Various computer display standards or display modes have been used in the history of the personal computer. They are often a combination of resolution (specified as the width and height in pixels), colour depth measured in bits, and refresh rate expressed in hertz.
Until recently, all computer monitors had a 4:3 aspect ratio. Recently, monitors with 16:9 and 16:10 aspect ratios have become available, leading to new widescreen formats.
XGA - Extended Graphics Array is an IBM display standard introduced in 1990. XGA supports a resolution of 1024 x 768 pixels with a palette of 256 colours, or 640 x 480 with high colour (16 bits per pixel). XGA-2 added 1024 x 768 support for high colour and higher refresh rates, improved performance, and supports 1360 x 1024 in 16 colours.
SVGA - Super Video Graphics Array. A video display standard created by VESA for IBM PC compatible personal computers. The resolution is 800 x 600 4-bit pixels. Each pixel can therefore be one of 16 colours.
VGA - Video Graphics Array, with 640 x 480 pixels in 16 colours and a 4:3 aspect ratio. There is also a text mode with 720 x 400 pixels.
EGA - Enhanced Graphics Adapter, with a resolution of 640 x 350 pixels of 16 different colours selectable via a palette.
CGA - Color Graphics Adapter. One of IBM's earliest hardware video display standards for use in IBM PCs. CGA can display 80 x 25 or 40 x 25 text in 16 colours, 640 x 200 pixels graphics in 2 colours or 320 x 200 in 4 colors (IBM PC video modes 0-6).
Hercules, A monochrome display with resolution of 720 by 348 capable of text and graphics.
MDA, monochrome display adapter, the original standard on IBM XT PCs. Supports text only at 720 by 350 pixels.
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