A Forgotten Company’s Prototype Graphics Card Has Turned Up On eBay!

TECH NEWS – Many of you might not even remember the company’s name anymore, and the card has ridiculous performance for today’s technology…


3dfx Interactive was founded in 1994 and was a significant player in the discrete graphics card market in the second half of the 1990s before ATi and Nvidia ousted it. The latter bought the company’s assets in late 2000 before 3dfx filed for bankruptcy in October 2002. Veteran gamers only remember the brand, so only to them does the Voodoo range from the company say anything. It had hardware acceleration for 3D graphics and rendering. One of them, a prototype of the Voodoo 5 6000 3700A, has turned up on eBay, currently bidding at $12,500, and with six and a half days left until the auction ends, the most likely 3dfx enthusiast could pay double that…

The card owner, gtastuntcrew302, explained why he is selling the card: “I have concluded that this card just isn’t the holy grail for me and that I have other pieces in my vintage hardware collection that simply mean more to me and will always mean more to me. This card has been considered the ultimate holy grail piece for most, if not all, 3DFX enthusiasts/collectors, which is why I want to pass it on to someone who will view it as such and get that warm and special feeling for it. I wish to pass the card to someone who will care for it for years to come and preserve its history and significance in the world of 3D.

This card was personally reworked by the well-known 3DFX engineer Hank Semenec for a fully stable 8X FSAA (I have personally verified that this card is rock solid at 8X). Unlike many other Voodoo 5 6000 prototypes, this one is from the later stages of the 6K prototype project, where the vast majority of bugs have been ironed out. So if you’re looking for the ultimate Voodoo 5 6000 experience with an ACTUAL REAL PROTOTYPE, this is the card for you! This card will come with a “Voodoo volts” style barrel connector to molex plug adapter. I would also like to clarify that I bought this card via a good friend of mine a while back, and I have personally cleared the idea of auctioning the card with him before listing it out of respect,” the post says.

Now a few words about the specifications. We would like to point out that this is two decades old technology, so that it would be out of date today, but it was not designed to keep up with expectations for so long. It supports DX6 and OpenGL 1.1 and can display up to 1366×768 resolution. It’s 250nm technology (we’re well under 10nm today), and the die size is 112 mm2 with the Voodo Scalable architecture. It has 32 MB of memory on a 128-bit bus with 2.656 GB/s bandwidth. The Voodoo 5 6000 has a maximum clock speed of 166 MHz for the GPU and SDRAM, uses a single card slot, has 60W TDP, and has a single VGA connector. It should be used with a power supply of around 250W.

It was one of the first cards to have 128 MB of memory (nowadays, 8 GB is slowly becoming the minimum, which is sixty-four times more…), and the AGP slot alone is not enough to power the video card, so it needs to be connected to the power supply. The eBay advertiser has enlisted the help of a 3dfx engineer, Hank Semenec, to optimize the video card’s power consumption. The four fans are no coincidence: there are four GPUs…

We wonder what the graphics card market would be like today if 3dfx hadn’t declared bankruptcy…?

Source: WCCFTech

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Anikó, our news editor and communication manager, is more interested in the business side of the gaming industry. She worked at banks, and she has a vast knowledge of business life. Still, she likes puzzle and story-oriented games, like Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments, which is her favourite title. She also played The Sims 3, but after accidentally killing a whole sim family, swore not to play it again. (For our office address, email and phone number check out our IMPRESSUM)

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