The basic goal of this paper is to present the characteristics of those frame buffers currently used to display images, versus those features which might more ideally suit frame buffers for this purpose. We use current and perceived needs and data based on our experience to identify the salient points which are useful and necessary. Over the last five years we have implemented the same image processing system on eight different frame buffers' (RAMTEK 9050 and 9400, Grinnell GMR-270, Hewlett-Packard 98710 and 98720, Nodecrest Ltd. TVN 256, Lexidata 3400, Pixar Image Computer). This paper extrapolates from these efforts on existing displays to determine what characteristics are desirable in a frame buffer used primarily for multimodality image display. Two case examples are presented: 1. A system developed for high quality computer graphics, as exemplified by the Pixar Image Computer (or in the future the AT&T PXM900 Pixel Machine). 2. A system developed for nuclear medicine and radiation therapy treatment planning as exemplified by the Nodecrest Ltd. TVN256 and TVN512 displays.