FuryGPU: PC enthusiast builds own DIY GPU, with custom Windows drivers, to run Quake at 60 fps

Fancy building your own GPU from scratch? And then writing drivers for it, for Windows? Nope? Well, some unhinged soul has done exactly this.

1 minute & 6 seconds read time

Every so often a weird and wonderful, highly surprising story pops up around a DIY tech project, and they don't come any more astonishing than FuryGPU, frankly.

As Tom's Hardware picked up, FuryGPU is the accomplishment of games developer Dylan Barrie (who seems to work at Respawn, or someone of the same name does on LinkedIn, at any rate).

Barrie had the idea to build his own GPU - completely from scratch - and actually managed to pull this off.

As Tom's explains, the project kicked off when Barrie got hold of an Arty Z7 development board, and really took off with the arrival of Xilinx Kria System-on-Modules. As Barrie notes these modules combine "insanely cheap Zynq UltraScale+ FPGAs with a ton of DSP units and a (comparatively) massive amount of LUTs and FFs, and of particular interest, a hardened PCIe core."

As well as putting together the PCIe graphics card, Barrie had to create his own Windows drivers from scratch, an even steeper hill to climb than building the hardware apparently. The developer described this part of the endeavor as 'painful' and we can well believe that's an understatement.

As you can see in the above YouTube clip, Barrie now has his custom GPU and drivers - with custom graphics API and Windows kernel drivers for the display and audio - and Quake is fully functional, hitting 44 fps in Timedemo, and apparently now running at a smooth 60 fps.

We can expect further details to be posted on the development blog which has just been created, and meantime, hats off to Barrie. This is insanely impressive stuff...

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Darren has written for numerous magazines and websites in the technology world for almost 30 years, including TechRadar, PC Gamer, Eurogamer, Computeractive, and many more. He worked on his first magazine (PC Home) long before Google and most of the rest of the web existed. In his spare time, he can be found gaming, going to the gym, and writing books (his debut novel – ‘I Know What You Did Last Supper’ – was published by Hachette UK in 2013).

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