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ATi All-in-Wonder PCI
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Summary: A good card for OS/2, but with some annoying font problems and a complex driver installation procedure.

ATi was the first company that I went to when I stopped using Diamond. I liked ATi because their cards try to do everything for a decent price. I was reading about OS/2 drivers and how they are actively writing them. You need to remember that whatever the company, you need to ask them if they have drivers for the card you are using and if they are working on new drivers.

Installing the ATI card was physically easy, just open the case, find a open PCI slot, shove it in, close the case, and wala. It's physically installed. Remember when you put a new video card in OS/2 you might want to go to a OS/2 command prompt right before you shutdown and install the new card. At the prompt type X:\setvga. This will reset your video back to default video drivers so you can install the new video card drivers with little hassle. The ATI software install was a 12 step process with 7 sub processes. It wasn't as bad as it sounds but it could be easier (The setup for win95 was around 3 steps!) After I rebooted, the first thing I noticed was all my fonts were not the default Warpsans anymore. It was Roman and it was big. I couldn't even use Warpsans. I would never figure out why and even my e-mail to them would go unnoticed.

The performance of the card was great in terms of speed. I at a resolution of 1024x768 at 16-bit color, never a flicker. This is because the card uses 64-bit acceleration and 100MHz SGRAM memory. The All-in-Wonder is upgrade able to 8MB of memory that will bring high resolution graphics up to 1600x1200 and images at refresh rates up to 200Hz. The chipset is the ATI 3D RAGE PRO TURBO, a high performance 64bit graphics accelerator with support for 3D, 2D and motion video; includes integrated setup engine, on-chip texture cache, hardware assisted MPEG-2 acceleration and scaling, and integrated 230MHz DAC (Digital to Analog Converter - turns a digital signal into an Analog one that drives your monitor).

The ATI All-in-Wonder is a good all around card. I used this Card for around a year, If it wasn't for that darn Font problem I might still have the ATI card. It's the small things that get to me though, The Font problem and no true software to use with ATI's drivers were the killing decision for me. If you considering the ATI brand, it is a very good card, but for OS/2, there is better.

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All-in-Wonder PCI

by ATi Technologies, Inc.
MSRP: $169 (with 8 megs)
Copyright © 1998 - Falcon Networking ISSN 1203-5696
December 1, 1998