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3D Spotlight : Hardware : Matrox Millennium G400 review


Matrox Millennium G400 review
Posted by Julio Franco on September 20, 1999
Matrox     Product: Millennium G400 DualHead

Matrox, a Montreal based graphics card maker has been up for a while now. Back to the time when 3D was everything and 3D acceleration didn’t even appear in our minds, I remember Matrox was one of the manufacturers that brought us some of the fastest cards with the most stable and functional drivers for the time.

Then it was that the Millennium name became somewhat famous because it’s excellent performance. However with the introduction of 3D acceleration Matrox had to keep up with the latest technology so they released their first 3D capable chip, the MGA-200, which following Matrox’s tradition had exceptional 2D performance and this time with a 3D core incorporated bringing great 3D performance as well.

There were some problems with G200 card though, the most important I think was that it appeared too late in the market, for the time being Voodoo2 cards were already available in stores and NVIDIA’s TNT chip was released just a bit later with better performance.

Also G200 based cards suffered problems with OpenGL performance, games had to be run with a mini-driver which didn’t performed too well and it took several months to Matrox to finally release a complete OpenGL ICD in beta form.

It wasn’t all bad with the G200 though; the most remarkable feature of this chip was its visual quality, definitely the best out there. Colors were richer than what we were used to see from the rest of the chips specially when running at 32bit color depth.

This exceptional visual quality has been improved in the G400 thanks to a special filtering method that Matrox calls “Vibrant Color Quality2 (VCQ2) Rendering”, more on that later.

So, now onto the G400 chip, Matrox has got assured their latest product won’t be just another chip out there, they have included on it some new features we had never seen before, some of them are bump mapping and Dual Head Technology.


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