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17.Jan.2002
Christoph Gutjahr (ANF)


New informationen about "ATI-Radeon" support for AmigaOS
On the AmigaOne mailing list Bill Toner, responsible for development of 2D/3D AmigaOS drivers for ATI Radeon graphics boards, voices upon miscellanous questions regarding support for these boards. The most important spots:

Support for the following versions of the operating system and computer configurations:

Bill Toner (and a partner not named) are responsible for driver development; Picasso96 and Warp3D drivers. Those drivers are about to be released for AmigaOS 3.x and AmigaOS 4.x.

In any case the Prometheus PCI board will be supported under OS 3.x, since Bill owns such board. Mediator support is being planned, though Mediator 1200 boards will raise additional efforts. According to Bill, DCE did not respond to his request regarding Radeon drivers about one year ago, therefore he cannot talk about GRexx solutions, yet.

Radeon versions supported

First the original Radeon chipset will be supported (RV100), later on support for the newer chipset RV200 will be added. Whichever the different versions (32 or 64 MB video RAM, additional chips for special functions like TV in/out) would differ from the developers point of view, it may come that not every model will be supported, due to the developers team cannot purchase every Radeon board. The PCI Radeon 32MB SDR, one AGP RV100, and one of the newer boards with RV200 chipset are planned to be supported at all events. If the "All-In-Wonder" (highend version with TV tuner, etc.) will be supported (respectively all of its features) was not decided yet - even though they aim at this. There will not be more detailed information about board models to be supported before the developers will have an Amiga with AGP slot.

Distribution and prices

Apparently the drivers will be sold bundled with an ATI graphcis board, only. Those are expected to work only with that board, they will come bundled with. Bill expressly states, that one should not buy an ATI graphics board right now.

This step intends to decrease the number of piracy copied driver versions. As an example Bill states the low number of registered P96 users among the customers of Elbox. Further on this would help the Amiga developers to enhance their income a bit, since they will not only earn by selling their software, but also can book the difference from purchase price to selling price of the graphics board (which otherwise a PC vendor would get).

According to a careful estimation by Bill the packet ATI graphics board plus Amiga driver would cost 50 to 70 USD more than the respective board would cost at the PC vendor's - he hopes that the additional charge will be only a few more than 50 USD if possible, but cannot say anything in detail about that, yet.

The additonal charge contains:
  • The costs of 2D and 3D drivers.
  • Support, which also has to be done by the developers.
  • A commercial Picasso96 license.
  • Probably a commercial Warp3D license.


Release-Date

An initial driver release should not be expected along with the OS4.0 launch. Bill cannot tell about detailed dates, yet.

Original English postings

Under the following links you can read the original postings from Bill Toner, Forefront Technologies, Inc. (previously Progressive Data Systems) on the AmigaOne mailing list:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/amigaone/message/10510
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/amigaone/message/10532
(ps) (Translation: mj)

[News message: 17. Jan. 2002, 12:14] [Comments: 1 - 18. Jan. 2002, 15:11]
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