Extended Graphics Array

Definition of Extended Graphics Array

Extended Graphics Array (XGA) is a display resolution standard for computer monitors and projectors, introduced by IBM in 1990. It offers a resolution of 1024×768 pixels, which was a significant improvement over the previous Video Graphics Array (VGA) standard of 640×480 pixels. XGA provided enhanced image quality and was widely used in computer displays, laptops, and projectors until it was surpassed by more advanced standards like SXGA and UXGA.


The phonetics of the keyword “Extended Graphics Array” can be transcribed as:ɛkˈstɛndɪd ˈɡræfɪks əˈreɪIn the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA), it would be written as:/ɪkˈstɛndɪd ˈɡræfɪks əˈreɪ/

Key Takeaways

  1. Extended Graphics Array (XGA) is a display resolution standard that supports a maximum resolution of 1024×768 pixels, offering improved image quality and color depth compared to its predecessors, the VGA and SVGA standards.
  2. XGA was introduced by IBM in 1990 for its PS/2 line of computers, and the standard was later adopted by other manufacturers, becoming widely used in personal computers, laptops, and projectors for many years.
  3. Despite being largely replaced by higher resolution standards such as SXGA and UXGA, XGA is still supported by many display devices due to its compatibility with a wide range of legacy systems and video sources.

Importance of Extended Graphics Array

The technology term Extended Graphics Array (XGA) is important because it marked a significant advancement in display resolution standards for computer monitors and projectors during the early 1990s.

Developed by IBM, XGA provided a higher resolution of 1024×768 pixels, which allowed better visual quality, clarity, and image detail compared to its predecessors, such as Video Graphics Array (VGA) and Super Video Graphics Array (SVGA). This improvement in image resolution facilitated enhanced user experience, enabling better multimedia and graphical applications, and paving the way for further innovations in computer display technology.

Today, though XGA has been superseded by more advanced standards, it played a crucial role in the evolution of modern visual display systems.


Extended Graphics Array (XGA) is a technology that plays a crucial role in the display systems and is used to enhance the quality and resolution of what we see on screen.

One of the primary purposes of XGA is to provide users with a high-quality visual experience by offering a resolution substantially greater than its predecessors, such as Standard Graphics Array (SGA) and Video Graphics Array (VGA). Introduced by IBM in 1990, XGA was designed to support resolutions up to 1024×768 pixels, paving the way for more detailed and vibrant images, as well as smoother video playback on computer monitors and projectors.

Over time, XGA has proven to be an essential component in various applications and industries which rely on high-quality graphics, such as gaming, multimedia, engineering, and professional design.

Additionally, it has become a standard for many display devices, like laptops, desktops, and projectors, to optimize the viewing experience.

In a world where visual representation is key in displaying information and conveying ideas, XGA serves as an essential tool for delivering refined images and videos, enabling users to enjoy an immersive visual experience.

Examples of Extended Graphics Array

Extended Graphics Array (XGA) is a display resolution standard, developed by IBM in 1990 as part of their PS/2 computer line. XGA was designed to offer improved graphical capabilities compared to the previous VGA standard and its many derivatives. The standard XGA resolution is 1024×768 pixels. Here are three real-world examples of XGA technology applications:

Computer Monitors: XGA was commonly used in CRT and LCD computer monitors in the 1990s and early 2000s. Many PC monitors from that time supported XGA resolution, providing users better display quality for video, text, and images.

Projectors: XGA projectors are popular in classrooms, conference rooms, and home theaters. They can display content at 1024×768 pixels, making it an excellent choice for displaying presentations, videos, and other multimedia content with details and high contrast.

Laptop Displays: Some laptops from the late 1990s to mid-2000s came equipped with XGA displays, offering more detailed visuals compared to previous VGA displays found on older laptops. For those who worked with graphics or text-intensive applications, the upgrade to XGA provided a significant improvement in clarity and readability.


Extended Graphics Array (XGA) FAQ

What is Extended Graphics Array (XGA)?

Extended Graphics Array (XGA) is a display standard developed by IBM in the early 1990s, providing enhanced resolution and colors over VGA. XGA was designed to improve screen quality on computer displays, supporting a resolution of 1024×768 pixels with 65,536 colors (16-bit color).

How does XGA compare to other display standards?

XGA was an improvement over earlier standards like VGA (640×480 resolution) and SVGA (800×600 resolution). It was later surpassed by newer standards like SXGA (1280×1024 resolution) and UXGA (1600×1200 resolution) which offered higher resolution and color depth.

What are the practical benefits of using XGA?

XGA offers higher resolution than VGA and SVGA, allowing for more screen real estate and the ability to display more detailed images and text. This makes XGA better suited for tasks like graphic design and video editing where high resolution is essential. However, in recent years, XGA has been mostly replaced by more advanced standards like SXGA and UXGA.

Are there different types of XGA connectors?

XGA typically utilizes a 15-pin VGA connector, also known as D-Sub connector, for analog connections. Some XGA devices may also support digital connections through a DVI or HDMI port, but this is less common.

Is XGA still relevant today?

While XGA has been largely replaced by more advanced standards like SXGA, UXGA, and even higher resolution display technologies, there are still some legacy devices and monitors that support XGA. However, most new devices now use higher resolution display standards, rendering XGA less relevant in today’s market.


Related Technology Terms


  • High-Resolution Display
  • 1024×768 Pixel Resolution
  • Video Graphics Array (VGA)
  • Super Video Graphics Array (SVGA)
  • Display Adapter


Sources for More Information


About The Authors

The DevX Technology Glossary is reviewed by technology experts and writers from our community. Terms and definitions continue to go under updates to stay relevant and up-to-date. These experts help us maintain the almost 10,000+ technology terms on DevX. Our reviewers have a strong technical background in software development, engineering, and startup businesses. They are experts with real-world experience working in the tech industry and academia.

See our full expert review panel.

These experts include:


About Our Editorial Process

At DevX, we’re dedicated to tech entrepreneurship. Our team closely follows industry shifts, new products, AI breakthroughs, technology trends, and funding announcements. Articles undergo thorough editing to ensure accuracy and clarity, reflecting DevX’s style and supporting entrepreneurs in the tech sphere.

See our full editorial policy.

More Technology Terms

Technology Glossary

Table of Contents