VGA is approaching 35 years old now and is an analogue format.
For a modern computer this means you have to convert from a digital signal, to analogue RGB & sync, then back to digital for display on your LED/LCD monitor – there will be some loss of image quality at each stage, including some high frequency losses in the cable itself (this latter causes some fuzziness on sharp transitions and loss of fine detail)
HDMI is digital all the way through – you either get a perfect picture or none at all.
However. If you’re looking for high refresh-rate 4k (over 60Hz) displayport is the way to go.
HDMI is a digital cable. VGA is analogue. VGA cables can have degrading quality within the cables and make picture quality poorer. On the other hand, HDMI is all digital, so quality is not at all affected. HDMI either works entirely, or doesn’t work at all. This is also why overpriced HDMI cables aren’t worth it. There is no picture quality difference whatsoever. Sometimes you might want a better HDMI cable if it’s moved a lot and needs to be more rugged, but otherwise its best to get the cheapest one. VGA is more hit and miss. Also, VGA is an aging standard, and the majority of modern displays do not support it. The most common standards now are DVI, HDMI, [Mini] DisplayPort, even USB-C. A combination of these will work with virtually all computer displays, TVs, projectors, etc.
But Better is subjective. In terms of resolution and signal, if by better, you mean higher resolution, then the answer is Yes. HDMI is better. If you mean better cable, then I’d have to say Meh. Most VGA cables (lets call them 15 pin) have a locking connector by means of 2 screw in posts. The female port on a VGA device is almost always nutted to a solid housing making it much more sturdy than many HDMI ports. In terms of the actual signal, VGA is an analog, non copy protected signal and HDMI provides a way to copy protect content with HDCP compliancy. Finally, if you need to make an VGA cable, it is pretty easy and very inexpensive. There are ways to make HDMI cables, but they take a long time and are very expensive
However, HDMI is much simpler to work with. Because it is digital, lots of information can be passes between 2 devices over a single HDMI. Video signal, Audio signal, control protocol, and network protocol. Additionally, information like EDID and HDCP compliancy can be passed over HDMI. EDID is important because it is “identifier” information with the most common information being resolution. This is why when you plug in a computer to a TV (computer with HDMI and a TV with HDMI) you don’t have to mess with the resolution. The handshaking and identifying is done between the devices automatically (In most cases).
All of this to say that generally HDMI is considered better because it will carry much higher resolutions and much more information than VGA.
Post time: Jul-29-2020