Hardware for the summer - autumn 1999
Up to the arrival of the TNT2, the different Voodoo had been the queens as for the yield it refers, except some concrete cases in which a TNT could go so far as to overcome a Banshee. Nevertheless, now the returns have changed. The design of the Voodoo begins being obsolete, and the absence of use of the new technologies (like the AGP, the render of 32 bits or the impossibility of mapear textures of more than 256 x 256 pŪxels) they penalize enough to him both in yield and as image.
The Voodoo 3 shows a quite equal yield between them, with a few differences between four versions of scarcely 12 frames per second in the Quake 3. In this case the price is decisive. Really does this frame cost so much money per second? It is not necessary to forget that the price of these "utensils" is not as to take it lightly.
4 models of TNT2 show more differences, especially between the model of "low" scale and the models TNT2 Ultra, who are the fastest. Three versions of the TNT2 Ultra take as the only difference the speed of the mike and of the memory, there are no other significant differences. The jump of the "normal" TNT2 to the TNT2 the most common Ultra (that of 150/183 MHz) is quite high (10 frames in the Quake 3), a difference that is supported in the top models, which differ again in the speed of the mike and of the memory.
Comparing the TNT2 against the Voodoo 3 we have to do distinctions. When the processor is delivered "to ceiling" and the card does not receive enough information as to be saturated, the differences are minimal (practically nonexistent) and due to the controlers that they incorporate. But if it is the processor the one for that the TNT2 has to wait for the graph (we speak about 450 MHz or more) then proves to be more rapid enough than the Voodoo 3 (only the slowest of the TNT2 is reached by the most rapid Voodoo 3). These differences happen so much in Direct 3D as in OpenGL. Only there is a case in which the Voodoo 3 is more rapid, and it is on having used the controler OpenGL optimized for Glide and 3DNow! of the Quake 2.
It is possible that I have become a little weighed with the topic of the controlers, but it is something to what the user often does not give the importance that is deserved. There are authentic marvels of programming that do that a processor as the Intel i740 (that we can obtain for 6.500 pts) endures better playing to the Quake 3 in OpenGL that quite a Voodoo Banshee that costs the double or more, or that we could enjoy shades in real-time with a card that at first does not support it (as in the Creative TNT).
Also, with the arrival of the new instructions in the processors (them 3DNow! of AMD and the KNI of Intel), it is possible to increase the yield of the graphic processors optimizing the code of the controlers. This is palpable in previously commented. The Voodoo 3 proves to be slower than the TNT2 in any case, except when the controlers are really optimized like those of the Quake 2; nevertheless this does not mean that the Voodoo 3 has better controlers, but simply it has a few specifics to be able to play the Quake 2. Probably with a few more optimized controlers, the TNT2 would win again.
Both graphic processors have controlers optimized for the instructions 3DNow! of AMD-Cyrix-IDT, also the TNT2 also is optimized for the KNI of the Intel PIII (I could not have confirmed those of the Voodoo 3). It looks like 2 controlers games that they prove to be stable (there are no problems with them), although the cards are another thing.
If you possess a Pentium II or a Celeron, I do not believe that you have problems, nevertheless if you possess an AMD K6-2 (or another processor with Super platform 7) with a motherboard governed by a chipset Ali Aladdin V, almost better to forget to puncture a Riva TNT2, you will have to praise yourselves for a motherboard with control Route MVP3. Nevertheless, big part of the problems of compatibility is solved, less and less basic badges have problems and it seems that soon there will go out a few controlers that will solve them definitely. In case querŠis a Voodoo 3 for an AMD K6-3, you do not buy a motherboard FIC PA-2013 since they are "incompatible", at least until there is solved the problem that they take as an excess of electrical consumption (of any form, it is not a very common badge in Spain).
After everything what I have written you will not hope that he says to you what you must buy, everything that thing about arrives it is so that you do the reflection to yourselves yourselves. You will have to shuffle the different options, bearing in mind that although we can find the Voodoo3 with the only price (only it has an integrator), several assemblers mount the TNT2, with different prices, speeds and "extra" (games, exits of TV, support for glasses of virtual reality as in Elsa...). You more than anybody know WHAT is what you need; now he has you to decide.
Miguel Tarazona Skaug
Hello, I am Juan. I hope that you I should have liked the article so much; I coincide to 96,8 % with Skaug, but I cannot refuse to give my opinion about this topic (self-centered that is one): for me, the Voodoo 3 is a card adapted only to update PCs that they have a motherboard that AGP does not support or does it of incomplete form (a Socket 7 of Pentium MMX, AMD K6 or similar, or one for Pentium II with chipset FX or LX). In these cases or with not very rapid mikes, it is possible that it is a better buy than a TNT2, although everything will depend (as always) on the price.
On the other hand, if on a TNT2 you decide for, remember that as Skaug was commenting the offer it is very wide: compare prices and characteristics, and always choose a card of mark to have specific updated controlers for her (generic controlers exist, but they offer less characteristics). Curiously, in case of the Voodoo 3 only there are a few controlers, since all STB mounts for 3Dfx. The monopolies it is possible that they are not good, but sometimes they are comfortable...