VOGONS


First post, by Bimmy

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Hey guys,

I apologize in advance if this has been discussed elsewhere on the forum, I did a quick search but couldn't quite find what I was looking for.

I'm doing a retro build with the following;

Asus P3V4X (VIA Apollo Pro 133A)
Coppermine P3 733mhz 133mhz fsb
4x256mb of PC133 SDRAM
AWE64 Gold

Currently it's paired with a 32mb TNT2 M64, but I would like to upgrade it to play some later generation windows 98 titles as well.

I was looking at some of my options on the local used markets and it seems I don't have a lot of choice when it comes to 3dfx cards (they must not have been so popular here..?) so I've been looking at some later generation windows 98 cards such as the Radeon 9700-9800 and possibly agp versions of the x800 since that's the latest that was supported by windows 98 from what I've read.

Do any of these have notable issues with 'most' DOS games? I'm willing to sacrifice a bit of compatibility with some really old DOS titles that rely on certain hardware tricks from older generation cards, in favor of better performance in many later titles.

I used the 9800pro myself back in the day but that was already way past the DOS era, so I do not have much recollection of how it fared in DOS titles.

I'm open to other suggestions however!

Reply 2 of 17, by Tiido

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Only problem I have ever had with Radeons in DOS are Keen games sometimes tearing, but that I get with most other cards also. Pretty much everything I have tried works fine and performance is significantly higher than most other cards I have tried, image quality pretty much always beats anything else out there (except maybe some Matrox cards).
In Windows you'll probably have less issues than with nVidia cards, when you must use drivers past the 4x.xx version since those in my experience are full of problems. PCI-E X600 in my beefiest 9x machine works without any problems, on some other machines I have there's X850xT PE, 9600XT, Radeon 7000VE, Rage3D II and VLB Mach32 in use and all of them work without issues in similar fashion, no strange instability, no image quality problems, no issues in DOS or Windows games. I certainly have never seen the worthless part as far as DOS stuff goes that I see being said very often in this part of the internet.

T-04YBSC, a new YMF71x based sound card & Official VOGONS thread about it
Newly made 4MB 60ns 30pin SIMMs ~
mida sa loed ? nagunii aru ei saa 😜

Reply 3 of 17, by kolderman

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They don't support table fog and paletted textures, there is nothing remarkable about image quality compared to other cards from same year, they don't support Glide, and they die hard and fast. I am not saying they are bad in every scenario, just there are much better options for overall win98/dos gaming.

Reply 4 of 17, by Tiido

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VGA output is noticably blurry on all my nvidia cards (something from every generation pretty much) though removal of some components can fix it on most cards, I even had to a modification on a GTX690 to get the VGA output look ok at high resolutions (i.e stuff beyond 1600x1200). DVI output scaling always looks worse and seems not to work with all monitors on the older cards. I haven't seen any difference in death rates between the two as far as pre PCI-E cards go, higher powered cards die equally well on both sides when cooling maintenance in being neglected or someone goes overclocking happy...
I suppose I haven't played (or care about) the games where the table fog and paletted textures support is necessary, I don't play a whole lot outside FPS type games on PC 3D stuff and even then not a whole lot of what is out there, so perhaps on Windows things can be not so good. For DOS the cards are definitely adequate, I don't see any reason for the hate that seems to go around.

T-04YBSC, a new YMF71x based sound card & Official VOGONS thread about it
Newly made 4MB 60ns 30pin SIMMs ~
mida sa loed ? nagunii aru ei saa 😜

Reply 5 of 17, by gdjacobs

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kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 02:57:

Radeons are worthless Win98/DOS cards.

I guess I'd better take my 8500LE out of my Win98 rig as it's useless, apparently.

All hail the Great Capacitor Brand Finder

Reply 6 of 17, by kolderman

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Tiido wrote on 2020-05-13, 04:28:

VGA output is noticably blurry on all my nvidia cards (something from every generation pretty much) though removal of some components can fix it on most cards, I even had to a modification on a GTX690 to get the VGA output look ok at high resolutions (i.e stuff beyond 1600x1200). DVI output scaling always looks worse and seems not to work with all monitors on the older cards. I haven't seen any difference in death rates between the two as far as pre PCI-E cards go, higher powered cards die equally well on both sides when cooling maintenance in being neglected or someone goes overclocking happy...
I suppose I haven't played (or care about) the games where the table fog and paletted textures support is necessary, I don't play a whole lot outside FPS type games on PC 3D stuff and even then not a whole lot of what is out there, so perhaps on Windows things can be not so good. For DOS the cards are definitely adequate, I don't see any reason for the hate that seems to go around.

Why are we talking about pcie cards? That is not relevant to win98, and yes radeons from HD era onwards are mostly fine. They might be adequate for DOS, but so is an s3 virge. The point is they excel at nothing, have no special features, lack other certain features, and there are just better options for ever use case.

Reply 7 of 17, by kolderman

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gdjacobs wrote on 2020-05-13, 04:35:
kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 02:57:

Radeons are worthless Win98/DOS cards.

I guess I'd better take my 8500LE out of my Win98 rig as it's useless, apparently.

Well if you tried to play ff7, a win95/98 game, it would be.

Reply 8 of 17, by Bimmy

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Thank you for your replies!

This is going to be a tough choice haha, another contender; the Ti4200 seems to support the tablefog and paletted textures but lacks the DirectX 9 support ;p

Offtopic;

kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 04:44:

Well if you tried to play ff7, a win95/98 game, it would be.

That was a bad looking 3d game even for its time, I always thought they should have stuck with 2D until they could have done a proper full 3D one. No loss there, also probably better on an actual Playstation but I digress.

Last edited by Bimmy on 2020-05-13, 05:09. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 9 of 17, by gdjacobs

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kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 04:44:

Well if you tried to play ff7, a win95/98 game, it would be.

I don't, but apparently it's not so futile.
Final Fantasy 7 PC ( FF7 , FF7PC ) ,ATI Radeon cards in WinXP (how to make them friendly!)

All hail the Great Capacitor Brand Finder

Reply 10 of 17, by kolderman

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Bimmy wrote on 2020-05-13, 05:04:

This is going to be a tough choice haha, another contender; the Ti4200 seems to support the tablefog and paletted textures but lacks the DirectX 9 support ;p

Sigh.

Reply 11 of 17, by dr.zeissler

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There is a break in Dos-Compatibility from the R9200 to the 9600er series. (noticed in qv 1.03 while loading images with vesa support (the screenbuffer is not cleared while switching resolutions in different pictures)

Retro-Gamer 😀PowerMac 6100-66/Houdini 486/66 - G4 Cube 450/Rage128pro OS9.0.1 - Macintosh LC/Apple IIe Card OS6.0.8 - Acorn A4000 Archimedes - Unisys CWD 486/66 + Aztech Washington

Reply 12 of 17, by Bimmy

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kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 05:44:
Bimmy wrote on 2020-05-13, 05:04:

This is going to be a tough choice haha, another contender; the Ti4200 seems to support the tablefog and paletted textures but lacks the DirectX 9 support ;p

Sigh.

Not sure if you're trolling or what exactly is up with your elitist and snobby way of commenting on this topic.
If you don't have anything useful to add to the discussion anymore, please just don't bother at all.

dr.zeissler wrote on 2020-05-13, 06:20:

There is a break in Dos-Compatibility from the R9200 to the 9600er series. (noticed in qv 1.03 while loading images with vesa support (the screenbuffer is not cleared while switching resolutions in different pictures)

Noted! I suppose this era is really full of weird compatibility issues and there really is no "one" solution for it all...

On another note, does that mean the 97/9800 does not suffer from this issue?

Reply 13 of 17, by Srandista

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kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 04:44:
gdjacobs wrote on 2020-05-13, 04:35:
kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 02:57:

Radeons are worthless Win98/DOS cards.

I guess I'd better take my 8500LE out of my Win98 rig as it's useless, apparently.

Well if you tried to play ff7, a win95/98 game, it would be.

That's exactly one game. I would assume, that there were more games released under Win98. All of these other games have some problems on Radeons, since you're saying that all Radeons are worthless for Win98?

Socket 775 - ASRock 4CoreDual-VSTA, Pentium E6500K, 4GB RAM, Radeon 9500@9700, ESS Solo-1, Win 98/XP
Socket A - ASRock K7S41GX, AMD Athlon XP 3000+, 512MB RAM, GeForce4 Ti4200, SB Live, Win 98

Reply 14 of 17, by Tiido

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kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 04:43:

Why are we talking about pcie cards? That is not relevant to win98, and yes radeons from HD era onwards are mostly fine. They might be adequate for DOS, but so is an s3 virge. The point is they excel at nothing, have no special features, lack other certain features, and there are just better options for ever use case.

I said "pre PCI-E" not "PCI-E".
I really cannot agree with the excel at nothing and whatnot, sure there can be better cards at some stuff but these other cards are also not great at everything, maybe only at few more things but they certainly are not some all rounders (no such card seems to exist, there always are tradeoffs and card juggling or dedicated hardware setups are necessary).
My personal experience shows that in case of nvidia the drivers are awful and I go as far as saying that Win9x instability is blamed on nvidia's and creative's shitty drivers. Not a single daily driver machine I have had while Win98 was still a thing (or on its way out more than a decade ago) or retro machines built recently have been completely stable except with really old drivers, while same hardware with ATI using any driver version or hardware supported on 9x never crashes or does other oddities, especially when you also try to do DOS things from within Windows. Maybe I have been tremendously unlucky, but my experience with nvidia+9x has been mostly disaster (Luck turned with XP and newer though, except until hardware death on the infamous lines with manufacturing flaws). There's no reason to dismiss the ATI cards, use what you got and see about others when any problem appear.

T-04YBSC, a new YMF71x based sound card & Official VOGONS thread about it
Newly made 4MB 60ns 30pin SIMMs ~
mida sa loed ? nagunii aru ei saa 😜

Reply 15 of 17, by Bimmy

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Tiido wrote on 2020-05-13, 07:14:
I said "pre PCI-E" not "PCI-E". I really cannot agree with the excel at nothing and whatnot, sure there can be better cards at s […]
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kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 04:43:

Why are we talking about pcie cards? That is not relevant to win98, and yes radeons from HD era onwards are mostly fine. They might be adequate for DOS, but so is an s3 virge. The point is they excel at nothing, have no special features, lack other certain features, and there are just better options for ever use case.

I said "pre PCI-E" not "PCI-E".
I really cannot agree with the excel at nothing and whatnot, sure there can be better cards at some stuff but these other cards are also not great at everything, maybe only at few more things but they certainly are not some all rounders (no such card seems to exist, there always are tradeoffs and card juggling or dedicated hardware setups are necessary).
My personal experience shows that in case of nvidia the drivers are awful and I go as far as saying that Win9x instability is blamed on nvidia's and creative's shitty drivers. Not a single daily driver machine I have had while Win98 was still a thing (or on its way out more than a decade ago) or retro machines built recently have been completely stable except with really old drivers, while same hardware with ATI using any driver version or hardware supported on 9x never crashes or does other oddities, especially when you also try to do DOS things from within Windows. Maybe I have been tremendously unlucky, but my experience with nvidia+9x has been mostly disaster (Luck turned with XP and newer though, except until hardware death on the infamous lines with manufacturing flaws). There's no reason to dismiss the ATI cards, use what you got and see about others when any problem appear.

Thank you for the comment! Guess I'll have to try it out for myself! Luckily these generation cards can be had fairly cheaply these days. Not much "3dfx premiums" going on here :p

Reply 16 of 17, by dr.zeissler

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Bimmy wrote on 2020-05-13, 06:22:
Not sure if you're trolling or what exactly is up with your elitist and snobby way of commenting on this topic. If you don't ha […]
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kolderman wrote on 2020-05-13, 05:44:
Bimmy wrote on 2020-05-13, 05:04:

This is going to be a tough choice haha, another contender; the Ti4200 seems to support the tablefog and paletted textures but lacks the DirectX 9 support ;p

Sigh.

Not sure if you're trolling or what exactly is up with your elitist and snobby way of commenting on this topic.
If you don't have anything useful to add to the discussion anymore, please just don't bother at all.

dr.zeissler wrote on 2020-05-13, 06:20:

There is a break in Dos-Compatibility from the R9200 to the 9600er series. (noticed in qv 1.03 while loading images with vesa support (the screenbuffer is not cleared while switching resolutions in different pictures)

Noted! I suppose this era is really full of weird compatibility issues and there really is no "one" solution for it all...

On another note, does that mean the 97/9800 does not suffer from this issue?

as far as I tested this it's 9600+, which means 9800+ x800+ x1800+ etc.

Retro-Gamer 😀PowerMac 6100-66/Houdini 486/66 - G4 Cube 450/Rage128pro OS9.0.1 - Macintosh LC/Apple IIe Card OS6.0.8 - Acorn A4000 Archimedes - Unisys CWD 486/66 + Aztech Washington

Reply 17 of 17, by dr.zeissler

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TableFog an Palettized Textures are up to Rage AFAIK, which means Radeon 7xxxx and upwards it's broken, BUT some features can be reactivated with the rage/radeon-tweaker-tool, which also runs on older radeon-cards.

other thing is s3tc. the radeon 7000 supports UT99 directly where R92xxx does require an updated engine/driver for the unreal/ut games.
looks like this: https://www.flickr.com/photos/94839221@N05/al … 157702928362631

Retro-Gamer 😀PowerMac 6100-66/Houdini 486/66 - G4 Cube 450/Rage128pro OS9.0.1 - Macintosh LC/Apple IIe Card OS6.0.8 - Acorn A4000 Archimedes - Unisys CWD 486/66 + Aztech Washington