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resolution
Last modified: Monday, May 05, 2003 

Refers to the sharpness and clarity of an image. The term is most often used to describe monitors, printers, and bit-mapped graphic images. In the case of dot-matrix and laser printers, the resolution indicates the number of dots per inch. For example, a 300-dpi (dots per inch) printer is one that is capable of printing 300 distinct dots in a line 1 inch long. This means it can print 90,000 dots per square inch.

For graphics monitors, the screen resolution signifies the number of dots (pixels) on the entire screen. For example, a 640-by-480 pixel screen is capable of displaying 640 distinct dots on each of 480 lines, or about 300,000 pixels. This translates into different dpi measurements depending on the size of the screen. For example, a 15-inch VGA monitor (640x480) displays about 50 dots per inch.

Printers, monitors, scanners, and other I/O devices are often classified as high resolution, medium resolution, or low resolution. The actual resolution ranges for each of these grades is constantly shifting as the technology improves.

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Video Modes, Resolution and Color
Describes the technical details of video modes and signals, as well as the major characteristics of the video image. This page is from "The PC Guide."

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related categories

Graphics

Measurement

Monitors

Operating Systems

Scanners

Video Memory

related terms

bit map

dpi

megapixel

monitor

optical resolution

pixel

pixelated

printer

QXGA

raster

SXGA

UXGA

video adapter


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