Here we have the new 4.6 Catalyst drivers in a nutshell. One thing we can honestly say is that if you're trying to break the Aquamark 3 record, stick with the 4.5 drivers as it seems to take a big hit with the latest release from ATI. We see a little jump in most games but at the end of the day its nothing that you would really be able to notice in games - the difference in some games is only an FPS or two.
If you're benchmarking 3DMark 2003 quite heavily and trying to break some records (like me recently as a bunch of new high-speed products hit our labs) we would definitely recommend installing these new drivers as we saw quite a good jump in both resolutions and when we had AA and AF maxed out.
It's great to see Overdrive is available in the new drivers. Though, in all honesty, a lot of people buying the X800 cards will know how to overclock manually and will not be afraid to do it. Nonetheless, Overdrive is a nice little marketing feature and as you can see you do get a slight jump in performance. There can be no harm in using it if you don't want to manually overclock for whatever your reason.
Overall we have a nice driver set with not only some new performance increases under Windows XP SP1 but some fixes for some of the more recent games. If you haven't installed the latest Catalyst drivers from ATI yet, don't be afraid as they are quite good and they should give you a little bit more power to work with.
- You can download ATI Catalyst drivers here from the ATI website
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