First post, by 386SX
I'm testing both these cards on a Pentium III 500Mhz, 128MB PC100, i440BX, SB Vibra 16VX, Win 98 etc.. and I can say that thinking to be back in the 1997/98 I'd have been quite "happy" having these as first 3D accelerators. I had the S3 Trio3D in the late 98 and it was quite bad mostly cause I had not knowledges or sources to get newer drivers, whatever it might have changed, and I remember a friend having the Rage IIC 4MB.
Honestly, even I know testing these cards with much polished drivers (late for the Rage Pro Turbo indeed) I am quite impressed! The Rage Pro Turbo as already said gives a much better rendering accuracy than the Riva 128 imho tested in the ZX AGP version which had good drivers support with latest version but the rendering resulted as we all know, sometimes not acceptable (Half Life both D3D or OGL while I do appreciate the tweaking options given by the control panel and I sort of like its unique rendering) and on a features level the Rage Pro Turbo seems rendered most Dx6/7 early games I was used to play almost correctly and with acceptable frame rates (3DMark runs even Bump Mapping first test which I wasn't expecting).
As said it might not be fair to test 2002 drivers on a 1998 card but OpenGL support seems very good for such old solution. Adding to that it had no heatsink, a good quality PCB, a good multimedia engine with Motion Compensation (and iDCT in some versions) I wish I had that one in the K6-2 back in its days more than the V3 2000 I had to buy later considering the price difference at its release.
About the Rage IIC I know many might think I've tested the wrong video chip 😁 but considered all with latest drivers (I'm trying some .50xx drivers dated 1998) it's impressive to say the least to see most games rendering accurated while with slow fps of course but both 3DMark99 and 2000 renders mostly ok (not the last water scene for the IIC), Half Life runs incredibly well in D3D, Thief 1 runs @ 400x300 accelerated at playable frame rate without any gfx errors.. I know it doesn't have OpenGL but accepting slow frame rate it's a huge improvement over the previously tested Virge/DX 4MB PCI with latest drivers, not even close. I can't even understand how it can run Thief II which isn't an easy game to render in many cards at 400x300 and incredibly it doesn't show the shadow/lights problems of the Rage Pro. Might be mitigated by the low resolutions but it's almost playable. I remember many discussions about it but on the S3 side and the Trio3D things weren't even close to this result.
What's you opinion?