OpenGL and D3D tabs combined into one

CATALYST™ 3.8 introduces a new user-friendly 3D control panel. The 3D control panel combines the current D3D and OpenGL tabs into one tab called ATI 3D.

Game Profile Feature

CATALYST™ 3.8 provides users with the ability to create 3D profiles so that every game can have its own unique settings. The custom sections of the control panel can now be used to individually configure 3D settings such as Anti-Aliasing, Anisotropic filtering and SMARTSHADER™ effects. These additions allow gamers to activate exciting pixel shader effects in any Direct3D or OpenGL application.

CATALYST™ Uninstaller

CATALYST™ 3.8 introduces a new simple application that removes the CATALYST™ software from the system.

MULTIMEDIA CENTER™ Update

The latest version of the ATI MULTIMEDIA CENTER™ now provides the following new features:

  • Teletext support within EAZYLOOK™
  • Fast TVTV™ for PC Integration
  • File Player Enhancements
  • MULTVIEW™
  • EAZYLOOK™ On Screen Information Enhancements

For more information on these new features within the ATI Multimedia Center 8.7 visit: http://www2.ati.com/drivers/mmc87_Release_Notes.html

New ATI 3D Tab Layout

CATALYST™ 3.8 now provides a single slider within the new 3D tab that allows users to select from different ATI recommended 3D settings. Benefits include the flexibility to adjust the overall performance/quality experience with the main slider.

SMARTSHADER™ Effects

SMARTSHADER™ allows gamers to enable an exciting pixel shader effects in Direct3D or OpenGL applications. SMARTSHADER™ effects delivers the amazing rendering techniques found in pre-shader 3D applications.

VPU Recover

VPU Recover (patent pending) allows the CATALYST™ display driver to reset the graphics accelerator when it is no longer responding to the display driver. Without VPU Recover, a reboot of the system would be required when the graphic accelerator is not responding to the display driver. Depending on the state of the system when VPU Recover is activated, applications that are running may be able to fully recover from the graphics processor reset. If this is not possible, the active application may be closed and the system will return to the desktop. VPU Recover will significantly reduce the number of system crashes caused by graphics hardware hangs. This allows for fewer interruptions and virtually eliminates situations where work can be lost, as well as increasing system stability.


Note: When the CATALYST™ display driver cannot activate the VPU Recover feature a message is displayed indicating the following: A severe graphics error has occurred. Please save your work, and restart your system.


ATI OVERDRIVE

The new ATI OVERDRIVE (patent pending) tab, currently available for the RADEON™ 9800XT only, provides a safe and intelligent graphics processor clocking utility. ATI OVERDRIVE is constantly monitoring the graphics processor and pushing the graphics frequency to its maximum, while always ensuring that the processor temperature stays at a safe level. If the temperature of the graphics processor were to become too hot, ATI OVERDRIVE automatically decreases the clock speed until a safe temperature is reached. ATI OVERDRIVE never reduces the graphics processor speed below the pre-set factory default clock speed.

HYDRAVISION™ Basic Edition

HYDRAVISION™ Basic Edition provides users with the ability to configure and operate a multiple display setup. HYDRAVISION™ allows for applications to be moved between displays using the application taskbar and restoring minimized applications to any display. HYDRAVISION™ basic edition provides full control over how many displays an application should expand across. It also allows the user to have full control where dialog boxes should appear.

TV Overscan

TV Overscan supports full screen TV display on devices connected to a RADEON™ or MOBILITYRADEON™ product. This feature is supported under the Windows 98SE, ME, 2000, XP and XP MCE operating systems. In normal mode, the video image is scaled down so that the complete picture is always visible. This is necessary when displaying the Windows desktop on a TV. In Overscan mode, the video image is not scaled and uses all available scan lines of the TV. This results in a slightly bigger picture but the outer edges of the picture will be lost. This is the normal mode for TVs playing a standard video source such as live TV or DVD using a consumer electronics DVD player.

Performance Improvements

As with most CATALYST™ releases, the performance has increased. The HyperZ enhancements in CATALYST™ 3.8 provide performance improvements to applications that use the Z-buffer in certain ways. Tomb Raider frame rates improve as much as 20%. Giants - Citizen Kabuto also runs significantly faster. Other titles may also be improved.

Issues Resolved in CATALYST™ Version 3.8

The following section provides a summary of the issues that have been resolved in the latest release of CATALYST™ 3.8. These include:

Resolved Game Issues

This section provides information on game issues that have been resolved in the latest release of CATALYST™.

  • Setting the Landscape details to Perfect in the game IL2 Stumovik Forgotten Battles no longer results in the system not responding during the track playback
  • Playing the game Tiger Woods with the game options set to 1280x1024 32bpp and graphic parameters set to high, no longer results in the game failing to respond after the scorecard is displayed
  • Setting the game Flight Simulator 2004 to display at 1024x768 or 1280x1024 followed by starting a new flight results in the menu being flipped just before the new flight is about to begin
  • Setting the display to 800x600 32bpp 100Hz followed by enabling triple buffering no longer results in display corruption when playing CounterStrike
  • The correct ATI board name is now display in the configuration window of the game Serious Sam 2
  • A dark screen image and texture corruption is no longer seen when playing the game Project A3
  • Running the game eRacer with clone mode enabled no longer results in corruption on the secondary display during the opening introduction
  • Playing the game Midnight Club 2 with the default setting no longer results in the texture coordinated being corrupted. This issue occurred under Windows XP with an ATI RADEON™ 7500 installed
  • Fog issues have now been resolved in the game Neverwinter Nights
  • Image corruption is no longer noticed in the game Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness. This issue was known to occur under Windows XP with an ATI RADEON™ 9000 series installed
  • Playing the demo game Midnight Club 2 under Windows XP with the default modes enabled for the game no longer results in the fog being missing from the game
  • Playing the demo game XIII under Windows XP with an ATI RADEON™ 9500 or 9800 series card installed no longer results in texture corruption when moving the mouse around the game area

Resolved Application Issues

This section provides information on Application issues that have been resolved in the latest release of CATALYST

  • The ATI RADEON™ 7500 series card no longer experiences texture and geometry corruption in GL application samples

Resolved Benchmark Issues

This section provides information on Benchmark issues that have been resolved in the latest release of CATALYST™.

  • Setting the display size to 1600x1200x32 bpp under Windows ME with a 256Mb RADEON™ 9700 series card installed and running 3D Mark2003 no longer results in the system failing to respond
  • The CodeCreatures benchmark score dropping by approximately 10-12% on DX8-class hardware (RADEON™ 9200, 9000, and 8500) is now resolved

Resolved CATALYST™ Driver Issues

This section provides information on CATALYST™ driver issues that have been resolved in the latest release of CATALYST™.

  • When updating to current or future CATALYST™ releases your current color control panel profiles are no longer lost
  • Setting the main OpenGL slider in the ATI 3D tab to quality no longer results causes games to run in 16bpp mode
  • Disabling Extended Desktop when two display adapters are connected to four Displays no longer results in corruption on one display
  • Help file is now available for brightness of TV under Windows XP with a RADEON™ 9800 series card installed
  • The large desktop resolution setting are no longer displayed in the Setting tab once large desktop has been disabled
  • Selecting the 3D screen saver during DVD playback when the display resolution is set to 1280x1024x16bit no longer results in display corruption being noticed on the overlay
  • Repeatedly switching between a Full Screen DOS session and the window desktop no longer results in corrupt horizontal red lines on the CRT
  • Entering the screen saver tab in the display properties and selecting 3D Flying Objects followed by entering standby mode no longer results in the Windows 2000 operating system rebooting
  • The ability to extend the desktop while playing an MPEG file is now resolved
  • The system no longer reboots when playing NEC dvd4 after changing the display from extended mode to clone mode
  • The ATI Problem Report Wizard is now functioning properly under Windows XP
  • The ATI RADEON™ 8500 no longer suffers from a Direct 3D performance decrease when the Windows XP desktop resolution is set to 32bpp
  • Setting the display resolution to 1152x864 32bpp under Windows XP and playing an MPEG or AVI file no longer results in display corruption on the TV output
  • Texture banding issues under OpenGL is now resolved

Known Issues

The following section provides a brief description of known issues associated with the latest version of CATALYST™.

  • The main menu screen of Blade of Darkness displays a flickering pink horizontal strip of corruption. This issue will be resolved in an upcoming CATALYST™ Release. Further information regarding this issue can be found at: http://www.ati.com/support/infobase/4277.html
  • Flashing on boat texture when playing Morrowind on specific system with specific board. This issue will be resolved in an upcoming CATALYST™ Release. Further information regarding this issue can be found at: http://www.ati.com/support/infobase/4276.html
  • ChameleonMark shows some display corruption on DX8-class products. The issue is already resolved and a fix will be released in CATALYST™ 3.9
  • Home World 2 experiences poor performance and possible system hangs with CATALYST 3.7. This issue will be resolved in an upcoming CATALSYT™ release.
  • Quake III or Half-Life engine games remap the arrow keys to the shift key when the Num Lock is enabled. This issue will be resolved in an upcoming CATALYST™ release.
  • Jedi Academy hangs when enabling 4x or 6x Anti-Aliasing. This issue will be resolved in an upcoming CATALYST™ Release. Further information regarding this issue can be found at: http://www.ati.com/support/infobase/4271.html
  • The help files for the new VPU Recover feature may still reference to that feature as smartsave. Smartsave was the internal engineering name of the feature and we were unable to update the help files with the proper name of VPU Recover. This issue will be resolved in an upcoming CATALSYT™ release.
Alternative drivers to ATI Catalyst Radeon Display Driver 3.8 (Windows 98/ME):