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Buying Guide to Graphics Cards Contents

The is a vital performance component of your computer, particularly if you play 3D games, or work with graphics and video content. The graphics card sits in an expansion card slot in your PC and it is specifically designed to process image data and output it to your monitor, enabling you to see it. A graphics card works by calculating how images appear, particularly 3D images, and renders them to the screen. 3D images and video images take a lot of processing capacity, and many graphics processors are complex, require fans to cool them and need direct power supply. The graphics card consists of a graphics processor, a memory chip for graphics operations, and a RAMDAC for display output. It may also include video capture, TV output and SLI and other functions. You can find the graphics card that suits you by comparing specification between brands and vendors on Myshopping.com.au

At Myshopping.com.au you can compare a great range of appliances, and assess them according to their specifications, brands, prices and vendors.

What are your needs?

The first decision you need to make is whether you need a graphics card for handling 3D images or whether you are simply requiring 2D image rendering. For 2D requirements, you need only a low-cost solution. In many cases, an integrated graphics solution will suffice for 2D applications.

However with 3D graphics, the performance of the graphics card will impact directly on the frame rate and image quality of 3D programs and games. The differences between the low and high-end cards can be substantial, both in cost and performance.

Rendering 3D graphics is like lighting a stage, both the geometry of the shapes in question and the lighting of it need to be taken into account. The geometry of an image calculates the parts of an object that can and can’t be seen, the position of the eye and its perspective. The lighting is a calculation of the direction of the light sources, their intensities and the respective shadows that occur. The second part to presenting a 3D image is the rendering of colours and textures to the surfaces of the objects, and modifying them according to light and other factors.

Most modern graphics cards include a small microchip called the Graphics Processing Unit (GPU), which are provide the algorithms and memory to process complex images. They reduce the workload of the main CPU, and provide faster processing. Different graphics cards have different capabilities in terms of processing power. They can render and refresh images up to 60 or more times per second, calculate shadows quickly, create image depth by rendering distant objects at low resolution, modify surface textures fluidly and eliminate pixelation.

What Specifications to Consider slicks graphics

Processor clock speed

This impacts on the rendering capability of the GRU. The clock speed itself is not the critical factor. Rather it is the per-clock performance of the graphics processor, which is indicated by the number of pixels it can process per clock cycle.

Memory size

This is the memory capacity that is used exclusively for graphics operations, and can be as much as 512MB. The more demanding your graphics applications are, the better you will be served with more memory on your graphics card.

One thing that can slow down 3D graphics performance is the speed at which the computer delivers information to the graphics processor. A higher bandwidth means a faster data transfer, resulting in faster rendering speeds.

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