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Regular RGB palettes
Systems with a 9-bit RGB palette use 3 bits for each of the red, green, and blue color components. This results in a (23)3 = 83 = 512-color palette.
9-bit RGB systems include the following:
- MSX2 computer (also MSX2+ and MSX Turbo R)
- NEC PC8801 Mk II SR and later models (8 of them at once)
- NEC PC-Engine/TurboGrafx-16 video game console
- Sega Mega Drive/Genesis game console
- Sega Nomad handheld game console
Systems with a 12-bit RGB palette use 4 bits for each of the red, green, and blue color components. This results in a (24)3 = 163 = 4096-color palette.
12-bit RGB systems include the following:
- Namco Pole Position arcade system board (up to 3840 colors simultaneously)
- Sharp X1 Turbo Z series
- Fujitsu FM-77 AV
Systems with a 15-bit RGB palette use 5 bits for each of the red, green, and blue color components. This results in a (25)3 = 323 = 32,768-color palette (commonly known as Highcolor).
15-bit RGB systems include:
Systems with an 18-bit RGB palette use 6 bits for each of the red, green, and blue color components. This results in a (26)3 = 643 = 262,144-color palette.
18-bit RGB systems include the following:
- Fujitsu FM-77 AV 40 (all 262,144 colors can be displayed simultaneously)
Often known as truecolor and millions of colors, 24-bit color is the highest color depth normally used, and is available on most modern display systems and software. Its color palette contains (28)3 = 2563 = 16,777,216 colors.
24-bit RGB systems include:
- Namco's arcade system boards from System 2 to ES3
- Fujitsu FM Towns computer (32,768 colors can be displayed simultaneously)
- Capcom's CP System II arcade game board
- Sega arcade system boards from Model 2 to Nu
- Sega's Saturn and Dreamcast consoles
- Sony's PlayStation consoles from PSone to PS Vita and PS4
- Nintendo consoles from N64 to 3DS and Wii U
- Philips CD-i
Non-regular RGB palettes
These also are full RGB palette repertories, but either they do not have the same number of levels for every red, green and blue components, or they are bit levels based.
Most modern systems support 16-bit color. It is sometimes referred to as Highcolor (along with the 15-bit RGB), medium color or thousands of colors. It utilizes a color palette of 32×64×32 = 65,536 colors. Usually, there are 5 bits allocated for the red and blue color components (32 levels each) and 6 bits for the green component (64 levels), due to the greater sensitivity of the normal human eye to this color.
16-bit RGB systems include the following:
- Sharp X68000
- Atari Falcon
- Extended Graphics Array (XGA) for IBM PS/2
- Sega Model 1 arcade system board
It must be noticed that not all systems using 16-bit color depth employ the 16-bit, 32-64-32 level RGB palette. Platforms like the Neo Geo videogame console employ the 15-bit RGB palette (5 bits are used for red, green, and blue), but the last bit specifies a less significant intensity or luminance.