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Re: How much graphics RAM?

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg37062] Re: How much graphics RAM?
  • From: Jens-Peer Kuska <kuska at>
  • Date: Mon, 7 Oct 2002 05:26:24 -0400 (EDT)
  • Organization: Universitaet Leipzig
  • References: <an3pp2$ofk$> <> <anos0s$pql$>
  • Reply-to: kuska at
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at


Mathematica's PostScript does not need a 3d graphics card
and will not use it.

Only the RealTime3D` package make use of the 3d graphics and it's
memory. Since it make an off screen rendering it will be slow 
and since one must be mad to use it for 10^5 polygons it does not
matter how much graphics memory you have. The tiny polygon counts
of Plot3D[] & friends can be handled wit 8 MByte :-)

MathGL3d will run fine (not fast) with 8 MByte. For the most
MathGL3d applications 64 MByte sufficient.

With more than 10^6 polygons or many huge (1024^2) textures you may
run into problems. For the MathGL3d development I have GeForce 3/4 cards
with 128 MByte RAM.

BTW the RAM of the 3d graphics cards is for textures and Mathematica
does not know what a texture is or how usefull it is for scientific


Murray Eisenberg wrote:
> We are about to order new PCs for a university student lab in which
> Mathematica will be installed.  Of course they will be using 2D and 3D
> graphics -- plots of surfaces, e.g.  Sooner or later students will want
> to rotate such plots, too.
> An unresolved issue is how much graphics RAM to get.  On existing
> machines we typically have 64MB.  But for the PCs we are looking at,
> manufacturer's limits on graphics RAM, rather than cost, seems to limit
> us to 32 MB.
> Is 32 MB adequate not just now, but likely to be adequate as well for
> the near future (say, a 3- to 5-year equipment lifetime)?
> --
> Murray Eisenberg                     murray at
> Mathematics & Statistics Dept.
> Lederle Graduate Research Tower      phone 413 549-1020 (H)
> University of Massachusetts                413 545-2859 (W)
> 710 North Pleasant Street
> Amherst, MA 01375

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