VOGONS


First post, by tauro

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3DMark 2000
PCI R9250 .(64-bit) - 2404 (Sapphire)
AGP R9200 .(64-bit) - 2552 (Asus)
AGP R9250 .(64-bit) - 2574 (Gigabyte)
AGP R9250 (128-bit) - 2595 (Asus)

Roughly the same score on all the AGP cards, 9200/9250 64/128.

I tried Quake II, using the 3DNow! patch, and all the AGP cards show the same performance, around 44 FPS (1024x768, texture level 4)

Other specs about this build
GA-5AX, K6-2 @585MHz (Bus 130MHz)
Win98, 128MB, DirectX 7.0

Reply 1 of 16, by swaaye

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Your CPU is the bottleneck. Those are very fast cards for a K6.

You'd see more difference between the cards at 1600x1200. That would significantly shift the load towards fillrate and memory bandwidth.

Reply 3 of 16, by tauro

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You're probably right guys. It's quite an interesting fact that I wasn't aware of, though. You don't need a 128-bit card for a (Super) Socket 7 build.

I'll do some tests with a Pentium III build and it's very likely that I'll get different results with these cards.

swaaye wrote on 2023-08-02, 23:09:

You'd see more difference between the cards at 1600x1200. That would significantly shift the load towards fillrate and memory bandwidth.

In my tests I use (at most) 1024x768. I noticed that there's not a significant difference between 640x480, 800x600 and 1024x768 in games such as Quake II and Unreal Tournament. That reinforces the CPU bottleneck hypothesis.

A Voodoo3 is quite a bit faster with 3DNow patched Quake II (+60fps) , but yields a similar result in Unreal Tournament (around 30/32 fps), although the Voodoo3 feels smoother. There are slowdowns when I use a Radeon card, I don't know where they come from. Perhaps the explosions, I'm not sure.

Reply 4 of 16, by Sphere478

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tauro wrote on 2023-08-02, 22:21:
3DMark 2000 PCI R9250 .(64-bit) - 2404 (Sapphire) AGP R9200 .(64-bit) - 2552 (Asus) AGP R9250 .(64-bit) - 2574 (Gigabyte) AGP R9 […]
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3DMark 2000
PCI R9250 .(64-bit) - 2404 (Sapphire)
AGP R9200 .(64-bit) - 2552 (Asus)
AGP R9250 .(64-bit) - 2574 (Gigabyte)
AGP R9250 (128-bit) - 2595 (Asus)

Roughly the same score on all the AGP cards, 9200/9250 64/128.

I tried Quake II, using the 3DNow! patch, and all the AGP cards show the same performance, around 44 FPS (1024x768, texture level 4)

Other specs about this build
GA-5AX, K6-2 @585MHz (Bus 130MHz)
Win98, 128MB, DirectX 7.0

I have encountered the same performance brick wall on my 7500/9200/9250 cards over pci. Perhaps a limitation of s7/ss7/k6

Apparently there is a cool thing that can happen with gf2/3 and 7.76 driver 😉

Sphere's PCB projects.
-
Sphere’s socket 5/7 cpu collection.
-
SUCCESSFUL K6-2+ to K6-3+ Full Cache Enable Mod
-
Tyan S1564S to S1564D single to dual processor conversion (also s1563 and s1562)

Reply 7 of 16, by Sphere478

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AMD K6 3DMARK, aiming for stars.

Sphere's PCB projects.
-
Sphere’s socket 5/7 cpu collection.
-
SUCCESSFUL K6-2+ to K6-3+ Full Cache Enable Mod
-
Tyan S1564S to S1564D single to dual processor conversion (also s1563 and s1562)

Reply 8 of 16, by appiah4

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128-bit memory bus becomes a factor as you crank up the resolution or turn on MSAA.

Also, with that CPU that 9250 is performing at about 10% its max performance 😀

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 9 of 16, by tauro

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Sphere478 wrote on 2023-08-03, 08:00:

Very interesting read, thanks for sharing.
Unfortunately I don't own a working GF2 or 3 😦
I have a GF2 MX400 but to my surprise, it's not working. I may get another one in the future but since I prioritize the DVI output, it will be harder to find one.

After seeing that an overclocked K6-2 doesn't perform well enough for late 90's games, even with decent video cards (well, other than GF2/3...), I'm thinking about building something decidedly slower, aiming at less demanding and older software.

Besides, all the retro PC cases I own are for baby AT/ATX boards, and since this build is aimed at ≤'99 stuff, I think I'm going to go with something older, slower and retro-er.

appiah4 wrote on 2023-08-03, 08:44:

128-bit memory bus becomes a factor as you crank up the resolution or turn on MSAA.
Also, with that CPU that 9250 is performing at about 10% its max performance 😀

Knowing that the 64-bit variants of the R9200/9250 are already too fast for a SS7 CPU, I can save the 128-bit card for a newer and faster build. P4 maybe? C2D?

For the Radeons I read about modifying the EDID to force the output to be 1280x960@70MHz so I'll probably try that too some time down the road.

In order to cover all the eras with the least amount of machines possible, a Pentium MMX build will do for most stuff from mid 80's to mid 90's. After that, probably a C2D can go from late 90's to early 2010's. I'm still trying to figure it out.

I thought I could get away with the K6-2 @585MHz (4.5x130MHz, stock voltage) for late 90's stuff but it seems that it's too much for the SS7 platform and I'm not too happy about over stressing the chipset/video cards.

I remember having played Half Life on an AMD 5x86 😆 those were the days! We were far more tolerant with low framerate/resolution back then.

Reply 10 of 16, by Sphere478

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tauro wrote on 2023-08-03, 13:18:
Very interesting read, thanks for sharing. Unfortunately I don't own a working GF2 or 3 :frowning: I have a GF2 MX400 but to my […]
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Sphere478 wrote on 2023-08-03, 08:00:

Very interesting read, thanks for sharing.
Unfortunately I don't own a working GF2 or 3 😦
I have a GF2 MX400 but to my surprise, it's not working. I may get another one in the future but since I prioritize the DVI output, it will be harder to find one.

After seeing that an overclocked K6-2 doesn't perform well enough for late 90's games, even with decent video cards (well, other than GF2/3...), I'm thinking about building something decidedly slower, aiming at less demanding and older software.

Besides, all the retro PC cases I own are for baby AT/ATX boards, and since this build is aimed at ≤'99 stuff, I think I'm going to go with something older, slower and retro-er.

appiah4 wrote on 2023-08-03, 08:44:

128-bit memory bus becomes a factor as you crank up the resolution or turn on MSAA.
Also, with that CPU that 9250 is performing at about 10% its max performance 😀

Knowing that the 64-bit variants of the R9200/9250 are already too fast for a SS7 CPU, I can save the 128-bit card for a newer and faster build. P4 maybe? C2D?

For the Radeons I read about modifying the EDID to force the output to be 1280x960@70MHz so I'll probably try that too some time down the road.

In order to cover all the eras with the least amount of machines possible, a Pentium MMX build will do for most stuff from mid 80's to mid 90's. After that, probably a C2D can go from late 90's to early 2010's. I'm still trying to figure it out.

I thought I could get away with the K6-2 @585MHz (4.5x130MHz, stock voltage) for late 90's stuff but it seems that it's too much for the SS7 platform and I'm not too happy about over stressing the chipset/video cards.

I remember having played Half Life on an AMD 5x86 😆 those were the days! We were far more tolerant with low framerate/resolution back then.

DVI on GeForce of that era doesn’t seem to work very well in boot. FYI.

Grab a K 6 –2+570 off eBay and play with that in the system should get you a little bit more performance see my signature for unlocking into a 3+

Sphere's PCB projects.
-
Sphere’s socket 5/7 cpu collection.
-
SUCCESSFUL K6-2+ to K6-3+ Full Cache Enable Mod
-
Tyan S1564S to S1564D single to dual processor conversion (also s1563 and s1562)

Reply 11 of 16, by tauro

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Sphere478 wrote on 2023-08-03, 16:17:

Grab a K 6 –2+570 off eBay and play with that in the system should get you a little bit more performance see my signature for unlocking into a 3+

Unfortunately eBay is not an option for me so I'd have to wait until I can source one locally. Probably my best bet is buying an old "for parts" laptop with one inside it. Any recommendations on what the most popular models to look for are?

I think I would get a 10% CPU boost, maybe 15%. I already tweaked this setup a lot.
I'm getting 1649 MIPS/708MFLOPS in Sandra '99.
To my surprise the L2 cache withstands 130MHz. The on-board IDE doesn't happily accept it though, but disabling DMA results in a stable system.
The memory speed would increase a lot with a K6-2+.

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Sphere478 wrote on 2023-08-03, 16:17:

DVI on GeForce of that era doesn’t seem to work very well in boot. FYI.

Thanks for that bit of info. I never saw one "in the wild", only FX/Radeon cards with DVI output. The Radeons have the sharpest image, and if I'm lucky and can get the cable EDID mod or BIOS mod, I think that will be quite good for DOS general purpose. For the time being with my setup, a 5:4 DVI picture looks far better than a stretched 4:3 through VGA output. But if I find a GeForce 2/3, that one could get the AGP port and have two cards in the same build, one for DOS and one for Windows. Too complicated maybe 🤣

Reply 12 of 16, by Sphere478

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Quadro 2 agp is a good buy for agp ss7 if going for record, personally I go for a 9xx0 series radeon on ss7

Laptops with plus chips are rare in of themselves and should be a collector’s item if found. Do not harm them.

Sphere's PCB projects.
-
Sphere’s socket 5/7 cpu collection.
-
SUCCESSFUL K6-2+ to K6-3+ Full Cache Enable Mod
-
Tyan S1564S to S1564D single to dual processor conversion (also s1563 and s1562)

Reply 13 of 16, by tauro

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Sphere478 wrote on 2023-08-04, 02:45:

Quadro 2 agp is a good buy for agp ss7 if going for record, personally I go for a 9xx0 series radeon on ss7

Thanks for the tip. I'll see if I find one of those some day.

Sphere478 wrote on 2023-08-04, 02:45:

Laptops with plus chips are rare in of themselves and should be a collector’s item if found. Do not harm them.

Primum non nocere.

Reply 14 of 16, by Sphere478

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tauro wrote on 2023-08-04, 11:55:
Thanks for the tip. I'll see if I find one of those some day. […]
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Sphere478 wrote on 2023-08-04, 02:45:

Quadro 2 agp is a good buy for agp ss7 if going for record, personally I go for a 9xx0 series radeon on ss7

Thanks for the tip. I'll see if I find one of those some day.

Sphere478 wrote on 2023-08-04, 02:45:

Laptops with plus chips are rare in of themselves and should be a collector’s item if found. Do not harm them.

Primum non nocere.

I’m proud to say I got that out of context before googling it haha.

Latin, first do no harm. Very good motto for retro activities as well as healthcare! :p

Sphere's PCB projects.
-
Sphere’s socket 5/7 cpu collection.
-
SUCCESSFUL K6-2+ to K6-3+ Full Cache Enable Mod
-
Tyan S1564S to S1564D single to dual processor conversion (also s1563 and s1562)

Reply 15 of 16, by swaaye

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tauro wrote on 2023-08-03, 04:28:

A Voodoo3 is quite a bit faster with 3DNow patched Quake II (+60fps) , but yields a similar result in Unreal Tournament (around 30/32 fps), although the Voodoo3 feels smoother. There are slowdowns when I use a Radeon card, I don't know where they come from. Perhaps the explosions, I'm not sure.

3dfx cards work very well with K6 systems. This is especially true if a game offers Glide support as that is the most efficient option and so you get the most from your CPU. It also translates into higher minimum frame rate which is why it feels smoother.

Reply 16 of 16, by tauro

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swaaye wrote on 2023-08-05, 15:52:

3dfx cards work very well with K6 systems. This is especially true if a game offers Glide support as that is the most efficient option and so you get the most from your CPU. It also translates into higher minimum frame rate which is why it feels smoother.

That makes a lot of sense, the higher minimum frame rate with the Voodoo3. I have yet to test many games since I'm not a "3D gamer", if you'll pardon the expression. I didn't have 3D card back in the day and all my experience is pretty much 2D, so that's a world awaiting to be explored for me.

Sphere478 wrote on 2023-08-04, 17:01:

I’m proud to say I got that out of context before googling it haha.

Latin, first do no harm. Very good motto for retro activities as well as healthcare! :p

Sometimes you have to use some part as a donor, but it's "for science" 😉
On the other hand if the patient (hardware) dies in the process, you better learn from your failure and don't repeat it.
Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other. -Benjamin Franklin