View Full Version : Apple QuickDraw 3D Accelerator Card

04-29-2001, 01:51 PM
I tested this card, on loan from magician, in my PTP with XLR8 G3 540/270 and ProFormance3+ 32MB card. The card just sits in a PCI slot. There are no interconnecting wires between cards and there are no monitor ports on the backplane. The card just sits there and waits for something to do. I put it in a slot next to the PF3+ card. It was not in a Busmaster slot.

The list of what this Apple card accelerates is long and impressive but way beyond my comprehension of what it means.
Workstation-class 3D acceleration ---------------------------------
* Accelerates QuickDraw 3D rendering up to 12 times (12X)
* Renders 10 million tri-linearly filtered, bitmapped texture pixels/second
* Renders up to 120 thousand triangles per second
* Accelerates Gouraud shading, texture mapping, transparency, and Constructive
Solid Geometry (CSG)
* Tri-linear filtering, mipmapping, and diffuse and specular lighting are always enabled, producing very high-quality texture-mapped images
* Uses high-performance SRAM memory to display up to 12 texture maps in each window
* Outputs an alpha channel, making it fast and easy to transfer images between applications
* Hardware-accelerated per-pixel Z-sorting provides precise rendering of transparent surfaces or CSG, regardless of submission order or interpenetration
Scalability -----------
* A single card accelerates 3D rendering to all frame buffers in the system.
* Hardware rendering performance can be doubled simply by installing a second card.
The two necessary extensions for the Apple card to operate are:
* Apple QD3D HW Driver
* Apple QD3D HW Plug-In

To disable the card, it is only necessary to remove, from the Extensions folder:
* Apple QD3D HW Plug-In

The two cards, PF3+ and Apple 3D, work well together. I found absolutely no conflicts thru OS9.0.4. I can disable the Apple card by the simple means above. I can disable the PF3+ QuickDraw 3D accleration from within its control panel, or I can leave both running.

What happens:
With both cards active for QuickDraw 3D, the Apple card takes control of QD 3D rendering in almost all cases of applications I tried. The one application where the PF3+ card did the rendering was in G4TimeDemo, which did not recognize the Apple card.

With QD 3D acceleration disabled in the PF3+ card, the Apple card did all of the 3D rendering, except, of course, G4TimeDemo would not run because it does not recognize the Apple card. A window opened stating to the effect that QD 3D acceleration could not be found.

The results:
Despite the impressive list above, the PF3+ 32MB is faster at rendering within 3D applications than the Apple card by about 5% in Cinebench 2000 raytracing, 6.98 vs. 6.64. Not bad for an old, but still supported (I don't know about OSX), card. Looks like my Voodoo 5500 card would benefit from this Apple card in 3D applications.

I will keep the Apple card for a few more days if anyone has questions/comments before returning to magician. k

04-30-2001, 12:50 PM
K, no rush. Hold onto it. I was planning to stick it into a Moto StarMax 5k that my son and I are going to optimize for gaming this Summer. It's got five PCI slots, and there's not much else to do with it. We've got at least a couple of months before we really need it.


04-30-2001, 01:05 PM
OK, it's still sitting in my PTP. Think I'll try it in my S900 with V5 card.

Will return it later. Amazing that Apple still supports it in the OS and that two of the cards would double rendering performance. k

04-30-2001, 09:38 PM
I know....I'm kinda pissed that I didn't hide a pair of them.

That one there was one of the last available. I almost ended up without anything. They sold out fast.

04-30-2001, 09:56 PM
I got a few of those Quickdraw 3D cards, will sell.

04-30-2001, 10:24 PM
Do you have three of them? I'm looking at an eBay at $20 with no takers. Dumb me, MacResQ had five of them on eBay at $15.99 a few days ago. No takers. k

04-30-2001, 10:56 PM
OK, just won one on eBay at $20. Do you have two to sell? What price? k

04-30-2001, 11:04 PM
I have about 8, sealed in original Apple packaging to sell. How much do you think I should sell them for?

04-30-2001, 11:13 PM
Any idea how well they boost the on-board video of a 75/7600 anyone? Seems like a good fit for what I might be doing here. Lemme know a price and I might pick up a few.

04-30-2001, 11:22 PM
I think all they do is assist the otherwise software-only rendering of RAVE (QD3D).

RAVE is all but dead, but you could watch the Gerbils go fast.

[This message has been edited by Louie (edited 30 April 2001).]

05-01-2001, 12:25 AM
I'll take two at $20 each plus S/H, if you want to sell at that price. Do you have PayPal? k

05-01-2001, 04:39 PM
They were kinda pricey when we got them, If anyone will buy at this price, I will sell them new, in unopened packaging with a software CD-ROM at a base price of $50-55 (may lower price on multiple purchases), and I will ship the paid item anywhere via your shipping preference. Add $5 for a special CD-ROM with the latest Quickdraw drivers, and Quickdraw game demos and tryouts. I currently don't have PayPal yet... and if you need the cards ASAP, I will accept other payment methods. You may be able to get me down on price also. Email me at Filter413@hotmail.com

Also, we got some more of these cards in, and have about a dozen on hand, and we do also have extra supplies of these, but quantities are limited. Right now we are selling these rather quickly in our local store, and customers seem to like the card in their PCI PowerMacs very much. Another note as mentioned, you can install two of the cards for even better performance. These cards are a good compliment to a Mac's stock video, a 3Dfx Voodoo card, the new nVIDIA video cards in PowerMac G4s (which have immature, slow, and buggy Quickdraw drivers), or any other video card. Feel free to ask any questions.

[This message has been edited by Mactacular (edited 01 May 2001).]

05-02-2001, 02:50 AM
Please explain, are these rave-centric accelleraters? Or for anything that outputs a QuickDraw 3d file?

05-02-2001, 10:03 AM
QD3D is RAVE. RAVE was Apple's baby until they adopted OpenGL from SGI.

[This message has been edited by Louie (edited 02 May 2001).]

05-02-2001, 07:21 PM
Louie's point about the Gerbils is exactly correct. Those cards do not do anything for you for 2D or non-QD3D 3D. Read, NO ACCELERATION except in Gerbils, Strata-Studio Pro 1.7.5, certain versions of Infini-D that use QD3D preview rendering, and maybe that Dinosaur game that comes on iMacs.

Most stuff now is OpenGL, and that card was built solely to promote Apple's new QD3D technology, b/c at the time they were having trouble licensing OpenGL and porting the support for it.

05-02-2001, 07:55 PM
There are several good games that use RAVE, but all the ones released in the last one or so us OpenGL. Glide was the game king api till 3dfx evaporated and Apple leased OpenGL.

05-02-2001, 08:01 PM
Lots of games run in RAVE, any Unreal Engine based game will (Unreal, Unreal Tournament, Rune, Deus Ex, and more on the way). The dinosaur game mactheripper was talking about was Nanosaur.