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Thread: Need help choosing a VGA card for turbo XT system

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by nestor View Post
    I would go for a one based on Trident 8900/9000 or Realtek RTG3105 chipsets, they had an utillity to switch to a 100% CGA compatibility mode.
    Yes, Paradise has this as well. I believe ATi cards from that era also have this.
    It's still nowhere near 100% compatibility, but at least the palettes will be correct.

  2. #12

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    The most important thing about running VGA in an XT is CGA compatibility...

    Quote Originally Posted by TheMaritimeMan View Post
    Oak Technology OTI-077
    Rather crappy overall, but it does have CGA/Hercules/EGA emulation modes, available via VGAMODE.EXE

    Tseng ET4000AX
    Very good chipset, also supports emulation modes, but they require a "Sync ROM" to work with VGA monitors - if your card has that ROM then it's probably the best choice, the video mode utility is usually named VMODE.COM

    Prisma VGART 800+
    No idea, I guess it's the card's name, but it's the chipset what's most important...

  3. #13

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    I have had great success with these two cards in 5150/5160 systems. They are used only for testing, although if one did live in a system, it would be a late release XT, like the CompuAdd, or maybe an XT-286.

    I prefer the Western Digital, as the VGA quality is good, and there are no vertical stripes.



    I also like the Video7 as I can change the display/monitor without having to change any jumpers on the card itself, but the VGA quality is not as good.


  4. #14

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    That Video Seven card is strange - VGA card with EGA feature connector...

  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xacalite View Post
    That Video Seven card is strange - VGA card with EGA feature connector...
    That feature connector is also found on lots of other (16-bit) VGA cards.







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  6. #16
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    Just want to echo that for retro systems, CGA compatiblity is important. While most VGA cards have generic CGA emulation, this fails on a few early applications. For example, the famous Microsoft Flight Simulator II will display a squished double screen. A "pure" CGA emulation mode will permit these applications to run and look right, within the limits of VGA hardware.

    On the the Video 7, it is even possible to flip DIP switch and enter "pure" CGA emulation mode at startup, without running any utilities. That may enable some booters to operate properly.

  7. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1ST1 View Post
    I think these cards are pearls thrown in front of pigs... Most software which is made for XT will not use VGA modes but some CGA, MDA or EGA modes. Such a VGA card is ways faster than the XT can deliver the graphics data. They have more memory than the XT directly can adress plus it's own ressources. The only real benefit you win is that it's easier to connect a modern monitor. Consider reserving the best of these cards, the ET 4000, for a 386 or 486 system, that fit's better, pearl for the princess.
    The vast majority of the programs i use on my Turbo XT clone offer EGA or VGA modes which generally run extremely well on an 8mhz V20. I still use a CRT too, but i agree that it is nice to be able to plug in a throwaway flatscreen if you dont have much space. I really personally recommend adding a VGA card as very few games that will run well on a turbo XT in the first place will experience severe slowdown through a VGA card, at least that i've personally found. Plus ISA VGA cards are still generally easier to find cheap than EGA or even CGA at this point if you're building a system from scratch.

  8. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stone View Post
    That feature connector is also found on lots of other (16-bit) VGA cards.
    The cards on your pictures all have a VGA-style feature connector - 26-pin edge.
    But that Video Seven card posted earlier has an EGA-style connector - 32-hole.

    Quote Originally Posted by SomeGuy View Post
    On the the Video 7, it is even possible to flip DIP switch and enter "pure" CGA emulation mode at startup, without running any utilities. That may enable some booters to operate properly.
    Many ISA VGA cards support CGA booters - they have an option to keep emulation mode active even after reboot, eg. OAK's VGAMODE.EXE has the "LOCK" option.

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