The day the earth stood still
With months of lead time lost for the next-generation of 3d technology, 3dfx was in a bind. Missing a crucial window of opportunity in the most competitive and advanced PC technology market wasn't simply an unfortunate reality, it was a tremendous blow to the gaming community. Nvidia was making waves throughout with the GeForce 256, and at the time, there was little that 3dfx could do.
Exactly one year after the announcement of the Voodoo3, 3dfx again gathered the press around a November Comdex announcement. This year, they promised something truly revolutionary, under the banner cry of "insane fill rates," in answer to Nvidia's rally of "hardware T&L." Unveiled at the show was the VSA-100, or Voodoo Scalable Architecture, which allowed anywhere from 1 to 32 VSA chips to run in parallel, attacking the same 3D graphics problem in unison.
While VSA-100 allowed 3dfx to cite its heralded 1.46 Gigapixel per second claim, the part itself remained a mystery to many readers, who felt it failed to address the need for constant innovation. "Add a few oft-requested features to a run-of-the-mill Voodoo3, re-enable the Scan-line Interleave feature introduced in Voodoo2, and you've got yourself a Voodoo5, right? Well, what are the differences between Voodoo3 and VSA-100 technology, and why did it take 3dfx so long to engineer?
Due to the number of questions we've received regarding Voodoo4/5 and VSA-100, we decided to get on the horn with 3dfx's Scott Sellers and Brian Burke, and find out straight from the horse's mouth why VSA-100 is a worthy successor to the Voodoo family name.