As spotted by HotHardware (opens in new tab), Anthony, a hardware enthusiast from the Mod Labs (opens in new tab) forums, has recreated 3dfx Interactive's renowned Voodoo 5 6000. The company never released the Voodoo 5 6000 to the public, but the skillful enthusiast managed to revive the fallen graphics card through some exquisite reverse engineering work.
You might not have even heard of 3dfx, and we don't blame you because it has been ages since we've heard that name. For the uninitiated, 3dfx was one of the key players in the graphics card market, next to Nvidia and ATI. The company closed its doors in 2002, but it's still widely regarded as one of the pioneers of the graphics card market.
Voodoo 5 6000 was a single-slot graphics card based on 3dfx's VSA-100 (Napalm 30) die, or rather four of them, and it was quite the GPU back then. The VSA-100 chips, which measured 112mm², housed up to 14 million transistors. TSMC was responsible for producing the VSA-100 for 3dfx on the foundry's 250nm process node. Each VSA-100 had up to two pixel shaders; therefore, the Voodoo 5 6000 had eight of them in total, running at 166 MHz. On the memory side, the Voodoo 5 6000 featured 128MB (4x32MB) of SDRAM clocked at 166 MHz. Across a 128-bit memory interface, the Voodoo 5 6000 provided up to 2.656 GBps of memory bandwidth.
Anthony's creation isn't exactly a faithful copy of the original Voodoo 5 6000, but some may argue that it looks even better. Instead of the old-school green PCB, he created his own black PCB, which adds a bit of a modern look to the graphics card. He equipped it with four VSA-100 dies, which cost $18.95 apiece, with their corresponding heatsinks and cooling fans.
The Voodoo 5 6000 was certified for a TDP of 60W, which is more than the AGP slot can provide. Therefore, it drew its power through an external 250W power brick. Anthony artfully added a standard 4-pin Molex power connector to his rendition of the Voodoo 5 6000 to run the graphics card with a common computer power supply. Putting aside these small changes, Anthony assures that his Voodoo 5 6000 performs the same as the original because he replicated the same BIOS, drivers, and even the same bugs.
Aside from the high production cost, 3dfx didn't launch the Voodoo 5 6000 due to several bugs with the AGP x4 slot on some motherboards. As a result, the graphics card was forced to run at x2. Some of the reported issues included color distortion and artifacts in games, translucent stripes on the screen, and other miscellaneous bugs.