Direct3D has been available in all Windows Operating Systems since Windows 95. As the name implies, its a 3 dimensional graphics renderer, and part of the DirectX API. (API – Application Programming Interface – is how the computer communicates with the hardware to create the graphics you see)The signal is then accelerated by the graphics processor. On onboard graphics processors, sometimes it can give you a gain in graphics performance, or solve issues with excessive graphics demand, by disabling direct3D. This frees up some resources and allows the graphics to draw faster, though without the additional pretties of the 3D system. Its like switching on Dolby on a stereo.. the music with Dolby on will be cleaner, but a little muffled. Turn the Dolby off, and the sound is maybe not quite so refined, but its louder.. performing better.If you have a separate graphics card installed, then its highly unlikely that you will ever need to disable direct3D. Any graphics card less than 6 or 7 years old should have no trouble with this technology. A caveat to this is that you may want to play a modern game which is a fraction beyond the capabilities of the graphics card, disabling some features giving you the extra performance you need to actually play the game. The gaming community experiment with all kinds of settings within graphics cards, including direct3D and anti-aliasing, in their constant search for higher scores on benchmarking tests.There are three major players in the Graphics game. These companies design the electronics that go into a graphics card, and license the technology to manufacturers, many of whom add their own changes.NVidia graphics cards are known as GeForce. You can buy as an example various models of the GeForce GTS250, all basically the same electronics, but some with 512MB of memory and others with 1G of memory, some with two dvi connectors and others with only one, but a hdmi connector as well. Some run faster clockspeeds than others. There are a mulitude of manufacturers, some of the larger ones would be Leadtek, Albatron, Asus, Gigabyte, and MSI, but there are many others.ATI Radeon graphics cards are the second major player. The same manufacturers build these graphics cards under licence, each doing things in their own way, just the same as Nvidia.The third major player is Matrox. Matrox are not big in the gaming community, but are the biggest when it comes to specialty cards that can run many monitors and configurations at once. These cards are aimed at corporate customers, and they are extremely expensive. Matrox manufacture their own video cards.For most users, if you have a DX9 graphics card or better, you have all you will ever need. This would include virtually any graphics card made in the last 6 or 7 years. Any onboard graphics on reasonably modern motherboards will also have DX9 capability and be sufficient for most purposes. Onboard graphics often can struggle with modern games though, and if you play these then certainly you wouldnt be satisfied with the onboard graphics. You can buy graphics cards from 50 bucks up to a grand, it depends on what you need or desire, but gaming is what the serious top end cards are for, and most users would never need anything more than a basic $50 graphics card. Some motherboards have onboard graphics, some require a separate graphics card, but most give you the option of either. I personally have 2 graphics cards, and both have 2 dvi connectors, allowing me to use 4 screens at once. Of course, I had to pay a little more for this 😉 but its what I needed. If you already have what you need, then you dont need any more than what you have 🙂The bottom line is, if everything works well and looks good on your screen, there is no need to play with the graphics at all. You only need to worry about this stuff at all if you discover a problem, or something the graphics cant handle.
Mitz from Tips4pc