Video Card Drivers
Video Cards are responsible for all imagery that we see on our computer monitors. This allows us to use different software, and work with it the way it is suppose to be used. There are some alias for video cards such as: graphic accelerator card, display adapter, and graphics card. They all do the same thing as the video card.
Video Card Components
There are four basic parts of a video card to make the imagery appear on your monitor.
*A motherboard connection- This gives the video card the power and data it needs to function.
*A processor-All information received to the video card comes from the CPU. Stored within the video card is a graphics processing unit or GPU this calculates all the math that is needed to produce the imagery.
*Memory-After processing the GPU stores all pixel, color, and location, temporarily on RAM. The RAM is connected to the Digital-to-Analog Converter or DAC that switches analog signals into the images that we can see.
*A monitor connection- The video card connects to the monitor to show us the final images.
More About Video Cards
Motherboards usually come with a Graphic Processing Unit (GPN) built into the system. Unless you need advance graphics you do not need to purchase a video card. This will save a few dollars for something you probably will not use.
Video Cards first came out in 1981 by IBM. It was known as Monochrome Display Adapter (MDA). It components consisted of only one color, 80x25 text-only display and a memory of 4KB. Within the next 6 years several improvements were made with video cards.
-Color Graphics Adapter (CGA)- 640x200 Graphic Mode with 16 colors and 16 KB memory
-Enhanced Graphics Adapter (EGA)- 640x350 Graphic Mode with 16 colors and 256 KB memory
-Multi-Color Graphic Adapter (MCGA)-320x200 Graphic Mode with 256 colors
In 1987 Video Graphic Adapter was released containing 720x400 text only display, 640x480 Graphic Mode display, 256 colors and 256 KB memory.
Video Cards and Computer Users
Computer users were in love with this product. Seeing this, companies such as S3, Cirrus Logic, and ATI wanted in on the accomplishments. So they improved on the VGA creating the Super VGA (SVGA).
It was capable of 1024x768 resolutions at 256 color mode with a 2MB video memory.
Video Cards reached its peak in 1995 when manufactures included 2D and 3D visual capabilities.
These card contained all the standards of the SVGA but with the added benefits of 3D viewing.
Voodoo entered into the video card manufacturing in 1997 by creating a 3Dfx card.
Between the years 1999 and 2002 a company called NVIDIA dominated the video card market, because it moved the standards from 32MB in GeForce to 128 MB in GeForce 4.
Their domination was taken away in 2006 by ATI when they marketed their Radeon Video cards.
Listed below are some of the producers of video cards today:
NVIDIA, ATI Technologies, 3Dlabs, Matrox Graphics, SiS Inc., ABIT Ltd., Aopen, ASUSTek Computer, Gain ward (CardExpert), LeadTek Research, MSI Inc., PNY Technologies, and Sapphire Technologies.