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Thread: ATI Rage 128 VESA Feature Connector support?

  1. #1
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    Default ATI Rage 128 VESA Feature Connector support?

    I've tried looking for the perfect way to bring old and... well, less old together.

    I've tried using ATI All-In-Wonder Cards in hopes that it would work for my VFX1 VR headset, but the only ones that work are the Rage Pro/Turbo lines. (and I have a bunch of Radeon and Rage 128 All-In-Wonder cards due to failures in attempting to get the VESA Feature Connector pins (26 pin header) to work.

    The connector is shared with ATI's own AMC 40-pin multimedia standard, and partially uses the same board footprint.

    I've looked at getting a normal ATI Rage 128, because I'd like to be able to use the video-out RCA port (to connect to a TV just for fun), and play early-2000s-era games. The older models seem to have AMC with populated pins. These cards also have the AMC mark on the back, which automatically tells me it's compatible with the VESA feature connector standard.

    On the other hand, specification documents for the Rage 128VR and 128GL tell me this isn't the case, and that feature connector support has been removed:

    https://forum.videohelp.com/threads/...W-Rage-128-Pro
    http://vgamuseum.info/index.php/comp...8eba1bbbe62e17


    On the other, OTHER hand, I've read that some people have gotten feature connector video output to work just by populating the empty solder vias with pins, or that support HASN'T been removed (Use the Find function for "VIP" on these pages):
    http://dmarton.tripod.com/rage128.htm
    https://www.anandtech.com/show/205/2
    https://drivers.amd.com/manuals/online.pdf

    TL;DR: Conflicting documents and accounts make me unsure of when ATI decided to drop the VESA feature connector ability.
    Last edited by T-Squared; March 7th, 2020 at 06:35 PM.

  2. #2

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    Are you sure you're not confusing a feature connector with a composite video connector?
    PM me if you're looking for 3" or 5" floppy disks. EMail For everything else, Take Another Step

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stone View Post
    Are you sure you're not confusing a feature connector with a composite video connector?
    Nope. I know what a feature connector is. (and sorry I confused you, I edited my first post to correct that.) They were 26-pin (or 2 rows of 13 pins) connectors that allowed video from video cards to be used on other displays, in the case of my VR headset, or to be piped through special cards, such as MPEG decoders, or DVD decoders.

    Some of ATI's cards also had RCA connectors that allowed you to output video to a TV, but it seems as though they traded one output for another. They gained direct video output on-board (without a small converter box), but lost the VESA feature connector.

  4. #4
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    You are running into pretty much the same problem I ran into which was the VESA support was limited. Electrically the interface is standard compliant but the VIP card is not initialized properly on quite a few cards. Exactly what is different? I don't know because I'm not going to hang a logic analyzer off it. Likewise I've seen the reports of just repopulating the header but again didn't consider myself desperate to throw a header on and try. ust get one of those VGA to composite scan converters because the VFX1 is going to lock you to 800x600 max.
    I gave up and settled on one of the RagePro Turbo chipset All in Wonders you mentioned with 8mb SGRAM. It's not an excellent performer relative to what we know of the card now but for games at the time there is still a considerable amount of power available.J
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  5. #5
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    I bit the bullet and got the Rage 128 with the AMC 2.0 feature. It doesn't work. They were serious about the Rage 128 dropping feature-connector support. So, if you want the best retro video card that you can get with VESA feature connector support,...

    Get the ATI Rage Pro Turbo All-in-Wonder.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by T-Squared View Post
    I bit the bullet and got the Rage 128 with the AMC 2.0 feature. It doesn't work. They were serious about the Rage 128 dropping feature-connector support. So, if you want the best retro video card that you can get with VESA feature connector support,...

    Get the ATI Rage Pro Turbo All-in-Wonder.
    I haven't posted specs on my recent K6-2 build yet as I'm in the 'tweak' stage, but I did use the ATI Rage 128 AGP version. I don't think that I'll be opting for the feature connector at this time, but here's some info: Good luck with your project.
    https://www.datasheetarchive.com/ati...datasheet.html
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