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ATI's CATALYST A.I. - Honest Application Specific Optimizations - Image Quality Investigation

ATI is today launching a new feature in their upcoming drivers called CATALYST A.I. which "allows the driver to intelligently analyze applications and textures to maximize graphics performance and stability". It's ironic that a year later ATI are making this feature public and active in their driver which both they and nVidia used to try and deceive us.

| Editorials in Video Cards | Posted: Sep 21, 2004 4:00 am

Image Quality Investigation


Okay, we've seen performance increases from 8% up to 26% so far through ATI's clearly new and smart way of processing 3D graphics. Surely though this comes at a price? We fired up Doom 3 using a custom timedemo with A.I. on and off in both Normal Quality (0x AA and 8x AF) and High Quality (6x AA and 16x AF) to see if we could notice any image quality reductions.


The images below are all compressed JPG (although only 1% compressed) and as a result do not 100% accurately represent actual in-game quality - please keep this in mind when looking at the screenshots.


You can click on each image below for the full 1600 x 1200 version which will make it easier to check the differences, if any.


A.I. OFF - Normal Quality



A.I. ON - Normal Quality



A.I. OFF - High Quality



A.I. ON - High Quality



I am hard pressed to notice much difference in image quality. However, I'll be the first to admit I don't have as good a trained eye compared to many other people.


Having said that though, it would seem apparent that image quality reduction is not an issue with CATALYST A.I. - I zoomed in on the screenshots with Paint Shop Pro and failed to notice any difference. It's important to keep thing in prospective here as it's not like you are going to examine every single texture in extreme detail as I did when you are busy fragging your opponent.


Bottom line on this subject, CATALYST A.I. improves performs without compromising image quality as promised in the press material from ATI. And I'll say it again, Free performance...we love that kind of thing!




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