New features in Catalyst 7.1 for Vista
On the top of the list is support for Blu-ray and HD-DVD playback which means that not only will you be able to playback such next-generation content but also have your Radeon off-load work from the CPU to the GPU and improve image quality through AVIVO. During our testing we checked the control panel for AVIVO settings and discovered all the usual options such as de-interlacing and pull down detection. If you're running the 64-bit version of Vista, you'll need to wait for Cat 7.3 in March for this feature.
Probably the most important feature included in Cat 7.1 for Vista for gamers is support for Crossfire dual graphics. Until now both nVidia and AMD have lacked dual graphics supports in all their previous Vista drivers and it's great to see AMD has taken care of this missing feature. During our testing with the driver, we used a couple of Radeon X1950PRO cards on an Intel P965 motherboard and everything worked perfectly.
In this release, there is only support for DirectX 3D Crossfire - OpenGL Crossfire support is coming in a future ATI Catalyst release but it is not a bad start at least for the new OS. Crossfire Alternate Frame Rendering (AFR) mode is not ready yet but it's coming soon for Vista and is to be enabled by default for all applications. If you're a gamer, Cat 7.1 for Vista is going to make your life a little better. It's clear though from not just AMD but nVidia as well that the drives are not fully refined yet and each intend on improving with new releases.
AMD promised performance and stability improves in Cat 7.1 for Vista and we can confirm that the driver works well in DX3D games and performance has improved over the previous release but we'll cover that later in more detail in our benchmarks.
For a little while now AMD has had a new install manager for their Vista drivers (you won't see these changes in XP, Vista only) which doesn't offer much new functionality, at this stage, but looks good, as you can see above. In the future, AMD plans on giving users of their cards and Vista the ability to use their upcoming download manager allowing you to download new drivers, without visiting their website. And talking about driver updates for Vista (as with Windows XP) AMD plans on releasing a new Vista driver every month - great news for gamers.
PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.
United States: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon's website.
United Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon UK's website.
Canada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon Canada's website.
- Page 1 [Introduction]
- Page 2 [New features in Cat 7.1 for Vista]
- Page 3 [New features in Cat 7.1 for Vista Continued]
- Page 4 [Benchmarks - Test System Setup and Performance Notes]
- Page 5 [Benchmarks - 3DMark05]
- Page 6 [Benchmarks - 3DMark06]
- Page 7 [Benchmarks - Company of Heroes]
- Page 8 [Benchmarks - Half Life 2]
- Page 9 [Benchmarks - Half Life 2 - Episode 1]
- Page 10 [Benchmarks - Serious Sam 2]
- Page 11 [Final Thoughts]
Recommended for You
- We at TweakTown openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion of our content. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here.
Latest News Posts
- New map, competitive ranking system arrive for Insurgency
- Google will reportedly shame vendors into Android updates
- Lenovo says Motorola acquisition 'did not meet expectations'
- Android Auto, CarPlay available for Hyundai vehicles
- GAINWARD's GeForce GTX 1080 Phoenix spotted with black/red/gold look
- SanDisk X400 1TB SATA III SSD Review
- Asus S300CA screen flickering/stripes
- Asrock MB front HD audio doesn't work (rear works)
- GA-H97-Gaming 3 trying to Raid Two 950pro's via PCIE Apadpter
- GA-Z170MX-Gaming 5 USB 3.1 and Thunderbolt not recognized
- Samsung Electronics expands 750 EVO SSD with worldwide availability and increases capacity to 500GB
- Free public gamer event E3 Live to debut in Los Angeles
- Cryorig teases two new cases bound for Computex 2016
- Toshiba launches the OCZ RD400 NVMe SSD series
- Colorful & Bykski announces first water block for GTX 1080 Founders Edition