Messing around with Vistapro 4.0

So I uh.. found this copy of Vistapro 4.0  And I though it would be fun to kick out an animation.  At 320×100 this took a whole 8 minutes to render on my laptop.

I though that was cool, but I was mistaken in thinking it was multi-threaded while it rendered. I have access to a machine with 16 processor cores, so I setup a rendering machine, and found out very quickly it was only using one core.  I think their final product Vistapro renderer may have used multiple cores although the company that sold it went bankrupt quite some time ago.  Anyways I rendered this animation at 1080p and it took about two hours.

For a while this kind of ‘virtual reality’ and desktop rendering of places was quite popular.  Although Vistapro originated on the Amiga, but without a numerical coprocessor and fast processor this may have taken weeks or months on a stock 68000.  I haven’t tried, and I’m in no hurry to find out.

I didn’t insert any music or audio, so it’s just 48 seconds of the camera going around.

5 thoughts on “Messing around with Vistapro 4.0

  1. Don’t know about a plain old 68k, but Lightwave 3D rendering on a 33Mhz 68040 equipped Amiga 4000 wasn’t all that fast either. NewTek sold a MIPS(?) based external rendering box called the Toaster Screamer to speed things up.

    • I’d never heard of that one. Apparently it was made in limited numbers. The real solution was porting to NT. I’d like to think 16 cores should be plenty fast for 1997

      • …and going full circle, DeskStation Technology was the OEM involved in the project. No surprise given that both companies were based out of Kansas.

  2. I used Vista on an A1200/030 with 1 meg fastram / 2 meg chip ram. It took about 45 mins to render a 640×256 image I think, which wasn’t so bad for visualisation. Animation was beyond the reach of this config though…

    Also porting to SGI was a better solution at the time, not NT 🙂

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