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Tech Source Releases Condor 4000 3U VPX Graphics Card for GPGPU Applications

Tech Source, Inc., an independent supplier of high performance embedded video, graphics, and high end computing solutions, has released the Condor 4000 3U VPX form factor graphics/video card. Designed for compute-intensive General Purpose Graphics Processing Unit (GPGPU) applications deployed in avionics and military technology, the Condor 4000 3U VPX graphics card delivers up to 768/48 GFLOPS of peak single/double precision floating point performance and 640 shaders with the AMD Radeon E8860 GPU at its core.

The Condor 4000 3U VPX card is for seriously high-end graphics, parallel processing, and situation awareness image and sensor processing applications such as radar, sonar, video streaming, and unmanned systems. The new card operates at higher speeds than an XMC form factor equivalent card as it occupies a dedicated slot to allow for better cooling which enables it to run at 45 Watts full power.

NVIDIA Announces GeForce 350.12 WHQL Game Ready Drivers

NVIDIA released its latest "Game Ready" marked and WHQL-signed GeForce drivers, in the run up to a big game release - Grand Theft Auto V (GTA-V), in this case. NVIDIA also took the opportunity to bump its version numbering to R350, with the GeForce 350.12 WHQL numbering these drivers are being released with, today. These drivers come with a boat-load of optimizations for GTA-V, including SLI profiles, Dynamic Super Resolution (DSR) support, and GeForce Experience optimal settings. GTA-V supports NVIDIA-exclusive features such as MFAA, TXAA, percentage-closer soft-shadows (PCSS), 4K surround, and more. The R350 driver series also introduces OpenCL 1.2 support.
DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce 350.12 WHQL Game Ready for GTA-V: Windows 8/7/Vista 64-bit | Windows 8/7/Vista 32-bit | Windows XP 32-bit | Windows XP 64-bit

NVIDIA Rolls Out GeForce 350.05 Hotfix Driver

Despite WHQL-signed driver releases almost every other week, NVIDIA still seems to find time or reason for stopgap releases such as the new GeForce 350.05 Hotfix drivers, which quickly address a pressing issue with the latest WHQL-signed drivers (349.88 in this case). The driver fixes a crash with DirectX error message on Battlefield: Hardline. It also fixes a crash with Dragon Age: Inquisition. Expreview reports that NVIDIA also quietly slipped in OpenCL 1.2 support with the new driver, which could be one of the highlights of NVIDIA's upcoming R350 drivers.
DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce 350.05 Hotfix

Valve Announces Link, Source 2, SteamVR, and More at GDC

Valve announces a number of product and technologies at this week's Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco. "We continue to see very strong growth in PC Gaming, with Steam growing 50% in the last 12 months," said Gabe Newell, Valve's president. "With these announcements we hope that we are helping build on that momentum."

Steam Machines, Windows PCs, Macs, and Linux PCs will be able to take advantage of a new product announced at GDC called Steam Link. Designed to extend your Steam experience to any room in the house, Steam Link allows you to stream all your Steam content from any PC or Steam Machine on the same home network. Supporting 1080p at 60Hz with low latency, Steam Link will be available this November for $49.99, and available with a Steam Controller for an additional $49.99 in the US (worldwide pricing to be released closer to launch).

AMD Mobile "Carrizo" Family of APUs Arrive in 2015

AMD (NYSE: AMD) today at its Future of Compute event announced the addition of its first high performance system-on-a-chip (SoC), codenamed "Carrizo", and a mainstream SoC codenamed "Carrizo-L" as part of the company's 2015 AMD Mobile APU family roadmap. In collaboration with hardware and software partners, these new 2015 AMD Mobile APUs are designed as complete solutions for gaming, productivity applications, and ultra high-definition 4K experiences. With support for Microsoft DirectX 12, OpenCL 2.0, AMD's Mantle API, AMD FreeSync and support for Microsoft's upcoming Windows 10 operating system, the 2015 AMD Mobile APU family enables the experiences consumers expect.

"We continue to innovate and build upon our existing IP to deliver great products for our customers," said John Byrne, senior vice president and general manager, Computing and Graphics business group, AMD. "AMD's commitment to graphics and compute performance, as expressed by our goal to improve APU energy efficiency 25x by 2020, combines with the latest industry standards and fresh innovation to drive the design of the 2015 AMD Mobile APU family. We are excited about the experiences these new APUs will bring and look forward to sharing more details in the first half of next year."

AMD Accelerates Speed and Performance for New Adobe Creative Cloud Pro

AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced that AMD A-Series APUs, AMD Radeon graphics and AMD FirePro professional graphics deliver superior performance to unlock the full potential of the latest features and capabilities announced by Adobe for its flagship Adobe Creative Cloud professional video tools and workflows. New high performance AMD-powered OpenCL debayering for Phantom Cine and Canon RAW camera formats joins previously unannounced debayering of RedR3D, CinemaDNG, and Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera JPEG formats, unlocking real-time editing, effects and color grading for massive production productivity and lightning fast rendering to deliver projects on time and at high quality.

"Speed and performance are essential ingredients that ensure video producers are productive every day and successfully compete for business, engagement and client satisfaction," said Steve Belt, corporate vice president, Strategic Alliances and Platform Enablement, AMD. "Pros know that they can rely on the combination of OpenCL support in Adobe Creative Cloud and the associated AMD hardware acceleration to deliver a steady stream of advanced tools that set them apart creatively and productively."

AMD Acceleration Enhances the Next Wave of Adobe Photoshop CC Features

AMD today announced that its APUs and GPUs enable accelerated performance for powerful new creative workflow features available for Adobe Creative Cloud members. The latest additions to Adobe Photoshop CC will take advantage of AMD acceleration to provide valuable creativity and productivity tools. Some of these tools include motion blur effects for the next generation of Blur Gallery, a focus selection feature that enables users to quickly select in-focus areas of an image and an enhanced image resample option that preserves fine details when upscaling images.

"The collaboration of AMD and Adobe assures creative professionals access to the performance they need to make the most of incredible new features as they become available across Adobe Creative Cloud," said Steve Belt, corporate vice president, Strategic Alliances & Platform Enablement, AMD. "AMD acceleration connects the fantastic creative and productivity enhancements in Adobe Photoshop CC to the compute performance required for an effortless user experience."

AMD Demoes its Next-Gen x86 APU Running Fedora Linux

Red Hat Summit 2014 -- AMD today announced another major milestone in the development of its enterprise software ecosystem with the first public demonstration of its second-generation AMD Opteron X-Series APU, codenamed "Berlin," running a Linux environment based on the Fedora Project. The Fedora Project is a Red Hat-sponsored, community-driven Linux distribution, providing a familiar, enterprise class operating environment to developers and IT administrators worldwide. This is important to companies looking to transition to x86 APU servers but who are reluctant to introduce new tools and software platforms to their IT environments. This demonstration also represents a significant step forward in expanding the footprint of x86 APU accelerated performance within the data center.

AMD's premiere demonstration of "Berlin" will showcase the world's first Heterogeneous System Architecture (HSA) featured server APU ahead of its official launch later this year. The demonstration features advancements incorporated in "Project Sumatra" that enable Java applications to take advantage of graphics processing units (GPUs) within AMD server APUs. The combination of Linux and Java on AMD APU platforms provides an ideal platform for server-based multimedia workloads and general purpose GPU compute that will help drive new levels of workload efficiency in the data center. AMD also will demonstrate software-based on OpenCL and OpenGL on "Berlin."

Finalwire Releases AIDA64 v4.30

Finalwire released the latest update to AIDA64, popular system information, diagnostic, and bechmarking suite. Version 4.30 builds on its predecessors by adding support for new hardware, newer versions of Windows, new technologies, and offers a new benchmark. To begin with, it adds support for Windows 8.1 Update 1 and Windows Server 2012 R2 Update 1. It also adds support / detection for NVIDIA's new CUDA 6.0 GPGPU API. Among the new hardware support are the AMD socket AM1 platform, Intel "Broadwell" CPUs, early support for AMD "Carrizo" and "Toronto" APUs, early support for Intel "Skylake," "Cherry Trail," and "Denverton" CPUs. Among the new GPUs supported, are AMD Radeon R7 265, and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 745, and the 800M series. A new OpenCL SHA-1 hash benchmark is added.
DOWNLOAD: Finalwire AIDA64 v4.30 (installer) | Finalwire AIDA64 v4.30 (ZIP package)

AMD Delivers Peak Performance for Key Features in Latest Photoshop CC Release

AMD today announced that it has delivered significant optimizations in the graphics processing pipeline to increase performance for powerful creative features and workflows in the newest version of Adobe Photoshop CC. Use of both OpenCL and OpenGL standards enables Adobe Photoshop CC to directly tap the compute and graphics processing capabilities of AMD FirePro Professional Graphics, AMD Radeon Graphics, and AMD A-Series APUs to unlock new levels of performance in the Smart Sharpen filter, and provide highly responsive, visually accurate experiences for the new 3D printing workflows, and transformations such as Perspective Warp.

"Compute performance is essential to effective creative workflows," said Steve Belt, corporate vice president, Strategic Alliances & Platform Enablement, AMD. "An efficient, speedy process is often the difference between successfully capturing inspiration and seeing flashes of brilliance ebb away. That is the real essence of what the AMD-Adobe collaboration achieves. Together we continually find ways to successfully tap open standards in order to deliver the highest levels of performance for the most sophisticated new tools like those unveiled today in Photoshop CC."

New AMD FirePro Deliver Unprecedented Levels of Performance for Mac Pro

AMD announced dual AMD FirePro professional graphics solutions (GPUs) deliver unprecedented levels of performance for the new Mac Pro. The AMD FirePro D300, D500 and D700 professional GPUs offer exceptional compute power and reliability for creativity and productivity in a wide range of applications. With industry-adopted OpenCL (Open Computing Language) support, Mac Pro users have the ability to seamlessly edit full-resolution 4K video and simultaneously render effects in the background, and still have enough performance to power up to three high-resolution 4K displays.

These new AMD FirePro GPUs are built on the strength of AMD's award-winning Graphics Core Next GPU design -- an architecture conceived from the ground up to intelligently manage rendering and compute workloads. The combination of AMD FirePro GPUs and OpenCL -- strongly supported by both Apple and AMD -- is designed to deliver massive compute and graphics performance in one compact solution.

Khronos Finalizes OpenCL 2.0 Specification

The Khronos Group today announced the ratification and public release of the finalized OpenCL 2.0 specification. OpenCL 2.0 is a significant evolution of the open, royalty-free standard that simplifies cross-platform, parallel programming.

With an enhanced execution model and a subset of the C11 and C++11 memory model, synchronization and atomic operations, OpenCL now enables a significantly richer range of algorithms and programming patterns to be easily accelerated with improved performance. Significant feedback from the developer community was incorporated into the final specification, following its provisional release in July. The OpenCL 2.0 specifications are available at www.khronos.org/opencl.

AMD Enables Server APU Software to Reimagine the Server

AMD today announced it is enabling its accelerated processing units (APU) for next-generation servers through important advancements in software tools developed by AMD and in collaboration with technology partners and the open source community. In his keynote address at APU13, AMD Corporate Fellow Phil Rogers highlighted the significant progress AMD has made in both developing software internally and empowering others to develop software to take advantage of the capabilities of AMD APU technology, which combines industry leading AMD Radeon graphics processing engines with x86 computational processing on a single chip.

"Servers must be efficient, scalable and adaptable to meet the compute characteristics of new and changing workloads. Software applications that leverage server APUs are designed to drive highly efficient, low-power, dense server solutions optimized for highly parallel and multimedia workloads," said Suresh Gopalakrishnan, corporate vice president and general manager of the Server Business Unit, AMD. "We have evolved our processor roadmap to support this opportunity, and now we are showcasing how the APU software ecosystem is gaining momentum and what developers can do to participate."

AMD to Unveil Next-Generation APUs on November 11

As a follow-up to our older article on how December-January will play out for AMD's next-generation APU lineup, we have news that the company will unveil, or at least tease its next-generation desktop APU, codename "Kaveri," on November 11, 2013. It's when the company will host its APU'13 event, modeled along the lines of GPU'13, held in Hawaii this September, where it unveiled its Radeon R9 200 and R7 200 GPU families. On its backdrop, the company will also hold its 2013 AMD Developer Summit, which brings together developers making software that take advantage of both CPU and OpenCL-accelerated GPUs. APU'13 will be held in San Jose, USA, and like GPU'13, will be live-streamed to the web. In addition to new APUs, the company is expected to make some big announcements with its HSA (heterogeneous system architecture) initiative that brought some big names in the industry on board.

The agenda for APU'13 follows.

Do We Really Need AMD TrueAudio?

At its press meet called to unveil its next-generation graphics lineup, which lasted for about 3 hours and 45 minutes, a full one hour was spent detailing TrueAudio, an audio DSP that AMD co-developed with GenAudio, makers of AstoundSound technology; both of which are brand names we'd heard for the first time, and that's coming from someone who's been an audiophile and follower of PC audio technology for 15 years now. Here are a few reasons why the concept of TrueAudio, or at least the way AMD and its newfound GenAudio pals explained it, is unconvincing to the extant of flagging "snake oil." While we did not attend GPU'14, experiencing TrueAudio is irrelevant to our analysis. It focuses on what "yet another" positional audio DSP has to do with GPU, and how AMD is getting ahead of itself with non-graphics features in exactly the same way it criticized NVIDIA of doing, not too long ago.

AMD and Industry Leaders Bring the Power of 4K to Video Production at IBC 2013

At this year's IBC (International Broadcasting Convention), AMD is collaborating with outstanding industry leaders -- Adobe, Autodesk, Blackmagic Design, Dell, Fusion-io, and Supermicro -- to showcase video production workflows with a variety of 4K sources using AMD FirePro professional graphics. These demonstrations feature compute- and graphics-intensive animation, display, and content creation supported by a host of creative hardware and software collaborations.

AMD is pleased to showcase ground breaking demonstrations at IBC 2013 powered by AMD FirePro graphics:
  • First public showing of real-time 4K color correction with Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve 10 and Supermicro with multiple GPU support;
  • First implementation of edge blending, image warping, and color correction with Scalable Display solution based on AMD FirePro DOPP (Display Output Post-Processing) feature;
  • New Direct Graphics-Memory Access features for low-latency SDI input or output directly from AMD FirePro W-series graphics;
  • New Dell mobile workstation lineup with AMD FirePro graphics;
  • 4K color calibration, 2D / 3D video effects and post production using OpenCL in Adobe Premiere Pro CC;
  • Integrated stereo camera within Autodesk 3ds Max with support for Active Stereo;
  • OpenCL-accelerated Bullet Physics extension for Autodesk Maya 2014.

AMD-Adobe Collaboration Unlocks Outstanding Creative Workflows for Video Pros

AMD today announced that its collaboration with Adobe has reached a new milestone in the drive to deliver faster and more sophisticated professional video workflows. The two companies' leadership in OpenCL acceleration means that video and film professionals, as well as enthusiasts, can take full advantage of the massively parallel compute power of AMD APUs, Radeon graphics, and AMD FirePro professional graphics in their everyday and more compute-intense workloads.

New breakthrough features and efficient workflows announced by Adobe for Adobe Premiere Pro CC, Adobe SpeedGrade CC, and Adobe Media Encoder CC exploit AMD App Acceleration via OpenCL and deliver streamlined, leading edge support for Blackmagic Design and Vision Research Phantom cameras.

AMD FirePro Professional Graphics Power New Thin and Light Mobile Workstations

AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced the AMD FirePro M4100 professional graphics, on mobile workstations such as the HP ZBook 14 giving outstanding OpenCL performance powered by award-winning AMD Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture. The new thin and light mobile workstation with an optional touch screen interface is ideal for product development, mechanical computer-aided design (CAD) and engineering, as well as for artists, video editors, photographers and designers -- a wide set of users of professional applications who require true mobility.

"Together, AMD and HP offer workstation users industry-leading technologies in a portable design that deliver users next-generation, powerful mobile graphics processors for exceptional workstation performance," said David Cummings, senior director and general manager, Professional Graphics at AMD. "Designed for the enhancements of Windows 8, the new HP mobile workstation combines with AMD FirePro M4100 to deliver superb workstation functionality on the go."

AMD and Mixamo Deliver Face Plus Real-time Facial Capture Technology

AMD today announced its collaboration with Mixamo on the launch of Face Plus, an advanced real-time motion capture and 3D facial animation technology for the Unity game engine (v4.3). Mixamo, an AMD Ventures portfolio company, provides online 3D animation service for game developers.

Mixamo's Face Plus plug-in for Unity is designed to enable developers to capture their facial expressions through standard webcams and transfer them in real time onto a 3D character using technology powered by AMD A-Series APUs and GPUs. This real-time capture and animation capability is made possible by offloading Mixamo's innovative and complex algorithms from the CPU onto AMD's industry-leading GPU technology.

Schenker Intros 13.3-inch Power House Gaming Notebook

Schenker Technologies UK Ltd, subsidiary of Schenker Technologies GmbH today announced their most powerful 13.3" HD portable laptop to date. The XMG P303 packs a punch with a top of the range 4th gen Intel Core i7 2.80 - 3.80 GHz quad core processor, three storage drives and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 765M with 2GB GDDR5 memory, NVIDIA's best in class gaming graphics available for a laptop of this size. Under a year ago, the sheer performance of the P303 was physically impossible in a chassis so small, the P303 is a breakthrough for laptops" remarked Neil Richards, Managing Director, Schenker Technologies UK.

AMD Powers Visual Computing Experiences With Industry Leaders at SIGGRAPH 2013

Today at the 40th SIGGRAPH 2013 International Conference and Exhibition, AMD (NYSE: AMD) powered visual computing experiences for content creation with outstanding industry leaders Adobe, Autodesk, Christie, Dell, and Optis. AMD FirePro professional graphics demonstrations featured unique animation, display, simulation and other creative hardware and software collaborations for attendees from around the world. With strong adoption of OpenCL, AMD FirePro graphics have gained positive momentum in the months leading up to SIGGRAPH 2013. Recent highlights and wins for AMD FirePro graphics include:
  • Acknowledgement as the dual graphics solution for the forthcoming Apple Mac Pro;
  • Optimization and certification of Maxon Cinema 4D application;
  • Certification for The Foundry's MARI application;
  • Optimization of Adobe Premiere Pro CC, backed by OpenCL standards.

Khronos Releases OpenCL 2.0 Specification

The Khronos Group today announced the ratification and public release of the OpenCL 2.0 provisional specification. OpenCL 2.0 is a significant evolution of the open, royalty-free standard that is designed to further simplify cross-platform, parallel programming while enabling a significantly richer range of algorithms and programming patterns to be easily accelerated. As the foundation for these increased capabilities, OpenCL 2.0 defines an enhanced execution model and a subset of the C11 and C++11 memory model, synchronization and atomic operations. The release of the specification in provisional form is to enable developers and implementers to provide feedback before specification finalization, which is expected within 6 months. The OpenCL 2.0 provisional specification and reference cards are available here.

"The OpenCL working group has combined developer feedback with emerging hardware capabilities to create a state-of-the-art parallel programming platform - OpenCL 2.0," said Neil Trevett, chair of the OpenCL working group, president of the Khronos Group and vice president of mobile content at NVIDIA. "OpenCL continues to gather momentum on both desktop and mobile devices. In addition to enabling application developers it is providing foundational, portable acceleration for middleware libraries, engines and higher-level programming languages that need to take advantage of heterogeneous compute resources including CPUs, GPUs, DSPs and FPGAs."

AMD Performance Screams with Adobe Photoshop CC and Premier Pro CC

After a successful collaboration with AMD over the past two years to leverage open standards to drive amazing quality, scalability, and performance for our customers - Adobe has just released Adobe Photoshop CC and Adobe Premiere Pro CC. Now users can get the production releases of these flagship products which have been optimized to the massive compute power of AMD APUs, AMD Radeon HD graphics and AMD FirePro professional graphics to enable GPU-accelerated performance across a broad range of form factors through the OpenGL and OpenCL open standards. As highlighted in recent blogs, these optimizations are significant because, not only do they result in faster final render times, but more importantly, they enable users to apply effects and preview their edits in real-time, enabling greater productivity. This is great news for end-users everywhere, who now have unprecedented choice in using the hardware that best suits their needs. AMD-based systems coupled with Adobe's shift to the affordable and innovative Adobe Creative Cloud model for managing licenses and software updates can now put these latest Adobe creative tools in the hands of more users than ever.

HSA Foundation Announces First Specification

The HSA Foundation has released Version 0.95 of its Programmer's Reference Manual. The HSA (Heterogeneous System Architecture) Foundation is a not-for-profit consortium dedicated to developing architecture specifications that unlock the performance and power efficiency of the parallel computing engines found in most modern devices. This is the first output from the HSA Foundation, who have been collaborating on this project since its founding in June 2012. It represents an important step in the development of the HSA Foundation's ecosystem because it enables software partners to develop libraries, tools and middleware and to code high performance kernels.

The Programmer's Reference Manual provides a standardized method of accessing all available computing resources in HSA-compliant systems. This enables a wide range of system resources to cooperate on parallelizable tasks. It has been specifically designed to perform in the most energy efficient way without compromising on performance. The goal is to enable a heterogeneous architecture that is easy to program, opens up new and rich user experiences and improves performance and quality of service, whilst reducing energy consumption.

Intel Releases SDK with OpenCL 1.2 Support for Intel Xeon Phi Coprocessors

Intel has announced the production release of the Intel SDK for Open CL Applications XE 2013 that launched as a beta program in December. The new SDK broadens options for developers on Intel architecture and includes tools, optimization guides and training.

The SDK helps OpenCL developers improve performance and efficiency on Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors and Intel Xeon processors as well as create highly parallel applications for high performance computing workstations, data analytics and other uses. Download the Intel SDK for OpenCL Applications XE 2013 here.
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