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Thread: In theory, could you make a DAC out of a video card?

  1. #1
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    Question In theory, could you make a DAC out of a video card?

    I just got a new motherboard and was taking my current rig apart, QM2000, 7900gt... They're almost the same thing, from my perspective. They both have a cpu, RAM, output... their main purpose is to draw. VGA is even analog.
    Alright, the dumbass has spoken... Shoot.
    Love, peace, and grease,

    allthat... aka: aaron@pangolin

  2. #2
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    It might be possible in theory, but it's not at all practical. A video card operates several orders of magnitude faster than the galvos we use for laser shows. While I'm sure you *could* use something like a video card to perform the conversion from digital to analog in theory, it sure sounds like you're using a sledgehammer to drive a thumbtack.

    A sound card is more suited to the task, and indeed there are several laser show products that are based around sound cards. (In fact, I believe the original Full-Auto board was a hacked version of a high-end sound card... DreamBeamz may be able to offer more insight on this.)

    A video card, on the other hand, has a lot more hardware on board. Then too, the data set that you send to a video card is more complex than what you send to a sound card, and the card performs several operations on that data set before it's converted to an analog signal that gets set to the monitor. That's what all the extra hardware is for. I don't know what you'd use all that extra hardware for, if anything, with regard to laser shows. Mostly I think it would just be wasted. Plus you'd have to massage the data from the show software before you sent it to the video card, because video cards are designed to draw raster images, not vector images.

    But could it be done, in theory? I'd say that just about anything is possible if you throw enough time and money at it, so yeah... Probably.

    Adam
    Last edited by buffo; 05-17-2007 at 06:15.

  3. #3
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    Damn, Allthat! How many 1000's of animated smileys you got anyway??

    (the horse poopin is hilarious)

  4. #4
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    Dude... Aaron is the king of smileys. (I think he secretly scours the web looking for new ones.) But for sure he's got a hell of a collection!

    I agree that the horse pooping one is one of his all time best though...

    Adam

  5. #5
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    Strange that ...

    Cos i cant see his smileys .... all i see is a link to a gif on candlepower forums ... if i click on it, i get sent to a new page with only the smiley on it ....

    maybe its my settings .... does anyone else have the same issue

    all the best ... Karl

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