June 6th, 1999, 03:38 AM
Diamond and US Robotics modems, Soundblaster sound cards, Voodoo3 and Riva videocards
Ok, first of all I would like to say that U.S. Robotics is an excellent modem. It was a hard choice for me to make between that or my Diamond modem. The Diamond modem ended up getting my vote b/c when I bought both and tested them, I found the Diamond Supra Max and Supra Express outperformed the U.S. Robotics Winmodem by 2000bps. Not much but I am a speed demon when it comes to internet surfing. Both modems connected far beyond what other modems had a chance to connect at. When I had an old 56k modem(name withheld b/c the company sucks and I don't want anybody to even consider looking them up) and it could barely connect above 26400bps on a 56k compliant connection. I figured it was bad phone lines and I am sure some of it is because no phone line is perfectly noise free. I popped in the U.S. Robotics one and it connected at 40000bps!! I then uninstalled the modem and popped in the Supra Max and it connected at 42000bps so I am sure you know which modem I kept and which modem I returned to Wal-Mart. Just to make sure I wasn't getting false reports, I downloaded a 1mb test file on each modem and I was able to maintain an average of 4.9kbps on the U.S. Robotics modem and arond 5.1kbps on the Diamond modem. Please keep in mind that all server's receive and transfer speeds are different. Sometimes on my Diamond Modem, I can download around 7-8kbps if I find a fresh one with few users and sometimes I can catch a slow server and connect around 1.5kbps. Both modems are great and I would recommend either one to anybody looking to achieve higher speeds.* Now on to other things, I have a Soundblaster Live Value installed on my computer and I am here to say that it's great! It has nearly 360 voices it can put out compared to it's big brother(Soundblaster Live which can dish out around 520. Most people find that amazing but the average human can distinguish around 300 voices added together at one time so you really arent missing much when you go Value. By the way, for those of you who care, the human eye can see around 70frames per second at one time at video so when you see a review on a video card boasting that I can achieve 100fps at a certain resolution, ignore the extra 30 fps and look at other things such as the highest resolution it displays and where it supports only 16-bit color mode or both. A good comparison would be the Voodoo 3 chip and the Riva TNT2 videocards. I have made out a chart below for your viewing.
Can display at both 16-bit and 32-bit color modes but is a little sluggish in 16-bit mode compared to the voodoo3. Provides great innovation for the next year or so!
Only displays in 16-bit color mode. Don't expect to run your games in 32-bit color mode because it just isn't happening. This card rocks though in 16-bit color mode!! It also has the highest software-compatibility of any video card out there! Grab this one only if you need a cheap fix and/or you have a slower processor which needs to run in 16-bit color mode. I hope this answers all the questions to the people that replyed in the last letter (The Doc's Guide to A Faster Connection)
June 6th, 1999, 05:55 PM
Thanks for telling us this stuff. I am looking for a new modem after my old one got fried by lightning. Have you tried Zoom, and if so, what were the results? Thanks.
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