Unless you've been living under a rock, you would know that the release of the Catalyst 11.4s has been anticipated as one of the most significant ones from AMD in many months. We've actually been using the 11.4 driver for months in the form of the HD 6990 Beta and new models that launched after the HD 6990 carried with them slightly modified versions of the 11.4.
Today, though, we've got a WHQL version and we'll of course be comparing it to the 11.3 driver which while we thought was better than the 11.2s, wasn't as much of a stand out as the 11.4 betas that we'd been using.
Before we get into the performance side of things, let's first check out what some of the new features are that AMD have implemented along with taking a closer look at the performance improvements that they're telling us we should receive.
Enhancements to the AMD VISION Engine Control Center / AMD Catalyst Control Center
New task based Display Management controls
Simplifies the configuration of displays and display settings
New Eyefinity setup group
Setting up an Eyefinity group has never been easier
AMD Catalyst update notification (found within the Information Center)
This feature notifies users that new AMD Catalyst software packages are available
GPU Compute enhancements
The OpenCL runtime (included in AMD Catalyst 11.4) includes performance enhancements supporting zero-copy on APUs and increased performance for PCIe transfers between a CPU and discrete GPU.
A number of performance enhancements are seen with the AMD Radeon HD 6900 Series and AMD Radeon HD 6800 Series:
Call of Duty Black Ops - gains of up to 15% with Anti-Aliasing and Anisotropic Filtering on single GPU configurations.
Battleforge - gains of up to 15% with Anti-Aliasing and Anisotropic Filtering on single and multiple GPU configurations.
Batman Arkham Asylum - gains of up to 20% with Anti-Aliasing and Anisotropic Filtering on single and multiple GPU configurations.
Aliens vs. Predator - gains of up to 8% with Anti-Aliasing and Anisotropic Filtering on single and multiple GPU configurations.
Civilization 5 - gains of up to 15% on single and multiple GPU configurations.
Far Cry 2 - gains of up to 6% on single and multiple GPU configurations.
Just Cause 2 - gains of up to 9% on single and multiple GPU configurations.
Lost Planet 2 - gains of up to 10% on single and multiple GPU configurations.
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