Raspberry Pi VGA Adapter

September 28, 2014 | 22:30
Raspberry Pi VGA Adapter
Raspberry Pi VGA Adapter

Owners of the Raspberry Pi B+ board now have the option to connect to a VGA monitor without the need for a HDMI to VGA adapter. The VGA signals are generated natively using hardware GPIOs of the RPi. The bad news is that it uses all but 6 of the available 40 GPIO pins of the B+ version of the RPi. On the plus side, the CPU loading is about the same as that required to generate the HDMI output. It can display 1080p60 VGA video with no CPU load and the adapter makes it possible to produce both VGA and HDMI signals at the same time for a dual-screen setup (the software for dual-screen operation should be available soon).

The Gert VGA 666 board (6 bits per colour channel, hence 666) has been designed by Gert van Loo who you may know was one of the hardware engineers responsible for the initial design of the original Raspberry Pi (he was also one of the chip architects on the BCM2835 chip at the heart of the Raspberry Pi).

Pi Supply has launched a kit of parts for the display adapter via Kickstarter and with seven days to run they have already exceeded over five times their original goal. Gert has released the design fully open-source under the GPLv3 license so you can also make your own. A full set of files, schematics and other details are available at GitHub.


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