PDA

View Full Version : What on EARTH is this PCI card?



NeXT
December 31st, 2010, 02:45 PM
Oh snap.

http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a166/ballsandy/Computer%20related/100_1479.jpg
http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a166/ballsandy/Computer%20related/100_1480.jpg

Intel i960, Crystal audio chip, TI DSP, TWO C-Cube VideoRISC Processors, AND dedicated video ram.
Whatever this capture board was made for, it offloads EVERYTHING from the system and probably does a lot more. Seeing how it has audio as well as only one composite input, I can't see this being used for security purposes.
It was made by a company called Optivision Inc. I beleive the model of the card is the EM-4248.
Optivision does not seem to do anything anymore that would require this card.
Edit: Or there are two companies with the same name. (http://www.optivision-cctv.com/) Still, One channel seems a bit lacking for a security capture card.

Chuck(G)
December 31st, 2010, 03:11 PM
How about videoconferencing? Something like this? (http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Optivision+Showcases+High+Quality+MPEG+Video+for+M ultimedia...-a053116193) Since you're in Canada, perhaps someone at Simon Fraser might remember this.

Tetrium
December 31st, 2010, 04:11 PM
I have something roughly similar in appearance. Mine has 2 of those S3 Virge or Trion chips, as if they are 2 graphics cards on 1 PCB. It also has the black plastic handle at the opposite end of the metal bracket.

k2x4b524[
January 5th, 2011, 05:28 PM
that 50 pin connector may be for a seconday card, or a header for extra video ports and all the goodies, it's probably a multi-video board with built-in audio. but the i960 lends credence to some kind of video conferencing board, or the 50-pin is a scsi connector of some kind. That's not a composite connector, is a BNC connector i believe, leans toward some kind of highly advanced network board *could be wrong* if i had a cleaner pic of the front, i could look a little better at it.

Chuck(G)
January 5th, 2011, 05:41 PM
that 50 pin connector may be for a seconday card, or a header for extra video ports and all the goodies, it's probably a multi-video board with built-in audio. but the i960 lends credence to some kind of video conferencing board, or the 50-pin is a scsi connector of some kind. That's not a composite connector, is a BNC connector i believe, leans toward some kind of highly advanced network board *could be wrong* if i had a cleaner pic of the front, i could look a little better at it.

If I count the pairs correctly, that header is at least 60 pins...

glitch
January 5th, 2011, 06:07 PM
Yep, that's for videoconferencing. I've got several of what I think is the new version of that card, pulled from Pentium III videoconferencing systems I acquired. Mine have socketed i960s in ceramic PGA packages...I've thought about maybe building something around the i960. Other than that, I haven't found a real use for them.

njroadfan
January 20th, 2011, 05:10 PM
http://web.archive.org/web/19980624195409/www.optivision.com/products/index.html

Its likely a real time MPEG capture card (the C-Cube chips are a giveaway) from one of their video streaming systems.

NeXT
January 20th, 2011, 05:49 PM
Aww, so it's not really some incredible high resolution streaming capture card with compression. I was going to pair it with an equally long RAID card which also has an i960 and make some incredible (for the time) capture rig.
Actually, can you still be able to do that or is this so specifically designed for one task?

njroadfan
January 20th, 2011, 06:03 PM
It likely has NT 4.0 drivers, but its uses are probably limited to its custom application. Of course its hopelessly obsolete nowadays seeing that today's CPUs can encode HD video in h.264 in realtime! That i960 shows up in weird places, my HP Laserjet 4MP is powered by one.

deathshadow
January 20th, 2011, 06:58 PM
Good job completely killing that card BTW putting it down on the shag carpet like that.... Bye-bye RAM's, Bye-Bye logic chips...

tipc
February 1st, 2011, 03:31 PM
get it off the carpet!!

kishy
February 1st, 2011, 03:39 PM
Just IMHO (and that of every computer professional I've spoken to on the matter): it takes a #$@#load of ESD to kill components in an assembled part.

Could rub the thing around on the shag carpetting then toss it in a box of foam peanuts and shake it up and it'll probably be fine. ESD isn't a myth, but the level of care needed to prevent damage from it is grossly overstated by many.

Chuck(G)
February 1st, 2011, 04:14 PM
It depends. We used to kill boards in the office by simply walking across the (non-ESD treated) carpet during the wintertime and touching them. As a matter of fact, we had systems that had passed hipot testing and still could be killed with a stroll across the polyester. After the carpets were treated, that did go away.

But just saying...

Ole Juul
February 1st, 2011, 05:44 PM
Good job completely killing that card BTW putting it down on the shag carpet like that.... Bye-bye RAM's, Bye-Bye logic chips...

Remember that the humidity of that carpet is probably around 65% RH - possibly higher. I lived in Vancouver for almost 50 years and most of the year you couldn't create a static buildup if your life depended on it. Certainly not using the carpet.

I've always been careful, but didn't realize how good I had it down there. When I moved here the first thing I noticed is that the RH was always under 50%! In fact it even goes under 30% a lot of the time. We get really good sparks around here. (Ask my cat.) Anyway, it varies by locality. In Vancouver, the carpet if fine.

Raven
February 2nd, 2011, 10:20 AM
Not sure if somebody has answered, btw, but I'm pretty sure that card is a RILOE. They're used to remotely view and control a machine without even having the machine itself powered on. I could be wrong on this, but that's what it looks like to me. They come in both x86 and i960 varieties, and were often used in Compaq and HP servers, but work in any machine (with slightly reduced functionality). These are worth a fair bit, if it works.

The odd connector(s) are used for control of the main computer (since this is an independent SBC). The network port is to hook the SBC to the network, so you can view the current output of the machine from a remote location. Combine the two and you can monitor and even reboot a server remotely - cool stuff.

The only thing that seems off, for that assessment, is the lack of a rear connector for power, but maybe not all RILOEs are designed to receive external power (i.e., it only sends information while the machine is on, and if you direct it to reboot you'd lose the feed temporarily..)?

Here's a picture of a Compaq RILOE, (http://web.mac.com/martinmacleod/iWeb/Site/Blog/compaqrib.JPG).

The one you have, I'd guess, is a much older card with a similar purpose, and obviously not Compaq or HP (or it'd be labeled in an obvious way).


Just IMHO (and that of every computer professional I've spoken to on the matter): it takes a #$@#load of ESD to kill components in an assembled part.

Could rub the thing around on the shag carpetting then toss it in a box of foam peanuts and shake it up and it'll probably be fine. ESD isn't a myth, but the level of care needed to prevent damage from it is grossly overstated by many.

True, but only with more modern parts than many we deal with here. Anything from 1992 or newer is probably designed to withstand ESD (this is a guess, but somewhere around there..), while 80s gear is not afaik.

Raven
March 18th, 2011, 08:25 AM
Did you ever confirm/deny my assertion that it's a RILOE? I'm curious.

Chuck(G)
March 18th, 2011, 08:43 AM
I don't think that's what it is, given the BNC connector and the manufacturer's name (Optivision)..

luckybob
March 18th, 2011, 11:07 AM
+1 for it not being a RILOE. Every one that I've ever come across has more external connectors, AND has some sort of serial/proprietary internal interface with the motherboard.

NeXT
March 22nd, 2011, 06:58 PM
It's no RILOE.
I'm really tempted to see if I can amke this work as a really nice capture card. It would be pimp to be capturing video at 640x480 with audio and having it get compressed and everything right on the card.

Raven
March 23rd, 2011, 12:43 PM
Well I figured the BNC was 10base2 networking, and there are some headers on the card that could be the proprietary connectors for the mobo/case connections. I didn't see the name branding on there, though.

In retrospect it has a Crystal chip, and a Phillips chip. The Phillips is likely a decoder chip for video, and the Crystal is most likely a sound chip of some variety. This seems to support the theory that it's a capture or encoding/decoding card of some sort. My initial theory was that the Phillips chip was for encoding video, and the Crystal chip for encoding audio, they'd both be muxed into a signal and sent over the BNC (and input would run back up the BNC) which'd be networked with the controlling PC.

Anywho whether it's a RILOE, a capture card, or a decoder, etc.. I'm still rather captivated by the mystery. I hope you find out how to use it to do something. :D

EverythingIBM
April 2nd, 2011, 11:27 PM
Well I figured the BNC was 10base2 networking, and there are some headers on the card that could be the proprietary connectors for the mobo/case connections. I didn't see the name branding on there, though.

In retrospect it has a Crystal chip, and a Phillips chip. The Phillips is likely a decoder chip for video, and the Crystal is most likely a sound chip of some variety. This seems to support the theory that it's a capture or encoding/decoding card of some sort. My initial theory was that the Phillips chip was for encoding video, and the Crystal chip for encoding audio, they'd both be muxed into a signal and sent over the BNC (and input would run back up the BNC) which'd be networked with the controlling PC.

Anywho whether it's a RILOE, a capture card, or a decoder, etc.. I'm still rather captivated by the mystery. I hope you find out how to use it to do something. :D

And this is where I come in...

The crystal audio chips are quite cool, they are sound blaster compatible (also able to run "windows sound system" on DOS games that used it) and feature a unique version of OPL3: Crystal FM synthesis. I actually prefer Crystal FM chip over the real OPL3... but don't tell any OPL3 enthusiasts that!
I do have a cool SCSI jumpered sound blaster 16 though. I use them both :)


Good job completely killing that card BTW putting it down on the shag carpet like that.... Bye-bye RAM's, Bye-Bye logic chips...

Nah... I wore a hoodie and walked on shag carpet all day touching my computers. It takes a lot to kill computer components. Obviously I am extra careful with expensive vintage electronics, but for ordinary every day stuff, nah. I never once killed an electronic component with carpet or such. I think it'd be hard to do.

njroadfan
April 3rd, 2011, 07:49 PM
And this is where I come in...

The crystal audio chips are quite cool, they are sound blaster compatible (also able to run "windows sound system" on DOS games that used it) and feature a unique version of OPL3: Crystal FM synthesis. I actually prefer Crystal FM chip over the real OPL3... but don't tell any OPL3 enthusiasts that!

Are you sure the card just didn't install the Voyetra SuperSAPI! OPL driver (which I think sounds WAY better then the generic one)? It used to come with older SB16 driver bundles and the Crystal based Aztech Labs WSS compatible cards.

EverythingIBM
April 4th, 2011, 02:20 PM
Are you sure the card just didn't install the Voyetra SuperSAPI! OPL driver (which I think sounds WAY better then the generic one)? It used to come with older SB16 driver bundles and the Crystal based Aztech Labs WSS compatible cards.

I'd have to hear a few familiar MIDI files with "Voyetra Super Sapi" and see if it's the same as Crystal FM synthesis.
The crystal card does NOT contain an actual OPL3 chip (they would have had to pay yamaha: and if they went that far, may as well just make it sound the same), as far as I know anyways (I couldn't find one on my systemboard -- it's integrated)... just a lone chip entitled "CRYSTAL".
I've never heard any SB16s having the same sound as Crystal FM synthesis; in fact, my SB16 (an old version as noted above) has fun playing at the same time with the crystal one, and I get some cool chorus and grungy effects: as both cards have a slightly different sound.

Tetrium2
April 12th, 2011, 07:03 AM
I took the liberty of taking a couple pics of that strange S3 card (sorry for stealing the topic :blush:).

http://i941.photobucket.com/albums/ad254/inteltetrium/DSC00545.jpg
http://i941.photobucket.com/albums/ad254/inteltetrium/DSC00547.jpg
http://i941.photobucket.com/albums/ad254/inteltetrium/DSC00549.jpg

It's in mint condition, though I don't have anything else except for the card itself. I found it sealed in an antistatic bag and took it home, since it was in new condition and it looked so odd.

lutiana
April 12th, 2011, 07:56 AM
I took the liberty of taking a couple pics of that strange S3 card (sorry for stealing the topic :blush:).

http://i941.photobucket.com/albums/ad254/inteltetrium/DSC00545.jpg
http://i941.photobucket.com/albums/ad254/inteltetrium/DSC00547.jpg
http://i941.photobucket.com/albums/ad254/inteltetrium/DSC00549.jpg

It's in mint condition, though I don't have anything else except for the card itself. I found it sealed in an antistatic bag and took it home, since it was in new condition and it looked so odd.

http://www.trademoon.com/Product50006.aspx

Its a Compaq STB Video card, I recognized the part number and looked it up. HP and Compaq always use a xxxxxx-xxx type part number. It is a pretty odd looking card though.

eeguru
April 12th, 2011, 08:13 AM
I think that S3 card was the predecessor to this (http://img.techpowerup.org/081001/VideoLoca.jpg)

njroadfan
April 12th, 2011, 04:15 PM
I think that S3 card was the predecessor to this (http://img.techpowerup.org/081001/VideoLoca.jpg)

If only they knew what video cards would have become.

deathshadow
April 12th, 2011, 05:00 PM
Remember that the humidity of that carpet is probably around 65% RH - possibly higher.
I'm in New Hampshire, where we have 10% humidity or less for 3 months of the year and only see it go past 50% for two months (where is spikes up to an ungodly 90%)

Like right now -- it's April, it's getting ready to rain tonight, and we're at 38% humidity. Yesterday we had a 72F with 12% humidity -- in APRIL. (admittedly the entire week before that the daytime temp never even broke 40F here) We never see anything more than 40% humidity until July.

Good five months a year you can drag your feet on a carpet and get jolts a inch from a grounded surface with a visible spark.

Tetrium2
April 14th, 2011, 12:45 PM
I think that S3 card was the predecessor to this (http://img.techpowerup.org/081001/VideoLoca.jpg)
Oh yes, still looking for the ugly mutha heatsinks though :P

And personally I always take precautions concerning ESD. In The Netherlands weather is usually moist, but with my yltra-dry skin I always get sparks flying, so better not to risk things. Often when I go to bed (I'll spare you guys the details :P) and I get out of my pants, I can hear the sparks and sometimes even "SEE" the sparks in the dark!
So for me it's best to -always- be careful when taking ESD into account. And besides, ESD is pretty easy to avoid but a pain to diagnose.