Software Quadro

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Been getting some comments about that software GeForce-Quadro conversion:

At first I didn’t think it did anything, but then I took a closer look and realized what had happened.

Essentially the hardware alterations and this software are both trying to do the same thing: access the extra features a Quadro card (short of the increased amounts of RAM.) provides with a GeForce level GPU.

All of the hardware alterations I’ve seen go about accomplishing this by changing the way the card identifies itself to the drivers, hence making them think it’s Quadro kin.

This software package patches the driver set so that it no longer cares what the card is, and forces installation into a particular mode. I assume that is why you have to select the Quadro level you want to force on your card in the program.

The card still shows up (in my case) as a GeForce2 GTS, but I now have features available in my driver settings that were previously only there for Quadro cards. An interesting workaround.

I have used the SoftQuadro hack with the 12.40 drivers on an ASUS V7700
Deluxe. It works slick as (use your imagination) and really speeds up the shaded
manipulation (panning, zooming, spinning, and clipping) of multiple models in
Pro/Engineer 2000i2, where the standard drivers just die (think running Quake3 on a 386 with a Trident ISA card)
after opening 5 or 6 models in the same session.

It now runs better than my
3DLabs GVX-1 that I have in my workstation at the office.This patch beats
the hell out of melting a $300 board or buying an identical $1200 board.

I tried it out on a Geforce 2 Pro Leadtek with 5ns RAM and it seemed to
work at home. Had a little trouble getting consistent Specview results,
but the numbers in general were higher, especially the lines tests (1 &
2). Looks like it works to me.

The capabilities are enabled for quadro
and device manager shows quadro, but the nVidia control panel still shows
GTS/Pro chipset and extensions. Nor does Applying the driver seem to
consistently alter the default core clock to 250 Mhz like the Quadro.

I tried it out on a Geforce DDR under Win98 with a TBird 900Mhz. Don’t
have much to go on here for scores, but specperf 6.1.2 with ProCDRS scored
24.39 overall and test1: 16.3, test2:20.8. These scores seem in line with
what a Quadro should score and are about twice what a Geforce DDR would get.

The end result is rather unspectacular though as the advantages are rarely used with a Quadro. It
took a full day to even find a benchmark that would notice the difference.

Ed. note: Don’t expect general improvement in gaming from this conversion; you won’t get
it even from a real Quadro card. It does certain specific things much better.

Email Ed

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