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AMD Catalyst 11.8 WHQL Driver Suite Released

AMD today rolled out this month's major Catalyst software suite release, Catalyst 11.8 WHQL. The software provides the latest WHQL-signed drivers for AMD Radeon GPUs, AMD accelerated processing units (APUs), and AMD chipsets with integrated graphics. This release sees the fusion of AMD Overdrive System (CPU) with GPU overdrive. Both AMD processors and Radeon GPUs can be tweaked using a single application in the Vision Control Center. CPU Overclocking in Vision Center, however, is only supported on Black Edition processor models.

In the GPU driver front, Catalyst 11.8 brings a few major performance improvements, including a 10% performance improvement for Crysis 2 DirectX 11, for both non-Anti-Aliasing, and application enabled Anti-Aliasing modes; 8% performance boosts in FEAR 3 DirectX 11 with application enabled Anti-Aliasing; and a significant 20% boost in Call of Duty Black Ops for single and multi-GPU setups. AMD has redesigned Morphological Anti Aliasing (MLAA) code to boost performance of all applications with MLAA enabled, by up to 30%.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.8 WHQL

AMD Catalyst 11.7 WHQL Released

AMD today released this month's major update to its Catalyst software suite, Catalyst 11.7 WHQL. The new driver introduces a few major bug fixes, and provides WHQL-signed support for the recently released AMD A-Series APUs, apart from Radeon GPUs and AMD 8-series and 7-series chipset-integrated graphics. AMD claims to have fixed all outstanding issues related to cursor-lag; a variety of system hangs noted when using HDMI or DisplayPort outputs have been fixed; a number of video playback issues, some generic and some application-specific, were resolved; the "checkerboard" pattern display corruption issue related to Eyefinity on CrossFire setups in DirectX 10 games was fixed; and flickering issues related to Portal 2 were fixed. The driver doesn't introduce any new features or performance improvements, but with greater stability, improved performance should naturally follow.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.7 WHQL for Windows 7/Vista 64-bit | Windows 7/Vista 32-bit | Windows XP 32-bit | Windows XP 64-bit

A list of changes follows.

Eurocom Launches AMD Radeon HD 6990M GPU in Line of High Performance Notebooks

Eurocom Corporation, a developer of long lifespan, fully upgradable notebooks is adding AMD’s newest AMD Radeon HD 6990M GPU to their extensive options list of high performance notebook computers. Eurocom will offer both HD 6970M and HD 6990M in its products. The addition of the AMD Radeon HD 6990M offers users a new level of high performance GPU computing in single and CrossFireX (dual) configurations. Eurocom will also offer the AMD Radeon HD 6990M GPUs separately to existing customers as an upgrade option.

“Together with support from Eurocom, AMD is able to provide notebook users with the world’s fastest single mobile graphics processor – AMD Radeon HD 6990M,” said Matt Skynner, corporate vice president and general manager of the graphics division, AMD. “AMD’s graphics offer massive computing power for mobile users and hardcore gamers can experience even more gaming performance through AMD CrossFireX technology.”

AMD Streams in Catalyst 11.6b Hotfix Update

AMD today released the second hotfix update to Catalyst 11.6, which provides immediate fixes to bugs found with the previous hotfix. Catalyst 11.6b Hotfix update fixes a BSOD error noted when connecting a HDMI and DisplayPort based display to an AMD Radeon HD graphics card running on Catalyst 11.6. It also fixes random screen flickering noted when idling, as well as a mouse pointer corruption issue found with older Catalyst releases. Apart from this, it packs the key feature of Caralyst 11.6a Hotfix, support for AMD A8-3800 and A6-3600 series accelerated processing units.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.6b Hotfix Update

AMD Southern Islands GPU Codenames Surface

It was discovered that an early version Catalyst 11.7 contains entries for new GPUs, spelling out the possible codenames of upcoming AMD Southern Islands GPUs. Southern Islands is the next generation of AMD Radeon GPUs, which will possibly see propagation of VLIW4 SIMD design to GPUs in all market segments, and possible adoption of 28 nm manufacturing process. Moving on to codenames, 3D Center observes that the top of the line GPU is codenamed "Tahiti", there is a possibility of two single-GPU variants.

A graphics card that makes use of two Tahiti chips is codenamed "New Zealand". "Thames" is the codenamed of a possible low cost mobile chip, it could also be a performance chip. There's some uncertainty here. Not much is known about another chip codenamed "Lombok", either. Perhaps it's a performance desktop chip.Source: 3D Center

AMD Releases Catalyst 11.6a Hotfix Update, Adds A-Series APU Support

AMD released a new Catalyst hotfix driver update, 11.6a. This release comes 15 days after the month's main version, 11.6 WHQL, was released. The updated driver otherwise has the same exact feature-set as 11.6 WHQL, but adds support for graphics processors embedded into AMD's new Vision A-Series accelerated processing units, namely Radeon HD 6550D inside A8-3800 series, and Radeon HD 6530D inside A6-3600 series. Available for Windows XP, and Windows 7/Vista in both x86 and x86-64 forms, the Catalyst 11.6a Hotfix update can be downloaded from the link below.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.6a Hotfix Update

FurMark Updated to Versions 1.8.5 and 1.9.1

The enthusiast community's favourite trial-by-fire for graphics cards, FurMark, has been updated to versions 1.8.5 and 1.9.1. Its developers maintain two branch versions of the program, since version 1.8 is popular, and 1.9 is the latest, bleeding-edge in the suite of stress test routines it has. FurMark is an OpenGL-based 3D graphics hardware stress-testing and benchmarking program. Its stress-testing functions are widely used to test stability of overclocked graphics hardware, and is dreaded by GPU manufacturers.

Version 1.8.5 is a maintenance release, which packs improved score submission, an updated number of window resolutions available, and improved graphics hardware detection using an updated ZoomGPU code. The FurMark 1.7 mode is removed. A bugfix filters the spikes in temperature graphs. Minimizing the window now can't be done in full-screen mode. Version 1.9.1, on the other hand, adds support for new AMD and NVIDIA GPUs with updated detection code, supports GPU-Z 0.5.1 and GPU Shark 0.5.1; added a workaround for a bug in AMD Catalyst GLSL compiler, which led to wrong lighting of the furry donut.

DOWNLOAD: FurMark 1.8.5 and 1.9.1

AMD Catalyst 11.6 WHQL Driver Suite Released

AMD Catalyst received its monthly major update with version 11.6 WHQL. The driver isn't posted on AMD Game website, but leaked to the media. The new drivers bring support for AMD's new Fusion "Llano" A-series accelerated processing units (APUs), which embed AMD Radeon HD 6000 series GPU components. The new drivers also introduce the new AMD Steady Video Technology, which is an AMD APP-based software that works on AMD Radeon HD 6000 series graphics cards (only on systems that also run AMD processors), AMD E450, AMD E300 APUs, and AMD A8, A6, and A4 series APUs. The technology processes videos for image-stabilization of each frame, giving out a "steady" video output. Videos processed by Steady Video are compatible with any of the popular video players, including Adobe Flash player, Windows Media player, Cyberlink PowerDVD, Corel Win DVD, ArcSoft TotalMedia Theater.

With the new driver, AMD enabled decode acceleration of MPEG-4 part-2 content in Microsoft's video player applications (through MFT support) for all AMD Radeon 6000 Series GPUs. The new driver also packs a number of game-specific performance enhancements, for applications such as Dirt 2, F1 2010, Tom Clancy's HAWX, Crysis Warhead, and Unigine Heaven (OpenGL). For more information, refer to the Release Notes article.

AMD Releases Catalyst 11.5b Hotfix Update

AMD was a little too early in May with its monthly Catalyst driver release, with the Catalyst 11.5 WHQL reaching the web as early as 9th May (typically monthly Catalyst updates are released after the 24th). On the same date, AMD also released its first hotfix update for the Catalyst 11.5, the 11.5a Hotfix Update, which packed a number of game-specific performance improvements. Today, the company released its second such update for the month, with Catalyst 11.5b Hotfix.

The update is rushed in to fix a number of issues found with the recently-released game, Brink. It also fixes a number of non-gaming application issues, particularly related to media decoding. In the process, the driver also brings with it a number of game-specific performance improvements, games including Civilization 5, Dead Rising 2, Fallout 3, Mafia 2, NBA 2010, ShenGuiChuanQi, Starcraft 2, Warcraft III, World of Warcraft, and Dirt 3.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.5b Hotfix Update.

A complete list of changes follows:

AMD Catalyst 11.5 WHQL, 11.5a Hotfix Driver Suite Released

It's not even 15th of the month, and AMD already released its monthly update of the Catalyst driver suite, which is normally reserved for the last week of the month. Catalyst 11.5 WHQL doesn't come with any performance enhancements as such, but apparently AMD found that a certain feature-enhancement in HydraVision was important enough to warrant a WHQL release. HydraGrid feature found in HydraVision is now aware of custom (user-created) Bezels. There's now also a "Automatic Grid" option that aligns to the user defined Eyefinity display layout.

The rather dull WHQL release is backed by a Hotfix release that comes with a lot more outstanding issues. Catalyst 11.5a Hotfix update includes fixes concerning quality of videos GPU-transcoded from H.264 clips to MPEG2 Blu-ray video, intermittent cursor lag, performance and quality enhancements for the upcoming game Brink, and flickering noted by Radeon HD 6600 series graphics cards with DDR3 memory running in DX9.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.5 WHQL for Windows 7/Vista 64-bit, Windows 7/Vista 32-bit, Windows XP 32-bit, Windows XP 64-bit

DOWNLOAD: AMD Catalyst 11.5a Hotfix Update
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