Entries tagged as: Driver Updates

AMD FirePro Catalyst OMEGA driver - performance is key

Posted by Tony DeYoung on December 09, 2014

AMD’s Glen Matthews, Sr. Manager, Workstation Graphics, describes the reasons why AMD FirePro drivers matter so much to workstation users.

AMD FirePro driver V9.003.3 improves performance in SolidWorks, AutoCAD and Windows 8

Posted by Tony DeYoung on January 08, 2013
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AMD FirePro unified driver version 9.003.3 is posted and available for download.

New Features

  • Support for AMD FirePro S10000 in Unified driver
  • Performance improvements in SolidWorks
  • Performance improvements in Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.3 support
  • Windowed OpenGL quad-buffer 3D support in Windows 8
  • 10-bit color video output technology support in Windows 8

Linux Distributions Supported

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux5.8 and 6.3
  • SUSE LINUX Enterprise Desktop (SLED) 10 SP4 and 11 SP2
  • SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server (SLES) 10 SP4 and 11 SP2
  • OpenSUSE 11.4 and 12.1
  • Ubuntu 11.10 and 12.04

Catalyst Driver Windows 8 Release Preview for AMD FirePro

Posted by Tony DeYoung on May 31, 2012

AMD has released Catalyst Driver Windows 8 Release Preview for FirePro workstation graphic cards. It supports the new WDDM 1.2 driver model including native stereoscopic 3D, a unified video API, optimized screen rotation for rotation-aware devices, optimized GPU power consumption, as well as support for Eyefinity, OpenCL, OpenGL, UVD, and CrossFire Technology.

OpenGL 4.2 improves shader performance, texture handling, & speeds repositioning of complex objects

Posted by Tony DeYoung on August 09, 2011
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New functionality in the today announced OpenGL 4.2 specification includes enabling shaders with atomic counters for things like object for single-rendering-pass order-independent transparency, capturing GPU-tessellated geometry to enable complex objects to be efficiently repositioned and replicated, modifying an arbitrary subset of a compressed texture, without having to re-download the whole texture to the GPU for significant performance improvements, and enhanced transfer of data between shader stages.

Christophe Riccio has published a review of the new features in OpenGL 4.2 on Google Docs

Any FirePro graphics card will be able to run applications that use 4.2.

How to Keep Your Workstation Graphics Card Updated, Part 1: Why Is It So Hard?

Posted by Tony DeYoung on August 04, 2011
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I recently got to thinking about auto-updating for graphics drivers (similar to how version auto-updates in Chrome browser).  My thought was that a FirePro card could automatically update every time there was a performance update. Or maybe it would at least pop up a notification: “Hey there is a new version of your graphics card driver.  Would you like to update now?”.  This sounded like a great way to always have the latest performance enhancements and bug fixes.  So I did a little research on the topic and have started a series of posts on the Cadalyst CADSpeed blog site.

The first in the series is: How to Keep Your Workstation Graphics Card Updated, Part 1: Why Is It So Hard?

ATI FirePro driver V8.773.1.1 adds support for FirePro mobility graphics on HP and Dell laptops

Posted by Tony DeYoung on February 17, 2011
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The new ATI FirePro driver V8.773.1.1 available at http://ati.amd.com/support/driver.html adds support for FirePro mobility professional graphics on HP and Dell mobile workstations including DirectX11, OpenGL 4, OpenCL and of course ATI Eyefinity multi-display technology. Specific drivers are for:

  • HP EliteBook 8540w w/ ATI FirePro M5800
  • HP EliteBook 8740w w/ ATI FirePro M7820
  • Dell Precision M6400 w/ ATI FirePro M7740
  • Dell Precision M6500 w/ ATI FirePro M7740

FirePro driver v8.801 offers full support for OpenGL 4.1 on Windows and Linux

Posted by Tony DeYoung on January 24, 2011
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Today, in conjunction with SolidWorks World 2011, AMD announced the new FirePro v8.801 unified driver with full compatibility for OpenGL 4.1 across the current FirePro line (V3800, V4800, V5800, V7800, V8800 and V9800), for Windows 7, Vista, and XP, as well as Linux. Details include:

  • Improved OpenCL interoperability for accelerating computationally intensive visual applications
  • Continued support for both the Core and Compatibility profiles first introduced with OpenGL 3.2, enabling developers to use a streamlined API or retain backwards compatibility for existing OpenGL code, depending on their needs
  • Easier porting between mobile and desktop platforms with full OpenGL ES 2.0 API compatibility
  • Ability to query and load a binary for shader program objects to save re-compilation time
  • Capability to bind programs individually to programmable stages for programming flexibility
  • Higher geometric precision with 64-bit floating-point component vertex shader inputs
  • Increased rendering flexibility with multiple viewports for a rendering surface
  • Support for new ARB extension introduced with OpenGL 4.1

More on the FirePro performance plug-ins for 3ds Max & AutoCAD

Posted by Tony DeYoung on October 05, 2010

Check out these graphs showing the performance gains using the new FirePro plug-ins developed in collaboration with Autodesk.

AUTOCAD
Note the 130-446% performance boost from the low end FirePro to the mid-range FirePro V7800

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3ds MAX
Note the 59-65% performance boost across the FirePro line

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FirePro performance plug-ins for AutoCAD 2010, AutoCAD 2011, 3ds Max 2010 and 3ds Max 2011

Posted by Tony DeYoung on October 04, 2010
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Along with a recent FirePro V8.773 driver update, AMD today released new plug-ins that provide enhanced performance with AutoCAD 2010, AutoCAD 2011, 3ds Max 2010 and 3ds Max 2011. They also provide significant improvements in visual quality.

Some interesting stats comparing Radeon (consumer) to FirePro (professional) graphics cards using the new plug-ins, benchmarked on AutoCAD with Cadalyst Systems Benchmark 2011:

- Radeon HD 5850 ($280 street)  scored 587
- FirePro V3800 ($107 street) scored 930
- FirePro V5800 ($385 street) scored 1980

Now those are some nice performance differences.  Of course the FirePro cards are also certified for CAD accuracy and precision, not just speed.  The professional cards better handle antialiasing (FSAA and sub-pixel precision), overlay plane support, multiple clipping planes, many layers of transparency, and high polygon counts.

ATI FirePro beta driver 8.76.2 coming soon with 20%-80+% performance gains across CAD and DCC apps

Posted by Tony DeYoung on July 26, 2010

A new AMD blog talks about the upcoming release beta driver version 8.76.2 for ATI FirePro hardware. Highlights include:

  • More than 50% increase in performance for ATI FirePro V8800 on the 3ds Max subset of the SPECviewperf 10 benchmark, as well as a 40% gain on the Catia subset, a 20% gain on the Pro E subset and more than 20% gain on the overall composite.
  • Across the board performance increases for the entire family of current ATI FirePro graphics on the Lightwave subset of the new SPECviewperf® 11 benchmark, with the entry-level ATI FirePro V3800 achieving up to 62% performance gain and the ultra-high ATI FirePro V8800 achieving up to 81% gain, compared to the previous driver.
  • Across the board performance increases for the entire family of current ATI FirePro graphics on the SolidWorks subset of SPECviewperf 11, with the entry-level ATI FirePro V3800 achieving up to 43% performance gain and the ultra high-end ATI FirePro V8800 achieving a 63% gain compared to the previous driver.
Update Jul 27 The offical press release is now out.
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