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8-bit

A computer term used to designate either color depth or a unit of data for integer-based computing. One octet equals eight bits, or one byte, so early computers and graphics processing made use of a byte-side data unit on which to perform functions. Today, however, as most computing is now at higher 8-bit increments (e.g., 32-bit or 64-bit), the term 8-bit is used to refer to color depth. As analog content is converted to digital, 8-bit allows a maximum representation of 256 different colors in a single color map. With RGB signals, where an 8-bit color map of up to 256 different colors can be chosen for each of the three–red, green, and blue, respectively—there are 16.8 million color choices.