Carmack on Graphics Cards
Posted on: 05/19/2000 03:11 PM

I noticed via Tech-Report this morning that John Carmack updates his .plan with his take on what the industry has to offer.
The DDR Geforce is the reigning champ of 3D cards. Of the shipping boards, it is basically better then everyone at every aspect of 3D graphics, and pioneered some features that are going to be very important: signed pixel math, dot product blending, and cubic environment maps.
I forgot my universal translator at home, but he goes on...
The saving grace of the voodoo5 is the scalability. Because it only uses SDR ram, a dual chip Voodoo5 isn't all that much faster then some other single chip cards, but the quad chip card has over twice the pixel fill rate of the nearest competitor. This is a huge increment. Voodoo5 6000 should win every benchmark that becomes fill rate limited.
How about his take on ATI?
The real issue is how quickly ATI can deliver fully clocked production boards, bring up stable drivers, and wring all the performance out of the hardware. This is a very different beast then the Rage128. I would definitely recommend waiting on some consumer reviews to check out teething problems before upgrading to a Radeon, but if things go well, ATI may give nvidia a serious run for their money this year.
As always, Carmack doesn't disappoint. Worthwhile read if you're not intimidated by a lot of techno-babble :-)

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