[rescue] Old Sun graphics systems (HW & SW)

Janet L. Campbell janet at foonly.com
Fri Mar 18 11:02:38 CST 2005

On Fri, 18 Mar 2005, Michael Doyle wrote:

> Sun-3's yesterday). I have seen a couple of GT's
> offered on eBay but of course they were missing the SBus board and
> corresponding cable that interfaced the unit with its host Sun.

You're not missing that much.  We had a "household" GT picked up for a
song connected to a SS2 for a while...the fact that it was 1280x1024 24bpp
was really nice, but blitting speed was painful.  Really really painful,
as in on the order of a second or two to do a full screen draw if you
couldn't use the fast clear panes (blanking the screen was pretty quick).  
The interface just didn't have the bandwidth for blits.

As for 3D, it was reasonably fast but buggy.  Many of the major CAD
packages of the day that did use XGL eventually included warnings that the
GT was a buggy design, and they couldn't support it.  SDRC IDEAS comes to
mind as one of these.  Ford had a fleet of GTs that they eventually
pitched for this reason, IIRC.


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