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New Intel DG1 Discrete GPU Pops Up: D-Sub Output Meets Low Profile Design

Gunnir
(Image credit: Gunnir)

Intel introduced the Iris Xe discrete graphics processor months ago, but so far, only a handful of OEMs and a couple of graphics card makers have adopted it for their products. This week, VideoCardz discovered another vendor, Gunnir, that offers a desktop system and a standalone Intel DG1 graphics card with a rare D-Sub (VGA) output, making it an interesting board design. 

It's particularly noteworthy that the graphics card has an HDMI 2.0 and a D-Sub output that can be used to connect outdated LCD or even CRT monitors. In 2021, this output (sometimes called the VGA connector, yet a 15-pin D-Sub is not exclusive for monitors) is not particularly widespread as it does not properly support resolutions beyond 2048×1536. Image quality at resolutions higher than 1600×1200 heavily depends on the quality of the output and the cable (quality is typically low). Adding a D-Sub output to a low-end PC makes some sense because some old LCD screens are still in use, and retro gaming with CRT monitors has become a fad. 

As far as formal specifications are concerned, the Gunnir Lanji DG1 card is powered by Intel's cut-down Iris Xe Max GPU with 80 EUs clocked at 1.20 GHz ~ 1.50 GHz paired with 4GB of LPDDR4-4266 memory connected to the chip using a 128-bit interface. The card has a PCIe 3.0 x4 interface to connect to the host. The card can be used for casual games and for multimedia playback (a workload where Intel's Xe beats the competition). Meanwhile, DG1 is only compatible with systems based on Intel's 9th- and 10th-Gen Core processors and motherboards with the B460, H410, B365, and H310C chipsets. 

(Image credit: Gunnir)

It is unclear where these products are available (presumably from select Chinese retailers or to select Chinese PC makers), and at what price. 

Intel lists Gunnir on its website, but the card it shows is not actually a custom Gunnir card but is a typical reference design of an entry-level add-in-board from Colorful, a company that officially denies it produces Intel DG1 products as it exclusively makes Nvidia-powered GPUs.

  • InvalidError
    My last CRT monitor died to bad site wiring (weak neutral) about 10 years ago. I'm kind of surprised D-sub is still a thing today. The closest thing I have had to a D-sub on one of my GPUs in the last ~15 years is DVI-I. At least that lets you choose whether you want analog or digital for your second monitor.
    Reply
  • BillyBuerger
    VGA is still used on servers so it's not dead yet.
    Reply
  • NightHawkRMX
    AMD and Intel have omitted any analog support from their graphics cards for a long time now, but to be honest, a VGA port is pretty useful on a GPU of this tier.

    someone with a low end GPU might not have a fancy new monitor either
    Reply
  • Pollopesca
    My pals in retail computer repair jobs can confirm that VGA GPUs/displays still in service are quite plentiful. Think of all the users over age of 40 or just those with budget systems. Many monitors still include VGA to this day to support legacy users. It will be a long time before the little blue port disappears completely.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    NightHawkRMX said:
    someone with a low end GPU might not have a fancy new monitor either
    Fancy? Basic 1080p monitors start at $100 and you could get them for ~$80 pre-covid. I'm surprised more monitors haven't axed the VGA port since the analog input circuitry likely adds well over $3 to manufacturing costs over a digital interface. (Thought digital interfaces have the drawback of HDMI and HDCP licensing fees.)
    Reply
  • usiname
    New gt1030 competitor!
    Reply
  • NightHawkRMX
    my benq gw2270 1080p panel from 2018 has vga and dvi only.

    people on a budget will be much more inclined to reuse an old monitor.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    usiname said:
    New gt1030 competitor!
    Not much of a competitor when you consider that DG1 cards have no on-board BIOS and will only work on motherboards that have the GPU BIOS baked into the system BIOS. If you want to use a DG1 card, you need to make sure your motherboard BIOS supports it.
    Reply
  • usiname
    InvalidError said:
    Not much of a competitor when you consider that DG1 cards have no on-board BIOS and will only work on motherboards that have the GPU BIOS baked into the system BIOS. If you want to use a DG1 card, you need to make sure your motherboard BIOS supports it.
    Ok, new crippled gt1030 competitor!
    Reply
  • Chung Leong
    As a former owner of a CGA monitor, I appreciate the note about D-sub not being exclusive to VGA monitors. I'm about to die of old age incidentally.
    Reply