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ATI's CATALYST A.I. - Honest Application Specific Optimizations (Page 2)

By Cameron Wilmot from Sep 20, 2004 @ 23:00 CDT

Test System System


Processor(s): Intel Pentium 4 3.2GHz Socket 478 (800MHz FSB) (Supplied by Intel)


Motherboard(s): DFI LANPARTY "B" 865 (Supplied by DFI)


Memory(s): 2x 512MB Kingmax PC4000 (Supplied by Kingmax)


Video Card(s): HIS Radeon X800 PRO 256MB (Supplied by HIS)


Hard Disk(s): Seagate 80GB 7,2000 RPM SATA (Supplied by Seagate)


Operating System Used: Windows XP Professional SP2


Drivers Used: ATI Catalyst 4.10 BETA and DirectX 9.0c


We decided to provide benchmark results with Doom 3 and CS Source BETA. We benchmarked UT2004 with CATALYST A.I. turned on and off and didn't see any performance increase. This may have been because we executed UT2004 via a benchmark batch file rather than directly through the "UT2004.exe" which directly tells the ATI drivers when A.I. should kick in.


We have tested at 1024 x 768 in High Quality mode with Doom 3 using our own custom timedemo and then with AA and AF maxed out at 6x and 16x respectively through the driver control panel. Vertical Sync was disabled for all testing.


Benchmarking in CS Source BETA was a little different than usual since we haven't figured out how to record a timedemo yet or if timedemos are even supported. Instead we actually played the game at a resolution of 1024 x 768 and measured frames per second using FRAPS. While the results cannot be 100% accurate, we feel as if they are really close since in each test we performed the exact same actions at the same point. We tested at 1024 x 768 with the default image quality settings which include 6x AA and 8x AF. Again, Vertical Sync was disabled for all testing.



You can see the latest version of CCC above (8.06) working together with the Catalyst 4.10 BETA drivers which will both be released to the public next month. You are able to enable and disable A.I. under the 3D section with relative ease as you can see above (CCC needs some tweaking itself however). It is unknown if you'll have access to A.I. in the old version of the control panel. You can adjust the settings from Low to High which according to ATI decreases or increases the amount of work A.I. is doing but we aren't exactly sure in what way. It seems though if you move the bar to High (or Advanced) you're going to get the best performance. We tested with the bar set to High.


In the effort to find out if image quality is impacted from said performance increases, we fired up Doom 3 and took several screenshots with A.I. on and off along with normal and high quality image settings.


Let's get onto the benchmarks and see if ATI can provide us with any decent performance increases here, followed by a closer look at the influences (if any) toward degradation of image quality.


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