VOGONS


First post, by C0deHunter

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My local retro PC shop has the following cards for sale ($19 per card):

- DIAMOND SpeedStar Pro SE (PCI)

- TRIDENT TGUI9680-1 - [ Trident ver. X5.5] (PCI)

- S3 Trio64V+™ (PCI)

- S3 ViRGE/DX™ ONBOARD™ Q5E4BB (PCI)

Here are the images of the 4 cards:
https://flic.kr/s/aHsmMhwhXp

My goal:

- I am planning to replace my existing Rage Fury Pro / Xpert 2000 Pro, as I have this weird 'banding'/dithering issue in Windows 98SE environment, and I simply would like to replace it with an "older" video card.

- To play mostly DOS games (under "pure" DOS mode), and also to play a few select Windows based games (Quake, Quake II, HeXen II, Heretic II, SiN, Unreal) all in software mode (don't plan to use any 3D acceleration, 320x240 resolution mostly!)

- I understand that my PIII is fast for some DOS games, but using SetMUL, I have been able to successfully install and run most of my favorite DOS games however.

- My system specs are noted in my signature at the bottom of my post here.

QUESTION:
1) Which card do you recommend, or should I simply get them all, to experiment?
2) Can I find their Win98SE drivers easily here on VOGONS?

Thanks in advance!

Last edited by Stiletto on 2020-03-31, 06:16. Edited 1 time in total.

PIII-800E | Abit BH-6 | Rage 128 Pro Video Card | 256MB SD-RAM PC100 | AWE64 Gold | Sound Canvas 55 MKII | SoftMPU | 2X SanDisk (2004) 2GB CF as C:\ (Win98SE OS) and D:\ (DOS Games) | Windows 98SE (using PhilComputerLabs', *pure* DOS option)

Reply 1 of 12, by RayeR

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I would take one with VESA VBE 2.0 - should be on S3 Virge and Trio64. But even that quality of VESA BIOS implementation may vary from manufacturer to manufacturer - better try with some problematic games and see.
All this cards should have drivers for Win9X/NT/2K and shouldn't be problem to google it.

Gigabyte GA-P67-DS3-B3, Core i7-2600K @4,5GHz, 4GB DDR3, 128GB SSD, GTX670(GF7900GT), SB Audigy + YMF724F + DreamBlaster combo

Reply 2 of 12, by Horun

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C0deHunter wrote on 2020-03-30, 21:35:
My local retro PC shop has the following cards for sale ($19 per card): […]
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My local retro PC shop has the following cards for sale ($19 per card):

- DIAMOND SpeedStar Pro SE (PCI)

- TRIDENT TGUI9680-1 - [ Trident ver. X5.5] (PCI)

- S3 Trio64V+™ (PCI)

- S3 ViRGE/DX™ ONBOARD™ Q5E4BB (PCI)

Here are the images of the 4 cards:
https://flic.kr/s/aHsmMhwhXp

My goal:

- I am planning to replace my existing Rage Fury Pro / Xpert 2000 Pro, as I have this weird 'banding'/dithering issue in Windows 98SE environment, and I simply would like to replace it with an "older" video card.

- To play mostly DOS games (under "pure" DOS mode), and also to play a few select Windows based games (Quake, Quake II, HeXen II, Heretic II, SiN, Unreal) all in software mode (don't plan to use any 3D acceleration, 320x240 resolution mostly!)

- I understand that my PIII is fast for some DOS games, but using SetMUL, I have been able to successfully install and run most of my favorite DOS games however.

- My system specs are noted in my signature at the bottom of my post here.

QUESTION:
1) Which card do you recommend, or should I simply get them all, to experiment?
2) Can I find their Win98SE drivers easily here on VOGONS?

Thanks in advance!

I would buy the two S3 cards and maybe the Trident. Have enough Cirrus chip cards to last a lifetime 😀

Hate posting a reply and have to edit it because it made no sense 😁 First computer was an IBM 3270 workstation with CGA monitor. 🤣 Second computer a 286 12Mhz with real IDE drive ! After that came 386, 486, Pentium, P.Pro and everything after....

Reply 3 of 12, by zyga64

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Only Virge have already 2MB (expandable to 4MB) so this is best choice for windows.

1) VLSI SCAMP /286@20 /4MB /TVGA9000C /CMI8330
2) i420EX /486DX33 /16MB /TGUI9440 /YMF718+GUS
3) i430HX /P233MMX /64MB /VirgeDX+3DFX /YMF701
4) i440BX /P II 400 /256MB /MX440SE /SBLive!+Vibra16s
5) i865G /E5800 /2GB /Ti4200 /YMF724

Reply 4 of 12, by JoeCorrado

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Horun wrote on 2020-03-31, 01:19:

I would buy the two S3 cards and maybe the Trident. Have enough Cirrus chip cards to last a lifetime 😀

So you would recommend that he go with the CL card? 😀

-- Regards, Joe

Expect out of life, that which you put into it.

Reply 5 of 12, by paulo_becas

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S3 cards would be my choice because they are the more compatible out there

AMD Am486/Am5x86-P75 DX5 133 Mhz-64Mb Ram
S3 Trio 64V2DX 2 Mb
Soundblaster AWE64 Gold+Music Quest+MT-32+MU80
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1.44 3,5 Epson Drive+1.2 5,25 Mitsumi drive+Iomega Zip 256Mb
8gb HDD,4Gb CF HDD
HP CDRW 9200
http://jp-retro.blogspot.com

Reply 6 of 12, by RacoonRider

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S3 would be nice and compatible. However, you have to understand that Trio64 and Virge were capable chipsets sold in immense quantities for a very low price. There are very nice branded cards out there (Diamond Stealth64 comes to mind), there are cards from long-forgotten small companies that did their job well and then there are cards that aimed at the lowest price point. I'm from Russia, so I have seen a lot of the later.

My point is, the chipset is nice and compatible, but the cards themselves might not live up to your expectations in terms of picture quality if you're into that thing. In that regard, I would get the SpeedStar Pro. It should at least have quality output.

Reply 7 of 12, by ShovelKnight

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S3 Virge/DX with 4 MB of video RAM is a nice card.

4 MB of video RAM would allow you to run Windows 98 desktop at 1280x1024 at 24-bit colour, it's also fast and very compatible with DOS games.

Reply 9 of 12, by zyga64

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RacoonRider wrote on 2020-03-31, 14:54:

My point is, the chipset is nice and compatible, but the cards themselves might not live up to your expectations in terms of picture quality if you're into that thing. In that regard, I would get the SpeedStar Pro. It should at least have quality output.

You may easily improve picture quality for no-name S3 card if you know how to solder.
Just remove capacitors and short inductors (chokes) on all three R,G,B lines.
S3 Virge GX 385 Video Noise Recap?

I did this for S3 Virge and S3 Trio64+ and I'm satisfied with the result. Now 1280x1024 on LCD is possible (clear and sharp).

1) VLSI SCAMP /286@20 /4MB /TVGA9000C /CMI8330
2) i420EX /486DX33 /16MB /TGUI9440 /YMF718+GUS
3) i430HX /P233MMX /64MB /VirgeDX+3DFX /YMF701
4) i440BX /P II 400 /256MB /MX440SE /SBLive!+Vibra16s
5) i865G /E5800 /2GB /Ti4200 /YMF724

Reply 10 of 12, by RacoonRider

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zyga64 wrote on 2020-03-31, 19:15:
You may easily improve picture quality for no-name S3 card if you know how to solder. Just remove capacitors and short inductor […]
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RacoonRider wrote on 2020-03-31, 14:54:

My point is, the chipset is nice and compatible, but the cards themselves might not live up to your expectations in terms of picture quality if you're into that thing. In that regard, I would get the SpeedStar Pro. It should at least have quality output.

You may easily improve picture quality for no-name S3 card if you know how to solder.
Just remove capacitors and short inductors (chokes) on all three R,G,B lines.
S3 Virge GX 385 Video Noise Recap?

I did this for S3 Virge and S3 Trio64+ and I'm satisfied with the result. Now 1280x1024 on LCD is possible (clear and sharp).

Good point. I might do it on one of those cards someday. Currently though, I have more quality PCI cards than systems that need them - I used to hoard stuff and now I refuse to let it go 😀 Anyway, thank you for your input!

Reply 11 of 12, by SodaSuccubus

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S3 Verge was essentially the next generation after the Trio64 line, and retains its excellent compatibility! Might not be on Matrox levels in the image quality department though.

You can find tools like S3VBE and S3 Speed Up on Vogons Drivers Archive that can give both it and the Trio64 an boost in VESA modes too.

Why not just pickup both? You can never have enough S3 around when compatibility is a must 😀

Reply 12 of 12, by foil_fresh

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my pci voodoo banshee died, and i ordered a riva 128 to fill the gap on my k6-2 pc. during the wait for the new card to arrive, i decided to use a spare s3 trio 3d/2x (2mb) for my dos games in the meantime. didnt run into any issues with any 2d games, and even ran Dark Forces 2 in D3D 400x300 res , at a slightly reasonable 25~ fps. i'll use it properly one day in a pentium mmx 166 build with either win95 or win3.11 for laughs.

the control panel in win98 was working (not that many features tho) and caused no instability. pretty decent for the job. i'd guess that the virge you listed should be just as compatible (but might not have the 3d capability?) and can be upgraded with socket ram too.