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Review: Voodoo 5 5500

by David Ross on 26 July 2000, 00:00

Tags: 3dfx

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Introduction

When I first heavily got into Computers, the 3dfx Voodoo 1 had just been released. This video card was the card to have and yeah - I got it! I regretted it a few months later when the 3dfx Voodoo 2 was released and ever since that I've felt that 3dfx have been lacking a bit, in the shadow of NVIDIA. But hey, competition happens - just like Intel and AMD. I must admit I do like NVIDIA cards a lot and I have a GeForce 2 GTS that is in my main machine, but I thought to be fair I would have to compare it to the Voodoo 5 series so I contacted 3dfx to get a card.

Since the Voodoo 1 card which I used to adore, lots of things in the Video Card market have changed and the Voodoo 1 contributed hugely to this change. Everything has gone up in terms of speed, power and visual quality and now we are using cards that have internal processors faster than the original PC's that we had a few years ago with our Voodoo 1's! There is a lot of competition to 3dfx nowadays, especially from ATI, NVIDIA and Matrox and this eventually led to 3dfx buying STB so that they could produce the boards. Also, 3dfx seem somewhat late with releasing all of their cards... don't ask me why!

Since I have a GeForce 2 GTS and have seen other people's opinions about the V5, I wasn't holding much hope for the card. My GTS is the fastest card I've ever seen! But, you still need to ask yourself - is it worth getting a V5 5500?

First looks at the card indicate that it is VERY large and has 2 processor units with some heatsinks and fans on them. Then it suddenly hit me - how the hell do you do a decent video card review?! It all comes down to so many aspects. I personally feel that as long as I can slap the card in and set it to use maximum quality in all games as well as run them super smooth then it does the job! But sometimes, it is hard to find a card which you all like for whatever reason, be it like my own reasons for liking a video card or some other unique reasoning.

I always run in 1024*768 @ 72hz on my monitor - it's the way that I like it. But with graphics cards these days, you need to test it in a high resolution to respect its abilities and performance. The image must always look nice, but the game must run fast too. At the end of the day, most people tend to have a trend that they stick to in terms of chosen resolution for gaming and sometimes base their choice of a new video card on this preference thus consider how certain video card options would perform at those settings.