As an added bonus, I have compiled some useful information to get the best out of your 3DFX Voodoo 3 2000/3000. For more technical problems visit seniorbro's website at www.voodoo3users.cjb.net - Every question and more will be answered there. Right, first shut down your PC and enter the SETUP. Once again we will set your PC going for maximum effiency. Now set the following commands:


  ADVANCED CMOS SETUP:

  External Cache -
ENABLED
  System Bios Cacheable -
DISABLED
  Video Bios Shadow -
ENABLED

  ADVANCED CHIPSET:

  VGA Frame Buffer -
ENABLED
  VGA Data Merge -
DISABLED

  PCI / PLUG AND PLAY SETUP:

  PCI VGA Palette Swoop -
DISABLED


These are the setting's which I find work the best and give the most satisfactory performance. ALWAYS write down your original settings BEFORE you change them just in case you have any problems ( which you shouldn't ) I have had many positive responses from people saying that they got around a 15-20% speed increase in their games with these settings so it is important that you follow them. Thanks to everyone for responding.




Chances are that If you have a Voodoo 3 2000 / 3000 PCI, you bought it because you have an older computer without a AGP slot. However, many computer manufaturers now build there computers with built - in sound / video cards attached to the motherboard. Because of this, it is impossible to upgrade to state of the art graphics cards as there is no AGP slot available. Whats more, the intergrated cards are usually built around year old technology ( such as the ATI RAGE PRO ). PCI is the only solution.

However, it is unwise to install your new PCI graphics card if you have not completely disabled your built - in one first. To do this, first shut down your computer and enter the SETUP ( again ) Now, go to ADVANCED CHIPSET and see if you can locate " ONBOARD AGP/PCI CHIP". If it is there, then set this to DISABLED. If it is not there, then first look for it in the other SETUP options and try to see if there is anything closely resembling it. If not, then the only other solution is to flash upgrade your BIOS ( Basic Input / Output Socket ). This is incredibly risky and only should be attempted if you really need to do it and you know what you are doing. Visit your computer manufacturers website first to find out if you can update your BIOS or failing that try to find the manufacturer of your motherboard and visit their site. As a last resort, you can visit the BIOS manufacturers website ( usually American Megatrends, Award or Phoenix ) to try and find it their but this could be a long and potentially fruitless experience. Once again only do this if you simply must do it and find out how to do it first. After all, if you mess up your BIOS - You mess up your computer potentially irrepairably. You are warned!!

If you have got this far without any problems then well done!!! It is plain sailing from now on. Right, start up your PC and go to SETTINGS. Next go to CONTROL PANEL and then ADD / REMOVE PROGRAMS. You should then try to find your graphics hardware display driver ( such as ATI MACH64 on an ATI RAGE PRO ). This should be uninstalled. You may need to delete any registry entries too - use regedit and be careful!!

Finally, install your graphics card if it isn't allready and install the drivers for it. You will now find a much more stable system which hardly ever crashes and is faster than before. It's good to tweak isn't it?




This is in fact a very useful program for your Voodoo 3 2000 / 3000 / 3500. It doesn't just let you overclock your Voodoo but also lets you turn off VSYNC and set your own refresh rates and Video filters. As a guideline, I have set my Voodoo 3 3000 PCI to 175 MHZ with no additional cooling. This is as far as I would take it without a fan of some sort. This program is readily available as Freeware off of the web and you can find it in my
Downloads section.

As for the other settings, I would tick the "Use high quality video" tab in both the Direct 3D and GLide selection tab, and definately place a tick on the VSYNC settings. VSYNC ( vertical syncronisation ) can kill many of your games, and for Quake 3, also induce slight input lag. It will also limit your maximum FPS to the refresh rate of your monitor. The "high quality" setting improves image quality slightly, and had no noticable impact on performance on my machine. Try it and see if it harms FPS in any way.






This comes free with your display driver. This is quite a useful program and here are my recommended settings: ( These settings are for use with the glide selection tab )

  ALPHA BLENDING -
SHARPER
  VIDEO DISPLAY -
HIGH
  FORCE MIPMAP DITHERING -
TICKED
  FORCE TRIPLE BUFFERING -
UNTICKED
  LIMIT TEXTURE MEMORY TO 2MB -
UNTICKED
  DISABLE SPLASH SCREEN -
TICKED

These are the optimal settings for use with Quake 3 ( and most games for that matter ).




3DFX are always releasing new drivers - some good, some bad. The latest official version - 1.04.00 was released originaly on the 25th January 2000 and then re-released 2 days later with critical bugs eradicated. This driver corrects the problem with Quake 3 when playing with the texture quality on maximum.

However, some machines ( mainly AMD without plug and play monitors ) can completely lose 800x600 resolution. Also, games such as EverQuest and Quake 3 can become very pixelated and jerky. The GLide API seems slightly slower too.

However, my machine runs great with the drivers so try them to see what you think. If they are causing problems with your machine, then use the 1.03.05 drivers released on the 16th December 1999. They are fast, reliable and produce no gamma inaccuracies as with the new driver. This driver is available from
www.voodoo.dk. Also, do not just copy newer drivers over older ones if you have problems - instead use regedit to remove all traces of the previous driver. You could also do a clean install as decribed in the driver read-me. After all, it is better to be safe than sorry.

Also, feel free to try the hacked drivers available from
3dXtreme. I have heard the hacked 1.03.05 is possibly the most compatible and best performing driver available.




It seems like an eternity, but the new WHQL drivers from 3dfx are now available. They are quite large (10.5MB), and are available from
Here. There are both Win95/98 and WinNT/2000 sets available.

They are very different to the usual drivers in that they have a great set of 3dfx tools attached to them. These are a set of variables in which you can tweak your Voodoo 3 to the max! I have downloaded these new drivers and although the image quality is nice, the FPS seemed to have slipped (again). There is also a possible fault with the installation procedure. I have put up a piece on how to properly install the drivers
Here. If you want to get the best performance out of your driver, it is important you follow it.

Be sure to get these drivers as they will probably be the last that 3dfx produce for the V3 series. The Direct3D API seems fast, and the OpenGL API (which has always been excellent on the V3) is still very good. There is also lots of fixes to many of the problems you may have been having with your games.




Here is the suggested settings I find work best for my games:

  
Direct 3D:

  ALPHA BLENDING -
SHARPER
  3D FILTER QUALITY -
NORMAL
  Z BUFFER OPTIMIZATION -
ENABLED
  LEVEL OF DETAIL BIAS -
-3

  
OpenGL / GLide:

  GLIDE SPLASH SCREEN -
DISABLED
  LEGACY TEXTURE COMPRESSION -
ENABLED
  ALPHA BLENDING -
SHARPER
  3D FILTER QUALITY -
HIGH
  MIP MAP DITHERING -
ENABLED
  TRIPLE BUFFERING -
DISABLED
  MAXIMUM BUFFERED FRAMES -
NO PENDING BUFFER
  LIMIT TEXTURE MEMORY -
SOFTWARE CONTROLLED
  LEVEL OF DETAIL BIAS -
-3

These settings work best for me. Experiment if you like, to see if different settings suit you machine or games better.


3dfx have secretly added some special advanced tools in their new set of drivers. They give you the option to overclock your Voodoo, and to disable VSYNC in Direct3D and OpenGL / GLide! The advanced tools can only be accessed by editing your registry. Find this reg command:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\3dfx Interactive\3dfx Tools\Installed\Tools\{AB040305-8AA1-11D2-8DD1-00104BB5EAD6}

Now find the key "Complete Registration" and modify this so that it is 1 instead of 0. Now reboot, and you can then select the new options from the advanced display settings.
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