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Freesync, G-sync done "right"

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#1
"So I came across this article on anantech.

It is basically G-sync, but then without any hardware modification, licence free and open.

In the case of the Toshiba Satellite Click, the panel already supports variable VBLANK. AMD’s display engines have supported variable VBLANK for a couple of generations, and that extends all the way down to APUs. The Satellite Click in question uses AMD’s low cost Kabini APU, which already has the requisite hardware to support variable VBLANK and thus variable display refresh rates (Kaveri as well as AMD's latest GPUs should support it as well). AMD simply needed driver support for controlling VBLANK timing, which is present in the latest Catalyst drivers. AMD hasn’t yet exposed any of the controls to end users, but all of the pieces in this demo are ready and already available.
Sooo, apparently there isn't really a good reason for stuff like a G-sync board, apart from making it proprietary, unless Nvidia's GPU's don't support something like VBLANK on their own. It also once again shows the difference between business strategies between Nvidia and AMD. Apparently this VBLANK was a VESA standard for some time now, and imho it makes G-sync look kind of silly.

What are your guys' thoughts?

Edit: Nooooooo messed up the title ""

Another article on Techreport.
 
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#2
If AMD are so nice, why didn't they do this years ago? They had the ability. So why not release it?
 
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#3
If AMD are so nice, why didn't they do this years ago? They had the ability. So why not release it?
Apparently they still need the display manufacturers to support this in the display firmware. Apart from that, I believe they stated that this feature untill now was primarily aimed at decreasing poweruse, which desktop panel makers didn't really care about.

Also, according to Raja, their GPU's support it for 3 generations now.

Edit: I agree btw, its also the usual story in the sense that Nvidia has a real product, while AMD is still mostly talk. The story still makes sense, however.
 

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#4
If AMD are so nice, why didn't they do this years ago? They had the ability. So why not release it?
They probably had no idea of the possibilites, or it doesn't work properly which could be why it hasn't been implemented yet. Then NVidia release something similar, twice the cost, and everyone gets messy in their pants. Now AMD wants a piece of the action, but because of whatever reason they didn't implement it, they're lagging behind.
 
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#5
Apparently they still need the display manufacturers to support this in the display firmware. Apart from that, I believe they stated that this feature untill now was primarily aimed at decreasing poweruse, which desktop panel makers didn't really care about.

Also, according to Raja, their GPU's support it for 3 generations now.

Edit: I agree btw, its also the usual story in the sense that Nvidia has a real product, while AMD is still mostly talk. The story still makes sense, however.
I read the Anandtech article and it seems that one of the comments hits it on the head. Nobody really cared about it for fps smoothness. I still say AMD could pushed panel makers into this a while ago. They do have a lot of laptops with cpu's inside after all.
Will render G sync pretty useless if it catches on.
 

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#6
I read the Anandtech article and it seems that one of the comments hits it on the head. Nobody really cared about it for fps smoothness. I still say AMD could pushed panel makers into this a while ago. They do have a lot of laptops with cpu's inside after all.
Will render G sync pretty useless if it catches on.
But this is the usual story, while AMD can be the good guy and offer something great as standard, NVidia offers it at substantial price hike, AMD will likely fail or balls it up, or simply not market it AT ALL.
 
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#7
This was posted hours ago. There are many more comments in this thread.
 
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#8
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#9
From the timestamp it looks like that other thread was posted about 4 hours later
Reread the date; it was posted almost 10 hours earlier.



It's also worth noting that although Free-sync is less expensive, G-Sync is still a technologically superior solution. One person, "purehg," has posted in many of the online forums about this and summarizes the differences perfectly:

GSync is "GPU drives VBI," whereas FreeSync is "driver speculates VBI." The outcome can be close, but one is superior than the other.

FreeSync uses variable VBI, meaning the driver needs to setup the proper VBI for the next frame, therefore requires the driver to predict the future.

If the app isn't running in constant FPS, then FreeSync will fail when FPS changes, and you will still see stuttering. Also, you need to enable VSYNC, therefore you still have the lag issue that GSync solves by working without VSYNC.

Sure you will have a better experience, but not as good as GSync. With FreeSync you will have software overhead. If you predict conservatively you lose FPS; if you predict aggressively you might end up with more stuttering than plain VSYNC.

GSync solves the problems by holding VBI until the next frame is drawn, therefore there is no speculation, so it works under all circumstances. You simply can't do that in software, because software runs on the computer, not the monitor. You have to have a monitor smart enough to wait for the next GPU command to do the drawing, and that's why NVIDIA has to do it with a separate board. There is no VESA standard for that.
 
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#10
Reread the date; it was posted almost 10 hours earlier.
Am I missing something about the way time works around here?

Nevermind, 12AM not 12PM. Screw 12 hour clocks.
 

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#11
I read the Anandtech article and it seems that one of the comments hits it on the head. Nobody really cared about it for fps smoothness. I still say AMD could pushed panel makers into this a while ago. They do have a lot of laptops with cpu's inside after all. Will render G sync pretty useless if it catches on.
Not sure how they could "push" panel makers into anything to be honest as the panel makers are likely to be considerably bigger and therefore probably more powerful than AMD is, I am sure they were doing quite nicely before this little "innovation" was introduced and in any case would possibly have little impact on panel saes within the mainstream market.
 
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#13
Reread the date; it was posted almost 10 hours earlier.



It's also worth noting that although Free-sync is less expensive, G-Sync is still a technologically superior solution. One person, "purehg," has posted in many of the online forums about this and summarizes the differences perfectly:
G-Sync doesn't work on all circumstances. Its limited to 3D Full-screen mode and over at PC Perspective they've found a dead-zone between 25-30fps.



Note the distinct plateaus across the 25-30 FPS band. The center area of unhappiness feels like intermittent lag and introduces a judder-type effect on smooth pans occurring within that 25-30 FPS range.

I suspected this issue might be correctable by having the driver dynamically adjust the forced refresh to shorter delays when rendering within the 30 FPS range. After further discussion with NVIDIA, the 30 FPS plateau was a design decision for this first generation of G-Sync as it applies to this specific ASUS panel. Future iterations may still exhibit this quirk, but at longer forced refresh wait time and therefore would push the dead band to even lower FPS ranges. NVIDIA designed G-Sync around the 40-60 FPS target and it's worth noting that FPS can even dip into the 30's without issue. The reduced latency of G-Sync may cause a tendency towards cranking video settings up further than they normally would, and I believe that is why so many folks are reporting this effect at :love:0 FPS. For the moment I'd recommend shooting for the 40-60 FPS range, with the hope that future G-Sync panels will be able to force this band down below 20 FPS. This should reduce the possibility of entering the band in even the most demanding scenarios.
 
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#14
More info from hardware.fr (translated from French) http://www.hardware.fr/news/13517/ces-amd-freesync-g-sync-gratuit.html

"To our surprise, AMD then explained to us that this display technique was already in development for some time, but mainly for other reasons: to reduce consumption display related to mobile systems.AMD also specifies a standard VESA finalized but not yet announced a framework already exists for this and that the consortium was very surprised at the announcement of G-SYNC by Nvidia.

Thus, some of the tiles already would support the currently used frequency variable cooling via a variable period VBLANK (exactly what G-SYNC so).If the email linked to the display supports it, which is not a problem according to AMD, then it is sufficient that the display engine of the GPU and drivers to do the same.AMD says that its recent GPU are capable and software support is also ready even if the access interface is not yet in place.

AMD has yet designed a small demo that shows all in action and it works just as well as priori G-SYNC, no extra hardware, no additional extra cost!AMD drives the point facing Nvidia stating that they do not intend to do so to add an additional cost to operate a technology that is already a standard.Why they call him now FreeSync.

AMD does not yet know when or how this display technology will be offered to users Radeon or which screens actually incorporate this possibility.AMD seems to have been surprised by G-SYNC-like according to its leaders a way for Nvidia to earn a few months on the timing of arrival of a technology standard expected.

It is not impossible that a firmware update can make this support on some screens already on sale, then this should be the case at no extra cost on future screens.Moreover, this approach allows a fairly simple use in the mobile world, which could benefit more quickly.

This is new in our case and is of course a big surprise.We are trying to learn more and our current assumption is that the Nvidia GPU may not directly support this possibility, which would explain the use of G-SYNC module."​



The use of open standards is appreciated, but I wouldn't get hopes too high on it being available anytime soon. It is based on an upcoming VESA standard, meaning it maintains no backwards compatibilty with existing monitors and has no set release date. You conceivably could firmware update existing monitors, but I know of none that can do that. I feel this will turn out like the initial release of Displayport with AMD supporting it but monitors only trickling slowly onto the market. The technology has promise, but G-Sync will still have a 1-2 year lead before this becomes widely available.

G-Sync doesn't work on all circumstances. Its limited to 3D Full-screen mode and over at PC Perspective they've found a dead-zone between 25-30fps.
I wouldn't call that a revelation. The full screen mode requirement is understandable since you can't sync to two or more items at the same time without refreshing at the lowest common multiple, which is way too fast for any current display technology. Also, NVidia always stated that G-Sync doesn't work below 30FPS (the "dead zone") due to the monitor requiring a refresh (liquid crystals in LCDs lose state after a while). Compared to G-sync, AMD's technology might be able to go below 30FPS to around 24FPS, but the company still has to deal with the physics of liquid crystals, and I can't see how AMD can overcome the full-screen limitation.
 
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#15
GSync is "GPU drives VBI," whereas FreeSync is "driver speculates VBI." The outcome can be close, but one is superior than the other.
That guy at HardForum makes a good point however GPU driver has "render x frames ahead" functionality where x is 1 by default IIRC, so predicting the next interval could be done much more precisely. Latency, I hope, will be negligible.

edit: I see, reading article on techreport, that they use triple buffering. There goes the latency.
 
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#16
"So I came across this article on anantech.

It is basically G-sync, but then without any hardware modification, licence free and open.



Sooo, apparently there isn't really a good reason for stuff like a G-sync board, apart from making it proprietary, unless Nvidia's GPU's don't support something like VBLANK on their own. It also once again shows the difference between business strategies between Nvidia and AMD. Apparently this VBLANK was a VESA standard for some time now, and imho it makes G-sync look kind of silly.

What are your guys' thoughts?

Edit: Nooooooo messed up the title ""

Another article on Techreport.
the heading alone makes me giggle...... AMD "we let everyone else do the work" should be they're creedo

Thanks AMD, you saved money again for us ;)!
giggle........Thanks AMD for contributing nothing to pushing technology...again..
 
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#18
the heading alone makes me giggle...... AMD "we let everyone else do the work" should be they're creedo


giggle........Thanks AMD for contributing nothing to pushing technology...again..
Interesting take considering that DisplayPort is AMD tech and all G-Sync is is a DP hack.
 
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#19
Interesting take considering that DisplayPort is AMD tech and all G-Sync is is a DP hack.
Display port was not created by AMD.......

G-sync and variable refresh rate only works when the monitor has g-sync board or like in very few laptop LCD's a similar chip BTW was not created by AMD..
 
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#20
If AMD are so nice, why didn't they do this years ago? They had the ability. So why not release it?
Well if you'd been following at all, they've had their hands full with restructuring their workforce and production goals after some severe budget cuts, improving frame pacing on their Crossfire drivers, not to mention developing Mantle. That they're even trying to offer their own free version of this is pretty good considering pretty much all of that they are doing lately is striving to improving actual gaming performance, vs FaceWorks, Shadowplay, etc being extraneous crap Nvidia is indulging in that has no bearing on actual game performance, as usual.
 
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#21
Well if you'd been following at all, they've had their hands full with restructuring their workforce and production goals after some severe budget cuts, improving frame pacing on their Crossfire drivers, not to mention developing Mantle. That they're even trying to offer their own free version of this is pretty good considering pretty much all of that they are doing lately is striving to improving actual gaming performance, vs FaceWorks, Shadowplay, etc being extraneous crap Nvidia is indulging in that has no bearing on actual game performance, as usual.
Probably because it's AMD that actually need to make those improvements.

And with nVidia having zero intention of supporting Mantle let's hope AMD don't waste too much time on that either, we'd hate for them to spread themselves too thin. :p
 
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#22
How is shadow play garbage? It works really well..

That is all I use for desktop/gaming vids.

 
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#23
After reading this thread, I'm going to look on eBay and Craigslist for a good CRT monitor o_O
 
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#24
After reading this thread, I'm going to look on eBay and Craigslist for a good CRT monitor o_O
lol! contact Nvidia and see if they can retrofit a CRT with G-sync...hehehe
 
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#25
After reading this thread, I'm going to look on eBay and Craigslist for a good CRT monitor o_O
You can buy mine -
upload_2014-4-17_21-8-45.jpeg
no need for all this G stuff .....
 
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