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IBM PC Family  -  BIOS Video Modes


• The video modes are hexidecimal numbers, shown below as '00h' to '13h'.
• For IBM cards only; some third party cards 'behave' differently.
• For IBM cards only; some third party cards offered enhanced modes.
• For IBM cards only; some third party cards (notably Taxan made ones) use nonstandard sync frequencies.


References:
   1. IBM Color/Graphics Monitor Adapter  (CGA card)
   2. IBM Enhanced Graphics Adapter        (EGA card)
   3. Multi-Color Graphics Array                  (MCGA)
   4. Standard video modes
   5. Other

    = H.SYNC: positive at 18.43 kHz, V.SYNC: negative at 50 Hz
    = H.SYNC: positive at 15.7 kHz, V.SYNC: positive at 60 Hz       (A.K.A. EGA Mode 1)
    = H.SYNC: positive at 21.85 kHz, V.SYNC: negative at 60 Hz    (A.K.A. EGA Mode 2 or EGA High Resolution)
    = H.SYNC: 31.5 kHz, V.SYNC: 70 Hz
    = H.SYNC: 31.5 kHz, V.SYNC: 60 Hz

  Text /
Graphics
Size Mono / Colour /
Greyscale
MDA card MDA monitor on
EGA card
(see note 1)
CGA card PCjr CGA monitor on
EGA card
(see note 1)
EGA monitor on
EGA card
MCGA VGA  (standard)
00h Text 40x25 chars Greyscale - - Yes
shades:16
screen:320x200
char:8x8
Yes
shades:16
screen:320x200
char:8x8
Yes
shades:16
screen:320x200
char:8x8
Yes
shades:16
screen:320x350
char:8x14
Yes
shades:16
screen:320x400
char:8x16
Yes
shades:16
screen:360x400
char:9x16
01h Text 40x25 chars Colour - - Yes
colours:16
screen:320x200
char:8x8
Yes
colours:16
screen:320x200
char:8x8
Yes
colours:16
screen:320x200
char:8x8
Yes
colours:16
screen:320x350
char:8x14
Yes
colours:16
screen:320x400
char:8x16
Yes
colours:16
screen:360x400
char:9x16
02h Text 80x25 chars Greyscale - - Yes
shades:16
screen:640x200
char:8x8
Yes
shades:16
screen:640x200
char:8x8
Yes
shades:16
screen:640x200
char:8x8
Yes
shades:16
screen:640x350
char:8x14
Yes
shades:16
screen:640x400
char:8x16
Yes
shades:16
screen:720x400
char:9x16
03h Text 80x25 chars Colour - - Yes
colours:16
screen:640x200
char:8x8
Yes
colours:16
screen:640x200
char:8x8
Yes
colours:16
screen:640x200
char:8x8
Yes
colours:16
screen:640x350
char:8x14
Yes
colours:16
screen:640x400
char:8x16
Yes
colours:16
screen:720x400
char:9x16
04h Graphics 320x200 Colour - - Yes
colours:4
Yes
colours:4
Yes
colours:4
Yes
colours:4
Yes
colours:4
Yes
colours:4
05h Graphics 320x200 Greyscale - - Yes
shades:4
Yes
shades:4
Yes
shades:4
Yes
shades:4
Yes
shades:4
Yes
shades:4
06h Graphics 640x200 Monochrome - - Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
07h Text 80x25 chars Monochrome Yes
screen:720x350
char:9x14
Yes
screen:720x350
char:9x14
(see note 2)
- - - - - -
08h Graphics 160x200 Colour - - - Yes
colours:16
- - - -
09h Graphics 320x200 Colour - - - Yes
colours:16
- - - -
0Ah Graphics 640x200 Colour - - - Yes
colours:4
- - - -
0Bh       - [EGA internal use] - - [EGA internal use] [EGA internal use] - -
0Ch       - [EGA internal use] - - [EGA internal use] [EGA internal use] - -
0Dh Graphics 320x200 Colour - - - - Yes
colours:16
Yes
colours:16
- Yes
colours:16
0Eh Graphics 640x200 Colour - - - - Yes
colours:16
Yes
colours:16
- Yes
colours:16
0Fh Graphics 640x350 Monochrome - Yes - - - - - Yes
10h Graphics 640x350 Colour - - - - - Yes
colours:4 for 64KB
         16 for 128KB
(see note 3)
- Yes
colours:4 for 64KB
         16 for 128KB
(see note 3)
11h Graphics 640x480 Monochrome - - - - - - Yes Yes
12h Graphics 640x480 Colour - - - - - - - Yes
colours:16
13h Graphics 320x200 Colour - - - - - - Yes
colours:256
Yes
colours:256



Note 1 Changing the monitor type on an EGA card requires that switches on the EGA card be changed.
   
Note 2 Register and attribute behaviour is not quite the same as an MDA card. For more info, read the first page of the document here.
   
Note 3 4 colours if 64KB of RAM fitted to video card; 16 colours if 128KB of RAM fitted to video card.