What was the best and most successful video graphic chip ever built!

Discussion in '3D Hardware, Software & Output Devices' started by Shtal, Aug 26, 2008.

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What was the best and most successful video graphic chip ever built!

  1. ATI R300

    50 vote(s)
    38.2%
  2. ATI R420

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. ATI R580

    1 vote(s)
    0.8%
  4. ATI R600

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. ATI RV670

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. ATI RV770

    6 vote(s)
    4.6%
  7. Nvidia NV25

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  8. Nvidia NV30

    3 vote(s)
    2.3%
  9. Nvidia NV40

    2 vote(s)
    1.5%
  10. Nvidia NV47 / G70

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  11. Nvidia G80

    21 vote(s)
    16.0%
  12. Nvidia G92

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  13. Nvidia GT200

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  14. 3DFX Voodoo 1 / 2

    42 vote(s)
    32.1%
  15. 3DFX Voodoo 3

    1 vote(s)
    0.8%
  16. 3DFX Voodoo 5

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  17. Matrox Millennium series

    2 vote(s)
    1.5%
  18. Matrox Parhelia

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  19. S3 Savage 2000

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  20. Not on this list!

    3 vote(s)
    2.3%
  1. AcceleratorX

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    Um, well, I had a tough time deciding between R300, G80 and NV40, but eventually I think I'll give this title to NV40 after all. NV40 came after all the ruckus and disappointment of the NV3x days - NVIDIA had a tough task to do, that is, matching the performance of the R420 which would be approximately double the performance of R300/350, redesigning the VLIW architecture of the NV3x into a superscalar architecture and optimizing the compiler to achive optimal performance in all cases, while ensuring that non-optimized code still runs decently on the hardware. Not to mention that it added SM3.0 support, the first released chip to do so. And it certainly did not fail to impress as far as performance was concerned. It offered comparable performance to the R4xx series, the spin-off products led to an extremely successful GeForce 6xxx and 7xxx line up, and the fact that NVIDIA was able to offer competitive performance for two generations using this core architecture proved that it had some muscle inside it.

    Many years later, a GeForce 6800 still runs games a Radeon X800 would not. And runs them acceptably even if it means I have to put it at the lowest resolution. Multi-pass PS 2.0 just hurts performance too much I guess, but the fact of the matter is that the NV40 chip has lasted a very long time and its later derivatives (like, say the GeForce 7900) can still play the latest games with some small degree of satisfaction. The same cannot be said for the R300, which lacks the features used by modern games (example: HDR using the floating point framebuffer).

    Maybe its because NV40 was such a good architecture that it lasted two generations and gave NVIDIA more time to perfect the G80 which has been very successful in its own right. :)

    In either case, it is a close fit, but I will prefer to give the award to NV40. In the end, this was the chip that helped NVIDIA regain the trust and mindshare they had lost in the NV3x era. Not to mention that NV4x cards were amongst the most popularly purchased ones, I still see PCs with 6200s, 6600s and 7600s installed......
     
  2. _xxx_

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    Well that's the trouble with this discussion, are we talking longeivity, or bang for the buck, or biggest wow-factor, or ...

    I'm talking about the biggest step-up from what was there before and that definitely goes to Voodoo 1/2. Everything after was more or less small in terms of impact, rather incremental improvements in real-life use. TNT maybe an exception, with great picture quality step-up due to 32-bit colour but that was still a minor thing in comparison.

    I still remember playing Quake with Voodoo1 for the first time, it was like "WOW, my computer can do THIS?". Think 1995 or 96 and the state of things back then. Turok on the PC was also a great experience at that moment, as well as TombRaider 1 and later Unreal. Just the feeling I had seeing Unreal in all its glory on V2 SLI was something I wish to re-live with any new game and HW ever since.
     
  3. nicolasb

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    I always found GLQuake rather unimpressive, TBH. 3Dfx's "Wizard's Tower" demo really did wow me, though - it was almost like playing Myst with real-time rendering. (You get something of the same feeling watching ATI's "Cinema 2.0 stuff now).

    And the difference between the software-only and DOS-Glide versions of Tombraider was simply stunning. The software version run at 320x240 with no filtering and no perspective correction, so the textures constantly looked like they were peeling off the rockfaces (in the same way as they did on the original PlayStation). Going from that to 640x480 with bilinear filtering, perspective correction and mip-mapping and having your frame rate go up was just amazing. (The Voodoo edge anti-aliasing option looked damn good in Tombraider as well).
     
  4. _xxx_

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    What I found so impressive about Quake was simply that the models were true 3D for the first time in any "big" game (yes I know there were some before) and the step-up in comparison to say Doom2 or Duke in terms of visuals. It was a real 3D shooter for the very first time. Besides that, I liked the whole package as well, but that's a different topic :)

    The biggest wow-effect ever for me was still the first time with Unreal on V2 SLI, that was so huge beyond anything out there at the time.
     
  5. fellix

    fellix Hey, You!
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    Yep, it's all about the personal impression, not so much the technology itself. Personally for me, the pinnacle stunning moment was the first encounter with accelerated Unreal, ten years ago, and it was by far truly beyond reality--a true UNreal experience, that deserved its very name. Since then, that title has stamped in my mind as a sole benchmark for what a true break-trough game & tech should deliver like. ;)

    Damn, I feel old now! :D
     
  6. nicolasb

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    It's true that the jump from Doom 2 to Quake was huge; but the difference between software-rendered Quake and GLQuake was actually not all that large. GLQuake wasn't a particularly good showcase for hardware 3D acceleration (IMO) because it wasn't a sufficiently large jump beyond what was possible without hardware 3D acceleration.

    Actually I never cared for the look of Quake I much, anyway: the polygon count on the models was too low, so people's heads ended up looking more or less cube-shaped with their faces painted onto the sides of the cube. I actually preferred high-res sprite-based games (like Duke Nukem 3D or the original System Shock) in some ways.

    I have to agree about Unreal on Voodoo 2 SLI, though; that was truly impressive. :)
     
  7. swaaye

    swaaye Entirely Suboptimal
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    I remember being blown away by a demo of Wolf3D at the local store. When I got my first 486, the salesman gave me a floppy with a demo of it and bunch of Epic shareware games like Jill of the Jungle.

    That didn't compare to Unreal though. Unreal was not only beautiful, it was also expansive and really was unreal. It made the 'ol Voodoo 1 cry to do what it did. The game felt like it was made by people who had wild new ideas. It flattened the overhyped Quake 2. That was the peak of PC gaming for me I think. And then UT came out and redefined the multiplayer shooter.... And games like Deus Ex and System Shock 2 redefined the FPS genre some more... And then we got into the scary darkness dynamic lighting/shadows era with plastic wax people. Far Cry made a sweet tropical island with tons of openness. And finally today we have Crysis with people starting to look like people, destructible enviros and objects, and of course even more perty.
     
    #107 swaaye, Sep 15, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 15, 2008
  8. fellix

    fellix Hey, You!
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    Wow -- where did you miss Half-Life series? ;)

    To add up more on the Unreal topic, I remember a dude saying that the one thing, that could drive him to quit his job were: a retail copy of Unreal and a pair of Voodoo2's for SLi, magically appearing next to his home PC. :D
     
  9. swaaye

    swaaye Entirely Suboptimal
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    Forgotteded it!!!!
     
  10. _xxx_

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    HL was a nice flick, but it hardly "redefined" anything. At least not nearly as much as DeusEx did. Even today I still don't get the hype.
     
  11. swaaye

    swaaye Entirely Suboptimal
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    It was hyped as the first FPS to tell the story seamlessly within the gameplay. Obviously not something new compared to other genres, but it was better than FPS games with distracting cutscenes. The squad AI was also well done and the game has pretty decent atmosphere to it IMO. But it was ugly compared to its contemporaries.

    Before HL, I think Jedi Knight was the reigning FPS story experience champion. HL came along and made lots of people forget about JK. I think that's rather unfortunate. JK actually reminds me of HL in some ways. It's visually not that much worse and it also has a similar lonely, explorative atmosphere. Its FMV is both a plus and minus because while its entertaining the see the actors, it pulls you out of the gameplay.
     
    #111 swaaye, Sep 16, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 16, 2008
  12. Sunrise

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    It´s not easy to choose a "best card", since to me it´s more about the "best gaming experience" I had in my gaming life.

    Unreal played on voodoo2 SLI was simply mind-blowing beautiful, not only graphics wise but the atmosphere and music (sound) is something I won´t ever forget. I was at a friends house, he also had a P2-233 with v2 SLI and this very potent DENON (Dolby Surround) receiver and since he didn´t have speakers yet, I brought my rather expensive JBL stereo and surround speakers with me, so we could really turn up the volume and THAT really made the experience even more memorable.

    However, after that I bought an NV10 (Geforce 256 DDR) right after it got released (after seeing reviews showing it with better performance than v2 SLI @ 1024x768, etc.), which still was rather expensive and played Quake2 (online, ~4 years), Tribes2 (online, ~2 years) and a couple other games with it and I never looked back. Now this may sound a little weird, but apart from the fact that the R300 was a real penomenon, I didn´t buy it, because I was satisfied with my NV10. Until Doom3 hit the market I could play every game (some with lower settings), but everything still was easily playable (>20 fps avg.).

    The 2nd paragraph may sound like an NV ad, but it´s translated 1:1 from my experience. So all in all, the Geforce256 DDR was definately the best card for me, with a multitude of enjoyable gaming days.
     
  13. Davros

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    One thing I can tell from this poll :
    B3D Readers agree that I have excellent taste in Graphics Cards....
     
  14. fellix

    fellix Hey, You!
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    Do we, really? ;)
     
  15. Putas

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    Voodoo 1 because I see no higher success then creating product so good it will make people all of sudden think they need such kind of hardware.
     
  16. Silent_Buddha

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    Oddly enough, the game that first made me go..."OMG, I HAVE GOT TO HAVE A VOODOO GRAPHICS CARD!!!"

    Oddly enough, that was Moto GP. A rather simple Motorcycle racing game. But that was the first game I ever saw accelerated on a Voodoo Graphics (Voodoo 1) card. And seeing that next to the software rendering on my machine...and then getting blown away race after race after race because controls on my machine were so sluggish compared to the smooth goodness of the Voodoo Graphics machine...

    I don't even LIKE racing games, but seeing that made me WANT to play racing games. Yeah, it had that much of an impact.

    Yeah. I then made the mistake of buying...a Voodoo Rush...

    Hello, Face meet Palm...DOH!

    Less than a month later the Voodoo Rush went into a drawer to be replaced by first 1 Voodoo Graphics (STB) then a second one a few months later for SLI goodness.

    My god, gaming went to a whole new level.

    Even with that however. I still feel R300 was a more successful and influential part.

    Regards,
    SB
     
  17. Davros

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    you must mean voodoo2, v1 didnt sli
     
  18. Blazkowicz

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    they did! Quantum 3D made on-board Voodoo1 SLI, also made Voodoo1 with two TMU I think, and I saw a photo of two prototype Voodoo 1 SLI'ed.

    here is it (argh, it's a voodoo rush alike too. but there's 6MB ram per voodoo1)
    (see below..)
    I wouldn't mind having one!
     
    #118 Blazkowicz, Sep 18, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 18, 2008
  19. Blakhart

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    They must hide all that vram under that tiny red x?
     
  20. fellix

    fellix Hey, You!
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    Mirrored @ ImageShack:

    [​IMG]

    ;)
     
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