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.TGA File Extension

File TypeTarga Graphic

DeveloperAvid Technology
4.1 (188 Votes)
CategoryRaster Image Files

What is a TGA file?

A TGA file is a file saved in the raster graphic format designed by Truevision. It supports 8, 16, 24, or 32 bits per pixel at a maximum of 24 bits for RGB colors and 8-bit alpha channel. TGA files are used for various types of images, such as digital photos and textures referenced by 3D video games.

More Information
Screenshot of a .tga file in Apple Preview 10.1
TGA file open in Apple Preview 10.1

The Targa format, which stands for Truevision Advanced Raster Graphics Adapter, was designed by Truevision (now Avid Technology) in 1984 for use with its first video software programs. The original format consisted of 2 areas:

  1. TGA File Header
  2. Image/Color Map Data

While these two sections were included in the original 1984 specification of the Targa format, "Developer Area," "Extension Area," and "TGA File Footer" sections were added in 1989. This specification is known as the "New TGA Format" and consists of the following 5 areas:

  1. TGA File Header
  2. Image/ColorMap Data
  3. Developer Area
  4. Extension Area
  5. TGA File Footer

Besides the three new sections of the image format, Truevision also introduced several new extensions to the Targa format in 1989 to meet the needs of graphics professionals. Examples of the extra extensions include:

  • Date and time the file was created
  • Author name and comments
  • Alpha channel type
  • Pixel aspect ratio
  • Gamma value
  • A scaled-down postage stamp copy of the image (a "thumbnail" image)

Open and view .TGA files with File Viewer Plus.

Programs that open TGA files

Updated 8/19/2019

About TGA Files

Our goal is to help you understand what a file with a *.tga suffix is and how to open it.

The Targa Graphic file type, file format description, and Mac, Windows, Linux, and Android programs listed on this page have been individually researched and verified by the FileInfo team. We strive for 100% accuracy and only publish information about file formats that we have tested and validated.

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