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[ The PC Guide | Systems and Components Reference Guide | Video Cards | Video Modes, Resolution and Color ]

Color and Monochrome Modes

The first PCs used monochrome video only; color monitors became popular in the mid to late 80s. Monochrome displays continued their dominance into the early 90s in laptop PCs, where color displays were originally very expensive. Today monochrome displays and the video cards that drive them are obsolete except for specific industrial applications.

Most video cards today retain the ability to display information in a monochrome text mode, for compatibility with (much) older software. In practice this mode is very rarely if ever used. Even when monochrome text is displayed, this is usually in a color mode.

Next: Pixels and Resolution


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