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A21m graphics issues

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DoubleFace
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2019 1:49 pm
Location: Wroclaw, Poland

A21m graphics issues

#1 Post by DoubleFace » Sat May 11, 2019 2:04 pm

Hello

I've recently acquired A21m in a pretty good condition. I've managed to install all drivers with exception of ACPI, which seems to not have any supported drivers for Windows 98.

Anyway, I tried to play some games with varying types of graphics, Doom95, Worms 2 and Quake 3. Surprisingly, only the last one ran with no issues. Here's how the other games looked like:

Image

This was supposed to be Doom

Image

And here's "Worms 2"

I've got most up to date drivers and DirectX 9.0c installed. What could be the problem here? Why less demaning graphics show glitches, while more advanced game runs flawlessly. I've never managed to run Worms properly and Doom had proper graphics only once.

Also, for some reason, in Device Manager, there are two monitors installed, and whenever I remove one, it immediately comes back after the reboot... The video chip is ATI Rage Mobility M.

Bondi
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Re: A21m graphics issues

#2 Post by Bondi » Sat May 11, 2019 2:26 pm

I suspect this is some kind of software issue. Is it the same if you run the games in pure DOS?
I'd try tweaking BIOS settings related to graphics.
In generlal this exact model is perfect for dos-gaming as it has hardware sound blaster support in dos.
Thinkpads: 330C, 360CE, 560, 755CD, 760LD, 760EL, A21p, A31p, X60s, X230

DoubleFace
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2019 1:49 pm
Location: Wroclaw, Poland

Re: A21m graphics issues

#3 Post by DoubleFace » Sat May 11, 2019 4:13 pm

Bondi wrote:
Sat May 11, 2019 2:26 pm
I suspect this is some kind of software issue. Is it the same if you run the games in pure DOS?
I'd try tweaking BIOS settings related to graphics.
In generlal this exact model is perfect for dos-gaming as it has hardware sound blaster support in dos.
I checked two DOS games in MSDOS mode, Duke Nukem 1 and Doom. Both of them ran fine.

In BIOS I can only see one section that could be relevant, that is "display". Under it I can select primary video device, boot display device, HV expansion and brightness. I changed from PCI to AGP but the problem still persists. For future reference, my BIOS version is 1.09, and that seems to be most recent one for this model. Any more ideas :(?

Bondi
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Re: A21m graphics issues

#4 Post by Bondi » Sun May 12, 2019 11:19 am

I'd personally try the folowing:
1) newer or older direcx drivers
2) setting a different (lower) desktop resolution before running the game (I know that it has nothing to do with the game, but it helped me once when I had problems running Half Life on my A21p)
3) turn off HV expansion in BIOS
4) turn off all hardware acceleration settings

The other thing that is worth doing is installing FastVid DOS utility that boosts graphics perfomance on PIII and PIV computers (It will not fix the issue, but I have it installed and it really improves video performance in DOS and Windows)

BTW what happens if you run the game in a window?
Thinkpads: 330C, 360CE, 560, 755CD, 760LD, 760EL, A21p, A31p, X60s, X230

Bondi
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Re: A21m graphics issues

#5 Post by Bondi » Mon May 13, 2019 6:43 am

I tried myself to run Doom2 on my A21p from Win98 and it also runs oddly. In graph mode the image is ok, but the screen flickers as if the refresh rate was low. In text mode the screen is garbled slightly - kind of tiled. I tried all kinds of settings, created a shortcut and tryied all sorts of settings there, but could not get rid of the flickering. In DOS everyting runs perfectly. So I would simply run dos games in DOS instead of trying to resolve this isue.
Thinkpads: 330C, 360CE, 560, 755CD, 760LD, 760EL, A21p, A31p, X60s, X230

dr_st
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Re: A21m graphics issues

#6 Post by dr_st » Mon May 13, 2019 10:49 am

Bondi wrote:
Mon May 13, 2019 6:43 am
So I would simply run dos games in DOS instead of trying to resolve this isue.
That may be a good idea, but his first post talks about Doom95 and Worms 2, both of which are Windows games.
Thinkpad 25 (20K7), X1 Carbon (20HQ), Yoga 14 (20FY), T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X220 4291-4BG
X61 7673-V2V, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G, X32 (IPS Screen), A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad, A21m 2628-GXU

DoubleFace
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2019 1:49 pm
Location: Wroclaw, Poland

Re: A21m graphics issues

#7 Post by DoubleFace » Tue May 14, 2019 8:29 am

So a few updates:

- tried another game - Jazz Jackrabbit 2 - no issues at all
- tried Worms 2 full game - works well, however music and worm speech is missing (it plays in demo though, despite having graphic glitches)
- after turning off acceleration Worms 2 demo loops on startup screen (game doesn't start)
- HV expansion turned off - no effect, except some games play in a smaller window
- set lower resolution (800x600 instead 1024x768) - no effect

Haven't tried playing in windowed mode, but don't really know where I can set it up, or if I can force it in Windows settings.

I might try some other games in future, but it looks like there is no definite answer yet.

Screamer
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Re: A21m graphics issues

#8 Post by Screamer » Tue May 14, 2019 11:52 am

Could you try uninstalling your current display driver, and try installing this display driver instead?

That driver was the very last Rage Pro driver that ATI had officially released, if I am not wrong.

DoubleFace
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Joined: Sat May 11, 2019 1:49 pm
Location: Wroclaw, Poland

Re: A21m graphics issues

#9 Post by DoubleFace » Thu May 16, 2019 7:14 am

And this seem to finally work.

Image

My card is recognized kinda incorrectly, but the game finally works. Full version still doesn't have all sounds though, but I suspect the problem is that this is a rip, not an install from the disk. When I will finally have some serious amount of free time, I might check other games. Also, no more doubled monitors in device manager or screen resolution settings.

Thank you very much for help!

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