While we were at CES, AMD briefed us about several things. We’ve already had a chance to tell you about the Redwood chip behind the Radeon HD 5670 and 5570, and the Cedar chip behind the Radeon HD 5450. There was one last thing we haven’t had a chance to tell you about yet, and that’s drivers. Along-side our briefings about AMD’s new cards, they spent some time discussing what would be happening with the Catalyst 10.2 and Catalyst 10.3 drivers.

The Catalyst 10.2 drivers come out today, while the Catalyst 10.3 drivers will be next month’s release. We’ll just jump right in to the heart of things and list what’s coming with each release:

Catalyst 10.2

  1. Crossfire profile – Per-game Crossfire profiles are being moved out of the drivers, so that AMD can distribute out-of-band profile updates.
  2. CrossfireX rearchitecture - Certain parts of AMD’s multi-GPU code has been moved from the 3D driver to another driver component; this segmentation is largely to benefit Fuzion integrated CPU/GPUs later this year.
  3. Ultra Low Power State – This feature for lower-idling on Crossfire slave cards has been in the entire 5000 series. However it’s only being enabled across the board starting with this release.
  4. Crossfire Eyefinity – Eyefinity now works with all Crossfire configurations, not just on the 5970..
  5. DisplayPort Audio – The 5000 series is now capable of outputting audio over the DisplayPort in accordance with the DisplayPort standard.

Catalyst 10.3

  1. Catalyst Mobility – AMD will once again be releasing Catalyst drivers for most Mobility GPUs.
  2. Eyefinity Bezel Correction – Eyefinity setups can finally be adjusted to compensate for the space occupied by monitor bezels.
  3. Eyefinity Per Display Controls – Per display color correction, particularly useful for mismatched monitors.  
  4. Eyefinity Multiple Groups
  5. Eyefinity Display Configuration Switching
  6. 3D Stereo driver hooks – AMD is implementing some low-level hooks to help 3rd-party 3D displays work with Radeon cards.

For today’s 10.2 release, much of what AMD is enabling has already snuck out in earlier driver releases in some form or another. December’s 9.12 Hotfix enabled Crossfire Eyefinity, DisplayPort Audio, and Ultra Low Power State, so it’s best to think of the 10.2 driver as the shipping version of what we saw with the 9.12 hotfix.

10.3 on the other hand has not been released in a hotfix form, so everything here is brand-new.

10.2: Ultra Low Power State Confusion & Crossfire Eyefinity
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  • bhaberle - Monday, March 8, 2010 - link

    It looks like ATI Catalyst 10.3 Beta leaked out. I am pretty happy with it. You can download it here ( http://www.geekmontage.com/ati-catalyst-10-3-beta-...">http://www.geekmontage.com/ati-catalyst-10-3-beta-... ) I see it on a few other sites too, just do a google search.
  • dvdreplication - Thursday, February 25, 2010 - link

    Well dana i have placed my order for it. Hope that it 'll be a very nice product. Thanks for sharing.

  • Scali - Monday, February 22, 2010 - link

    Is it just me, or did ATi not talk about OpenCL support at all?
    As far as I can tell, it's still not included in the 10.2 drivers, I still need to install the Stream SDK to get the actual OpenCL runtimes.
    This is not acceptable for distribution to end-users. They will just need to include the OpenCL runtimes in the driver package.
  • DanaGoyette - Saturday, February 20, 2010 - link

    Mobility drivers for HD-series graphics cards sounds great... but what about laptops that have the FireGL-branded cards, such as mine?
    For example, HP's latest Win7 driver for my laptop is 8.632 -- which is really old.
    My ideal case: mobility drivers that offer the professional features (such as "10-bit pixel format", though I don't have a display capable of using that) -- even if they're not ISV-certified.

    Also, ATI has had some form of quad-buffered stereo on the workstation cards for a while; it's cool to see it now expanded to cover consumer cards (and hopefully laptops, as well).
  • LordanSS - Friday, February 19, 2010 - link

    I had to, one more friggin time, revert back to 9.12 hotfix because the darned mouse cursor bug is back.

    Why the hell can't they get this straight? Geez.
  • Quidam67 - Thursday, February 18, 2010 - link

    Sorry if this is off-topic, but it seems like a place I might get soem help on this:

    Having recently returned to AMD with the purchase of a HD5770 I'm having problems with the latest drivers, specifically they just don't seem to (properly) recognise my Panasonic V series LCD. The result is there is no DVI or HDMI (have tried both) Item added to the root tree menu in CCC. This means that amoungst other things, I can't alter the scaling -which by default results in a desktop screen that is significantly shrunk in the middle of my display.

    Luckily for me I also own a Samsung LCD. CCC recognises the Samsung and I get the DVI tree menu, which then allows me to adjust the scaling to zero. This setting is "remembered" when I plug back into my Panasonic -but what a headache, and I assume I'll need to do this everytime I update to a new ccc/driverset.

    So is this a fault with the Panny and the EDID data it sends, or is this an issue with ATI's software? The ting is I tried a much older rig running a HD3850 AGP and 8.9 drivers, and they seemed to detect the TV fine.

  • Quidam67 - Friday, February 19, 2010 - link

    For what it is worth, the 10.2 drivers seem to have fixed the problem I referred to above. I know get a menu item titled +DVT(DVI)4 in ccc giving me the scaling options back again.
    Thank god for that. I can only assume that between driver releases 9 thru 10.1 they broke something
  • Bolas - Thursday, February 18, 2010 - link

    Last year I came up with a joke about this subject. Hope you like it.

    How is ATI like a VW commercial?

    They're both "drivers wanted".
  • Roland00 - Wednesday, February 17, 2010 - link

    Does this mean you can use 3 monitors without buying a Displayport monitor and an active adapter? For if you have 4 cards you will have 4 TMDS signal generators.
  • Roland00 - Wednesday, February 17, 2010 - link

    Meant to say 2 cards with 4 TMDS signal generators

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