3D Accelerator Card Reviews

Hercules Thriller 3D

The Thriller 3D is the only card I haven't received yet, it's supposed to happen at Comdex. Nevertheless some background's available for you already for quite some time and I can add some rumor from within Hercules to it.

The Thriller 3D uses Rendition's Verite 2200 chip. This chip is supposed to be pretty much the same as the Verite 2100 chip used in Diamond's Stealth II S220, but it is using a 230 MHz internal RAMDAC instead of only 170 MHz in case of the Stealth II. The card will be offered with 4 as well as with 8 MB of RAM, enabling higher 3D resolution than Diamond's Stealth II.

Hercules is pretty excited about this card and they expect it to be a fairly fast player in the 3D graphic card market.

Number Nine Revolution 3D

The Revolution 3D from Number Nine is using the 'Ticket to Ride' chip, also manufactured by Number Nine. This chip offers high 3D performance, average 3D performance and OpenGL support and hence the card is mainly targeted to the professional market.

The benchmarks in the comparison chart are already several weeks old, so that it is fairly likely that the performance of the Revolution 3D has increased by now. There's no doubt about that the Revolution 3D is a very good 2D card with a kind of decent OpenGL performance. The expensive T2R chip does not have a RAMDAC included, so that the Revolution 3D is one of the few cards that use an external RAMDAC, which is responsible for a very good image quality.

The price as well as the low Direct3D performance will make the card pretty unattractive for gamers, but if you are a professional user and require excellent image quality, the Revolution 3D might be interesting for you. The card can be upgraded to up to 16 MB onboard WRAM.

I will re-run the benchmarks pretty soon to see if the 3D performance of the Revolution 3D has improved.