Graphics card or video card is
display adaptor or hardware
component whose function is to
generate output images to display.
It is also called as dedicated
1. GPU – Graphics Processing Unit :
A GPU is dedicated graphics
processor optimized for floating
point calculations which are
fundamentals to 3D graphics
2. Video Bios :
The VIDEO BIOS or FIRMWARE
contains basic programs that governs
graphics card operations and provides the
instructions so that computer hardware
and software can interact with card.
It contains information on memory
timing, voltage of graphics processor and
RAM, operating speed and other
Like our motherboard BIOS, it is
possible to change VIDEO BIOS of our
graphics card, but it is recommended that
it should be done under experts
supervision, since changing VIDEO BIOS
may improve your graphics cards graphics
3. RAMDAC :
RAMDAC is Random access
Memory Digital To Analog Convertor which
converts digital signal to analog signal for use
by computer display which uses analog input
such as CRT display.
4. Motherboard Interface :
It is the connection system which
connects graphics card with
Although there are many connection
system since 1974.Nowdays AGP and
PCI-Express slot are most widely used
5. Cooling Devices:
Graphics card uses lot of electricity
which is converted into heat. If heat
isn’t dissipated then card could get
overheated and get damaged. Cooling
devices are incorporated to transfer
These are the connection system which connects graphics card with
1. VGA (D-sub): Analog based standard adopted in 1980s designed for CRT displays.
Also called as VGA connector.
2.. S-Video : Analog.
Commonly known as
S-Video, Super-video and Y/C.
Usually carries SD video.
Typically used in older TVs
3. DVI: Digital. Digital Visual
Interface. Standard designed for
flat panel screens such as
display, HDTV, video
4. HDMI : Digital. High-
Definition Multimedia Interface.
Used in TVs, Monitors etc.
Carries Audio and Video.
5. DisplayPort : DisplayPort is a digital display interface
developed by the Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA).
The interface is primarily used to connect a video source to a
display device such as a computer monitor, though it can also be
used to transmit audio, USB, and other forms of data. VESA
designed it to replace VGA, DVI, and FPD-Link. Backward
compatibility to VGA and DVI by using active adapter dongles
enables users to use DisplayPort fitted video sources without
replacing existing display devices.
DisplayPort ports can be made so that they are compatible with
single-link DVI and HDMI 1.4. Compatibility is achieved with
DisplayPort Dual-mode ports, which are marked with the ++DP
logo, using attached passive adapters; powered active adapters
allow signal conversion to dual-link DVI and analog VGA. For
manufacturers DisplayPort has an advantage over HDMI in that it is
royalty-free, while there is an annual charge and a royalty fee for
DisplayPort and HDMI
Instructions to install graphics card :
1. Remove your current drivers (read how to
remove drivers under the drivers section).
2. Open up your case
3. Take out your old card
4. Pop in your new one(Make sure it's the
5. Lock your case back up
6. Boot up
7. Install new drivers from the video card
brand website (ATI/Nvidia) the drivers on the
disk provided are usually out of date.
8. Reboot after drivers are installed
• OpenGL: Open Graphics Library
• Cross-language, Multi-platform API for rendering 2D and 3D
computer graphics. The API is typically used to interact with
a GPU, to achieve hardware-accelerated rendering. OpenGL
was developed by Silicon Graphics Inc. and widely used in
CAD, virtual reality, scientific visualization, information
visualization, flight simulation, and video games. OpenGL is
managed by the non-profit technology consortium Khronos
• Microsoft Direct3D:
• Direct3D is part of Microsoft's DirectX application
programming interface (API). Direct3D is available for
Microsoft Windows operating systems (Windows 95
General-Purpose computing on Graphics Processing
Units is the utilization of a GPU (which typically handles
computation only for computer graphics), to perform computation
in applications traditionally handled by the CPU
• Microsoft DirectCompute wich is a part of the Microsoft DirectX
collection and is an API that supports GPGPU on Windows operating
• OpenCL: Open Computing Language
• CUDA: Compute Unified Device Architecture
CUDA, OpenCL, Stream
• CUDA: nVidia
• FireStream : AMD
• OpenCL: Open Standard (mainly used in AMD)
Usually GPUs have many Cores unlike CPUs. CPUs has few but powerful
cores (2, 4 etc) and GPUs has Hundreds of less powerful cores. This makes
certain operations are more efficient in GPUs than in CPUs.
(CPUs better for Scalar operations, GPUs better for Vector operations)
• Typical Core i5 CPUs has 2 or 4 cores
• A mid range nVidia GPU has more than 96 CUDA Cores
• A mid range AMD GPU has more than 400 Stream Processors +
ROP Units and Texture Units
• AMD and nVidia uses different techniques
• nVidia uses less number of Powerful cores
• AMD uses huge number of less powerful cores
• In computing, hardware acceleration is
the use of computer hardware to perform
some function faster than software
running on the general-purpose CPU.
Examples of hardware acceleration
include blitting acceleration functionality
in GPUs and instructions for complex
operations in CPUs
DXVA: DirectX Video Acceleration
• DXVA is a Microsoft API specification for the
Microsoft Windows and Xbox 360 platforms that
allows video decoding to be hardware accelerated
• Most Media Players and Codecs Support Different
• Nvidia PureVideo
• AMD UVD (Unified Video Decoder)
• ATI Avivo
• Intel Clear Video
• Intel Quick Sync