California Graphics Hawk 3D

California Graphics is a new nametous. The Company has a history in motherboards and its launching its graphics boards outside the US and its home market, Italy. The board that we got to look atis the Hawk 3D, which is based on the ViRGE/DX chip from S3.
The Hawk installed properly with no problems. The board includes the company's Reality utilities, that include features such the option to set specific resolutions for particular applications, so that the board could switch automatically to 24-bit operation for use with a graphics program, for example.
Performance was OK, and benchmarks improved when we got new drivers. 2D performance was in the upper half of the boards tested this time. The company has a policy of only using drivers that have been through the Microsoft Windows Hardware Quality Lab (WHQL) approval process.
This does slow the release, but ensures high reliability and compatibility.
This is not the card for a games specialist, but at the right price it would make a good general purpose card for 2D or productivity applications.

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