VideoLogic Launches PowerVR-Based 3D Graphics Card Apocalypse 3D

VideoLogic has today launched Apocalypse 3D. Based on the revolutionary PowerVR 3D technology from NEC and VideoLogic, Apocalypse 3D brings true arcade-level 3D gaming to the PC platform for the first time.

The card will be available in the UK from December through VideoLogic's existing network of distributors and resellers, currently selling the GrafixStar range. The Apocalypse 3D pack includes an NEC PCX1-based accelerator card, PowerSGL drivers, Microsoft DirectX drivers and two special PowerVR games - ULTIM@TE RACE from Mindscape Bordeaux and MechWarrior2 from Activision. The total Apocalypse 3D gaming package has an RRP £159.00 and an expected street price of £149.00. Further PowerVR enhanced games will be available in the market before Christmas, as well as an extensive range of Microsoft D3D compatible games titles.

The Apocalypse 3D card is a single slot half length PCI card for Pentium based Windows 95 PCs. The card uses the PowerVR based NEC PCX1 chip to create real time 3D rendering, and is compatible with DirectDraw-enabled 2D graphics cards or controllers. Apocalypse 3D is supplied with 4Mb of high performance SDRAM texture memory on board.Apocalypse 3D Delivers the fastest Microsoft D3D performance

Apocalypse 3D is supplied with D3D drivers which give the user access to some of the advanced features in the PowerVR-based PCX1 processor - further enhancing performance and gameplay for Windows 95 D3D games.

In designing D3D drivers for PowerVR, NEC and VideoLogic have worked closely with Microsoft to ensure that the new drivers take full advantage of PowerVR's unique architecture and features. As a result, PowerVR and Apocalypse 3D give users the highest level of D3D games performance anywhere in the market today.

Microsoft Direct3D Benchmark Test (166MHz Pentium)

Benchmark results.
Based on Microsoft Direct3D Benchmark

The test was conducted using the DirectX 3.0 SDK D3D benchmark with a screen resolution of 640x480 and 16-bit colours. All products were tested with the following features turned on: z-buffer, Perspective Correct Textures, Flat Shaded, Front to Back, Mono, Point Sample, no updates. Rendition and 3Dfx tests completed on respective developer kits.

"In only a matter of months we've seen a major split in the 3D PC graphics accelerator market into entry level 2D/'free' D offerings and high-end arcade-level 3D solutions," said Kevin Dale, sales and marketing manager for VideoLogic Europe. "Apocalypse 3D is the first of the true arcade-level, low cost 3D accelerators for the PC market."

Apocalypse 3D Arcade Performance

Apocalypse 3D uses the NEC PCX1 processor, which delivers unprecedented 3D rendering performance in the PC - outperforming current non-3D accelerated PC solutions by 25 times. Rated at 8 billion operations/sec, the PCX1 delivers up to 1million polygons/sec, with pixel fill rates up to 60 million pixels/sec. This performance allows Apocalypse 3D to deliver stunningly realistic rendered images at frame rates in excess of 30fps at 640x480 resolution in 24-bit true colour. PCX1 also performs 32 bit accurate z-buffering calculations on the chip, eliminating the need for expensive z-buffer memory, the performance bottleneck on traditional 3D systems.

Apocalypse 3D Features

  • NEC PCX1 single 3D graphics processor
  • 4Mb of high performance SDRAM texture memory on board
  • Two PowerVR special edition games - ULTIM@TE RACE and MechWarrior2
  • Priced at £159.00 (RRP)
  • PCI 2.1 Plug and Play card
  • Microsoft DirectX 3.0 support
  • PowerVR Direct3D and PowerSGL software drivers
  • Shipping to OEMs in November
  • Retail product available in Decembe