Since some readers appear to enjoy identifying prehistoric graphics cards, I thought I’d post photos of two more TIGA boards from my junk pile. I know what these are, but do you? One of them ought to be fairly easy to identify and photos of it exist on the Internet. The other one might be tougher and to my knowledge no photos of it are available.
Let’s start with Exhibit A: This is an ISA-based graphics card by a well known manufacturer whose name is clearly legible on the PCB. It’s a combined VGA + TIGA card, a somewhat unusual yet very logical combination.
There’s a 60MHz TMS34010 GPU and a BrookTree Bt473 DAC. The DAC is a 66MHz part, so no fancy high-res modes, just basic 1024×768. Somewhat unusually, the board uses standard 30-pin SIMM slots for GPU memory, which means it was probably user upgradable. There is separate VRAM in typical ZIP modules.
Common for boards of this vintage, there’s a large array of oscillators, made even more impressive by the fact that there’s one for the GPU, two for the VGA chip, and four for the TIGA part. No wonder designers switched to PLL clock synthesizers.
The most unusual feature of this graphics card is its VGA chip… an Intel 82706. Yes, Intel made VGA chips back in the 1980s! Clearly not very successfully, and sadly, a data sheet for this chip is not available, only the document’s part number is known. The board was manufactured around mid-1990.
And now for the second board. This is a Microchannel graphics card made in USA by a large Japanese company, not a common combination in the world of PCs. The board is equipped with a memory expansion daughter card, shown separately in the photo:
Once more there’s a TMS34010 chip, though running at only 50MHz. The DAC is a Brooktree Bt471, again a 66MHz variant. And there’s a Chips & Technologies 82C611 MCA bus interface module. Here’s a close-up of the major chips:
Can you identify these TIGAs? No cheating, please…