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3dfx Voodoo3 3500-TV AGP

by Bubba "Masterfung" Wolford


Test System Specs

  • EPoX KP6-BS Dual Slot 1 Motherboard
  • Dual Pentium II 400 MHz Processors
  • 256 MB PC100 RAM 8ns
  • Creative 24X CDROM
  • WD 18GB Expert 7200RPM
  • Diamond Monster MX300
  • 3Com 3C905B
  • Voodoo3 3500 TV AGP
  • Dual Boot Windows 98SE and Windows 2000 Server (Beta 3 RC1)


Last year in November, 3dfx unveiled the Voodoo3 to the public at the yearly Comdex meeting. Although unconfirmed, it was rumored that 3dfx did not even have a piece of Voodoo3 silicon until the day before Comdex, thus the surprise when Voodoo3 was actually running at the show.

3dfx planned on having two distinct products. One was the Voodoo3 2000 with a 125MHz clock speed and a Voodoo3 3000 with an 183MHz clock. At the time, the idea of pushing memory and core clock speed to 183 MHz was thought to be a little too aggressive. Many in the industry questioned whether this speed was even possible due to the mostly tapped-out .25-micron and heat generated by that kind of speed.

Having completed the merger with STB, 3dfx saw an opportunity to take advantage of some advanced STB technology and incorporated a TV tuner, an FM receiver with motion capture, streaming video capture and DVD playback at 30 FPS. Sporting a 350MHz RAMDAC for 2D speed, it was clear the new card 3dfx was making was becoming quite a monster.

An All-in-One Solution

Aptly renamed the Voodoo3 3500-TV, 3dfx sought to not just make the new Voodoo3 3500 TV the fastest in the 3D and 2D market, 3dfx planned to make the newest Voodoo3 do everything a home user could want in a video card.

However, the Voodoo3 3000 was not lost in the shuffle. Its clock rate was lowered to 166MHz and TV out was included. It (along with the Voodoo3 2000 which had its own clock rate increased to 143MHz) was released many months ago. Now the big brother 3500-TV is hitting the streets sporting the hottest specs out there.

Click to continue



V3500: The Specs

  • Integrated 2D/3D video solution
  • AGP form factor (2X, no AGP texturing)
  • 16MB 5.5ns SDRAM
  • 183MHz graphics core/memory speed
  • 366Mtextels per second (2 textures per clock)
  • 8-million tri/sec triangle setup engine
  • 2D resolution to 2046x1536
  • 350MHz RAMDAC
  • Supports Glide, D3D, OpenGL
  • Multitexture
  • Emboss Mapping
  • Point-sampled, bilinear, trilinear filtering
  • Perspective correction
  • 16-bit and 22-bit output in 3D
  • 16-bit Z buffer
  • TV Tuner, Digital VCR, FM Tuner
  • Motion compensation for MPEG-2 playback
  • A/V Input/Output breakout box
  • Coax S-Video Input/Output

The Competition

Of course, the competition for the V3 3500 TV is pretty stiff. On the 3D front, the V3 3500 is competing for your money against its brothers, the V3 3000 and V3 2000. Nvidia release hot hardware in the TNT2 and TNT2 Ultra. Matrox has recently entered the fray with its own G400 and G400MAX. ATI has followed up with its Rage Pro.

As a stand alone video card the V3 3500 would stack up against all the cards VERY well, but the V3 3500-TV brings a lot more bang to the table than any of the others. With its TV features it also competes with the G200 Marvel and ATI All-in-Wonder. How does it stack up? Look and see.

Go to Part II


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Last Updated August 24th, 1999

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