VOGONS


Voodoo 5 6000 Clone PCB

Topic actions

First post, by Stojke

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

How come no one ever cloned an Voodoo 5 6000 PCB?
I see on ebay that its possible to get an VSA100 processor for as low as 8$ per chip. It sounds pretty cool to make an PCB to fit those onto.
And i remember some people had clean 56k PCBs from when 3DFX kicked the bucket.

Note | LLSID | "Big boobs are important!"

Reply 1 of 103, by sliderider

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

The complexity of the board probably plays into it. Getting 4 VSA-100 chips to play nice with each other, and having separate memory for each chip makes for a lot of extremely fine traces and redundant components. I don't think it can be done by hand.

Reply 2 of 103, by nforce4max

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

The problem is cost, it will cost at least several hundred dollars to make these cards and that would be bulk, even more for a small run given their complexity.

On a far away planet reading your posts in the year 10,191.

Reply 3 of 103, by G1nX

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie
Stojke wrote:

How come no one ever cloned an Voodoo 5 6000 PCB?
I see on ebay that its possible to get an VSA100 processor for as low as 8$ per chip. It sounds pretty cool to make an PCB to fit those onto.
And i remember some people had clean 56k PCBs from when 3DFX kicked the bucket.

The blank pcb's you remember were not of the final revision which even that didn't work as planned. They didn't manage to mass produce 100% stable cards under FSAA so they stopped the project. It took 3 years until a former engineer created what is now known as Hank's PCI Rework which makes the Rev3400/3700/3900 run FSAA8x without system freeze.
Funny enough the Rev2600A2 didn't have this problem even thought it was an earlier design. This one's mine:
IMG_4099.jpg

sliderider wrote:

The complexity of the board probably plays into it. Getting 4 VSA-100 chips to play nice with each other, and having separate memory for each chip makes for a lot of extremely fine traces and redundant components. I don't think it can be done by hand.

Correct. The board is very complex and that's why 3dfx took so long in creating it (they started in mid 1999) and eventually never mass produced because of the bug I mentioned.

nforce4max wrote:

The problem is cost, it will cost at least several hundred dollars to make these cards and that would be bulk, even more for a small run given their complexity.

The cost is another issue. On dedicated 3dfx forums this topic has come up before and they investigated how much it would cost for a specialized company to reverse engineer the V5 6000 pcb and they received a quote for 30k Euro or so plus 5 original cards that would be destroyed in the process as they would basically peel them layer by layer. And noboby would front that kind of money not to mentioned agree to the destruction of the original cards.

Another explored option was to ask former 3dfx head engineer now at nVidia to support this and give out the schematics to build a new one. He said the problem was that nVidia legal department wouldn't approve it since they would be using patented technology and trade marks even if they were creating outdated cards.

From a collectors point of view it's more appealing to have an original card than a replica one. For purists even modifying the cooling on "Goddess" is seen as sacrilege.

Retro-gamer & VGA Collector
Powered by Voodoo5 6000

Reply 5 of 103, by The Serpent Rider

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

You understand that each backer have to sacrifice hundreds, if not thousands, (dead) american presidents to get a working card? And that's assuming we won't have VSA100 chips shortage.

Last edited by The Serpent Rider on 2020-01-14, 10:25. Edited 1 time in total.

Get up, come on get down with the sickness
Open up your hate, and let it flow into me

Reply 7 of 103, by erek

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie

this has be done / prototyped:

https://www.modlabs.net/forum/topic/60674/

1_5[1].jpg
Filename
1_5[1].jpg
File size
57.03 KiB
Views
1513 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception
1_3[1].jpg
Filename
1_3[1].jpg
File size
40.57 KiB
Views
1513 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

Reply 12 of 103, by The Serpent Rider

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

excited?

Hardly. I doubt it will go anywhere from few working prototypes. Which isn't first time happening.

Get up, come on get down with the sickness
Open up your hate, and let it flow into me

Reply 13 of 103, by Tetrium

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
erek wrote on 2021-02-18, 01:36:
this has be done / prototyped: […]
Show full quote

this has be done / prototyped:

https://www.modlabs.net/forum/topic/60674/

1_5[1].jpg

1_3[1].jpg

Very impressive!

Any idea what the cost would be to produce these?

And if these can be produced in any meaningful quantity, prices for the VSA100 chips could go up relatively quickly.

Whats missing in your collections?
My retro rigs (old topic)
Interesting Vogons threads (links to Vogonswiki)
Report spammers here!

Reply 14 of 103, by maxtherabbit

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
The Serpent Rider wrote on 2021-02-18, 02:20:

Price tag: GeForce RTX 3090 SLI.

Not that I would ever spend that much on a video card, but given the choice between the two I'd take the V5 tbh

Reply 15 of 103, by dionb

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t
maxtherabbit wrote on 2021-02-18, 06:45:
The Serpent Rider wrote on 2021-02-18, 02:20:

Price tag: GeForce RTX 3090 SLI.

Not that I would ever spend that much on a video card, but given the choice between the two I'd take the V5 tbh

Even as an investment that makes sense. That RTX3090 SLI will be worth a fraction of its current price in a year or two, a V5-6000 (even if it is a replica) is more likely to keep its value.

That said, I have better things to spend that kind of money on - but I can certainly feel the temptation.

Reply 17 of 103, by erek

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie
The Serpent Rider wrote on 2021-02-18, 02:57:

excited?

Hardly. I doubt it will go anywhere from few working prototypes. Which isn't first time happening.

would you operate one of the prototypes given the opportunity?

Reply 19 of 103, by erek

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie
151431422_1034894980326066_8445792243068459525_o[1].jpg
Filename
151431422_1034894980326066_8445792243068459525_o[1].jpg
File size
316.8 KiB
Views
1179 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

"Have a test board. Just out of curiosity tested on another PCI-PCI bridge (PI7C8140).

That project was quite easy. Only one month to complete routing. Working from the first attempt (or second). But still some testing required. Anyway, main functional is confirmed . Performance is exactly the same as on V56K. Same BIOSes, same drivers, same bugs."