This is an important performance component of your computer, especially if you play 3D games or work with graphics and video content. The graphics card is located in an expansion slot in your PC and was specially developed for processing image data and output to your monitor so that you can view it. A graphics card calculates the display of images, especially 3D images, and renders them on the screen. 3D images and video images take up a lot of processing capacity, and many graphics processors are complex, require fans for cooling, and require a direct power supply. The graphics card consists of a graphics processor, a memory chip for graphics operations and a RAMDAC for display output. It can also include video recording, TV output and SLI and other functions. Find the graphics card that suits you by comparing the specifications between brands and suppliers on Myshopping.com.au
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What are your needs?
The first decision you need to make is whether you need a graphics card to process 3D images or whether you only need 2D image rendering. You only need a cost-effective solution for 2D requirements. In many cases, an integrated graphics solution is sufficient for 2D applications.
With 3D graphics, however, the performance of the graphics card has a direct impact on the frame rate and image quality of 3D programs and games. The differences between the low and high end cards can be significant in terms of both cost and performance.
Rendering 3D graphics is like lighting a stage, taking into account both the geometry of the shapes in question and the lighting. The geometry of an image calculates the parts of an object that can be seen and cannot be seen, the position of the eye and its perspective. The lighting is a calculation of the direction of the light sources, their intensity and the shadows that occur. The second part of rendering a 3D image is to render colors and textures on the surfaces of the objects and modify them according to the light and other factors.
Most modern graphics cards contain a small microchip called a Graphics Processing Unit (GPU), which provides the algorithms and memory for processing complex images. They reduce the workload of the main CPU and ensure faster processing. Different graphics cards have different processing power capabilities. You can render and update images up to 60 times per second, quickly calculate shadows, create image depth by rendering distant objects at low resolution, smoothly modify surface textures, and eliminate pixelation.
Which specifications have to be considered?
This affects the rendering ability of the GRU. The clock rate itself is not the critical factor. Rather, it is the graphics processor’s performance per clock, indicated by the number of pixels it can process per clock cycle.
This is the storage capacity that is used exclusively for graphics operations and can be up to 512 MB. The more demanding your graphics applications are, the better you will be provided with more space on your graphics card.
One thing that can slow the performance of 3D graphics is the speed at which the computer delivers information to the graphics processor. Higher bandwidth means faster data transfer, which leads to faster rendering speeds.
DirectX shader models allow developers to control the appearance of an image when it is rendered on the screen and introduce visual effects such as layered shadows, reflections, and fog.
This is the speed at which an image can be rendered or “painted”. This rate is expressed in texels per second, the number of 3D pixels that can be drawn per second. A texel is a pixel with depth (3D). The fill rate results from the combined performance of the processor’s clock rate and the number of pixels it can process per clock cycle, and indicates how quickly an image can be fully rendered on the screen.
Corner points / triangles
Graphics chips do not process curves, but flat surfaces. A curve is created by several flat layers that are arranged to look like a curve. 3D objects are created with multiple triangular faces, sometimes hundreds or even thousands, that are tessellated to represent the curves and angles of the real world. 3D artists are concerned with the number of polygons required to form a shape. There are two different types of specifications: vertices per second (ie angles of the triangles) and triangles per second. To compare one measure with the other, consider that adjacent triangles have vertices in common.
A technique used to smooth images by reducing the jagged step effect caused by diagonal lines and square pixels. Different levels of anti-aliasing have different effects on performance.
The random access memory digital-to-analog converter captures the image data and converts it into a format that your screen can use. A faster RAMDAC means that the graphics card can support higher output resolutions. Some cards have multiple RAMDACs, so this card can support multiple displays.
Some graphics cards offer the option of connecting a television either via a composite (RCA) or an S-Video connection.
Some graphics cards have a connector for DVI monitors. Practical as many LCD screens support DVI. DVI offers better picture quality than the standard VGA connector.
Dual head is a term used when two monitors are used side by side and your desktop spans both.
SLI (Scalable Link Interface)
With SLI, you can connect two graphics cards to your computer so that each card requires half the rendering, which doubles the performance.
When considering your graphics card, it’s worth considering how much you need to process your graphics output on your computer. By using a high-end graphics card with a high number of pixels per clock, large memory, fast processor and other functions, you can run the latest games efficiently or work in intensive graphics development.
While there are many graphics card providers, there are actually only two major manufacturers of graphics card chips. Almost every graphics card on the market has a chip that is manufactured by ATI or Nvidia. Cards that use the same graphics chip behave roughly the same. Although they use the same chip, some offer slightly higher clock speeds and overclocking guaranteed by the manufacturer – an even higher clock speed than specified. Other factors that influence your decision should include the memory capacity of a card (128 MB, 256 MB, 512 MB) and its additional functions such as TV-out and dual-screen support.
Use the search functions of Myshopping.com to compare the functions, prices and providers of graphics cards.