If you don’t know who 3dfx is, we are going to give you a brief summary. For years, believe it or not, it was the main rival of ATI (now AMD) in the graphics card sector. A series of wrong decisions led to 3dfx bankrupt and I end up, being absorbed by NVIDIA. It’s largely thanks to that deal that NVIDIA is so strong in the graphics card market.
They release a driver for 3dfx Voodoo 5
Since 2002, the 3dfx company, as such, no longer exists. Patents and developments were acquired by NVIDIA. The last 3dfx graphics card was the Voodoo 5 5600of which only a few dozen units were made and which were never marketed.
This graph had the peculiarity of being the first graph with four graphics chips. To date, graphics cards have had at most two graphics chips on a single PCB. It was a rather rare bet and perhaps well ahead of its time.
Now, the fans of the 3dfxzone forum have released a new Voodoo 5 graphics driver. This is to improve compatibility with modern monitors. Added support for resolutions 1080p and higher. It should be noted that when this graph was created, the monitors were of the CRT type and had resolutions of 800×600 and 1024×768.
Support has also been added for 16:9 and 21:9 aspect ratios. This allows the graphics card to be used with newer LCD monitors.
Note that this graphics card, in theory, can only work with Windows 98 and Windows ME. It is said that these new drivers add support for Windows XP, although it is not clear.
The Voodoo 5 6000 is a graph withn Four VSA-100 graphics chips based on TSMC’s 250nm process and has only 14 million transistors. These chips worked at a 166MHz frequency and were accompanied by 4 x 32MB SDRAM chips each. It allows us to see how hardware has evolved in 20 years,
For those who want to know more about the history of this graphics card manufacturer, we recommend Martín Gamero’s 3dfx legacy. A highly recommended book where the history of this mythical company is collected.
What does this matter today?
It has a certain relevance, although we cannot think about it and it goes beyond simple tinkering. It means that there are people researching and developing on hardware that is clearly obsolete. Despite this, since 3dfx is the basis of modern NVIDIA, much can be learned about these graphics.
Something that we already knew, thanks to Atari and other brands, that some things still last, especially for the old school. But it is that, in addition, it is history of the hardware that has taken us to the present time. It would be like studying the historical period of the Middle Ages. Knowing him, we can see how we have evolved as a society. Here we can see how the hardware has evolved over time.