VOGONS


8 vs 12mb Voodoo 2 performance

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First post, by SodaSuccubus

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Legit curious why we don't see more 8 vs 12mb V2 comparisons out there. Especially in SLI.
I keep hearing about "the horrors!" of 2mb texture memory vs 4 in the V2-12 but iv always questioned how big of a deal it really is.

The only good comparison of the two i could find was this one video by 3DFX_Aslinger
https://youtu.be/0dFnDdBqNgY
Near the end you'l notice the 8mb is only roughly 5-10 fps behind the 12mb. Which makes sense and in games like Quake1/2 my V2 8mb is blazing along on par with 12mb setups, although other games like Half-Life seem to fair much worse in comparison.

I know most people would ideally pickup a 12mb card anyway, but they just seem to be getting less frequent and more expensive as time goes on. Meanwhile 8mb cards seem to be semi-commonly available, and for a cheaper price t00.

So whats the deal? We all know more texmem is better in the longrun, but a V2 is a V2. Why does everyon like to crap on the 8mb model like its the devil?

...i might be rooting for my card here 😜

Reply 1 of 27, by RaverX

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SodaSuccubus wrote on 2020-03-14, 23:38:

I know most people would ideally pickup a 12mb card anyway, but they just seem to be getting less frequent and more expensive as time goes on. Meanwhile 8mb cards seem to be semi-commonly available, and for a cheaper price t00.

Where? Ebay, other site? Or where do you live? In the last years I haven't found V2 cards, ok, I found a few from time to time, but 12 mb versions seems to much more common. I own quite a few V2 cards (more than 100) and only a few have 8 mb, most are 12 mb.

Reply 2 of 27, by SodaSuccubus

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RaverX wrote on 2020-03-15, 00:39:
SodaSuccubus wrote on 2020-03-14, 23:38:

I know most people would ideally pickup a 12mb card anyway, but they just seem to be getting less frequent and more expensive as time goes on. Meanwhile 8mb cards seem to be semi-commonly available, and for a cheaper price t00.

Where? Ebay, other site? Or where do you live? In the last years I haven't found V2 cards, ok, I found a few from time to time, but 12 mb versions seems to much more common. I own quite a few V2 cards (more than 100) and only a few have 8 mb, most are 12 mb.

Ebay Canada, yeah. I watch it semi daily out of deal hunting and iv been seeing alot more 8mb cards lately. Some occasional okay-ish deals on them too.

There's allways more then a few 12mb cards on there aswell, but their generally more expensive here.
But our dollar sucks right now so im sure that doesn't help 😜

Reply 3 of 27, by derSammler

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What he says is true for Germany as well. 8 MB V2 cards are all around and cheap. I have three on spare which I just got incidentally.

The 8 MB cards are also very easy to upgrade to 12 MB. All you need to do is to add the additional RAM chips. Nothing else required.

Reply 6 of 27, by mpe

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derSammler wrote on 2020-03-15, 18:16:

No, frame buffer is always 4 MB. 12 MB cards have 8 MB for textures.

Higher resolution requires SLI, no matter if 8 or 12 MB.

Thanks. I thought it was the other way around.

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Reply 7 of 27, by CoffeeOne

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RaverX wrote on 2020-03-15, 00:39:

I own quite a few V2 cards (more than 100)

My English is not very good, therefore I did not know, that "quite a few" means more than 100.

Last edited by Stiletto on 2020-03-15, 22:06. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 8 of 27, by kolderman

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RaverX wrote on 2020-03-15, 00:39:
SodaSuccubus wrote on 2020-03-14, 23:38:

I know most people would ideally pickup a 12mb card anyway, but they just seem to be getting less frequent and more expensive as time goes on. Meanwhile 8mb cards seem to be semi-commonly available, and for a cheaper price t00.

Where? Ebay, other site? Or where do you live? In the last years I haven't found V2 cards, ok, I found a few from time to time, but 12 mb versions seems to much more common. I own quite a few V2 cards (more than 100) and only a few have 8 mb, most are 12 mb.

Now that's hoarding!

Reply 9 of 27, by RaverX

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It's not hoarding, it's 17 years of collecting (I've started in 2003). Hoarding is when you grab and hold junk (Geforce 4 MX440, Radeon 9200SE, etc). That's what I think.

Anyway, back on topic, games from 97 and early 98 will probably run the same on a V2 with 8 mb and on a V2 with 12 mb. Newer games (late 98 and newer) will probably have hard times with V2 8mb.
But if you want to use it for those games you probably should go for V3 3000 (if you really want glide games). Or Riva TNT2 (not M64) if you want D3D games or OpenGL games (some OpenGL games will still run better on 3dfx).
V2 (and V1) are good for early games (DOS games patched to support glide), in those games it won't matter if V2 is 8 MB or 12 MB.

Reply 10 of 27, by SodaSuccubus

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RaverX wrote on 2020-03-15, 22:41:

Anyway, back on topic, games from 97 and early 98 will probably run the same on a V2 with 8 mb and on a V2 with 12 mb. Newer games (late 98 and newer) will probably have hard times with V2 8mb

Which makes me curious has to how much 8mb SLI and a fast (800mhz +) processor could make up for that.

Of course, it' be more practical to just get a V3. But a V3 doesn't have the same full-feeling a nice pair of SLI V2's does! 😀

Reply 11 of 27, by RaverX

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SodaSuccubus wrote on 2020-03-16, 00:17:

Which makes me curious has to how much 8mb SLI and a fast (800mhz +) processor could make up for that.

Of course, it' be more practical to just get a V3. But a V3 doesn't have the same full-feeling a nice pair of SLI V2's does! 😀

I'm not sure what you want, but for me it just doesn't feel right, I'll tell you why:
1. A fast cpu (800 mhz+) will make V2 overheat (especially in sli), I'd recommend cooling them, a good fan blowing from the side does wonders
2. 800 mhz+ cpu is simply not period correct for v2 sli, I wouldn't have a "full feeling" with such setup, again, it just doesn't feel right, at least not for me
3. V2 8 MB sli it's again a bit awkard, 8 MB was the "cheaper" alternative, going for sli with such cards it's a bit weird.
Sure, you can do it, a lot of people did that with much cheaper cards (6600GT in SLI was quite popular). But again, where' the "full-feeling"?

It's just what I think, maybe you have your own goal, but I don't see it... You don't want to be "practical" and go for a V3, you want the feel of something older but over the top for that period (I assume), yet you don't go all the way...

Reply 12 of 27, by SodaSuccubus

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RaverX wrote on 2020-03-16, 00:33:
I'm not sure what you want, but for me it just doesn't feel right, I'll tell you why: 1. A fast cpu (800 mhz+) will make V2 over […]
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SodaSuccubus wrote on 2020-03-16, 00:17:

Which makes me curious has to how much 8mb SLI and a fast (800mhz +) processor could make up for that.

Of course, it' be more practical to just get a V3. But a V3 doesn't have the same full-feeling a nice pair of SLI V2's does! 😀

I'm not sure what you want, but for me it just doesn't feel right, I'll tell you why:
1. A fast cpu (800 mhz+) will make V2 overheat (especially in sli), I'd recommend cooling them, a good fan blowing from the side does wonders
2. 800 mhz+ cpu is simply not period correct for v2 sli, I wouldn't have a "full feeling" with such setup, again, it just doesn't feel right, at least not for me
3. V2 8 MB sli it's again a bit awkard, 8 MB was the "cheaper" alternative, going for sli with such cards it's a bit weird.
Sure, you can do it, a lot of people did that with much cheaper cards (6600GT in SLI was quite popular). But again, where' the "full-feeling"?

It's just what I think, maybe you have your own goal, but I don't see it... You don't want to be "practical" and go for a V3, you want the feel of something older but over the top for that period (I assume), yet you don't go all the way...

I can answer that 😁
I don't have 12mb V2's simply because i just didn't feel like paying the inflated prices for a pair online. I didn't get a V3 because i managed to get a really good deal on 2 8mb V2s prior and i just don't have anymore money to throw at cards right now.

I love fast Pentium 3s for their performance, and i love the feeling of having that SLI dream powering games inside. Its just so weird and curious, to me.
Of course, i am interested in how much im loosing in performance vs 12mbs and a V3. But at the end of the day im still happy with my 8mb set. I'l defiantly be on the lookout for a nice V3 to throw in there if i change my mind 😀

This build as is isn't really about being practical or period correct. Its just kinda an fun amalgamation of parts from the 97-late 99 period that fascinate me 😁

Reply 13 of 27, by leileilol

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A SLI 8MB V2 won't compensate for the swapping penalties, it'll make it worse rather since the swapping will end up with double the PCI transfer and still effectively be a 2MB texmem card for most not-multitextured games.

And yeah, back in 98 the 8mb V2 was considered an undesirable odd duck as some Voodoo Graphics prices were getting cuts ($99 Pure3D 6mb especially) and offered better performance/value than 8MB V2s then.

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Reply 14 of 27, by derSammler

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RaverX wrote on 2020-03-15, 22:41:

It's not hoarding, it's 17 years of collecting (I've started in 2003). Hoarding is when you grab and hold junk (Geforce 4 MX440, Radeon 9200SE, etc). That's what I think.

No, it is hoarding. Hoarding is having way more of something than you ever use or need and still trying to get more. Seriously, having 100 Voodoo 2 cards is sick. And I mean that literally. It's not collecting and leaves many people wanting a single Voodoo 2 with emtpy hands. So it's selfish, too.

Also, what argument is that to say it would only be hoarding when the cards were e.g. Geforce 4 MX440? You may like 3dfx, but a Geforce 4 MX440 beats a Voodoo2 in every respect.

Reply 15 of 27, by RaverX

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I really didn't expect that on this forum, I thought we are all smart people with a passion for old hardware.
Collecting has nothing to do with "more than you need". You collect items for collection, not to use them. Some do that with super expensive cars, if they can afford.
As for leaving people wanting a Voodoo2 empty handed, are you serious? I've got the cards way back, when there are a lot of them and very cheap, most of them for prices between 5 and 10 euros, some even cheaper, a few (boxed one) a bit more expensive.

And one more thing, every card is special and unique. I know that for a lot of guys a Voodoo2 is a Voodoo2, but there are a lot of manufacturers, revisions, each card is slightly different, even if it might look the same, it might have a different memory type, different SMD color, different PCB date, etc.

Regarding the MX440 argument, is simple, really. MX440 was a low end mainstream card, affordable, there are tons of them. They weren't revolutionary, even worse, they were a downgrade from a GF3 (lack of pixel shader). But the fact that there are so many available makes them a "hoarding" item from my perspective, it's so easy to get a lot of them, even now. I don't say not to collect them, but from my perspective that's more close to what hoarding is than collecting is.

So, yeah, if you like Nvidia and MX440, by all means, get them, it's nothing wrong with that, if you really think they are cool, then I apologize for the associating them with hoarding, everyone should collect what he likes if he likes collecting. Hoarding is when you can't stop getting stuff, no matter how much value it has for you.

I hope I made myself clear.

Reply 16 of 27, by CoffeeOne

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RaverX wrote on 2020-03-16, 09:58:
I really didn't expect that on this forum, I thought we are all smart people with a passion for old hardware. Collecting has not […]
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I really didn't expect that on this forum, I thought we are all smart people with a passion for old hardware.
Collecting has nothing to do with "more than you need". You collect items for collection, not to use them. Some do that with super expensive cars, if they can afford.
As for leaving people wanting a Voodoo2 empty handed, are you serious? I've got the cards way back, when there are a lot of them and very cheap, most of them for prices between 5 and 10 euros, some even cheaper, a few (boxed one) a bit more expensive.

And one more thing, every card is special and unique. I know that for a lot of guys a Voodoo2 is a Voodoo2, but there are a lot of manufacturers, revisions, each card is slightly different, even if it might look the same, it might have a different memory type, different SMD color, different PCB date, etc.

Regarding the MX440 argument, is simple, really. MX440 was a low end mainstream card, affordable, there are tons of them. They weren't revolutionary, even worse, they were a downgrade from a GF3 (lack of pixel shader). But the fact that there are so many available makes them a "hoarding" item from my perspective, it's so easy to get a lot of them, even now. I don't say not to collect them, but from my perspective that's more close to what hoarding is than collecting is.

So, yeah, if you like Nvidia and MX440, by all means, get them, it's nothing wrong with that, if you really think they are cool, then I apologize for the associating them with hoarding, everyone should collect what he likes if he likes collecting. Hoarding is when you can't stop getting stuff, no matter how much value it has for you.

I hope I made myself clear.

I agree, it's ok for most people in this forum, if you decide to "hoard" Voodoo2 cards.

I was only frightened, that you said quite a few cards.
So when you will write next time, "I have a big lot of the xyz card", I guess it's in the thousands then.

Reply 17 of 27, by Unknown_K

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Any card somebody was dumping in 2003 would have ended up in the trash if somebody didn't save it (this was even before the e-waste boom a decade ago making things worse). To complain about pricing and availability now is kind of funny when there would be no supply if somebody had not saved them a decade or more ago when nobody cared. Eventually the hoards will end up in collectors hands or in the trash where they were headed to back then anyway.

Now if you outbid everybody today for every 3dfx voodoo 2 just to hoard them and drive the price up that's a different story.

I think to appreciate all the top end cards you need to experience using the mid and low level cards of the era, and to do that you need to save a few of them. Same goes with off brand sound cards. I tend to snag a few examples of everything while collecting over the ages.

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Reply 18 of 27, by Parni

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Coming back to the initial question of this thread, in what games can you really see a performance difference between the 8mb and 12mb versions, is Quake3 the only game where there is an upside to have a 12mb version???

Reply 19 of 27, by Joseph_Joestar

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Parni wrote on 2022-08-14, 06:11:

Coming back to the initial question of this thread, in what games can you really see a performance difference between the 8mb and 12mb versions, is Quake3 the only game where there is an upside to have a 12mb version???

I vaguely remember people saying that Diablo 2 is quite demanding on Voodoo 2 cards. Not sure whether the amount of memory affects it or not. Take this with a grain of salt though, since I don't have a Voodoo 2, and I'm just going from what I read on some gaming forums back in the day.

However, I do own a Voodoo 3, and Diablo 2 works great on that card.

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PC#2: AthlonXP 1700+ / Abit KT7A / Voodoo3 / Audigy1 / Vortex2
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