AMD ends driver support for HD 5000 and 6000 series graphics cards

By Scorpus
Nov 25, 2015
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  1. Alongside the launch of AMD's new Radeon Software Crimson driver, the company has retired support for all remaining non-GCN-based graphics cards, which means that cards from AMD's Radeon HD 5000 and HD 6000 series will no longer receive driver updates.

    The HD 5000 and 6000 series aren't the only products affected by making VLIW (AMD's previous graphics architecture) legacy; AMD has also retired the Radeon HD 7000 to 7600 graphics cards, and their corresponding HD 8000 to 8400 parts, as well as all Llano, Trinity and Richland APUs.

    For owners of AMD's now-legacy products, there are two final driver updates that users can select to use. The Catalyst 15.7.1 driver, released in July for the launch of Windows 10, is the last WHQL-certified driver to support the HD 5000 and 6000 series. A Crimson 15.11 beta driver is also available for those that want something slightly more up-to-date.

    The last major product launch in AMD's Radeon HD 6000 series occurred in early 2011, making the newest legacy cards just under five years old. Considering they don't support up-and-coming features such as DirectX 12 or FreeSync, AMD's choice to retire support for these products is understandable, and those still rocking a five-year-old card should probably consider an upgrade.

    In AMD's statement on the retirement of non-GCN-based products, the company says that their older architectures have "reached peak performance optimization." By no longer attempting to improve gaming performance on these cards, AMD can "dedicate valuable engineering resources to developing new features and enhancements for graphics products based on the GCN Architecture."

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  2. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,550   +2,894

    So does that mean all except the last generation (7000) and it's rebadges? I've lost track with the release of R5/R7/R9.
  3. RustyTech

    RustyTech TS Guru Posts: 865   +434

    Even though I don't own an AMD card, not sure how I feel about them not supporting 4 year old cards :/
    Isn't this the reason I switched away from them eons ago??
    alabama man likes this.
  4. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,476   +2,034

    I still own a HD 4000 series card, a high end range one at that. I'll just have to figure out a way of offloading it onto some unsuspecting patsy for a price. Legacy drivers and all that waffle...
  5. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,476   +2,034

    If you don't own one then don't lose any sleep about it. ;)
  6. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,648   +521

    Anything "high end" from the 4000 series will be easily replaced for $100, be less noisy, use less power, more compact, ect. I'm actually impressed a card from the 4000 series is still alive and kicking, every one I've come across has died, especially 4800 series cards.
    Cryio and hahahanoobs like this.
  7. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,648   +521

    Unfortunately my 5800 series cards still work, and one is in a back up spare gaming system, not a huge loss to no longer be getting updates, and I'm sure they couldn't squeeze any more performance out of these cards no matter how hard they tried. If it wasn't for the size and power consumption they'd make good HTPC cards, although I could just tweak the cards bios to be always de-clocked.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2015
    hahahanoobs likes this.
  8. Camikazi

    Camikazi TS Maniac Posts: 817   +231

    My 4850 has been running for years with no problem at all, I also have a 3870 that still works too and am currently using a 5850.
    SuperVeloce likes this.
  9. Cryio

    Cryio TS Booster Posts: 192   +58

    Haha, I wonder how a 3870 512 (maybe 1 GB) performs nowadays on Windows 10 .
  10. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 1,631   +432

    AMD Radeon™ HD 8000 Series (HD 8400 and below), Radeon™ HD 7000 Series (HD 7600 and below), Radeon™ HD 6000 Series, and Radeon™ HD 5000 Series Graphics products have reached peak performance optimization as of November 24th, 2015.

    These products have been moved to a legacy support model and no additional driver releases are planned. This change enables us to dedicate valuable engineering resources to developing new features and enhancements for graphics products based on the GCN Architecture.

    As a courtesy to our valued supporters we are providing a final “As Is” Beta driver together with the release of the AMD Radeon Software Crimson Edition. The AMD Radeon Software Crimson Edition Beta driver includes the redesigned user interface as well as some enhanced features. More information can be found in the AMD Radeon Software Crimson Edition Beta Driver Release Notes.

    For users looking for a WHQL certified driver, the AMD Catalyst™ 15.7.1 driver will continue to be available for users running Windows® 10, Windows® 8.1, and Windows® 7. Users running Windows® Vista and older Microsoft® operating systems can use the AMD Catalyst™ 13.12 driver.

    SuperVeloce likes this.
  11. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,476   +2,034

    Mine is the 4890 and it still works like a charm, it runs hot though.
  12. anguis

    anguis TS Enthusiast Posts: 85   +12

    I use a 4850 512MB and besides having to clean it out a couple times and reseat the GPU, it is running strong. That said, I'm buying a new card this month to finally replace it.
    Adhmuz likes this.
  13. anguis

    anguis TS Enthusiast Posts: 85   +12

    I mean reseat the heatsink, not the GPU.
  14. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,648   +521

    It would be an impressive feat, reballing the GPU, I contemplated it for my launch PS3 years ago when it YLOD on me.
  15. Camikazi

    Camikazi TS Maniac Posts: 817   +231

    Runs just fine for basic things, it doesn't seem to have any problems on WIndows 10, I have it in the computer mostly for the HDMI connection it has.
    SuperVeloce likes this.
  16. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,606   +287

    Click "Other settings" in the new driver UI and you get the old Catalyst style settings showing up. Hey, at least its done in the style of Windows 8/10. A partial overhaul of UI with big chunks of the old one still present.
  17. SuperVeloce

    SuperVeloce TS Booster Posts: 133   +34

    I guess they still need time to port some of the settings..

    Anyway, legacy or not, we got win10 drivers and that's what matters.
  18. Arris

    Arris TS Evangelist Posts: 4,606   +287

    Hopefully working well matters too :)
    I've only run up Fallout 4 so far, no problems with it so far. AMD pixel clock patcher ( ) still works with them and have my monitor running at 96Hz without issue.

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