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3Dfx Introduces Voodoo Banshee To Bring 3D Game Platform To PC OEMs

Innovative Features in Integrated 2D and 3D Graphics Chip Break 2D Performance

Barriers While Adding Powerful 3D and Full 3Dfx Games Compatibility

SAN JOSE, Calif., June 22 /PRNewswire/ -- 3Dfx Interactive(TM), Inc. (Nasdaq: TDFX) today introduced its much anticipated product to broaden its platform for 3D gaming and penetrate the PC OEM market: Voodoo Banshee(TM), which fully integrates 2D and 3D graphics in a single, powerful chip. Voodoo Banshee combines an entirely new 2D engine with the core of its most powerful 3D-only chipset, Voodoo2(TM).

Voodoo Banshee offers a number of innovative features that break the 2D performance threshold previously insurmountable in personal computer (PC) architectures. It delivers the highest levels of 2D performance on record, benefiting such applications as presentation graphics, Web browsing, 2D game playing, and general Windows screen performance, including refresh, drawing and scrolling.

Developed from the core technology in Voodoo2, the performance leader for 3D gaming, Voodoo Banshee offers the highest levels of game play and the greatest visual experience. Voodoo Banshee performs at optimal levels using multipass texturing, surpassed only by Voodoo2, which shows its unique advantage on complex games where it can process multiple textures in a single cycle. PCs equipped with Voodoo Banshee can run the more than 250 enhanced games developed for Voodoo2 and Voodoo Graphics(R).

"3Dfx has seen incredible success in the retail market with Voodoo Graphics and Voodoo2," said Greg Ballard, president and chief executive officer of 3Dfx Interactive. "With Voodoo Banshee, PCs users no longer have to compromise their choice of integrated graphics for gaming. Voodoo Banshee gives consumers the best of both worlds in an integrated OEM product- uncompromising 3D gaming performance and Voodoo compatibility along with outstanding desktop productivity performance through a new, highly innovative 2D architecture. No matter how you choose to buy 3D graphics, our commitment is to provide the Voodoo experience in retail and OEM products."

Breakthrough in 2D

The breakthrough in 2D graphics comes from a number of key hardware innovations. First, Voodoo Banshee has a dedicated high speed 128-bit interface to external memory with an internal 256-bit datapath for optimized memory utilization. For maximum performance, Voodoo Banshee has an internal, 256-bit memory interface to optimize memory utilization. Second, Voodoo Banshee features the industry's most complete hardware acceleration of the Microsoft Windows Graphics Driver Interface (GDI). Rather than resorting to software emulation for key GDI functions, Voodoo Banshee carries out the functions in hardware, resulting in a significant speed boost and greater stability. The hardware acceleration of GDI includes support for drawing polygons directly based on their vertices rather than requiring software translation and rasterization to create each part of the polygon, line by line. Voodoo Banshee can draw a polygon in tens of clock cycles instead of the thousands required by conventional 2D graphics hardware. Voodoo Banshee also provides full support for the 256 GDI raster operations in hardware, enabling fast object drawing in a single pass.

Another 2D performance breakthrough comes from Voodoo Banshee's ability to utilize block write support for optimal SGRAM performance. Block write support yields a quadrupling of 2D and 3D performance for polygon fills,
pattern fills and Z-buffer clears. Voodoo Banshee supports 4, 8 or 16MB of SGRAM memory and also includes support for 16MB of SDRAM.

Fastest VGA Performance

Voodoo Banshee is the first graphics chip to offer a full 128-bit video graphics adapter (VGA) architecture to boast the performance of legacy DOS games and applications. Voodoo Banshee also offers the highest levels of VGA compatibility.

Unique Optimization for Intel Pentium II CPU

Voodoo Banshee and Voodoo2 are the first graphics chips that can directly accept and execute the out-of-order graphics commands from an Intel Pentium II CPU. This patent pending technology can provide a performance advantage of up to 20 to 25 percent. This technology is the foundation of Voodoo Banshee's system-independent 2D and 3D interface to provide unparalleled performance in both PCI/AGP 1X and AGP 2X versions of the product.

Full Frame Rate DVD Video Acceleration

Voodoo Banshee provides full frame rate DVD video acceleration through either direct hardware assistance or through an optional DVD hardware decoder daughter card that can plug into its full VMI interface. With an integrated 230/250 MHz DAC, the chip supports high resolutions including HDTV resolutions of up to 1920x1440.

Powerful 3D With Full Voodoo Gaming Compatibility

Voodoo Banshee hosts an integrated, single texture unit version of 3Dfx Interactive's award-winning Voodoo2 game platform, the performance leader in 3D gaming. Voodoo Banshee maintains the fully compatible Voodoo core, which has been available to game developers for over two years and has resulted in a library of titles that could total over 400 titles by Christmas 1998. No other PC 3D graphics has maintained this level of stability and feature compatibility. The benefit of a stable 3D architecture is that developers have time to learn and specifically optimize games to a single architecture rather than being forced to re-learn a new PC graphics chip every six to eight months.

Optimized for all Major Game Development Environments

Voodoo Banshee is designed for optimized drivers for all major game development environments: 3Dfx Interactive's Glide, Silicon Graphics' OpenGL and Microsoft's Direct3D. Voodoo Banshee fully supports Microsoft's PC '98 specification and optimized Direct3D, including advanced features slated for DirectX 6.0. Voodoo Banshee also provides a new 3D graphics capability where textures can be rendered and mapped in real time on geometric surfaces to create effects such as true real-time reflections. Voodoo Banshee supports the real-time bump-mapping capability introduced with Voodoo2.

Perspective from Diamond Multimedia

"Diamond Multimedia's move to feature 3Dfx's Banshee technology in future Monster products enhances our on-going partnership with 3Dfx to provide the most innovative gaming technology to the PC user," said Scott Vouri, vice president and general manager of core graphics at Diamond Multimedia." The Monster 3D, both 1st and 2nd generation, has been the number one selling 3D graphics accelerator in retail for the last ten consecutive months and we anticipate the PC consumer will experience the same level of intensity and quality with this next generation of 2D/3D entertainment."

Perspective from Jon Peddie

"We expect the market demand for high-performance enthusiast-level game controllers to approach 10 million units," said graphics market analyst Dr. Jon Peddie, in Tiburon, Calif. "3Dfx has enjoyed leading brand recognition at the retail-level, and with Voodoo Banshee is well positioned to take on the OEM market".

About 3Dfx Interactive

3Dfx Interactive develops high-performance, cost-effective 3D media processors, software and related technology that are designed to enable a highly immersive, interactive and realistic 3D experience across interactive electronic entertainment platforms -- personal computers, coin-operated arcade systems and location-based entertainment. Current 3Dfx Interactive products include the Voodoo family of accelerator chip sets, Voodoo2, Voodoo Graphics and Voodoo Rush. Visit the company on the Web at

Except for the historical information contained herein, the matters set forth in this press release, such as statements relating to any of the company's ability to successfully exploit technological and market developments, the timing and success of new product introductions or offerings by competitors, and the ability to invest in new technologies and to enhance existing systems are forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties, including the impact of competitive products and pricing and alternative technological advanced, the timely and successful development and market acceptance of new products and upgrades to existing products, and other risks as detailed from time to time in each company's SEC filings, including the most recent Forms 10-K and 10-Q.

3Dfx Interactive, Voodoo, Voodoo 2, Voodoo Banshee and Voodoo Rush are trademarks and Voodoo Graphics is a registered trademark of 3Dfx Interactive. All other names may be trademarks of their respective holders.

SOURCE 3Dfx Interactive, Inc.
 -0- 06/22/98

/CONTACT: Steve Schick of 3Dfx, 408-935-4366,

/Company News On-Call: or fax, 800-758-5804, ext. 123070/

/Web site:


CO: 3Dfx Interactive, Inc. ST: California IN: CPR MLM SU: PDT

DK-SF -- LAM042 -- 2831 06/22/98 07:00 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 22, 1998
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