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What Is a Bitmap?

A bitmap image is a two-dimensional grid of units called pixels. The two dimensions are width and height. The resolution of a bitmap is measured in dots or points per inch (DPI or PPI). A higher DPI generally means a more detailed image. As you increase the magnification of a bitmap image using the Zoom tool, the individual pixels become larger and larger, until you can see each individual area of color.

Each pixel carries a number that determines what color it is. This number is a series of bits, or 1’s and 0’s. The more bits assigned to each pixel, the greater the color depth. A 1-bit pixel is usually either black or white. Eight bits can create up to 256 (2 to the power of 8) colors. Fireworks supports 24-bit RGB color, which is the standard color space for computer monitors. The Fireworks native format is 32-bit, which supports both RGB color and an 8-bit alpha channel for transparency masking.


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