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AMD’s Catalyst 12.1 Preview Driver With Improved Stereo 3D Support

December 13th, 2011 · 4 Comments · General 3D News


We all know that AMD (and the former ATI) can be a bit slow at times with video driver improvements and especially when adding new features in them, features, that are not the topmost priority for the company at the moment. One such example is the stereoscopic 3D support that is still lagging behind the competition in some aspects, one of them being the lack of multi-GPU support in stereo 3D mode that we’ve been waiting literally for years to happen. One of the reasons of the slow reaction to adding Crossfire Multi-GPU support for stereo 3D is probably due to the fact that AMD relied more or less on other companies such as iZ3D and DDD for their stereo 3D support… at least before AMD HD3D technology has been introduced. And although lately more games are coming out with native support for stereo 3D (able to output stereo 3D to AMD HD3D-supported hardware), if the game does not have native S3D support you still need the middle-ware software to be able to play it in stereoscopic 3D mode. Anyway, it seems that AMD is starting to focus more on stereoscopic 3D support and in the new Catalyst 12.1 Preview Driver (beta driver) there are some interesting new stereo 3D-related features, among other more general performance improvements and such.

The latest AMD Catalyst 12.1 preview driver is supposed to bring one of the features that many stereo 3D gamers have been waiting for, support for stereo 3D gaming (AMD HD3D technology) on systems with AMD CrossFireX configurations. This should cover the multi-GPU video cards such as Radeon HD 5970 or Radeon HD 6990 as well as two or more single-GPU video cards in one system, allowing the gamers to use the extra performance in stereoscopic 3D mode where it is actually needed a lot. However AMD is talking only about CrossFireX support in their HD3D technology and does not yet mention anything if it will also be supported when using the iZ3D driver or the TriDef 3D software, so this is something that needs to be tested.

Another new stereoscopic 3D-related feature that is introduced with the new AMD Catalyst 12.1 preview driver is the support for 1080p 30Hz frame packaged stereo 3D mode over the HDMI 1.4a interface. Have in mind however that this mode is not supported by every 3D-capable HDMI 1.4a equipped device and actually only limited number of devices might be able to benefit from it. The reason for that is the fact that the HDMI 1.4a specification has the 720p 50/60Hz 3D mode and the 1080p 24Hz 3D mode as mandatory and the 1080p 30Hz 3D mode as optional, so as a result not all devices will support it (only a few should). So it is time to start beta testing the new stereo 3D-related features of the Catalyst 12.1 preview driver, and if you try it, you are welcome to report your findings on both the CrossFireX support in stereo 3D mode as well as if your specific HDMI 1.4a hardware is being able to take advantage of the 1080p 30Hz 3D mode or not…

To download the new AMD Catalyst 12.1 preview driver for Windows Vista and 7 (32/64-bit)

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4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Dan // Dec 13, 2011 at 23:40

    It is about time! Thanks for the update Bloody.

  • 2 Andrea deluxe // Dec 14, 2011 at 10:53

    Nvidia have in driver the option to force DX10/11 games @120frame (force max refresh rate)

    example: Dirt3 DX10

    ati 6990 + 120hz monitor = 120hz but 60frame (v-sync on)
    gtx590 + 120hz monitor= 120hz and 120frame (v-sync on)

    this new ati driver have the option to force 120frame in dx10/11 games?

  • 3 PCStory // Dec 14, 2011 at 16:16

    HD3D is working perfectly with a double 6870 card and a samsung s27a950d. Finnally… after 9 month. It is working with hardware that support HD3D(Tridef) or native 3D application(Battlefield 3, Deus ex…)

  • 4 badelhas // Dec 16, 2011 at 20:57

    did anyone test it yet?

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