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Old 09-26-02, 03:48 AM   #1
Fotis
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Default Nvidia agp8x works fine while Ati not!!!

Reading a few reviews of geforce4 agp8x cards I can say that there has been no problem with sis648 or kt400 mobos.
Can Ati convince us that mobo makers are to blame since theirs is the only card that does not work with agp8x mobos?
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Old 09-26-02, 06:55 AM   #2
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I was waiting to see when someone would point this out. I know it doesn't give absolute proof that it's the ATI cards causing the problem, since the AGP specs have some leeway for interpretation and implementation. ATI's implementation is probably either borderline for the spec or out of spec, at least in the first revisions of their cards.
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Old 09-26-02, 07:23 AM   #3
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Check again, Xaber cards are also having issues on 8X AGP mobos as well.

Its also funny how you folks seem to forget the oringal GF launch when it had so many issues with AMD mombos. Other cards worked fine but GF cards caused lockup if they even booted at all. Turned out to be that the mobos were not following the AGP power specs and not the GF cards "fault". Funny how quick you to blame another vendor......
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Old 09-26-02, 07:49 AM   #4
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and when was the GF1 launch? how many years ago? weak arguement my friend
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Old 09-26-02, 08:41 AM   #5
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I'm not surprised that Xabre cards have issues too. In fact, being released earlier than available motherboards, much like the R9700, as well as coming from the economy brand card maker , it's a given that their implementation is either buggy or borderline (even moreso than the conclusions to be drawn concerning the 9700).

As far as the GF1 problems with AGP specs, what has that got to do with the price of rice in China, or the current issues with AGP8x? Just because nVidia's the only company that got it right pre-launch, don't feel bad. And I'm fairly certain that the motherboard / chipset makers (other than nVidia themselves, of course) didn't get with nVida to make sure that their implementations matched nVidia's specifically (the argument used concerning incompatibilities in methods used for some game's graphics / features with non-nV cards0.
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Old 09-26-02, 10:49 AM   #6
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"weak arguement my friend"

likewise
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Old 09-26-02, 11:52 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Gator
and when was the GF1 launch? how many years ago? weak arguement my friend
And

Quote:
Originally posted by SnakeEyes
As far as the GF1 problems with AGP specs, what has that got to do with the price of rice in China, or the current issues with AGP8x? Just because nVidia's the only company that got it right pre-launch, don't feel bad.
What does it have to do with the DX8 Issue? Nothing and everything. Nothing as its a completely different issue. Everything as now instead of NV cards not working its ATI cards. So these people that are now claming that's its ATI's fault were the same ones claming it was not nV back then. Basically your being hypocritical. Besides Kyle over at HardOCP has stated that most of these issues lie with the mobos (just like they did back in the GF days). I can provide a link but doubt it will help as some folks are too busy spreading crap without knowing what the issue is...
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Old 09-26-02, 01:50 PM   #8
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Thanks for the feedback jb. But the fact that two chips released prior to hardware supporting one of their features both have the same problem, while a chip released after the same supporting hardware has no problem says that at a minimum the two earlier releases are riding the edge of the specification. The same can be said for the GF issues (ie. nV rode the bleeding edge of the power specs for those chips), but that is definitely settled now, isn't it?
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Old 09-26-02, 11:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by SnakeEyes
Thanks for the feedback jb. But the fact that two chips released prior to hardware supporting one of their features both have the same problem, while a chip released after the same supporting hardware has no problem says that at a minimum the two earlier releases are riding the edge of the specification.
It doesn't mean that at all. How do you know that the boards appearing later (i.e. the nvidia boards) don't have workarounds for flakey motherboards in the BIOS/drivers?
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Old 09-27-02, 10:59 AM   #10
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Joe Schmoe,
In general:

Release order:
ATI 8x cards early revisions / Xabre, Sis648 / KT400 chipsets, nV 8x / ATI revised 8x cards (I believe the rev number people have been mentioning is 1.03 or 1.3?) cards.

8x compatibility with mobo chipsets and unrevised mobo bioses, cards released before the chipsets available to test the video card implementations on:
ATI 8x early revisions - Sis648 - sometimes, but enough problems to become a hot topic
ATI 8x early revisions - KT400 - sometimes, again enough to make it a hot topic
Xabre - Sis648 - same as ATI / Sis 648
Xabre - KT400 - same as ATI / KT400

8x compatibility with mobo chipsets and unrevised mobo bioses, cards released after the chipsets available to test the video card implementations on:
nV 8x - Sis648 -No problems reported.
nV 8x - KT400 -No problems reported.
ATI 8x new revisions - Sis648 -No problems reported.
ATI 8x new revisions - KT400 -No problems reported.

If I stopped at the list of cards prior to the new nV18/28 based models, I'd probably stick to the idea that chipset manufacturer's implementations were flawed, and that both ATI and Xabre cards were likely suffering because of it. With the introduction of the nV chips, it becomes more unlikely, because:
1) Each motherboard chipset is based on unique code, used to implement the AGP spec. (Intel only releases specs, not proprietary implementation information). This means nVidia would have to have hacks / patches / workarounds for two different chipsets, and the workarounds would likely be different, in addition to making sure that the nV18/28 still worked properly on any chipset that isn't flawed (ie. 3 code paths for AGP3.0 spec).
2) ATI was able to change the later revision R9700's in such a way that BOTH of the problem chipsets start working fine at 8x. This again would require 3 codepaths if the issue were with the chipsets, instead of with the video card itself.

So while I suppose it's entirely possible that nV did include workarounds for faulty implementations in the motherboard chipsets for the Sis648/KT400, I find it less likely than that ATI simply revised the implementation in the 9700 to be closer to spec, which results in 1 supported code path (based on the AGP3.0 spec, not needing hacks/workarounds). Otherwise both ATI and nVidia have workarounds in their new cards..

That's my thinking anyway.
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Old 09-27-02, 11:08 AM   #11
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And then there's this, which lends even more weight to it being an ATI issue:

originally quoted by jbirney in this topic: Change 9700 to AGP4x
Quote:
Spent over an hour with ATI Customer Service Canada and more important, the Engineering Dept. The subject: Our testing shows the Radeon 9700 will NOT work at all on the Asus P4S8X (SiS648), Gigabyte 7VAXP (KT400/8235), and VIA P4PB (P4X400/8235) which are the only 8x AGP boards on the market. Customer Service was not completely aware of this, but Engineering is.

According to ATI, they are now receiving and testing these 8X AGP boards. They are ALSO finding the 9700 does not work at all or works intermittently at best on these boards. Engineering indicated most of the boards already shipped have this problem.

Solution: A new BIOS and some board revisions are now available that fix this problem. Call ATI Customer Service for help with the issue. At present, they will ship a replacement board that WILL work in SiS and VIA 8X, but they are also considering a BIOS flash solution for problem boards.

Customer Service and Engineering deserve a 10-1/2 for their wonderful handling of this issue. They are very concerned that it be corrected quickly. They also shared that most of their 8X validation testing was done with Intel's unreleased 8X chipset and that they are just now receiving shipping versions of the SiS and VIA 8X chipsets.
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Old 09-27-02, 11:52 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by SnakeEyes
1) Each motherboard chipset is based on unique code, used to implement the AGP spec. (Intel only releases specs, not proprietary implementation information). This means nVidia would have to have hacks / patches / workarounds for two different chipsets, and the workarounds would likely be different, in addition to making sure that the nV18/28 still worked properly on any chipset that isn't flawed (ie. 3 code paths for AGP3.0 spec).
No offense intended, but you have no clue what you are talking about. I've done video driver work and we routinely put workarounds into the driver for flakey AGP implementations. That was back when AGP 4x appeared, and I have little doubt that things have changed with AGP 8x.
Quote:

2) ATI was able to change the later revision R9700's in such a way that BOTH of the problem chipsets start working fine at 8x. This again would require 3 codepaths if the issue were with the chipsets, instead of with the video card itself.
They could just have increased the tolerances for certain chipsets, it's not a big change to the BIOS.
Quote:

So while I suppose it's entirely possible that nV did include workarounds for faulty implementations in the motherboard chipsets for the Sis648/KT400, I find it less likely than that ATI simply revised the implementation in the 9700 to be closer to spec, which results in 1 supported code path (based on the AGP3.0 spec, not needing hacks/workarounds). Otherwise both ATI and nVidia have workarounds in their new cards..
As I said, it's not hard to increase tolerances for marginal AGP implementations. There are a whole host of AGP parameters to tweak (latency, clock skew, etc.).
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