Ati Radeon 64mbDDR

Is it true that the radeon 64mb can handle the most poly's at the highest res before being crippled more than 20fps? I can get my hands on this for cheap so the price/performance is too good to walk away from. I will mainly work in 3dsmax with this card, not highest frame rate in quake 3. I need the most poly's cards can handle at a res of around 1600x1200. Thx for the info
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  1. Answer is No. 3dlabs Wildcat series is probably the fastest:
    <A HREF="" target="_new"></A>
    Sorry Quandra but no dice for max poly's on the screen at once. If you look at the feature set of the Wildcat you may begin to get inpress with the Radeon because like the Wildcat the Radeon has:
    *3D volumetric texture support which no other non professional card has
    *10-bit DACs for color correction same again
    *Culling (this is a feature that is normally turned off in the drivers but easiliy turned on)
    Really the Radeon is a unique card but it is designed more for games (relatively low polys, textures, but fast FPS). So I wanted to see what the Radeon can do. I loaded up Truespace5, loaded about 10 ojbects then quad divide all the objects. Meaning I 4x the number of polys. These where orignally medium poly models. In texture rendering the Radeon still was able to pan around the perspective in a jumpy fashion. So then I turned on wire frame mode in OpenGL. My jaw dropped open. No hesitation whats so ever, I can pan at will through these 100,000s polygons like nothing. Well then I changed my resolution to 1600x1200 on the fly with TrueSpace5 open (not a problem, I have a stable W2K system) and Truespace5 resized itself with all those ridiculasly High polygon models. Not a problem in getting around in wireframe. So then I tried Directx, well Directx was about half the speed of OpenGL in Truespace5 with this number of polygons. Well if you model in wirefram with high polygon complex scenes vice drawing ojects as solids with textures turned on except when needed, the Radeon flys. You can render in realtime with solids and textures on the Radeon with single complex ojects (high polygon count) in OpenGL pretty efficiently. It will be very hard for me to believe that most people would exceed the number of poly's that I artificially inserted into TrueSpace5 in making a professional scene. I also relize that OpenGL flys in W2K compared to D3D. Plus OpenGl looks better in real time rendering. I hope this helps.

    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by noko on 02/12/01 11:26 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
  2. thx for the help. Since my budget isn't allowing me to look at the professional cards the radeon seems the best choice. What is culling? The radeon will definitely do better than my tnt2 can now especially when I upgrade my cpu and ram. It is pretty important to have the highest res textures and opacity maps along side many polys, looks like the radeon will be awesome for that at it's price. The 64mb will help me use those 1024 res map I love so much.
  3. Culling is a way to calculate the polygons in a 3D scene that are not facing the camera and therefore don't need to be rendered. Which will allow you to speed around faster while you model.
  4. Well the combo I mentioned works well and I was very much surprised with the improvement I get in W2k. The CPU didn't perform quite up to as advertised so I sent the following below E-mail to GenX. I recommend the setup only if you can live possibly with a slightly lower advertise performance or unless GenX makes good on this. Anyone else may have better results.
    Subject: Iwill KK266 and Thuderbird 650 @ 933 MHz Combo with Alpha PAL6035-38 Cooler fails to be reliable at 933mh

    -Have an approved AMD 300 watt Power Supply
    -Using a single Crucial (CT32M6484D7E.16T) 256mb Unregistered PC133 CL2 Dimm. (CL setting of 3 or 2 makes no difference in stability)
    -Radeon 64 ViVo Retail latest drivers, latest via 4in1 (428a)
    -When FSB configured at 133mhz, multiplier 7x, volts in Auto (1.92volts) sytem fails to be able to run a number of benchmarks, sytem halts in W2k, blue screens in WinMe, highest temperture noted is 42c for cpu. Heat sink remained relatively cool, slightly warm. Ram configured for CAS2or3, AGP 2x/4x didn't make a difference.
    -When configured with a FSB of 133mhz, multipier 6.5, cpu 1.87-192v (866mhz) the system is stable both in WinMe and Windows 2000 professional after many hours of 100% cpu usage test. Highest temperture noted during all testing was 41c
    -Max configurable stable operation: 140mhz FSB, cpu 1.92v, multiplyer 6.5, CAS3, AGP2xor4x passed all test I imposed on system. Cpu temperture never exceeded 41c as monitored often.

    Overall I am relatively satisfied with the whole setup. Will be doing a 4-5 part small review in in the Community section (forum section), thus far I've written this: (forum name: noko. This can be found in the Graphics section of the community.)

    <font color=purple><i>Burnt the oil lamp last nite. Took about 2 hours to configure W2k for my new setup. The built in sound chip is better than I thought. Supports four speakers, Direct Sound 3D & A3D interfaces with a fairly decent rack system. After configuring I did some serious testing to see how stable everything was. At 133FSB, CPU multiple of 7 (933mhz) WinMe & W2k would boot fine, VilliageMark would run but 3dMark2000 would last about 2-5 seconds before it kicked itself out. Plus I had a few system halts (W2k) and blue screen of death (WinMe) while configuring. Obviously not stable, went to a conservative 800mhz and everything was stable. So the tweaking and allnight testing began. Final maximum stable setup for both W2K and WinMe: FSB 140mhz, CPU voltage 1.92 volts, multiplier of 6.5, CAS3, AGP2x/4x Radeon was stable either way, max stable cpu freq = 910mhz. A little shy of 933mhz plus in a funky way. What was really surprising to me is that 3dMark2000 in W2k went up over 1000pts compared to WinMe 400pts. W2K is within 7% of WinMe in 3dMark2000 (D3D) now. I am very impressed with that but somewhat disappointed in max overclock potential. The upgrade went smooth, I shouldn't have to reload anything now, which obviously I am very glad. Maybe I will do a small review here in several parts. When I mean stable that means 3dmark2000 in 32bit mode will run 3 times without a hiccup or more, ATI Radeon ARK running for at least an hour afterwards. At 910mhz it passed both in WinMe and W2k. Will contact GenX about results to see how they reply. Overall I am pretty satisfied especially over Win2K improvement. 85 bucks for a 910mhz capable Thunderbird isn't to bad. Temperature with the Alpha cooler never got above 42c while testing (cpu at 100%). Obviously the Alpha cooler was made to cool Thunderbirds 1200mhz+. If I had one more voltage increment, 1.95 vice 1.92 I am sure 933mhz would be stable.</font color=purple></i>
    Please Advise:

    1. If I can easilily get my cpu voltage up to 1.95v to achieve stated 933mhz operation. Max value is 1.92v which was the setting the board/cpu was configured when received. Board/cpu as configured will not exceed 1.92v's. In auto or when in manual at max setting (1.85), the indicated cpu voltage is 1.92.
    2. 1.95v does seem relatively high but at 1.92v cooling is more then sufficient. Please advise.
    3. About CPU replacement, I really can't send in current CPU and wait for another CPU. What options do I have if any?
    4. Do you want to review my review at TomsHardware prior to me posting? Remember this is only in the forum section, no headliner stuff.
    5. If my first order 650@933-SL75KAVX-AlphaAMD shows up can I exchange cpu's or does GenX want me to refuse as agreed previosly so that the package gets returned to GenX?

    I am very impressed overall with GenX prompt reply to my last e-mail letter resulting in a better setup with the IWill KK266. As of yet I've have not received what was ordered initially. Slightly dissappointed in missing the 933mhz mark. Right now I have my machine configured at FSB 136, multiplier 6.5, CAS 2, AGP4x, 4 Banks Interleave (884mhz) and it is very stable. I do not like to exceed FSB settings that much when overclocking, just my preferenc, plus I like to keep my ram at CAS2 settings vice 3. Please reply and thank you.

    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by noko on 02/14/01 03:18 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
  5. Glad to see there weren't any major problems but we'll see what GenX says in your email. What did you do to win2k to help make the transition occur more smoothly? You said something about editing the registry but I don't have much experience with that. Is it better to backup my personal files and just start from scratch? Also, if I can get a tbird 850 and asus ayv133 for the same price should I go down that route since I would be able to reach higher clocks? Although, it may be more money to go down that route because I'd need to go with artic silver II and a good heat sink.
  6. Please check out the following links: (Big key in winning with W2k/Via/AMD, goes for any graphics card.)

    <A HREF="" target="_new"></A>

    <A HREF="" target="_new"></A>

    The Radeon cards really rely on 3 major aspects of a machine:

    -Bus Mastering

    If any one of those are not configured right, look out.

    -Via was slow to addressing DMA with there chipsets in W2k, only with the 426 beta 4in1 drivers was that issue addressed. DMA is used for AGP and hard drives, DVD drives. Necessary for DVD play, and VideoIn/Out. 428a 4in1 is the ticket mostly, read on.
    -If AGP is not configured, you end up with a VGA screen in W2k period with all the drivers indicating no problem.
    -Bus Mastering was even addressed later in 427/428 betas. Now the 428a 4in1 has been officially released and that driver is one big key in your success. Without bus mastering forget DVD playback and VideoIn/Out, TV turner. Obtain from here:

    <A HREF="" target="_new"></A>

    Still on some machines DMA becomes an issue again in W2k with ATA100 hard drives and the 686b southbridge, so check this out:

    <A HREF="" target="_new"></A>

    <A HREF="" target="_new"></A>

    You have to realize that Radeons usually have more features such as Video In/Out, Turners, hardware assisted DVD playback which any one of the above will plague it worst than a bad case of the crabs. Combine that with improper bios settings, bad memory, and old video card drivers still running in the background you begin to see why a few people had some major issues. Allot of progress has been made by:


    -Microsoft addressing the support for W2k issues with Via chipsets.
    -Via correcting there chipsets (KX133 is generally a very poor performing AGP chipset, many boards fail to be reliable at 4x AGP operations if at all) also developing there drivers to work.
    -ATI has improved the performance of there drivers tremendously.

    Will address ways for you to update W2k more easily on next post, sorry for the long read, hopefully it will help you out and save you countless hours and aggravation.

    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by noko on 02/15/01 05:24 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
  7. Don't worry about posting too much, and thank you for taking the time by answering my questions in detail. Most people put one liners in. You've been a great help.
  8. Alright then, you really want to know. Well I will do my best to ease the W2k configuring for a new motherboard. Just for fun open up the W2k Device Manager, yeah, please do. Also expand every item on that long list to make it even more impressive. Now realize each item usually have a driver, its own memory address and a register in the registry, Establishing the communication paths like a wiring diagram to your computer. The blueprint for all the connections between software and hardware. Now you will be switching from a Intel chipset to an Via chipset. An entirely different way of doing business. Like putting Wendy's employees at McDonalds and McDonalds employee's at Windy's. They both do make hamburgers but oh how different! They will be making BigSingles and Frosty Fish in no time. Virtually everything you see there will have to be reconfigured, new addresses found, registry items deleted and updated with the correct information, different device drivers loaded and unloaded. You probably won't find any help in the help files to easily bridge this Death Valley. W2k will try to make it work and keep on trying and trying until something gives in. I was a little bit luckier because I went from one Via Athlon chipset to another using virtually the same drivers. Believe me I almost had to reinstalled W2k doing this, I must had rebooted at least 20 times. I did a few tricks like removing devices that I know will change, removing as many "Users" as possible (each "user" has a harware configuration file in the Registry, I definitly didn't want to know how a old hardware configuration poping up would do to my W2k later on.). Also I started in safe mode to do the initial blunt of driver installation while minimizing the number of devices loaded. Configuring all my startup programs like Norton Anti Virus, ZoneAlarm, Winamp etc. etc. not to load during startup. For me it was roughly 2 hours to have a reconfigured W2k with all my custom configuration intact, programs ready to load on a more powerful computer setup. Now don't get me wrong I am interested if W2k can actually do it, it is a pretty robust operating system but really I strongly recommend against it.

    Well everytime I reformatted my hard drive I always forgot to copy something valuable, lost settings that I never knew was so important, games that I was on next to the last level vanished placing me being back at square one. Oh what a headache, weeks afterwards I will be loading software, updating software from the internet and realizing I just lost all those E-mails dealing with all my clients. Oh boy. Configuring my favorite programs to run like how I like them. Realizing I don't remember where I got that nifty shareware program that works so well. There are thousands and thousands of files on a large hard drive. Who has times to remember them all. Plus updating all those version from 1.1 to 2.31a in every software package takes weeks sometimes.

    Well this is the best solution I came up with. Keep all the files intact, don't format your hard drive. What? Yeap, keep all those files that you spent days,weeks maybe years creating right where they are at. There is only one directory that needs to be deleted. Usually it is called <b>winnt</b>. The directory where you installed your W2k operating system. Before you do this why not make it very convient for you by creating another directory and loading all those hotfixes, Via Drivers, sound card drivers, Radeon drivers (the ones from the ATI CD-Rom are probably the last ones you want to use except for the Multimedia Center drivers which deals with all the video features of the Radeon), everything you need to configure your new motherboard in one convient location. You won't have to search through different files, CD-roms, downloads etc. In fact W2k upon installation once directed will keep looking in that directory finding all the goodies automatically. If not you will know where they are at.

    Since you will be deleting the winnt directory there are files that can be important for you to screen and copy.
    -Like all your e-mail files from your in-box, out-box, sent-items etc. Easiest way is to do a search. <b>*.dbx</b> directed to the winnt directory will exposed all those files. Copy them where you want. That is if you use Outlook Express.
    -Some programs have *.inf (information) files that are in the system directory or somewhere in the winnt directory. do the same, search *.inf and screen them. Like if you have PowerStrip it saves a PStrip.inf in the system directory with your registration data contained within and custom settings. Just go through them and decide which ones to keep if any. They are usually texted based and easy to figure out.
    -*.DLL is a possiblity but I recommend against it, unless you know that you have updated programs that write DLLs to the winnt directory that you might want to reinstall later.

    Keep the files down as much as possible. Most of them will be unimportant. Then again you can copy the Winnt directory to maybe a CD rom or partition just in case you may need something from it later. Eventually you will want to get ride of it permanently.

    Now comes the easy part, I hope you have one location for all you program files as in a directory called "Program Files" with sub-directories for each program. If not that is ok. Rename the "Program Files" directory to something like lets say "Program FilesKEEP" <b>-> or <-</b> rename each program directory to something convient like the "3dsMax" directory to "3dsMaxKeep" <b>-> or <-</b> a combination from the two above (depending on how you install programs). Most programs keep their configuration data, DLL's (updated) etc in their own directory. So if you keep those directories intact the less work you will have to do later.

    Wouldn't hurt if you cleaned up your hard drive(s) and partitions and got ride of all the junk, plus defragement them as well.

    Sounds complicated? well actually all this will take around 10-15 minutes to do compared to the hours and hours of reconfiguring, updating of programs etc. to the most recent revision, this could take weeks, basically this is really simple to do.

    Now you have to delete the "winnt" directory in which W2k will prevent you from doing, thinking you are making a big mistake. You are going to have to boot up either by runing the W2k cd disk (it is bootable) going to a command prompt and deleting the winnt directory. I hope you remember dos commands. If your file system is Fat32 vice NTFS then you can use any dos boot disk and use dos to delete the winnt directory.

    Time now to upgrade and change out the motherboard, video card, sound cards and whatever your going to change out. What I do is leave out all the cards except for the video card initially. After I get the video card properly configured and working then I shutdown and install the rest of the cards. Easier to troubleshoot when there is nothing in your machine.

    Reinstall W2k, if you have an upgrade version then it will ask for a full version NT disk/cdrom or any full version Win9x CD rom to verefy you are a legal license owner. You will end up with the beautiful vga desktop eventually. This is what I would do assuming a VIA chipset Athlon system:

    1. Load SP-1
    2. Load Via's 4in1 428a or more recent
    *This will load the Ultra DMA driver for your hard drives and CD-roms
    also AGP driver and chip information to let W2k identify your hardware.
    3. Reboot and verefy those drivers are installed. You will see about 4 Via tech drivers in the Device Manager, plus you will see Ultra DMA for your IDE controllers.
    4. Install all of those hotfixes mentioned in previous post
    5. Install DX8a for NT(Newest Radeon drivers require DX8)
    6. Install Radeon Video drivers, adjust settings until you are satisfied Radeon is working right. Good time to run 3dMark2000. Just go to the directory where it is at and double click on the .exe file, benchmark will run normally if everything is ok.
    7. May have to reinstall hotfixes and or Via 4in1 drivers.
    8. Once stable, time to move on.
    9 Shutdown and install rest of your hardware, (all or one card at a time, up to you.)
    10. Make sure you test each thing you install before you move too far ahead
    11. Load ATI MMC (VIVO, DVD, CD player, File Player, Video CD) do this after sound card is configured.

    Once your hardware is working and configured now it is time to reload your software, the easy fast way.

    1. For example: 3dsMax, Direct the setup.exe program for 3dsMax to load in same path originally installed prior to changing out your mother board.

    ----Original path C:\Program Files\3dsmax4
    ----Duplicate that path C:\Program Files\3dsmax4
    Use the smallest installation method possible, like run from disk, it doesn't matter. Some programs will take seconds to install and you will end up with the exact setup you had before as you will see.

    2. Now go to that newly installed directory C:\Program Files\3dsmax4 and delete it. Uhhhh, yeap delete it. I just installed it!!!

    3. From your renamed directory like C:\Program FilesKEEP\ move or copy the original 3dsmax directory over to C:\Program Files\
    oh, now I see. Do you?

    Guest what, 3dmax4 is now what you had before, totally updated, same configuration. Test it out.
    This process should work for about 95% of your programs. Except for those that have specialize *.inf or *.DLLs in the NT directory. Hey remember you kept that intact or copied. Some programs you will just have to do the whole route in installing, updateing and configuring.

    Well you probably figured this out anyways, hey I don't have to do one at a time. I just load all my programs to the "Program Files" directory using the fastest way possible from the installation process, deleting the whole directory "Program Files" and then renaming "Program FilesKEEP" to "Program Files" again. That works too. Just remember it has to be the same path as before for each program.

    So basically all you are doing is reprogramming the Registry and the Start Menu for what you had before. This is a real time saver plus you will usually not loose something important. I can usually do this whole process in less than 4 hours with a pretty big loaded hard drive.

    Well something for you to think about and plan ahead. Nothing worst than deleting 100 high res models that took years to create and modify (exagerating) and then format over them accidentally without a trace.

    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by noko on 02/15/01 06:10 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
  9. Are you sure you´re not related to Hobbit?

    Better burn in Hell with some company than freeze in Heaven all alone
  10. lol, no kidding. Well, thx for the read, I figure I'm a week away until I have to go through the steps so I've lots of planning time. The only problem is that I don't think my system can boot with cd's, nothing in the bios about it either.
  11. Gees, alot of programs like to use the winnt dir to store their ini's. There are so many I can't decifer the ones I want to keep from the ones that will mess things up for me. I might go and just back up all the stuff I need. I will use BRB(be right back) for that though. It is a app that will assist you in backing up personal files and puts it into a nice rar. When you want to restore the files it will extract them into the dir they came from. This might be something you want to look at. Take a look here
    I might as well start from scratch but this time I will use ghost 6.5 once everything runs the way I want. That way if I have problems I can just use ghost to restore everything perfect. Again, thx for your help.
  12. Virtually all info files in winnt are nt related and have MS tags associted with them. So what system are you going to install the Radeon in? Current or future? I thought you where going to get a new motherboard and a new video card.
  13. If you upgrade your motherboard to a KT133(a) chipset, you can boot from a number of devices, including CD-Rom. Don't know about your current setup.
  14. Quote:
    Once you have backed up your vital data, BRB lets you restore everything
    to its original location with a single click!

    BRB could be useful. In short I am informing you that you only have to delete one directory, keep all your other directories intact (except renameing a few). Install all hardware and W2k and virtually recover all your programs in original state before the upgrade. All program patches, upgrades, settings and data files will be lefted untouched. If your hard drive has only a few programs on it then a fresh start may be better. Myself I just have to much stuff to keep track of everything, I have thousands and thousands of files I wouldn't know all the things to back up. Just a thought and good luck.
  15. Heh yeah, I just start to look around at the stuff I needed to back up off the HD and I think your right, there are just too much stuff. I keep my files pretty orderly so doing it your way seems a lot better.
  16. Can anyone guess how much all current cards will drop in price when the nv20 comes?
  17. Here is a tread dealing with 3dMax4.0 and the Radeon. You might want to ask Skynet the Ins/Outs on the Radeon. Price drop, don't know. I think the Nvidia GTS II line of cards will drop. Radeons probably not by much.

    <A HREF="" target="_new"></A>
  18. Heh, it isn't like ati's prices are high anyway.
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