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[News] Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200ANN.lu
Posted on 24-Feb-2000 07:40 GMT by Christian Kemp25 comments
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Ziggy writes: Martin Heine posted some Met@box news in c.s.a.misc, saying that the 3/4k-boards will be available about one month after the aj1200, the 2k-version will take about three weeks longer. Read more below. Nothing spectacular, but I thought I might share some pieces of information given by Thomas Rudloff (met@box) in an interview printed in the latest issue of the german magazine "amigaOS":
  • in addition to the flyer I quoted January 31st, a further difference of the amijoe for A2k and A3/4k from the amijoe1200 is that those for 2/3/4k will have a 100MHz-frontsidebus.
  • the 3/4k-boards will be available about one month after the aj1200, the 2k-version will take about three weeks longer.
  • the price for the "k"-boards will be about 100 DM more than the same version of the aj1200 because of the bigger board and the more expensive technology.
  • asked why they use a G3 instead of G4, Rudloff answered: "We can offer today 500MHz-G3-boards, while the situation of supply of the G4 is still not clear. All I can say about this for reasons of NDA is, that the first quarter of this year will bring completely new perspectives." (Original of the second part: "Alles, was ich aus NDA-Gründen dazu sagen kann, ist, daß das erste Quartal dieses Jahres ganz neue Perspektiven bringt.")
  • regarding 68k-emulation: met@box has two emulations in development, optimized for the pipes of the G3/G4. The first one is in a Flash-ROM and will reach about the niveau of a 030 - 040. An update for this emulation will only be necessary in case of any bugs. The second emulation will be loaded from harddisk at booting and brings the full speed. For this one there'll be regular updates for improvement. Current calculations show, that a PPC needs about 3.5 cycles (? - german: "Takt") for the emulation of one 8/16-bit-68k-command; 32-bit-commands are emulated in ca. 1.5 cycles, so that, regarding Thomas Rudloff, already their entrance-model will be better than an overclocked 68060. Important would be the possibility to switch between 68k- and PPC-code, so that a partial port of AmigaOS and applications would be possible. The second generation of emulation is already planned and will be much faster.
Bye, Martin.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 1 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by RemADeus on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
Hi
I'm glad the announcement of A4000(T)/A3000(T) AmiJoe cards have been announced
by the boys of Met@Box. I want to wait just as long as I'm certain I'll have
that accelerator for my BigBox Amiga.
--
Mr. Cthulhu? This is the front desk with your wake-up call...
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 2 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Ben Yoris on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
And still nothing concerning a 3D GFX board to be connected to the G3 board ?
I repeat myself but according to the unofficial survey by Elwood, a big majority of 1200 users won't buy one if a 3D gfx board isn't released.
A G3 with AGA sucks.
I hope Met@box guys are aware of that.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 3 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by traviz on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
Oh yes! AmiJoe4000, here I come! =)))
That is, ofcourse, if there also will be a rather powerfull 3D card to put on...
...otherwize I won't even go near it... =(((
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 4 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by is_not_of_your_business on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
Perfect! As Met@abox is going to release the AmiJoe A1200
when Windows 2k has no bugs (i.e., never), this means that
the A2k/A3k/A4k are going to be released... never. Period.
So, no hope for a new generation PPC card for the real Amiga
(and not, Escena is dead as their approach was not valid).
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 5 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by volm on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
Neat,
I hope the emulation speeds are true.
If so they can be sure that I'll place my order. ;)
- volm
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 6 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by volm on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 2 (Ben Yoris):
Hmm,
You still have the option of an Ateo-bus system and a Pixel64,
or am I mistaken? Agreed that this is far from the most optimal
nor elegant solution to the graphics speed problem.
- volm
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 7 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Ben Yoris on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 6 (volm):
No the Atéo Pixel 64 is far to be a solution.
1- We don't know if the Atéo Bus will be compatible with the Amijoe and vice versa
2- the bus is slow and it will be a bottleneck (see how the Permedia 2 bus is slowing things on Blizzard PPC
3- the Pixel 64 is not 3D able
Moreover, the entire solution represents an extra 200£ expense if compared to the less of £100 that could represent a standard 3DFX or TNT PC board.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 8 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Tony Gore on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
>>That is, ofcourse, if there also will be a rather powerfull 3D card to put on...
...otherwize I won't even go near it... =(((<<
I don't understand this kind of thinking. I'm hearing this from alot of people out there who have been sticking with 030's and/or AGA and would not buy a graphic card. Now all of a sudden, you refuse to buy an accellerator without one. I bought a gfx card long ago for my A3k (CV643D). Unfortunately, people still seem to want to program to the AGA Only specs. But that is now finally starting to change. I think that the graphics card will be there before long, but I would not go so far as to _refuse_ to buy the G3 until a gfx board was available.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 9 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Ben Hermans/Hyperion on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
It should be noted that a G3 will most likely be running Heretic 2 faster in software than the Permedia 2 can do it on the current PPC boards. This probably holds true for all Quake 2 based games.
Moreover, we are confident a grafics board will be released.
Ben Hermans
Managing Partner "Hyperion"
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 10 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Tony Gore on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 7 (Ben Yoris):
>>3- the Pixel 64 is not 3D able <<
Ben, I thought the Ateo website listed a future "3D add on board" for the Pixel-64. But you are right. I would rather be able to just go out and buy the latest Voodoo3 or TNT2 Ultra card and plug it into a full PCI slot. We would need at least reference drivers for them though. Wonder how hard it would be for Warp3D to be updated to support Voodoo3, TNT2 etc. Or even the Savage4 Pro or Savage 2000 with S3TC texture compression. That, combined with the G3 would make one kick-butt Amiga. Well, for playing games anyway. :) I'm sure it could be used for other stuff too.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 11 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by AGregory on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
If the statements are true, and they will release these boards
it sounds great to me.....of course, there may be ways which the
boards could be better, but the fact that they are out (if they
indeed make it) is incentive enough to buy it, and the new
programs will come out. I am slightly encouraged for the whole
Amiga, now that H&P are on board, smf TAO (with partial ownership of
Motorola, and Sony), and now a G3 board....but I don't want to get tooo enthused, as
many other companies made promises that were never kept...
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 12 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Joe Howard on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
So now I guess the big question remains - what kernel(s) will the Amijoe run with? Is it
safe to say that it won't run WarpOS until H&P/Sam Jordan get one and adapt WarpOS to
run on the board? I think they'd be foolish to come out with a board that doesn't
run current PPC software. Still though, I'm happy about the 500Mhz G3, I'm aware of the
G4 problems at Motorola.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 13 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Ben Yoris on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 8 (Tony Gore):
The problem is some people get used to have a Blizzard PPC and a Bvision.
Returning to AGA is simply impossible !
Imagine all the loss : having a 800x600 or 1024x768 Workbench, being used to CGFX viewers and datatypes and then going back to AGA-less-than-8-bits-if-not-WB-is-too-slow...
And even if Heretic II plays faster with a G3 software renderer, it will be on AGA only in 320x256x8. Because the bandwitdh of the AGA is so slow that you can't have anything more than 10 fps in 640x480x8 AGA. Just ask coders.
That's why many users who already have a Bvision won't come back to AGA, for sure.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 14 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Henrik Mikael Kristensen on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
Any progress in processor speed is a good thing. Some times its good to wait until something better comes up, but in this case I wouldn't criticise it. Finally someone are bringing out 400+ Mhz processor boards for the Amiga, and I think we should be glad and hope for the best for Met@box.
It's not as good as a G4, but I'd trade my tired 040/25 Mhz for any PPC these days even with 68k emulation.
As for the GFX card situation, yes existing cards will become performance bottlenecks, and it may last a while before a proper card comes out, but remember we don't have the luxury of being the most popular platform on this planet, thus having only a few courageous developers who will risk wasting money in bringing out hardware to a small platform. Developing hardware which operates in those frequency ranges "ain't like dusting crops, boy!".
I wouldn't start the mudslinging, until I had the luxury to do that. Right now it's hard work.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 15 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Bill Toner on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
I am very excited about Amijoe. Regardless of a graphics addon for it or
68K emulation speed, I will have one for my 4000T. I can't think of any 68K
software I have that I can't get a PPC version for that would significantly help.
The stuff I use that isn't available for PPC I don't see as heavily CPU intensive
tasks, like Dopus 4, YAM, my checkbook program, etc. I have a PicassoIV, so
I'm not in the situation some are of losing their Bvision/Cybervision PPC. I
have the potential of adding PPC software compatibility that I don't already have.
I don't expect to lose my 68K programs. My questions to Metabox got a response
that WarpOS applications would indeed be supported, but it wasn't clear if they
were going H&P official or doing some WarpOS API wrapper for their stuff. At the
moment I don't see much of an option, as I don't want a Phase 5 product again after
the crap I went through with my Cyberstorm MK2. I bought my copy if Wipeout 2097
a couple months ago, and am just waiting for a PPC card and the Paraglide from VT
to be able to play it.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 16 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Mike on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 14 (Henrik Mikael Kristensen):
I hope it isn't too early to say this, but damn, I'm really happy !!! :)
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 17 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by redrumloa on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
I want one now!!! If I can't repair the A3000 fast enough I'll buy another to slap this in. Too cool!
I just seriously hope the speculated time frames for release are serious!! I want one! I want one!
Did I mention I want one? :-)
Regards,
Jim
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 18 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Lee on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
I want one too...NOW! I'd prefer a G4 but I could live with a G3 happily,
I do believe. :) I hope there are some other things as well like blazing
SCSI, PCI, AGP, Firewire or at least uuuggg USB. I've been looking forward
to this for a long time. I've kept the faith in MetaBox. Guys, don't let
us down.
chreers,
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 19 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Remco Komduur on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 13 (Ben Yoris):
I can't agree more. I am not going back to AGA. So the boys at Met@Box better get their ass moving if they want me to buy their board becuase at the moment I am keeping my money for a Permedia 3 graphics card and maybe even a faster BlizzardPPC.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 20 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Mark Olsen on 23-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 9 (Ben Hermans/Hyperion):
It should be noted that a G3 will most likely be running Heretic 2 faster in software than the Permedia 2 can do it on the current PPC boards. This probably holds true for all Quake 2 based games.
You mean, it will run as fast, but without the goodies that a 3D chip offers ? And what ppl are asking for is not a bvision clone, it is a FAST, MODERN 3D chip WITH A PROPER BUS!
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 21 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Steffen Haeuser on 24-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 12 (Joe Howard):
Hi!
Concerning the 68k Emulation... their original plan was appearently to do their
own PPC Kernel (to save licensing fee) which would be not compatible to ANY
existing PPC Software (anyways, if WarpUP or PowerUP). Also due to limited time
for testing, it would most likely not be as compatible as the H&P
Emulation. Later they wanted to do an API Emulation AFAIK (which would add a lot of Developement time probably... and we need these Boards now...). It should not be forgotten, though, that until an article - like the
interview with Mr.Ruddloff in AmigaOS magazin - gets published a lot of time
passes, and it is possible that the situation changed a lot. I hope for
- and am quite confident that - the two firms will find an acceptable
solution :)
But they should really drop their idea of doing a third, incompatible Kernel.
Since this discussion started they have been getting email by quite some
important developers about that they would never support a incompatible
Kernel (which also would only run on new Boards...). I hope they have in the
meanwhile changed their policy.
But now as they are appearently the only G3/G4 Board manufacturer left i am
quite sure, they won't do anything which risks to screw up their now really
BIG chances to sell really MANY Boards :) But until they tell us, we have to
wait and see...
Steffen Haeuser
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 22 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Tony Gore on 24-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 13 (Ben Yoris):
>>The problem is some people get used to have a Blizzard PPC and a Bvision.
Returning to AGA is simply impossible !
Imagine all the loss : having a 800x600 or 1024x768 Workbench, being used to CGFX viewers and datatypes and then going back to AGA-less-than-8-bits-if-not-WB-is-too-slow... <<
Okay , I can see your point if you already have that equipment. That makes sense. But I have also heard people with basic AGA 1200's saying the same kind of thing, and that is what didn't make sense to me.
Well, let's hope they surprise us all and announce a Voodoo3 card or something. Or better yet, a way to connect a standard PCI card to Ami, even if it required a small external box to house it in, that would really be worth all the waiting. :)
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 23 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Martin Heine on 24-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 2 (Ben Yoris):
In the interview Mr. Rudloff says they'd be talking to companies more
experienced in the development of add-ons for the amijoe-cards - but
if necessary, met@box would develop them themselves.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 24 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Joe Howard on 25-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 21 (Steffen Haeuser):
Steffen -
You have hit the nail on the head. Regardless of whether the board comes with
gfx card this-or-that, or scsi this-or-that, if it doesn't run existing PPC
apps whether Powerup or WarpOS then it's not going to sell. People will want
the existing phase5 boards instead because they run software that's available
*today*.
Met@box G3 for A3/4k available 4 weeks after A1200 : Comment 25 of 25ANN.lu
Posted by Carl Mohlin on 25-Feb-2000 23:00 GMT
In reply to Comment 22 (Tony Gore):
A small box? I would say a BIG tower. Don't expect to have ppc-card AND a pci/agp-card in your damn small A1200 Desktop.
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