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3D Spotlight : Hardware : 3dfx Voodoo 3 3000 PCI review

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3dfx Voodoo 3 3000 PCI review
Posted by Thomas McGuire on January 31, 2000
Company: 3dfx Interactive     Product: Voodoo 3 3000 PCI

The Voodoo3 3000 PCI is the latest addition to 3dfxs PCI range. Being an owner of a 2000 PCI for some months now I was looking forward to see what I could get out this card.

Being a PCI model its obviously aimed at those out there who have no AGP slot on the motherboard, or those with video cards soldered into the motherboard (much like myself). So after finding the card hidden amongst the almost ridiculously large press kit, is it worth buying? Read on & find out more.

We won't go into much details on the Voodoo3 chip itself in this article, if you want to learn more about it be sure to check out our own review of the AGP version of the Voodoo3 3000 here, you will find a more comprehensive explanation on Voodoo3 chip features, visual quality and details.

In this article we will be focussing exclusively to the overall performance of the PCI version and its position on the market, below see some Voodoo3 general specs.

3D feature set

  • 7 million triangles per second
  • 333 megatexels per second fill rate
  • 128-bit 3d acceleration
  • Dual, 32-bit rendering architecture
  • True multi-texturing, 2 textures per-pixel per-clock
  • Full hardware setup of triangle parameters
  • Support for multi-triangle strips & fans
  • Single pass, single-cycle bump mapping
  • Single pass, single-cycle trilinear MIP-mapping
  • Sub-pixel & sub-texel correction with 0.4 * 0.4 resolution
  • Per-pixel atmospheric fog with programmable fog zones
  • Floating point Z buffer (W buffer)
  • True per-pixel, LOD MIP-mapping with biasing & clamping
  • Texture compositing for multi-texture & special effects
  • Support for 14 texture map formats
  • 8-bit palletised textures with full bilinear filtering
  • Texture compression through narrow channel YAB format

2D feature set

  • Fully integrated 128-bit VGA & 2D engine
  • High speed 128-bit Windows GUI acceleration
  • Hardware acceleration for Bresenham line draw, 2-edge polygon fill, scissor/rectangle clippers & full 256 ROPs
  • Internal 256-bit datapath
  • Source & destination chroma-keying for DirectDraw
  • Colour expansion & single-cycle block writes
  • Accelerated 8, 16, 24 (packed) & 32-bit modes

Video subsystem

  • Support for ultra-high resolution displays on PC monitors
  • Resolutions of up to 2046*1536 at a full 75Hz screen refresh rate
  • YUV 4:2:2 & YUV 4:2:0 planar support
  • 30 frames per second DVD playback with no dropped frames
  • Supports the latest MPEG2 software codecs via DirectShow
  • De-interlacing using Bob & Weave
  • Separate gamma correction for video & graphics
  • Auto page flipping using VBI for smooth motion video
  • 350Mhz integrated RAMDAC
  • Supports up to 24-bits per pixel or 16.7 million colours
  • Sub-pixel image scaling technology


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