NuBus Video Cards

RasterOps Paintboard Turbo 12"

Physical Specs and Compatibility

The RasterOps Paintboard Turbo 12" is a 12" NuBus card compatible with 680x0-based NuBus Macs running up to Mac OS 7.5.3. It may be compatible with higher versions of the Mac OS or PowerPC-based Macs, but no information is available at this time.

Hands On: Chris Lawson

Card tested in a Mac IIcx running System 7.1.0. Here are the numbers:

The following video benchmarks were obtained at 640 x 480 resolution using Speedometer 4.02:

computer              1-bit  4-bit  8-bit  16-bit
IIcx, "Toby"          0.252   n/a   0.248   n/a
IIcx, Turbo, off      0.264  0.226  0.202  0.170
IIcx, Turbo, on       0.271  0.293  0.324  0.416
IIcx, Prism, on       0.271  0.255  0.408  0.471
IIcx, 8•24 GC, on  0.421   n/a   0.422   n/a

The "Toby" card is Apple's unaccelerated Macintosh II Video Card. The Turbo was tested with acceleration off and on. Performance improved with acceleration enabled at all settings. It is 3% faster at 1-bit, 30% faster at 4-bit, 60% faster at 8-bit, and a whopping 145% faster at 16-bit.

The RasterOps Paintboard Prism and Apple 8•24GC are shown for comparison. On the more commonly used 8- and 16-bit settings, the Prism outperforms the Turbo by 26% and 13% respectively. The Apple 8•24GC outperforms both cards.

Again, I don't think the software is necessary for acceleration, but it's very useful. Wow, does it have some annoying sound effects in the Turbo control panel (used for enabling/disabling acceleration)! Fortunately, these can be turned off within the control panel.

Something that has really surprised me so far: a Quadra 605 is faster, supposedly, than all these cards have been. I wonder if it's a function of benchmarking them in a IIcx? Honestly, I think the Prism and Turbo are a lot faster than this, but I don't have a NuBus-based Power Mac to test them in, and I still haven't gotten that Centris 650 up and running.

There's a jumper marked "JP3" near the NuBus connector on this card; if anyone has any clue what this does, let me know.

Acceleration/Resolution/Color Support

The card provides standard QuickDraw acceleration and supports the following resolution/color combinations:

  • 640 x 480 up to 24-bit
  • 832 x 624 up to 24-bit
  • 1024 x 768 (at 60 or 75 Hz) up to 24-bit


RasterOps video card drivers can be downloaded from the Mac Driver Museum, where ShrinkWrap disk images are available for RasterOps Graphics Install v3.2 and v3.3, MoviePak, MoviePak2, and VideoTime.

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