20 for different computers.

 

One other thing to note is that the 12-inch monochrome  monitor on the French page takes 640x480, the 12-inch color monitor expects 512x384. Mac OS 9 and OS X even from the OSXPPC era will switch (begrudgingly) to that res (I ran a small TV off my tibook that way as a chat window for a while) but I don't know if anything on intel will.

Looks like the card is a GeForce2 MX from a Quicksilver, which is newer than I remembered. It is a genuine Apple card. 

 

I’m looking to use the same monochrome display as the French guy, so if the passive adapter doesn’t get things working I’ll use his solution with a modern Mac.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The passive adapter should work, but "soon" I'll go ahead and pull out my MCD14 (which should have the same or similar modes as the 12-inch monochrome display) and shut down vtools and turn it back on with that display connected to see what happens. I forgot what video card or system mac84 was using.

 

At worst, there are PCI cards that have DA15 output from the blue-and-white era that were expressly for using it with older displays (it was a side-grade from the rage128 in a couple early edu configs, also had analog video in/out) and the rage128s (both pci and agp) should work with the passive Apple/ATi adapters.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...