DOS Days

Revolution 3D

The Revolution 3D was the flagship product from Number Nine, winning many industry awards including being the "Editor's Choice Award Winner" by both PC Magazine and Byte Magazine. It was by far their most successful card in the company's 16-year history at launch.

Released June 1997 (PCI version), August 1997 (AGP version)
Chipset Number 9 T2R (Ticket to Ride) L2A0907
Standards MDA, Hercules, CGA, EGA, VGA
Memory 4 MB or 8 MB WRAM, and later, 4 MB or 8 MB SGRAM
Ports 9-pin DSUB (RGB analogue video out)
Part # 01-328002-004
Price At launch:
See Also Number Nine Revolution IV

It originally came in either 4 MB or 8 MB WRAM versions, and was based on Number Nine's third-generation "Ticket to Ride" graphics accelerator chip featuring an uncompromised combination of 3D, Windows and MPEG performance capabilities. Supporting both Direct3D™ and OpenGL® 3D acceleration with a dedicated 128-bit 3D engine and a 650-MFLOPS (million floating point operations per second) 3D setup engine.

In November 1997, Number Nine announced a new version of the Revolution 3D with either 4 MB or 8 MB of SGRAM. Both these new versions would be available with PCI and AGP buses, and were targeted at users who did not need extreme high resolution true color requirements. "Memory is one of the most expensive components of a graphics accelerator," said Andrew Najda, chairman and founder of Number Nine Visual Technology. "SGRAM is not only an ideal memory for today's fast graphics accelerators, it's now considered a commodity component. With fast, lower cost memory, Number Nine's 128-bit "Ticket To Ride" processor and Microsoft Certified WHQL (Windows Hardware Quality Laboratories) stable drivers, the SGRAM version of the Revolution 3D will be able to hit new markets which have been out of the reach with previous generations of Number Nine technology due to their higher price points.". The SGRAM versions would be available in the first quarter of 1998, and both were estimated to cost below $200 at the time of the announcement.

At the same time (Nov 1997), Number Nine announced they were reducing the ESP (Estimated Street Price) cost of the existing Revolution 3D to $249 for the 4 MB WRAM version and $299 for the 8 MB WRAM version.

Both the 4 MB and 8 MB WRAM versions supported optional memory upgrade daughterboards that added 4 MB or 8 MB additional memory, for a total capacity of 16 MB.

Revolution 3D SGRAM graphics accelerator features:

  • World's fastest 2D GUI (graphical user interface) drawing engine.
  • A built-in 3D Floating Point Setup Engine which is tightly coupled to a 128-bit 3D Drawing Engine for superior 3D performance
  • An 8KB on-chip texture cache for faster texture rendering.
  • Atmospheric effects for Specular LightingInterpolated Fogging and Alpha Blending improve 3D image quality.
  • 128-bit Video Engine allows smooth, full-screen, full-motion MPEG playback at up to 1152 x 870 at 16.8 million colors - without dropping video frames.
  • Front-end Color Space Converter de-compresses and converts MPEG color data from YUV to RGB which allows MPEG video clips to be scaled to full-screen resolutions - even when in true color display modes.
  • Video scaling is processed as a texture by the 3D engine, scaled and color interpolated for full-motion playback without the blockiness normally associated with scaled video.
  • A professional quality, externally mounted, 220 MHz. IBM DAC (digital to analog converter) provides a brighter, cleaner, crisper video signal to the monitor for a rock-solid image which is considered superior to products that incorporate integrated DAC within the processor.
  • Designed to accelerate Windows® 95 with Direct3D™, Windows NT 3.51 and Windows NT® 4.0 with OpenGL™ 3D support.

The pic at the top shows the 4 MB PCI version. Factory 8 MB cards have the other 4 MB on the rear of the card.
The pics below show the 8 MB AGP variant (has the optional 4 MB WRAM memory upgrade installed from factory).


Board Revisions

The only BIOS version known is 3.03.03.




In the Media


Setting it Up


Operation Manual

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Original Utility Disk

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More Pictures

Images of this card and the top pic are courtesy of Vogons member Artex

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