First post, by ATi_Loyalist
Hey everyone, I am new to Vogons, but I love old hardware.
In 2002 I bought a 9700 Pro just after launch. It was the best card I have ever owned, and it hangs in a frame to this day. The story there is, I overclocked the crap out of that thing, if I recall it was around 410MHz core clock. Stock was 325MHz. The card was volt modded, added a 10k pot to a couple pins on the VDDQ chip to allow adjustment of the VCore. I added a heatsink to the VDDQ at one point, but later on it got caught on something and I tore the chip off the card. 🙁 I wish I had a cooler story. Technically the card would still work, but I cant seem to get my hands on a replacement chip, nor do I have the proper hot air rework equipment to reattach a chip like that.
Ironically, after I took the photo of the 9700 Pro in the shadow box, I noticed the reflection of Gordon Freeman, our favorite mute hero from the greatest game of all time, HL2. I have a digital painting on canvas of him hanging next to my PC.
Ok Ok Here we go
On with the story. I created a project called ATi 1.0, nicknamed after my handle, 'ATi_Loyalist' It went through several iterations, the last one being ATi:Resurrected a long time ago, maybe 2004 or so.
I still have the case and some of the hardware and with the resurgence of retro gaming and PCs, I decided to rebuild my P4 system with the components I ALWAYS wanted when I was younger. I learned so much about modding with this case and it has been in a closet for 10+ years, it is my one possession, (next to my framed 9700 Pro and HL2 Painting) that I will never let go! It has a long and detailed history. The case was powdercoated red with multicolor flake, but I just dropped off the components at the powdercoater to get redone in silver with candy blue, and the chassis gloss sparkle black. Should get it back this week!
The original build in 2002
P4 2.66 GHz Northwood
Alpha PAL8942 Heatsink with one of those ridiculous Delta EHE fans. 55dB of pure power was all the rage in those days! I was able to overclock the processor to 3.4 GHz at the time.
Asus P4PE (with the lesser 845PE chipset, DDR333 FTL)
Radeon 9700 Pro - At the time, this card cost about as much as I spent on the rest of the system! $399 at launch! I spent maybe $500 on everything else! Case, PSU, RAM, etc! Hah!
120GB Hard drive
1GB DDR333 (2x 512MB)
Turtle Beach Santa Cruz sound card
P4 3.4 GHz Northwood (dreaming of a 3.4GHz Galatin EE, as soon as I find one it's mine!)
Thermalright XP-120 CPU Cooler
Asus P4C800 875P Chipset, mean overclocker in the day! I looked at the Abit IC7 and IS7 too, and a couple Soyo boards, but went with Asus, I have always been an Asus fanboy.
Radeon X850 Pro, I also have in my collection, a 9700 Pro, 9800 Pro, 9800XT, FireGL X2-256t, I may swap one of them out if needed, but I feel the X850 is right on the edge of period-appropriate, and is at the last string of 98SE and XP compatibility
320 GB Hard drive, thought about an SSD but that is totally cheating at the retro P4 rig game! Right?
Corsair TX750 (the only semi-modern component in the build, older PSUs are tough to find, and I got this one at a great price!)
Sources include, local electronics recycler, eBay, and a monthly electronics swap meet I have been going to.
Tl;dr - ATi fanboy rebuilds early 2000's gaming rig with dream components. More pictures to come! Stay tuned! Will be posting tons of build photos and retro photos as I find them.
Also, I am not sure if this is in the right section or not, but if it should need to be moved, Mods please move. I am new here, still trying to learn all the different subforums! Thank you!