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Onboard ATI video VS better PCI ATI video = Mac OS tussles, no RAVE

Byrd

Well-known member
Hi all,

I've been experimenting with adding an additional PCI graphics card into my TAM for fast external video and desire to play 3D accelerated games.  First I started with a MacMagic 3DFX Voodoo 1 card, which works well, however runs very hot in the cramped innards of a TAM.  Better cooling is an option, but thought I'd try something else next.  The TAM runs an ATI 3D Rage II 2MB graphics chipset, which is to be considered a very basic 2D accelerator.

My next card to try is an ATI Radeon 7000 Mac Edition card, the TAM is running OS 9.1 with the required official ATI driver extensions installed for the Radeon card (compatible with OS 9 - later ATI drivers required OS 9.2.2 which I thought overkill for the TAM).

Playing games, I'm experiencing a constant tussle with Mac OS being indecisive on what display or graphics it should use.  With the primary display/menu bar set to the external Radeon 7000 card, games keep switching their output to the TAM's LCD, or continue to be run in software mode - I've never seen RAVE acceleration.

I assume the TAM's poor PCI controller or driver issues are at fault, but does anyone know a work around/extension to force RAVE acceleration/better solution?

TIA

JB

 
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Byrd

Well-known member
The readme for the game Unreal confirmed that you might be able to disable the drivers for the ATI card you don't want to use to get acceleration on, for those machines using dual ATI graphics accelerators.  So I spent some time trying different ATI drivers, different OSes (Mac OS 9.1 --> 9.2.2), and newer ATI drivers just don't like working concurrently with the ATI Rage II in my TAM.

So looks like if I can get cooling right, my TAM will be using a MacMagic Voodoo 1 8MB card, which is nice and compact.  As much as I'd like to try a PCI Voodoo 3, from most reports they do not play nice in a 6500 and become even more incompatible with G3 upgrades - perhaps a power issue in the flaky PCI controllers in these Macs?

JB

 

NJRoadfan

Well-known member
I was able to disable the onboard 3D Rage Pro chipset on my beige G3 by using some OpenFirmware commands as I use an ATI XClaimVR 128 as the primary video card on that machine. The reason was OS X kept defaulting to the onboard video on boot. This was many moons ago and I can't remember the command I used to do this.

 

Byrd

Well-known member
Thanks NJRoadfan - I think it's a combination of the 6500/TAM's picky PCI controller and driver confusion that makes things go awry.  I'm still playing around with things, improving airflow and cooling within the casing, but it won't be an ATI card going in there (and that doesn't leave much choice apart from 3DFX, nVidia likely not!)

 
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