Hardware!

· by Steve · Read in about 3 min · (468 Words)

Well, the ‘flu’s after-effects are certainly dragging on and I still feel like I have a nasty cold, but I have at least been able to return to work and start catching up, with the Ogre forums too.

One of the other things that’s been on the back burner is that I’ve needed to revamp my ATI test rig, which also doubles up as my wife’s machine when she uses it. It used to have an X1600 in it, but since that released the magic blue genie smoke a couple of months ago it’s been toddling along on a rather, ahem, ‘modest’ 9600. Good enough to test a few basic things, but really not cutting the mustard. I had tried to replace it with a cheap X1800 I had access to (this is an AGP machine so there’s potential for lots of end-of-life stuff) but then the power supply couldn’t handle it. Really the whole machine needed replacing, and the final straw came was that I now really need access to a 2007-model FireGL card for the current work project I’m on. So, I bit the bullet and replaced the whole thing except for the chassis. The company paid anyway 😉

I haven’t had the FireGL card through from AMD yet so for now I’ve kitted it out with a HD 2600 Pro, which will do as an inexpensive stop-gap and has an R600 base too, good for testing. Once the FireGL arrives I’ll swap out the HD and it will be one of a pool of cards for use in one of another 2 test machines I’m planning on building once we get back from hols. Deck13 recently generously sent us a corporate donation which will fund these 2 machines. Well, mostly it only has to fund one (a relatively new PCI-E and Intel GMA combined test rig), because I intend to re-use the guts of the machine I just retired as my AGP test bed, for all the older cards. The plan is to load XP, Vista and one or more Linux distros on each and to be able to test as many cards as possible easily without disrupting my main work machines.

Which reminds me - if anyone reading this has some old graphics cards they don’t know what to do with, I’d be glad to ‘adopt’ them. I rather foolishly gave away a lot of my older cards to friends and family and as such my library of older cards isn’t as good as it should be. My gaps particularly include GeForce ¾, and Radeon 7×00, 8×00 and Xn00. Less common brands and motherboards with older GMAs would also be welcome. Contact me on the usual email addresses if you’d like to help annoy my wife at the amount of ‘junk’ I collect 😉