The ATI Radeon To ATI FireGL Mod Guide!

Discussion in 'Reviews & Articles' started by Chai, Jun 18, 2004.

  1. Hello, guys.

    Max_87! Still on top of it, I see. :lol:

    Just saying "Hi" again... It's been a while.

    Forsage? What's that?! Man, I've been out of touch.

    ...Once I hurdle all these licensure exams, I'll visit more often.
  2. slykester

    slykester Newbie

    Forsage is an ATI Catalyst driver mod. It allows you to soft-mod your Radeon to another Radeon model. It also allows you to softmod your FireGL to a Radeon (allows using Catalyst on a FireGL card). The softmodding Radeon part is nice, but it's even better to be able to use a Catalyst on a FireGL for gaming purposes. What it does not do is mod your Radeon to a FireGL. For that you need to follow the guide ;)

    I find the Forsage driver is most useful for my 9800 Pro that I hard-modded to X2, now I don't need to reflash my card just to use the Catalyst drivers. I just switch between the Forsage and FireGL drivers depending on what I'm going to do that day.

    Last edited: Jun 10, 2005
  3. ibanana

    ibanana Newbie

    Hi, everybody ;)

    Neewbie from France :thumb:

    I just want to know if the Free fire Gl drivers works well on all graphic cards supported by the drivers??

    (-->Do some 9800XT cards won't work with FFGL drivers??)


    EDIT : Does the X80XT moddable for a FireGL-X3??
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2005
  4. DanaG

    DanaG Newbie

    Actually, FreeFireGL is too obsolete. Look at
    to see how to use FireGL drivers with RivaTuner. 8.083 with RivaTuner 15.5 works. To get TV out working on the 9800Pro, edit the INF to set DisableTV to 0, and install CCC from the 5.6 Catalysts. TV is not available without the CCC, but it's okay because CCC has improved. For the Radeon portion of the settings, use ATITray (

    The only problem is, BF2 demo doesn't load.
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2005
  5. Aion-X

    Aion-X Newbie

    Is X series able to mod to FireGL?
  6. DanaG

    DanaG Newbie

    The 15.5 version of RivaTuner does have the ability to mod X800 to FGL X3. You may have to manually add device IDs to the INF file, though. As always, make a restore point before trying it.

    Unfortunately, the 8.083 control panel misses the TV-out option and only has "High-resolution" (3840x2400) monitor as an option. Thus necessitates the use of the CCC package from the "Dial-up" individual downloads of catalyst 5.6. At least this version of CCC does work better.

    One note: At least for my 9800Pro@FireGL X2 mod, I had to change the registry key that disables TV-out, since the FireGL X2 does not have TV output.

    For me I added the lines
    "ATI FireGL X2 AGP 4x/8x" = ati2mtag_R350GL, PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_4E48
    "ATI FireGL X2 AGP 4x/8x Secondary" = ati2mtag_R350GL, PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_4E68
    where normal was
    "ATI FireGL X2 AGP Pro" = ati2mtag_R350GL, PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_4E4B
    "ATI FireGL X2 AGP Pro Secondary" = ati2mtag_R350GL, PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_4E6B
    after patching ati2mtag.sy_

    I also had to use makecab.exe to recompress the new ati2mtag.sys back into ati2mtag.sy_

    You can make a shortcut to makecab.exe (no path needed) on the desktop and just drag the .sys file to it.

    For the X3 mod, you'd probably want to copy and change the lines
    "ATI FireGL X3-256" = ati2mtag_R420GL, PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_4A4D
    "ATI FireGL X3-256 Secondary" = ati2mtag_R420GL, PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_4A6D
    and change the name enough to distinguish it in Microsoft's stupid driver chooser that doesn't show versions or paths.
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2005
  7. dancingpotato

    dancingpotato Newbie

    Radeon 9500 to FireGL Z1

    Worked perfectly! ... see specs below... no flashing or soldering necessary. :thumb:

    I used RivaTuner 15.5 and followed the instructions from here:

    Before mod After mod (SpecView 8.01)
    Maya 14.39 36.49
    Proe 13.04 32.34
    3dmax 10.87 20.19
    catia 10.24 18.45
    ensight 10.07 14.39
    Light 9.241 17.49
    SW 9.95 14.93
    UGS 10.81 14.77

    3DMark03 stayed exactly the same and 3Dmark2001SE went up about 8%...

    Radeon 9500 (L memory), P2.8, 1 gig ram, No o/c, XpSp2

    :wave: :wave: :wave: :wave:
  8. finalzero

    finalzero Newbie


    New to this whole ATI FireGL mod but thought I would give it a try (I do allot of 3D stuff and really want the extra opengl features).

    My system is fitted with a ATI Radeon 9600 Pro 256MB made by Powercolor and it uses the Elixir DDR modules (flat type, not tsop).

    I tried doing the BIOS mod but was unsuccessful, I tested both the Sapphire FireGL and the ATI FireGL bios files but both failed - the Sapphire bios gave me a garbled screen where as the ATI bios completely killed my graphcis card (but I found a way back).

    *Okay for those that killed their graphics card as I did, you need to get hold of a PCI graphics card and put this into a free PCI slot and remove the ATI Radeon card; power on the PC and then enter the BIOS and check if your BIOS has the option to set the first boot device for your graphics card.

    I was able to set the boot option to use a PCI graphics card - save the settings in the BIOS and then power off, put your ATI Radeon in along with the PCI card and then power on again; after a pause the motherboard will detect the AGP card is not responding and switch to the PCI card. At this point keep a boot disk handy and boot into DOS.

    Then using something like flashrom reflash your ATI card with the backup of your original BIOS image (you did make a backup, right?):
    flashrom -f -p 0 a:\backup.bin
    Power off the PC, take out the PCI card and then power on again, you should now find your ATI Radeon card has returned to life :D Enter BIOS and check if your have an option to reset ESCD information (should be in PCI Device section); select enabled to clear the PCI slot configuration and save the settings and reboot.

    If everything went smoothly you should have your graphics display back as it wass *


    I couldn't flash as per above, I even attempted to edit the BIOS image and remap it to the settings of my Powercolor BIOS but this did not work, the flashrom program complained the ASIC memory value differs to the original value (1 hex value difference) which I think is the reason why others have had garbled displays.

    I tried the Forsage driver but this doesn't work or I am doing something wrong, the device manager window displays my graphics card as an ATI FireGL T2 but when I check the card settings it still comes up as a Radeon 9600 Pro so I think these drivers are either duff or the there is something in the guide that I did not follow (I skipped straight to the FreeFireGL section and followed the advise that I do not need to flash my bios as I can use the Forsage drivers...).

    Anyone know what I am doing wrong?



    Here is a dump of my BIOS file and my card settings:

    Radeon 9600 256MB Elixir DDR B81528.07240
    Device ID:  4150
    Subsystem ID:  2070
    Subvendor ID:  148C
    -- RaBiT v.1.2 --
    Readed from file: 53248 bytes, ROM len: 53248 bytes
    -- Analyze ROM BIOS --
    PCIR zone offs: 0x188
    KERNEL zone offs: 0x122
    CRC zone offs: 0x1B4
    CLOCK zone offs: 0x8DE
    DRAM zone offs: 0x1F4
    DRAM zone: MEM_CNTL(00000071), memory size = 256 Mb
    Memory config: 0x7180
    ASIC init: 0x74 = 0x90, 0x75 = 0x08
    TV zone offs: 0xB590
    Active TV type: 2
    -- ROM BIOS info --
    Desc: Radeon 9600 256MB Elixir DDR B81528.07240
    Info: V350AGP DGD1UN,  PA07240.A01 v611 , 2003/07/24 16:04
    Radeon famaly: Radeon 9600 series
    -- Parsing PLL script at 0x04B1 --
    Found MCLK_CNTL(0x551F0000) at 0x04C1
    Found M_SPLL_REF_FB_DIV(0x033F2004) at 0x04DB
    Found MCLK_CNTL(0x551F1212) at 0x050A
    -- Parsing PLL2 script at 0x056F --
    -- Parsing INIT script at 0x020F --
    Found MC_REFRESH_CNTL(0x00002030) at 0x0287
    Found MC_READ_CNTL_AB(0x0CCD0CCD) at 0x028D
    -- Parsing MEMORY script at 0x0382 --
    Found MC_CNTL(0x00000071) at 0x0384
    Found MC_TIMING_CNTL(0x1A28D922) at 0x03BA
    Found MC_SDRAM_MODE_REG(0x31320032) at 0x03D0
    -- In BIOS memory timings --
    tWrL = 1.0
    tCAS = 3
    tCMD = 0 clock
    tSTB = equals tWrL + 1/2 clocks
    tRcdRD = 5
    tRcdWR = 3
    tRP = 4
    tRAS = 17
    tRRD = 2
    tR2W = CL + 3
    tWR = 3
    tW2R = 2
    tR2R = 2
    tRFC = 15
    tRBS = CL + 3.5
    tERST = CL + 0
    tQSREQ = CL + 0
    -- Additional hardware SDRAM info --
    SDRAM Mode Register: 0x32
    MCLKA source select (PostDiv): MPLLCLK/2 (2)
    Chipset use A,B memory channels
    SDRAM specific: 2**13 rows, 512 columns
    Memory refresh rate: 0x30
    SDRAM dynamic CKE is Enabled
  9. slykester

    slykester Newbie

    The memory on your card is likely the problem. The reference FireGL-T2 uses 128MB of BGA-mounted DDR @ 600Mhz, the reference 9600XT uses 256MB of TSOP-mounted DDR @ 600Mhz, your card uses 256MB of TSOP-mounted DDR @ 400Mhz. The biggest discrepancy is the memory speed, and both of those bioses are for cards with 600 MHz memory. I would try creating your own custom bios by using either of those two bioses and change the memory speed from 600 MHz (300 x 2) to 400 MHz (200 x 2) using a bios tuner utility like RaBiT. While tuning the memory clock you might want to change the memory size from the default 128Mb to 256Mb, and if you want to be safe you can relax the memory timings. Memory clock speed is most important though, and makes sense because of your 'garbled screen'. Don't forget to re-solder that resistor after a successful flash.

    Of course the big question is: Were you able to re-flash your card back to the original bios? In other words is your card working with the original bios right now? Running your video memory @ 600 MHz (instead of the 400Mhz stock) may have damaged the memory modules (especially since your memory does not seem to have come with heatsinks), so the first thing to check is that games (or anything 3D) work with your card using the original bios. If the answer is no to any of the above then your card may not be repairable due to damaged memory modules.

    Regarding your question about your Forsage install, you're better off patching your own drivers using RivaTuner (use the guide, or click the link to a couple posts above). Forsage really shines when trying to use a Catalyst driver on FireGL cards (something that is not normally possible, and after a hard-mod it comes in handy).

    I chose to hard-mod because of the nuisance of patching drivers.

    Hope this helps; my experience is mostly with my 9800pro->X2 hard-mod.

    Last edited: Jun 26, 2005
  10. DanaG

    DanaG Newbie

    I figured out how to keep the TV Out option without the CCC. Just change the key DALRULE_LARGEPANELSUPPORT in HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Video\{long thing in curly brackets, find right one by looking} to 0. I still like the CCC, though, so I'm keeping it.
  11. alias353

    alias353 Newbie

    Radeon 9800SE

    I have a Radeon9800SE that fails the 9800SE>9800Pro mod because it's apparent that the 4 other disabled pipelines are beyond simply unlocking them because what results are very large checkerboard type artifacts.

    So I have to wonder, will I still possibly be able to mod my 9800SE into a FireGL X2?
  12. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    Sorry to hear that. :(

    Err.. Did you read the guide, specifically this page -

    Look at this section - Radeon 9800 SE 128MB 256-bit (380/300-340) To FireGL X2-128* (380/350)

    Hope that helps you some! :mrgreen:
  13. alias353

    alias353 Newbie

    I had read most of it but I guess I had just missed that part. XD
  14. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    Hehe.. It's okay. Now you know! :mrgreen:
  15. alias353

    alias353 Newbie


    I used the FFGL drivers for the 4x FireGL Z2 and they seemed to install just fine.

    When i go into properties it says just what it should under Adapter Type but under Advanced>Adapter String it says Unknown Adapter and I was guessing it should probably say FireGL Z2.

    Also, it'll run 3D mark fine and games but whenever I go to run Maya my computer completely freezes and I have to restart it.
  16. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    You might want to try using Rivatuner instead.
  17. alias353

    alias353 Newbie

    Ok I'll go and check that out right now...
  18. alias353

    alias353 Newbie

    I never tried the Riva Tuner stuff because it just looks like way too much to mess with.

    Upon further inspection the FFGL 4 pipeline driver DOES NOT allow me to play video games, it freezes too. I jumped to the conclusino that since it ran 3D mark 03 and 05 fine that it would also play video games fine but this it not true. Video Games freeze just like maya. This doesn't really make sense to me. The stress of a benchmarker it has no problem but it simply can't run maya or a video game?

    I'd also like to note that when loading maya I can here a beep as if there is an error of somekind but no message is displayed. This is probably due to the fact that my entire computer freezes so it can't display anything.

    Anyone know anything I can do? Maybe fix some settings. I've got a workstation tab I don't really know what to do with.
  19. slykester

    slykester Newbie

    As I'm sure many here will echo:

    Don't bother with FFGL, the drivers are too old and flaky at this point. Either perform a RivaTuner patch for softmod (look for link above to guru3d), or do yourself the favor of a hardmod. With the hardmod you can use unpatched drivers directly from ATI, and you can still use Forsage for games if you really want the extra framerate. However the hardmod is not for the faint of heart since it requires a soldering iron. :cool: In that case just go for the RivaTuner patch, either choice is more worthwhile than trying to use FFGL at this point in time. Even if you fix your problems you'll still see better performance with the RivaTuner patch or hardmod (in both Maya and games).

    Good luck
  20. Dashken

    Dashken Administrator!

    ATI Radeon To ATI FireGL Mod Guide Rev. 5.0!

    The guide has just been updated! :wave:

    Want a FireGL workstation card but can't afford to pay ATI's exhorbitant prices? Well, why don't you grab a Radeon desktop card and mod it into a FireGL card? Yes, you can easily mod a Radeon into the FireGL with just a simple BIOS flash!

    Our guide will go through all the possible FireGL mods for the Radeon 9500, 9700 and 9800 series of cards and teach you just how to mod your Radeon into a FireGL! Check it out!

    Here are the updates:-

    Link: ATI Radeon To ATI FireGL Mod Guide Rev. 5.0!
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2005

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