Pissedjedi wrote:Um Was this machine running the last Service pack for vista and..why god why are you still using catalyst 8.1.. when 8.3 is the latest?
SP1 was not public when the testing was done, so it wasn't used.
We used CATALYST 8.1 on many of the ATI cards because we don't have the time to update every card... It take a solid 4-5 hours to just benchmark the each card and that is flying.
# ATI Radeon HD 3870 - 512MB (777MHz/1.126GHz GDDR4)
# Diamond Radeon HD 3850 - 512MB(669MHz/1.658GHz GDDR3)
# ATI Radeon HD 3850 - 256MB (669MHz/1.658GHz GDDR3)
# ATI Radeon HD 3650 - 256MB (722MHz/1.584GHz GDDR3)
# Sapphire Radeon HD 3450 - 256MB (600MHz/1.000GHz GDDR2)
Those five ATI cards were run with 8.1 drivers... Is it worth 25 hours of work and then having to redo all the charts on top of that for just a few performance fixes?
Let's look at the performance improvements in CATALYST 8.2 and 8.3 drivers...
Call of Juarez: Performance scores increased up to 20% on ATI CrossFireX™ configured systems containing an ATI Radeon™ HD38x0 series of product
* Company of Heroes (DirectX 10): Performance scores increased up to 17% (especially at lower resolutions), on ATI Radeon™ HD38x0 products
* Crysis (DirectX 10): Performance scores increased up to 15% on all supported ATI Radeon™ products
* Lost Planet (DirectX 9): Performance scores increased up to 36% across all supported ATI Radeon™ products and in ATI CrossFireX™ configured systems
* Shadermark 2.1: Performance scores increased up to 35% across all supported Radeon™ products and in ATI CrossFireX™ configured systems
* Unreal Tournament 2004: Performance scores increased up to 10% on ATI CrossFireX™ configured system containing an ATI Radeon™ HD2400, HD2600, or HD3400 series of products
* Company of Heroes: DirectX 10 performance improves as much as 20% on the ATI Radeon HD 2000 Series and ATI Radeon HD 3000 Series of products. DirectX 10 performance improves as much as 30% on CrossFire configurations using the ATI Radeon HD 2000 Series or ATI Radeon HD 3000 Series of products
Of the six games that have improved performance we test with Company of Heroes and Crysis. I have not seen any improvement of Crysis v1.2 with 8.3 over 8.1 and they say up to 15% on all cards (don't think this is true with the v1.2 patch), but that doesn't matter because the low end cards were not tested in Crysis... All the ATI cards in Crysis used 8.3 drivers... On Company of Heroes the new drivers do make a difference when run with CrossFire and all the CrossFire and CrossFireX testing was done on 8.3's for this reason. So, to be honest that is why we are still using 8.1 drivers... It only impacts two of the games we use and the difference was not significant as I did test the new drivers to see if a performance update was needed. If I see a significant difference in driver performance (greater than 5%) we update the drivers and retest. We did this in February with 8.1 drivers as there was a significant improvement over 7.10 drivers that were previously used.
So, using 8.1 drivers only impacted one test - CoH and the impact should be minor and is not going to change what card you should purchase.