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AMD Graphics Games Hardware

Driver Update Addresses Radeon Frame Latency Issues 108

crookedvulture writes "AMD has begun addressing the Radeon frame latency spikes covered previously on Slashdot. A new beta driver is due out next week, and it dramatically smooths the uneven frame times exhibited by certain Radeon graphics processors. The driver only tackles performance issues in a few games, but more fixes are on the way. In the games that have been addressed, the new driver delivers more consistent frame times and smoother gameplay without having much of an impact on the minimum or average FPS numbers. Those traditional FPS metrics clearly do a poor job of quantifying the fluidity of in-game action. Surprisingly, it seems AMD was largely relying on those metrics when testing drivers internally. The company has now pledged to pay more attention to frame latencies to ensure that these kinds of issues don't crop up again."
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Driver Update Addresses Radeon Frame Latency Issues

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  • by Pinhedd ( 1661735 ) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:17PM (#42622757)

    This only applies to the new GCN architecture (most high end 7000 series cards) and not the older VLIW4/5 cards (which includes low end 7000 series cards and 6000 series cards)

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:30PM (#42622813)

    It's not just bottom line. At this point and time, they would financially benefit from open sourcing their drivers. The problem really lies in a huge tangled web of license agreements from other parties that they can't straighten out. For almost any commercial product to go open source while the company is still in operation is a legal nightmare, and that's why it almost never happens.

  • by Alwin Henseler ( 640539 ) on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:41PM (#42622857)

    Since when is disk I/O speed or access time relevant to frame rates in a game?

    Disk I/O determines how fast a game loads, or how short the wait between levels in a game etc. Frame rates (or latencies) are determined by the trio CPU + memory bandwidth + GPU. Sure some games may load data while you're in the midst of the action, but in that case likely bite-size chunks that shouldn't affect frame rates significantly (and unrelated to the issue discussed here).

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 17, 2013 @11:57PM (#42622915)

    Ermm.. wrong. A 5,200 rpm disk has to load considerable amounts of texture files per second and does cause frame grab and latency issues because the 3d card is waiting for throughput. Also auto settings for VM (eg 18gb if you have 12gb ram) takes time too, so experiment by shutting VM off.
    Going SSD even as game storage only can speed things up. Other frame problems can occur with the I/O chip that actually controls all I/O operations. A damaged chip can test OK, but will falter if it gets too hot or too demanding. Then, a slow monitor (8ms or more) can also cause problems. Winding down your res from maximum can be used to troubleshoot some of these issues.
    Hopefully the new driver may fix frame probs on Far Cry 3

  • by Sir_Sri ( 199544 ) on Friday January 18, 2013 @12:07AM (#42622953)

    Since when is disk I/O speed or access time relevant to frame rates in a game?

    When the engine is trying to grab data in real time from disk.

    This is most assuredly *not* every game. But it is some games, or games in some scenarios. In MMO's you don't have enough RAM memory of all of the possible character armours these days, so you have to dynamically grab only that which will be on screen, same with any zone streaming in data from whatever area you have around you.

    I can see why people would think this is a HDD speed issue. If you have burst loads of up to say 200 MB/s on a HDD, but average around 20, well then a regular drive will hiccup periodically whereas the SSD won't even bat an eye. As you say, that isn't actually *this* issue.

  • by ArcadeNut ( 85398 ) on Friday January 18, 2013 @03:16AM (#42623661) Homepage

    DVD"s are MPEG-2, not MPEG-4.

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