VAX graphics

Richard legalize at
Wed Feb 24 17:26:43 CST 2010

In article <4B7AF1F7.8030008 at>,
    Johnny Billquist <bqt at>  writes:

> After searching the net for a while, I think it is an E&S graphic 
> system. ES340 seems most likely, but ES390 might also be it.

I doubt its an E&S system because its raster based.

AFAIK, all the E&S terminals and DEC peripherals were vector based
until the PS/390.  If this were a PS/390, then it would have the
characteristic black enclosure for the monitor, keyboard and tablet.
Also, E&S products were high-end and had hardware line drawing at a
minimum, whereas this system appears to be a simple memory-mapped
frame buffer with no additional hardware acceleration.

The PS/390 was the first "Picture System" to support raster
operations.  The primary market for these peripherals was the
molecular design/molecular modeling community and they needed very
high quality line renderings of their models.  Until the antialiasing
technology for raster graphics introduced on the PS/390 the only way
to achieve that quality was to use a vector based display.  The raster
display decoupled the display refresh rate from the frame rendering
rate, allowing very high quality renderings of complex models at the
cost of interactivity.

Similar technology to that used in the PS/390 was used in E&S's first
workstation the ESV.  I worked on the ASIC that performed this process
in the ESV in the summer of 1989.  The workstation was released in Q4
1989.  All the E&S products were raster from then on, with the
exception of calligraphic light overlays used in the simulation

I have a PS/390 base and several ESV workstations in my collection.
"The Direct3D Graphics Pipeline" -- DirectX 9 draft available for download

      Legalize Adulthood! <>

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