Creative 3D Blaster VLB: $395 DOS Graphics Card from 1995 - creating3dgames.com

Creative 3D Blaster VLB: $395 DOS Graphics Card from 1995

LGR
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Experiencing the Creative Labs 3D Blaster VLB, a $350 graphics card from 1995 and one of the earlier attempts at a consumer 3D graphics standard. And specifically meant for 486 DOS computers! While others were catering to Pentium PCs and their fancy PCI slots, Creative took another route through this collaboration with 3Dlabs. So let’s admire the card itself, go over some history and context, get things installed and configured in the LGR Woodgrain PC, and play some mid-90s 3D accelerated DOS games!

● LGR links:

● You can grab the CT6200 3D Blaster VLB drivers and software here:

● Here’s an archive of the five bundled CGL games for the CT 6200:

● Music courtesy of Epidemic Sound:

#LGR #Retro #Graphics

104 Comments

  1. This looks like a good effort at a spectacularly bad idea. The overhead of CGL and the overhead of communicating with the card over VLB while it stalls the CPU (no Bus Master) is just so much higher than just rendering stuff in software. Plus 25MP/s fillrate is a little on the low side if you want to hit that 480p resolution, giving you the overdraw factor of 5 at 30fps. They should have considered targeting 400×300 or 512×384, which looks a ton better than 320×200 but also isn't quite as slow as higher resolution modes.

  2. Hi Clint! Thanks for another great video! We need a video of typical old dos gaming with Digital Foundry graphs! Maybe you could do a collab?

  3. You know I say everything above 15fps was playable in the 90s. I didn't have access to super high end stuff back then. So I made do with what I had

  4. I had the PCI version of this card that came out a few years later based on the Cirrus Logic chip and 4MB of Rambus memory. I had a budget socket 3 board at the time, AMD 5×86. I was a Windows 98 beta tester in high school and remember it blue screening during setup because MS didn't ship a Direct X compatible Cirrus Logic driver on the CD until later in the beta cycle after I reported my weird configuration.

  5. In the 90s I read about a graphics card that wasn't a graphics card – you installed it in your pc, but connected to your original graphics card via a VGA cable, and then from it, witha VGA cable to the monitor. It would enhance the graphics of the original card. Anyone knows what I'm talking about? I'd like to do some research, and it would be great to see LGR do an episode on it.

  6. Since it's a pass through, surely it can only run at the speed of the 2D card as maximum.

  7. All modern videocards do have a soundcard included (to support audio over hdmi).
    I remember the first hdmi cards to lack this feature and having alot of sync problems while using dedicated soundcards next to the videocard (digital video vs analog audio).

    As hdmi video cards eventually supported audio we had a new problem; the audio cut off when the display went into sleep mode which is what we are all used to now (gone were the days of listening to mp3's with the screen in power saving).

    Maybe you could do a video sometime about the first videocards supporting hdmi as that was also pretty prototype-y.

  8. 22:24 this looks like a capture of a replay. is it? the movements seem identical except the opponent cars have different paint jobs (not just resolution) across what seems to be a replay of the same instance.. anyone know why this is?

  9. The 32768 color modes where 15 bit, not 16! 🙂 This was a logical step, because it meant the same amoutn of bits (5) per RGB channel. But most vendors later added an 16 bit mode, which offered one bit more for the green channel, because the human eye can detect the color green more precise than Red and Blue.

  10. Hold on, so they bundled multiple games with the card, but the games that they had CHOSEN to ship with it performed so poorly that reviewers roasted them for it? What a strategy.

  11. My company should be called Technical Spaghetti

  12. Funny, I use the same microphone on my bathroom pc.

  13. 486 DX4 100 was faster than pentium 166s we had.

  14. "My video card doesn't come with a sound card" doesn't sound at all silly today. Every video card I've owned in the last 15 years has had onboard sound, for use in conjunction with HDMI out.

  15. I remember looking at reviews of the "creative" line of cards saying they just never had enough memory and used a wonky api. Say what you will about glide, it was easy to use and they let eveyone know how to program with it, not just venders.

    Also, Magic Carpet was my jam back in the day. You didn't have alot of games for the first voodoo except for that and myth.

  16. A card so bad it makes a Virge card look like a Voodoo by comparison.

  17. I grew up with a 286, and 386, later 486 and pentium PCs. I forgot how bad the frame rates were in games back then. It makes me cringe seeing these sometimes sub 10 fps games now, even though that seemed so normal back in the day.
    The yooth of today are lucky they didn't have to deal with games that make their eyes bleed

  18. 600 Dollars adjusted for inflation is pricey for a graphics card? Ha, haha, ah. 😭

  19. I remember watching that Diamond Edge card video when it came out, I think it’s really interesting, especially the Saturn port support

  20. Now 🍒
    That was Creative. You have really nice ones, not basic only.

  21. That GPU is the same size as the one in the Nintendo 64, absolutely giant chip.

  22. As a child I really had to push those cards to make them slot in! Hurt my nine year old fingers many times!

  23. yeah remember these 3dfx voodo cards … expensive …
    and didn't last long. Sometimes installing new did help, but the most cards really just died totaly.
    I don't miss that time, but like to remember as a history thing.

  24. Lol imagine a time when $600 was expensive for a graphic card 🤣😂😂………🥲🥲😭😭

  25. Pretty sure my optiplex pentium pro 200 system has 1 or 2 ISA slots

  26. Just for fun, I had tried a 486/DX4/100 with 2 Voodoo2 in SLI mode. Unreal Tournament ran at about 10fps.

  27. I remember Nascar Racing, Magic Carpet, Hi Octane back in 95, Fatal Racing, Screamer, etc and I was amazed with the 3D graphics, usually I was playing on soft mode because I didn't had a 3d accelerator until 97 or so with 3dfx chipset.
    Ahh the crazy 90s the best decade for gamers.
    Great job mate with the video.

  28. What would happen, is you plug your screen in you video card instead of the creative 3d card, when playing a game only supporting/running on the creative 3d accelerator?

  29. I was gaming back then.. that would have been perfectly acceptable

    way back then.

    Most people I knew played what they could play

  30. Will never forget installing an 8MB Voodoo 2 card. The difference in graphic fidelity and frame rate was mind blowing. The card came with that racing game Wipeout 2097… It's probably the biggest jump in graphics I have ever seen since.

  31. I had a Diamond VLB, cant remember what chipset it had, but it had 2 megs of ram i believe, and i was always blown away by the card, it was paired with a 486 DX2 66 cpu. I love the nostalgia of this channel!!

  32. I'm Brazilian…I admire North Americans that's why you are very good in technology, I used to spend hours looking at and admiring computer electronic circuits when I was young…video cards were my favorites…with their bright green color ..thin tracks as a hair or smaller than that I love technology ..it's a fantastic job

  33. Now I'm watching this on my 3080ti with over 10000 cuda cores lol .. we came a long way

  34. I just had a stupid idea. what if you daisy chained all of these "requires a 2d accelerator" cards together and see how many you can fit into one system at a time

  35. I have one of the screen shot intel cards of you would like to borrow it was a dual gpu

  36. I had a 3dfx Voodoo2 card and a fun thing to do with these pass-through cards is to see which graphics are accelerated and which are from the regular VGA card by switching around the VGA cable.

  37. 23:29 "airborne carpeted ambiance" gotta be one of my favorite genders

  38. Interesting to see what I didn't miss 🤣

  39. 600 bucks in present day money.

    Just goes to show you, you lost major dollars between 1995 and April 2021.

  40. Just as a bit of a follow up, I sent this card into LGR as I thought it was cool and important for everyone to learn about it and I couldn't think of a better channel than LGR. If you're interested, it was by complete chance that I found this card at all, it was inside a 486 mini tower PC that was missing its lid in amongst a pile of other rubbish at a local flea market in Sydney, Australia. Luckily, the parts inside the tower were in excellent condition and I was able to salvage this 3D blaster from it which worked first go when I tested it. Great job Clint and thanks for doing this card such justice even though the card itself is a bit underwhelming.

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