What is a graphics card

in Graphics

In a layman terminology, graphics card can be referred to as a device that is known to bring images to a computer's monitor after having converted them from binary data to a viewable image. Now, depending upon what you want to do there are different kinds of graphics cards or video cards that are available in the open market. And as expected, each of these cards is known to play distinct roles to which it is designed. A typical graphical card can be explained in a much better way if you were to understand different technical terms associated with it. Given below are few such terms…

1. Accelerated Graphics Port: - AGP as it is commonly known is the basic format or the interface of graphics card. This point-to-point and dedicated interface connects video card directly into the system's processor and memory.

2. Application Programming Interface: - API represents a set of instructions that allows programmers of video games to work efficiently without having to create routine operation over and again. OpenGL and Direct3D are few examples for API.

3. Anisotropic Filtering: - These are common filtering techniques employed in video games to help improve the quality of images shown on screen. Like others forms of filtering techniques, anisotropic filtering comes in different levels. Higher the levels of anisotropic filtration lower will be the performance of the games and vice versa.

4. Artifact: - They represent the undesirable and unintentional element present in the image of a video game. They can include image ghosting, flickering effect, blurring and so on.

5. Aliasing or Anti-Aliasing: - Aliasing represents the tendency for a diagonal or a curved line to appear jagged as they are typically composed of many small squares. Anti-Aliasing refers to remedies that are employed to overcome these tendencies through proper software settings.

6. Frame Rate: - It refers to the speed at which still images are produced on the screen so as to create a full motion effect. It is usually measured in fps or frames per second. Though humans are known to see 30 fps, many benchmark gamers believe that cards can be made to produce far higher performance.

7. Digital Video Interface: - It refers to the interface through which the transfer of digital video signals takes place between a computer and the display. This interface is chiefly responsible for better performance and image quality over an analog system. In addition to the computers, DVIs are also used in televisions to display high quality images from DVD, HDTV and other sources.

8. DirectX: - It is a term used to indicate a collection of APIs that are fully developed and owned by Microsoft.

9. Direct3D: - It is an API developed and owned by Microsoft used for creating 3D games.

10. Graphics Processing Unit: - The GPU as it is commonly known as refers to the processor that is present on graphics card. It is the main chip that handles the bulk work required for creating images on displays.

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Denyse Buckner has 5497 articles online and 3 fans

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What is a graphics card

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This article was published on 2010/10/09