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									Sadam khan                          Unit: 30 Assignment 1                      BTEC National


Graphics Card

Graphics card is responsible for delivering image on the computer’s monitor or display screen. The
image that you see on the monitor screen is made of tiny dots called pixels and the computer has to
decide what to do in order to create an image. This is where GPU (Graphic Processing Unit) comes
into it, which processes the machine code and changes it into a signal to the monitor.

It takes binary data from the CPU and creates a digital image by creating a wireframe and then
rasterising, and adding colouring and lighting to it whereas RAMDAC chip converts digital signals from
the GPU to analogue signals to be output to the monitor. (Reuben Julius notes).

Graphics card use system RAM rather then having their own RAM. There are various graphics card
available such as AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port), which is used to assist graphics performance and
PCI, which supports rapid data transfer necessary for high-end graphics processing. A graphics card
performs three main tasks:

Geometry - the computation of shapes

Lightening - the creation of shadows

Rendering images – adding textures to surfaces


RAM is sometimes known as 'primary' or 'main' memory and is very important to the operation of a
computer. Instruction and data are read from and written to RAM from. RAM memory does not
require a software device driver to be installed. All you have to do is install it and Windows such as
Vista, RAM memory does not require a software device driver to be installed in order to function.
All you have to do is install it and Windows, or any other operating system, can use it if it is
compatible with the motherboard that it is installed in windows such as Vista, XP Professional, or
any other operating system, can use it if it is compatible with the motherboard that it is installed in.

Processors and cache

Cache RAM is a short-term storage place and is where the computer gets the program and data it
needs to execute. If the cache is slower then your CPU, your computer will be slow. The more cache,
the faster your computer will load. When the processor operates, it looks for data in the cache prior
to looking in RAM. There are two types of cache, level 1 and level 2. Level 1 cache is built on the
same platform with the processor, while a Level 2 cache is not built on the same platform with the
processor. It is usually measured in bytes. A byte is the equivalent of eight bits and a bit is any of the
0’s and 1’s, which make up the binary digits.

Sadam khan                          Unit: 30 Assignment 1                      BTEC National

Input and output devices

There is various input and output devices commonly used such as scanner, Graphics Tablet, mouse,
digital cameras, printer, and computer monitors. I will explain some of the above devices that are
commonly used.

Input devices

Mouse- mouse is a common device used to control the position of an on screen cursor. It is seems to
be a small device with two buttons and one scrolling wheel, but can perform various actions such as
single-clicking, double-clicking, click and drag, drag and drop and right clicking. There are many
different computer mice but there are two commonly used in offices and colleges, optical mouse
and wheeled mouse. Optical mouse uses a light emitting diode to detect movement relative to the
underlying surface whereas wheeled mouse which uses a set of one rolling ball and two chopper
wheels for motion detection.

Digital cameras- a digital camera is an electronic device which can take pictures without the use of
film (Reuben Julius notes). There are various features in digital cameras which include its resolution,
zoom lenses and storage.

Output devices

There are number of output devices which relate to the computer, I have explained two of its mainly
used devices below.

Printer – printer is used to print images, information on a paper. Printer is omniscient in today’s
technologies, they are often used by graphic designers and they use it differently to most office
workers and home users. There various printers available, some of them produce very high quality
output and have slots for different types of memory card. Some have Bluetooth, which allows
photos to be sent from mobile phone to printer.

Computer monitors- there are two different types of monitors used as an output device, CRT and
LCD. CRT monitors is used by graphics designers as it supports a great screen resolution and displays
greater colour image. However, more designers are now moving to LCD monitors as the technology
has improved to provide output to compete with the quality of CRTs and they are capable of
displaying high definition graphics and are available in wide rang of sizes.

File storage

File storage includes CD ROM, Hard Drive, Flash Cards and USB storage devices.


CDs are excellent file storage for storing the large file size of high quality graphic images. The
benefits of CD ROM are that it does not just store high quality graphics images but it is also
compatible with other media such as sound and data.

Sadam khan                          Unit: 30 Assignment 1                      BTEC National

Hard Drive

As we know that high quality images require large amounts of disk space for installation and so hard
drives are capable of storing large amounts of graphic images or data. SATA hard drives are available with
disk sizes of up to 750 GB.

Flash Cards

A flash card is mini storage device that uses flash memory chip to store data. They are very small and
rapid because they have not got any functionality and no moving parts. Flash cards are commonly
used in many of today’s devices and they provide a substantial amount of space for products that
includes Digital cameras, Personal Digital Assistant (PDA), laptops and mobile phones. There are
various formats available such as CompactFlash, Microdrive and Smartmedia.

USB Storage devices

USB stands for Universal Serial Bus and it is an external bus or cable used to connect devices such as,
keyboards and mouse to the computer very quickly and easy. There are a number of different types
of device available. These include external hard drives, CD and DVD drives, pen drives and card disks.

Vector Software (Graphics)

Vector software- vector graphics are made of many objects such as colour, fill and outline. These
objects are often located at the sides of the computer screen (depends on the software). Every
object has a specific task to do for e.g. colour tool displays various different colours to improve
image aesthetics and its visual effects. Vector graphics are resolution independent, which means
they can be output to highest quality at any level. There are various software available and used to
create vector graphics, such as Adobe illustrator, CorelDRAW and adobe flash.

Adobe illustrator is much more than just for vector graphics program as it is a professional
multimedia authoring program. It can be used to create graphics images, slideshows, games, movies
and websites. Applications for producing 2D or 3D engineering use vector graphics. Autodesk
produces the best known applications which require rapid processors, lots of memory (RAM) and a
powerful graphical card.

Bitmap Software

There are number of Bitmap software used for creating a bitmap image, some of them are listed below:

     Microsoft Paint
     Adobe Photoshop
     Corel Photo-Paint
     Corel Paint Shop Pro
Bitmap images are made up of ‘pixels’ (tiny dots which make up what you see on the screen) in a
grid. Everything you see on the screen is made up of pixels, which are tiny dots when they form
together an image is made. An example is shown below:

Sadam khan                             Unit: 30 Assignment 1                          BTEC National

Google images (Software used: Adobe Photoshop)

As you can see in the picture above, when you enlarge the icon, as I have in this example, you can
clearly see each individual square dot of colour.

Manipulation software

Manipulation software are software which can be used to add various features to images and manipulate them
and also can be used to edit images such as photographs and scanned images. These types of software should
have selection of drawing tools that can be used to create images from scratch. Adobe Photoshop has all the
features and known as one of the best software for editing and manipulating of photographic images. A
manipulated image is shown below, (software used: Photoshop CS3):

Embedded software and other tools

Embedded software is an instruction or applications that are stored permanently in a ROM (Reading Only
Memory) or flash memory chip. There are various applications which have graphics facilities available within
them. These types of software enables the following features, shapes, 3D styles, shadow styles, lines, line styles,
arrows, autoshapes, line colour, fill colour, WordArt, grouping and ungrouping, ordering of objects, clipart and
picture insertion, rotating, flipping and a diagram gallery.

Some web based programs such as, Dreamweaver have facilities to produce graphics buttons and animated
gifts. Many different software and program such as Photoshop CS3 and have capability of creating photos,
resize images thumbnails and create hyperlinks to full size photos.


I have chosen two hardware upgrades, Graphics Card and Monitor, which are beneficial to high
quality graphics images. As we know that high quality graphic images require a lot of space to be
stored or loaded, therefore I chose two hardware upgrades, graphics card and monitor which are
suitable for adjusting those graphics images depending on their compatibility.

Graphics Card Upgrade

There are various Graphics cards available with different memories that are used to load and deliver
graphics images to the screen. Graphics cards such as AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port), which is
used to assist graphics performance and PCI, which supports rapid data transfer necessary for high-
end graphics processing. Graphics card use system RAM rather then having their own RAM
therefore, I will upgrade from lower memory graphics card to higher memory, which could make the
system of delivering and graphics performance more reliable and consistent to high quality graphics

Sadam khan                        Unit: 30 Assignment 1                    BTEC National

images. Performance has only been an issue for users who are into multimedia applications, such as
video editing and 3D gaming.

The higher the quality of a program, the large amount of graphics card RAM is needed. For example,
if I have a graphics card with 128MB DDR memory inserted in my motherboard slot, and want to
debug a program or software such as Adobe illustrator, which will require more than 128MB (512MB
DDR2), then I have to upgrade my 128MB graphic card RAM to 512MB as the program will not run
due to the inadequate of RAM. However, if the program is being debugged, some of the features of
the program will be lost as well as the performance of the program will be extremely slow in terms
of the amount of RAM. Higher graphics card RAM will be beneficial to display images on the monitor
screen and assist graphics performance.

Monitor Upgrade

There are two different types of monitors, CRT and LCD. While both have a place in the market, each
one is different and uses its own set of technologies. CRT monitors are used by graphics designers as
it supports a great screen resolution and displays greater colour image. However, more designers
are now moving to LCD monitors as they display high definition graphics and are available in wide
range of sizes. LCD monitors takes up much less electricity as opposed to the CRT and they weigh
much less and are portable. LCD monitors are very useful to gamers and also who work on photo
editing software. However, As far as photo editing is concerned, there are some people who still
have to rely on the CRT monitor as the colour purity that the CRT offers for editing colours cannot be
had in an LCD monitor.

If I have had a CRT monitor and was working on a program or photography relating to high quality
graphics images and games, I would upgrade from CRT monitor to LCD as they have an excellent
colour combinations, they are light and smaller in terms of weight, they are very power efficient
then compared to CRT and when it comes to anaesthetic of screen, they offer almost twice the
brightness as oppose to the CRT monitor. LCD monitor will assist in creating and editing a high
quality graphics images and are best for photography.

Sadam khan                               Unit: 30 Assignment 1                            BTEC National

M1 (Report)

Two Software packages----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 7
    Adobe Photoshop
    Paint
Two Hardware devices------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------8/9
    Mobile Camera
    Digital Camera

Sadam khan                        Unit: 30 Assignment 1                    BTEC National

Two Software packages

I have chosen Adobe Photoshop and Paint software packages used for capturing, manipulating and
storing graphics. In this task I will be contrasting and comparing the limitations between these two
devices. Both software uses various different features and design tools to add manipulation to high
quality graphical images. Some of the features are listed below:

       Image Slicing
       Art history brush
       Pencil
       Eraser
       Colour picker
       Resize (crop)

Adobe Photoshop

Photoshop program is known for its best tools, options and is popular for graphics editing. There are
many tools such as contrast, saturation, brightening, magic wand, clone, gradient and lightening that
can be used in Photoshop to add manipulation and additional features to graphics images and one of
the great features of Photoshop is that it is a user friendly interface that is very easy to navigate.
Each and every tool is located into palettes. All tools and techniques used in photoshop are
professional and modern in terms of graphics manipulation and production. However, the files
photoshop uses are very large and they takes up a large amount of area where s the files (JPEG) on
paint are much smaller as oppose to the Photoshop files format.

Adobe Photoshop is very useful for photographer and editing captured images from various devices
such as digital camera and mobile phones. There are various tools available to capture images in
photoshop, for example changing capture time and date for photos.


Paint is a simple graphics program used to draw pictures on the display screen. Paint is a good
program in terms of manipulation, capturing and storing graphics. Paint contains various features
and tools such as paint brush, blur, colour picker, adding text to images and much more to sketch or
manipulate your captured picture. In terms of memory, Paint has a small amount of file that the
image can be saved as compared to Photoshop. Paint is also rapid as it is a small program and has
lots of features such as cropping, resizing images, drawing shapes.

As we now know that they both are useful for manipulating, capturing and storing graphics.
However, there are some of the advantages of using these programs as well as disadvantages. Paint
is much quicker than Photoshop, it is a small program so loads very quickly where as Photoshop can
take a long time. In terms of cost, Photoshop is much expensive, but can perform various features
and a lot better than paint. Photoshop is utilised for advanced graphics manipulation as oppose to
Paint. Paint is incapable of performing various features such as layering and magnetic cropping,
which is why Photoshop is useful and professional to graphic manipulation.

Sadam khan                        Unit: 30 Assignment 1                    BTEC National

Two Hardware devices

I have chosen Mobile camera and digital camera used for capturing images. In this task I will be
contrasting and comparing the limitations between these two devices.

Mobile camera

There are various mobile phones and some of them have got a different camera based on their
‘Mega Pixels’ (resolution or mini dots which adds up and display an image on the screen). In this case
I will be using a 3.2 mega pixels camera in my examples. Most mobile phones available today can
capture images with a resolution of 0.3 to 3.2 or more megapixels. Most of today’s peoples are
looking for more megapixels phone cameras as the more the megapixels are, the better the
resolution of your image will be. Mobile camera with higher pixels create advanced quality pictures,
but create bigger files which might unable users to share them, for example when you sending your
picture through mms, email or the web, before you do this the size of a picture should be resized to
smaller size which will decrease uploading or downloading times.

Mobile camera (picture)               zoomed in

Figure.1                              Figure.2

As you can see in the picture above, the picture (figure 1) is unclear and doesn’t show much
purification due to its megapixels which are 3.2. The picture in figure 2 shows small dots (megapixels
in zoomed) of which the picture is made and as you can see when it’s zoomed because of its less
megapixels the picture is not mush clear.

Digital camera

Digital camera is commonly used for high quality and graphics images. Digital cameras are very rich
in terms of megapixels as they are especially made for high quality graphics images and also videos.
Digital camera can perform lots of tasks such as some cameras displaying images on the screen
instantly after they are recorded, storing thousands of images on a single small memory device.
Some digital cameras can crop pictures and are portable which means they can share pictures via
Bluetooth and USB port.

Sadam khan                         Unit: 30 Assignment 1                     BTEC National

Digital Camera (picture)                     zoomed in

Figure.3                                  Figure.4

Google image: http://www.labnol.org/gadgets/most-compact-digital-camera/13499/

As you can see in the picture above, it is a picture of digital camera with 12 mega pixels. The picture
is very much clear than the one with 3.2 megapixels. Digital camera picture with 12 megapixels and
mobile camera picture with 3.2 megapixels, they both can be edited and manipulated in these two
different software packages.


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