VGA VLB S3 Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) 86C801/805, basic info

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VGA VLB S3 Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) 86C801/805, basic info

Postby retro games 100 » 2011-4-14 @ 20:16

Introduction
I am testing a VGA VLB S3 Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) 86C801/805 video card. The image quality seems quite good, and it seems quite fast. It has 1MB of RAM. The BIOS POST screen says this about the card:

Quadtel S3 86C801/805 Enhanced VGA BIOS. Version 2.13.06
Copyright 1987-1992 Phoenix Technologies Ltd.
Copyright 1992-1993 S3 Incorporated
All Rights Reserved

DECpc S3 86C805 VGA BIOS Version 1.06.03
Copyright (C) 1993 Digital Equipment Corporation
All Rights Reserved

Thanks a lot Tetrium, your idea of filming the BIOS POST screen enabled me to write all of that info down! I have installed the Windows 3.x driver for this card (available below as a link), and it includes a DOS utility called refresh.exe. Using it, you can choose which resolution corresponds to which refresh rate. I tried 1280x1024 @ 60Hz, but Windows 3.11 displayed its desktop with a lot of very weird corruption and screen flickering. In fact, all 1280 resolution & colour depths resulted in failure. So, I used 1024x768 instead.

Edit: Added 3) & 4), below.

1) Link to driver software (version 2.41) for Windows 3.x, including DOS refresh.exe utility (80x241.zip from DriverGuide)
2) Link to driver software (version 2.30) for Windows 3.x (S386C805.ZIP from mpoli.fi)
3) Link to version 2.5 of the Windows 3.1 driver
4) Link to the Windows 95 driver

Notes
1) & 2) I tested both of these drivers, and they worked in Windows 3.11. I could not get resolutions of 1280 to work. Also, I could not get resolutions of 1024 to work, with a colour depth greater than 256 colours. I am using an 19" LCD monitor.
3) This is the latest version that I can find.
4) This is dated around the same time as the driver on the Windows 95 CD. It probably doesn't make any or much difference which one you use.

Questions
I found version 2.41 of the S3 86C801/805 Windows 3.x drivers on DriverGuide. Does any one have a later version, please? Also, does any one have any installation diskette(s) for this particular DEC S3 86C801/805 card please? Thanks a lot.

Benchmarks
I'm testing this card on an Asus VL/I-486SV2GX4 revision 2.1 mobo. It has an AMD DX4 120 MHz (write back) CPU in it, with 1 stick of 16MB FPM. I have been using 3DBench version 1.0, Quake, Doom, and WinTune 2.0 for Windows 3.x. For all of these tests, I have run them using the mobo's FSB setting of 50. I can run this mobo+CPU with every setting (both mobo and BIOS) maxed out. I increased the CPU's voltage jumper from 3.3 to 3.6. The WinTune 2.0 benchmarks seem to be good. My very early impression is that this board seems to work very well with the overclocked (50 FSB) AMD DX4 120 MHz write back CPU. I'm quite surprised!

3Dbench 1.0 = reading off the scale! I then ran 3DBench 1.0c and got 97.4
Quake shareware 1.06, fullscreen timedemo demo1 = 13.5
Doom shareware 1.9s, fullscreen timedemo demo3 = 2134/1344
PcpBench, vgamode = 20.8

Wintune 2.0 for windows 3.11
CPU
Image

Video speed :happy:
Image

Memory
Image

Speedsys (fsb also set to 50 for this test)
Image

Image
Last edited by retro games 100 on 2011-4-15 @ 09:56, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: VGA VLB S3 Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) 86C801/805, basic info

Postby Tetrium » 2011-4-14 @ 20:34

retro games 100 wrote:[color=darkblue]
Thanks a lot Tetrium, your idea of filming the BIOS POST screen enabled me to write all of that info down!

Thanks for the complement! :D :D :D

Just trying to make life easier for us Vogoners ;)

Btw, is the card any good? I know the later S3's were good, but I know relatively little about their pre-Trio stuff.
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Re: VGA VLB S3 Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) 86C801/805, basic info

Postby Aideka » 2011-4-14 @ 20:57

http://ftp.nchu.edu.tw/Hardware/S3/80xdrv/ seems to have many files for that card, even Windows 95 drivers :)
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Re: VGA VLB S3 Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) 86C801/805, basic info

Postby retro games 100 » 2011-4-15 @ 09:54

Thanks a lot! I downloaded some more drivers from that website. I downloaded and tested the Windows 3.x and Windows 95 driver. I then ran some more benchies! For the Windows 95 test, I left the mobo's settings (both jumper and BIOS) on "maximum/fastest performance". I'm impressed with this OC'd AMD DX4-120 --> 150 MHz CPU+mobo combo.

Link to version 2.5 of the Windows 3.1 driver
Link to the Windows 95 driver

Sandra 2001 shareware, in Windows 95. The CPU speed is wrong. It should be ~150! Also, does anyone have the "pro" version of Sandra 2001 please? I'm sure that will allow for better formatting. In the version I am using, I cannot resize windows, and I cannot select more appropriate comparison CPUs.
Image

WinTune 97, in Windows 95, highlights
Image

WinTune 97, in Windows 95, video
Image
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Re: VGA VLB S3 Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) 86C801/805, basic info

Postby stevenh » 2017-3-27 @ 00:12

I hate to dig up this thread... but I thought I'd just add a little more information.
The card also comes in a Quadtel configuration which allows for an extra socketed 1mb.

Image

The 'artefacts' at 1280x1024 mentioned above are because the resolution was too high for 1mb of RAM. An extra 1mb is required. The card doesn't check and attempts to render the resolution but the results are coloured artefacts as per below:

Image

With an extra 1mb, you get:

Image

See more here, I've written up a post about it.
http://modelrail.otenko.com/retro/486dx ... 801805-vlb
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Re: VGA VLB S3 Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) 86C801/805, basic info

Postby twitch86 » 2017-12-25 @ 12:52

Hi Guys,

i have a defective S3 805 - could someone manage to read the BIOS and uplod it somewhere for me to make sure its an hardware or an software issue?


My header looks like
Uª@ë7400é+ IBM VGA Compatible BIOS. »fE] ÿ Quadtel S3 86C801/805 Enhanced VGA BIOS. Version 2.13.06
Copyright 1987-1992 Phoenix Technologies Ltd.
Copyright 1992-1993 S3 Incorporated
All Rights Reserved


DECpc S3 86C805 VGA BIOS Version 1.06.01
Copyright (C) 1993 Digital Equipment Corporation
All Rights Reserved
09/02/9309/02/93




Thank you

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