This 23 Year Old Prototype Video Card has FOUR GPUs… AND IT WORKS! 3dfx Vodooo 5 6000

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3dfx was the king of the graphics card world in the 90s, and in a flash they were gone. The Voodoo 5 6000 was the last GPU 3dfx produced, and released – Could it have changed the face of PC gaming?

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MUSIC CREDIT
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Intro: Laszlo – Supernova
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iTunes Download Link:
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Outro: Approaching Nirvana – Sugar High
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Listen on Spotify:
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Intro animation by MBarek Abdelwassaa
Monitor And Keyboard by vadimmihalkevich / CC BY 4.0  
Mechanical RGB Keyboard by BigBrotherECE / CC BY 4.0
Mouse Gamer free Model By Oscar Creativo / CC BY 4.0

CHAPTERS
—————————————————
0:00 Intro
1:17 What makes this so special?
2:13 Firing it up and Half-Life 1
4:40 Tribes 2
5:58 3DMark 2001
7:22 The prototype isn't the only way to play
8:04 It was doomed to failure
9:03 Why was 3dfx even successful?
11:52 3dfx got complacent
13:29 Forced to compete without a competitive product
14:11 The doors close and Nvidia takes over
14:52 Conclusion – Competition is good

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56 Comments

Kizu Axiosov

The little gimmick of the editor going out of Premiere to Google the website with the drivers was a great moment. Nice one,editor!

    MK73DS

    The editor is Scott, nice one Scott!

    83y

    I liked it, but they could of gone to the waybackmachine tbh

    Jóhann Scott Sveinsson

    Thanks guys, I’m glad you liked it 😀

    SpotandJake 100

    yeah it was a nice little thing

    Arnox

    It’s both maddening and depressing when you need something from an old site and you type in its URL and then find out that the site doesn’t exist anymore. >:(

wrmusic

3dfx managed to go from zero to hero and back in less time than it took from the release of RTX 2080 to RTX 4080. Think about it.

    V3ntilator

    I still have my 3DFX Voodoo 1 and 2 Cards.

    abcpea

    @JNSSS ms-dos vs 2000 is a weird comparison. In 1990 you had Windows 3 and System 6, and 2000 is not much different to W95

    RFTL

    It really felt like your new Hardware became outdated on your way home from the dealer.
    But the differences for games that take advantage of the hardware was unbelievable.

    wrmusic

    @RFTL yeah NFS2 software renderer and NFS2 Glide difference was just insane. Voodoo2 was a beast.

    For a year.

    kimnice

    Back then Nvidia released THREE new generations of cards in 13 months (Riva TNT 2, Geforce 256 and Geforce 2)…

Sander M

This was like a short version of my computer history. Going to college in 1997 my friends and I would have endless debate’s on all these cards and in what would happen next. Remember 24 bit vs 32 bit color, the Matrox card my friend used to dominate in rocket arena? Those days where a crazy ride when actual technological innovations happened every year. Still happy I got to experience this all first hand on early internet, it was great and still is a great memory.

Thanks a lot to all of the LTT crew who made this video, you REALLY made my day! 😊❤

    R2 D3

    @Mud Kip Ah yes, you are totally right! Forgot about that one! Think it’s even on my UT GOTY Edition.

    pyromethious

    Yeah, I remember my Voodoo 3 and ATI AIO Capture card being the goto pair for me.

    Sander M

    @R2 D3 It started with quake 1 actually, i think the mod is called Arena yes but everyone I know says rocket arena. Was most popular in Q3 I guess. 😃

    R2 D3

    @Sander M You are right! Don’t know how I could forget that??!! (getting old I guess..) In Q3 Arena, the mod is called RA3 (rocket arena 3)….
    Quake 3 Arena is still my favorite FPS of all time!!

    Rainbow Dash

    Speaking of UT mods, anyone still remember Tactical Ops (pretty much like CS), Infiltration (basically ArmA before there even was Operation Flashpoint), Chaos UT, Unreal 4ever, Dark Magic or Frag Ball? XD

Dragon’s Advocate

Aah, 3dfx. Memories of a good time. Back then I had a Voodoo Banshee, a golden goose of a card which not only dominated all the games at the time, but got even better several times with new drivers! When was the last time you had that happen… apart from fixing broken stuff I mean?

binrat

The fact that the owner trusts linus with the video card given his track record of dropping tech is just wild to me.

    Nicholas Hulsey

    I’d trust him, bro

    Nothin

    @Divine Linker Linus Tech Trust lol

    Annul

    @Rainbow Dash “is that that 3dfx Vodooo 5 6000 from the office????”

    Personality Of Brick Wall

    @Nothin sounds like Linus running a tech Hedgefund

    wigneyr

    It’s okay cause no drops were written into the script for this episode, stress less

Eugene Bebs

Really loved the pc nerd history hour. Hope there’ll be more stuff like this.

Bobis32 Commentary

the fact that LTT and GN had a video about the Voodoo 5 6000 within a month of each other is crazy just the acquisition of one of these cards is a multimonth process

    Booth403

    went looking for this comment and wasn’t disappointed

    MrBogie4646

    GN’s was a reproduction though.

    Siana Gearz

    @MrBogie4646 GN is the one that you could spend months or years obtaining. This one is pure unobtainium.

    HDMC therapper

    Crazy right!? What a not coincidence

Michael Peterman

I miss how 3DFx ‘s box art was hardcore and next level. When you got one you felt like you were playing with the wild side.

Fasnic

I have such fond memories of the 3DFX days…. Finished Mechwarrior 2 normal and then replayed it on a Monster 3D… The depth and Rocky terrain vs Brown flat. Was truly a turn in my gaming life.

Robb

That case was a blast from the past I didn’t expect. That was my first personal PC case from my early teens in the mid-late 00s. I just remember it being HUGE, as around that age I was about as tall as Linus is now

    Rich H

    I feel shocked – I still have this case (in dark grey .. and no side window) NOW! … I just put my latest Ryzen build into it LMAO!

    Rich H

    …and it does weigh a friggin tonne! (only reason I think about changing it)

    Rainbow Dash

    @Rich H LOL I got a CoolerMaster Stacker in 2006 for my new main rig which was like 25-30% heavier even XD

    Hucken

    had it too! i think running with a Northwood, don’t know which GPU i had at this time though.

    Rich H

    @Rainbow Dash wow! you must be very strong 💪 … I don’t suppose they thought to put casters on that model Lol

Olivier Couston

9:15 3dfx actually tried to solve that problem with the Banshee, a regular video card with a voodoo2 built-in, but it wasn’t very successful. I remember because I had one.

    Daniel Shaw

    Former banshee owner here too.

    Lord Carnor Jax

    That’s because the Banshee had poorer performance than a Voodoo II but they were quite popular.

    S Orbatos

    It was successful enough for the time and things were moving fast. The Voodoo 3 was a complete replacement with 32 bit colour and functional OpenGL. V4 introduced shaders, a full OpenGL implementation and reality only failed to compete due to SDRAM’s poor fill rates compared to DDR.

Axel K

ELSA AG from Germany had already finished a 3D graphics card prototype with 4 or more chips at the end of the 80’s.
I personally had one of them in my hands and was also told how it should work…
First of all, there was a chip for each basic color and another one that was supposed to calculate the shades of gray. Unfortunately, the company went bankrupt too early and the new owners wanted to focus more on the modem/router area and then went completely bankrupt in 2002 and a Japanese company has it bought the name

    John Bailey

    I never used an ELSA card, but I remember seeing them sell for like thousands of dollars. I think there was an ATi card (Fire Pro or Fire GL??) that was insanely expensive too, which I drooled over endlessly lol

    noth606

    So? SGI already had far better running, and the color idea as explained by you is idiotic, SGI was doing 3D, as were later everyone else, which involves no color channel separation whatsoever. I think you made that stuff up, because it isn’t how it works.

Kjell Olav Forberg

My first real GPU was the Riva TNT 2 ultra and it was glorious! Maxing out the settings in every game I had was a wonderful feeling, a high I’ve been chasing ever since. And what made the jump so big was that I as mentioned in the video used software rendering previously.

Nitton Åttiofyra

The heatsinks at the back of the cards GPU’s makes sens because a lot of chips back then used some solder balls in the middle for cooling.
The PCB acted as a heatsink, partially or fully depending on the GPU.
You can still see that on modern BGA RAM chips in the data sheets.
Also overclockers back then did do sandwich mods, basically a heatsink and fan on the back, active backplate if you will.
And yes some cards ran very hot at the back no mater how much heatsink you threw at the front of the GPU, GeFroce256 comes to mind.

Also Nvidia having 32bit support in games was not much of a big deal unless you where fanboying a feature.
Both card supported 32bit colors in 2D but 32bit colors in 3D would easily lose you 30-40% of your FPS on most cards so few people would use that.

In fact the V3 3000 could do 22bit dithering on the output using the 16bit framebuffer, it basically outputted 22bit colors dithering the image creating an image that looks better but is still faster to render.
A Voodoo3 on a CRT looks very good with the right options set.

Natasha McEwan

A tangent from Glide, S3’s API, MeTaL, was super cool. It had S3 Texture Compression, which later got added to both DirectX and OpenGL.

Cim

I will never forget how I first came across 3dfx. I went to a local gaming café, where me and some friends used to play Lucasarts’s Outlaws in multiplayer. The staff had upgraded the computers to Voodoo cards without telling anyone, and once I saw how incredible the game looked on those cards compared to not having it? I made it my mission to get one myself. It was a night and day difference to have texture filtering in games.

    S Orbatos

    Hardware transform and lighting on consumer hardware really was the game changer.

    rewop23us

    I loved outlaw. I have it on my AMD K6 III 550 with Voodoo3 3000 rig

DigitalHi5 Media

I love how everyone is taking us down this memory lane of 3dfx

Blackxknight

Sure is nice to see the Chieftec Dragon case! I JUST replaced mine a few months ago because I got tired of not being able to use the side panel with a 3080ti waterblock.

JXBREAK

the history lesson about 3DFX at the second half was genuinely great

Steve

I vividly remember dreaming about this card back in the day. I would drool over it reading the specs on their website. Then nothing. RIP 3DFX. Not long after, I upgraded to an Asus V7700 GeForce 2 GTS Deluxe; $329 at the time. It came with active shutter 3D glasses that plugged into the card. Playing Unreal Gold in 3D was a wet dream come true. However, I always wondered how the 6000 would’ve performed. Thanks for the video!

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