AMD Catalyst Omega 14.12 WHQL released!

So, the highly anticipated AMD Catalyst Omega drivers have finally landed. And yes, they actually have Omega in the name and no, they are not in any way related to the old community modded Omega drivers. They feature several interesting features like…

VSR (Virtual Super Resolution)

AMD_VSR_SLIDE1Basically this is the same as NVIDIA’s DSR. It renders the image at 4K and downscales it to 1080p on the output. It convinces games that your display can render higher resolution than it actually supports, so the game has to offer you option for 4K. All fine and well, except it only works with R9 290 cards. Srsly? Where is that “all GCN cards will get the same treatment” from the past?. HD7900 series are GCN powered. And yet we got screwed. It’s good that in the future I’ll get this feature if I decide to buy another Radeon, but why screw the existing HD7900 users? Which also includes R9-280 users because it is based upon HD7900 series. I’ve been with AMD for the last several generations of GPU’s. Do you think I’d not buy another Radeon if I get VSR now on my HD7950? If that was the case, I’d already have GTX 970 in my box. But I don’t, because I’ve decided to wait for AMD’s response with R9-300 series when it gets out. Maybe HD7900 doesn’t have the 4K grunt for modern games, but there are older games that we play and that would greatly benefit from VSR. Anyway…

Improved Frame Pacing

AMD_FP_SLIDE2Supposedly only for multi card configurations, improving many games smoothness. They list Tomb Raider, Metro series, Batman Arkham Origins, Sniper Elite 3 and more. We’ll see if it makes any difference on single GPU…

AMD Fluid Motion Video

AMD_FLUIDMV_SLIDE3This feature is basically what high end LCD TV’s do, interpolate missing frames and make videos super smooth and sharp during motion. Something like Philips Perfect Natural Motion or LG’s TruMotion. Only downside is that it only works in Cyberlink PowerDVD 14. Which makes it kinda useless considering I never used that thing and never will. Media Player Classic Home Theater (MPC HC) or VLC support would make tons more sense…

Video filtering and 1080p Detail Enhancement

AMD_CR_SLIDE4AMD_1080PENH_SLIDE5These features enhance video quality and are available for regular common media players that use DXVA and also work on HD7900 series. Which is nice.

4K Ultra HD Upscaling

AMD_UHD_SLIDE6It gives ability to upscale 1080p video into 4K, enhance it and display it on your 4K monitor or 4K TV. I have a 4K Philips LCD, but since I’m on HD7900, I’m out of luck yet again…

Performance Enhancements

AMD claims 19% average framerate improvements which sounds like a lot, but TechPowerUp tests proved a bit differently. You can check it out here: Synthetic tests Game tests

While the differences aren’t all that big I’m still going to use it since I use latest drivers all the time. It has worked well so far so why not. I just wish they’d focus less on R9 only. I get it, it’s their current high end, but by supporting your older userbase, you’re showing them your long term commitment. Showing that you care. And it means a lot to me and is a great factor when I’m considering my next upgrade. If I’m being treated well as a customer even when I don’t have the latest and most expensive graphic card, I sure will buy a new high end card from the same company when I’ll consider my next upgrade. So far AMD showed decent support, but I’d wish  for a bit more…


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