You must have heard the famous English language-idiom which says “A picture is worth a thousand words”. These pictures in computer world are represented by image file formats that are standardized means of organizing and storing digital images. Such images can be stored in various formats that are defined by characteristics such as compression, quality, color and others. The image quality and size is subject to the file format in which it is saved. FileFormat.com
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Image File Formats
This article briefly describes BMP, PNG, and GIF image file formats.
What is a BMP file?
Files having BMP
extension represent Image files that are used to store bitmap digital images. These images are independent of graphics adapter and that is why BMP is also known as device independent bitmap (DIB) file format. This independency serves the purpose of opening the file on multiple platforms such as Microsoft Windows and Mac. The BMP file format can store data as two-dimensional digital images in both monochrome as well as color format with various color depths.
What is a PNG file? PNG
, Portable Network Graphics, refers to a type of raster image file format that uses lossless compression. This file format was created as a replacement of Graphics Interchange Format (GIF) and has no copyright limitations. However, PNG file format does not support animations. PNG file format supports lossless image compression that makes it popular among its users. With the passage of time, PNG has evolved as one of the mostly used image file format. Almost all Operating Systems have support for opening PNG files. For example, Microsoft Windows viewer has the capability to open PNG files as the OS provides support for PNG file format as part of installation.
What is a GIF file?
or Graphical Interchange Format is a type of highly compressed image. Owned by Unisys, GIF uses the LZW compression algorithm that does not degrade the image quality. For each image, GIF typically allows up to 8 bits per pixel and up to 256 colors are allowed across the image in contrast to a JPEG
image, which can display up to 16 million colors and fairly touches the limits of the human eye. An animated GIF combines numerous images or frames into a single file and displays them in a sequence to generate an animated clip or a short video. The color limitations are up to 256 for each frame and are likely to be the least suitable for reproducing other images and photographs with color gradient.
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