AMD Catalyst 12.4 Beta 8.96 15 March Benchmark

AMD Catalyst

After a couple of 8.95 stringed drivers have leaked, it’s finally time for another 8.96 driver. The latest one is dated March 15th and the only things that changed since 8.96 28 February is the OpenGL driver version (6.14.10.11616 vs 6.14.10.11627) and the newest iteration comes with Catalyst 12.4.

It’s pretty certain that this driver will be certified be Microsoft and released by AMD as AMD Catalyst 12.4 WHQL. Most drivers built around the middle of a month become the next month’s WHQL driver.

Tested Drivers and Information

Prior to installing a driver, a sweep was done in safe-mode using Phyxion Driver Sweeper.

Catalyst Version 2D Driver 3D Driver OpenGL Driver Driver Packaging Version CCC Version CCC
12.2 WHQL 8.01.01.1235 7.14.10.0894 6.14.10.11554 8.95-120214a-134393C-ATI 2012.0214.2218.39913 12.3
8.951.1 05 March 8.01.01.1235 7.14.10.0894 6.14.10.11567 8.951.1-120305m-134662E-ATI 2012.0305.442.8259 N/A
8.96 15 March 8.01.01.1243 7.14.10.0903 6.14.10.11627 8.96-120315a-135399E 2012.0315.1621.27344 12.4
Tests and Settings

All 3 drivers are tested in 5 synthetic benchmarks and 5 games.

  • 1. 3DMark06 1.02 Professional Edition - 1680×1050 – 2xAA – Anti Aliasing Quality = 0 – 4xAF – Shader Model 2.0 = Return to Proxycon + Firefly Forest – HDR/Shader Model 3.0 = Canyon Flight + Deep Freeze – 2 Runs.
  • 2. 3DMark11 1.0.3 Professional Edition - 1680×1050 – 2xMSAA – 4xAF – Graphic Tests 1-4 – 2 Runs.
  • 3. Unigine – Sanctuary 2.3 – 1680×1050 – 2xAA – 4xAF – High Shaders – Ambient Occlusion = OFF – 2 Runs.
  • 4. Unigine – Tropics 1.3 – 1680×1050 – 2xAA – 4xAF – High Shaders – Ambient Occlusion = ON – Reflections = ON – 2 Runs.
  • 5. Cinebench x64 11.5 – 3 Runs.
  • 6. Crysis 2 1.9 using Adrenaline Benchmark Tool – Extreme Preset – 1680×1050 – 4xAA – Hi-Res Textures – Central Park – 3 Runs.
  • 7. Metro 2033 using Update 1.2 Benchmark Tool – Very High Settings – 1680×1050 – 16xAF – No AA for DirectX 9 and 4xMSAA for DirectX 10 and DirectX 11 – 3 Runs.
  • 8. DiRT 3 – Ultra Preset – 1680×1050 – 8xMSAA – 3 Runs
  • 9. Battlefield 3 – Ultra Preset – 1680×1050 – 4xMSAA – 16xAF – Multiplayer @ Strike at Karkand (32p map, Large Conquest), main street: US Deployment -> B Flag – 3 Runs x 60s.
  • 10. Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim v1.4 – Ultra Preset – 1680×1050 – 8xAA – 16xAF – Tested in the area East of Rorikstead – 3 Runs x 60s.

All synthetic benchmarks were ran 2 times except Cinebench (3 runs), all games were ran 3 times.

Test System Specifications
Test Hardware | AMD Catalyst 12.4 Beta 15 March Benchmark
Processor

Intel Core i5-2500K (Sandy Bridge)

4.5 GHz, 6 MB L3 Cache, power-saving settings disabled, Turbo Boost disabled.

Motherboard MSI P67-C43-B3, Intel P67 Chipset
Memory 2 x 2 GB DDR3 1600MHZ
Hard Drives

WD 500 GB SATA III (OS)

Samsung 750 GB Sata II (Game)

Graphics Card Sapphire HD6950 1 GB
Power Supply Corsair TX 650 W
System Software And Drivers
Operating System Windows 7 SP1 x64

Table of Contents:

Page 1 – Introduction
Page 2 – 3DMark06,3DMark11,Cinebench and Unigine
Page 3 – Crysis 2, Metro2033, Battlefield 3, DiRT 3 and Skyrim
Page 4 – Conclusion


Page 2 – 3DMark06,3DMark11,Cinebench and Unigine

  • LEON_BASSEL

    wow so fast thx u a lot :)

  • elajits

    Nice Thx!. :)
    Should i keep using 8.95-120117a! or this one`? :)

    • http://benchmark3d.com Johnny 3D

      You should definitely give these drivers a chance.

  • Shidapu

    Im confused. DX api seemed to be greatly improved looking at the numbers, but OpenGL is the looser in this driver?..

    By how much is the loss in %?

    Most of the games out there is DirectX though. :)

    • http://benchmark3d.com Johnny 3D

      Well, that’s exactly my conclusion.

  • cristian.a

    so Fast !

  • Martix

    Nice driver, thanks for testing.

  • DOS

    “As always, DiRT 3 results are the same no matter which driver is installed on the system.”
    Over and over again for a long time. Why ever test it then?

    • http://benchmark3d.com Johnny 3D

      DiRT 3 is more like a control test, if things get messy there then we know something is not right with the driver.

  • kn00tcn

    you mean this is certain to be 12.3, 12.2 is 8.95 & everyone needs to ignore what CCC said since they jumped past 8.94 (probably for syndicate’s release which is only in 8.95)

    i’m also thinking, since you’re testing games, maybe instead of writing the 2d/3d drivers, you should just list the versions of dx9/dx10+ instead

    atiumdag, atidxx32, aticfx32

  • MiG

    Has anyone else experienced random periods of halved fps? (Anywhere from 30sec to a few minutes.)

    Problem showed up the moment I installed these drivers on my 5730m on virtually every game I’ve tried so far.

  • mark

    After i installed this driver, every time i restart windows cmd pops up. help!!

    • Igor Precep

      @ mark: After i installed this driver, every time i restart windows cmd pops up. help!!

      I saw that too after I’ve installed those drivers, after Windows restart cmd popups for a few seconds and then disappears. It’s one od the driver components (I forgot exactly wich because I’ve revert to 12.2 Preview drivers), but if that bothers you you can tur in off in MSCONFIG section: START meny >>> in search field type: msconfig …and then hit ENTER key >>> in section: Startup …you can turn it off, and then: Apply ….OK

  • Luciano Neves

    OFF TOPIC: All of you playing Battlefield 3 multiplayer… How the hell do I fix the damn freezes??? Have an AMD HD6990. Don’t have a realtek audio device (disabled audio anyway). Tried playing windowed mode. Tried overclocking and underclocking GPU. Don’t have faulty memories. CPU overclocked or not crashes/freezes anyway always after 15-20 mins gameplay. Don’t experience any other crashes in any other games.

    Thanks! Maybe off topic, but could be driver related or amd related?!

    • http://benchmark3d.com Johnny 3D

      How much RAM do you got? BF3 is RAM hungry like a beast.

      There are a few things you could do:

      1. If you have more than 4 GB of Ram you could try disabling the pagefile.
      2. If you have less than 4 GB of Ram try this http://support.microsoft.com/kb/929135

      Also, do you experience the same behavior with all AMD drivers?

    • Igor Precep

      I had a same issues like you when I was using previous factory overclocked GeForce 8800GT: 10, 15, sometimes 20 minutes of play (multiplayer) and then game freezes in the middle of the match, then I had to “kill” her in Task Manager and start the game again. It was very frustrating for me and my kid, especially for my kid because he was playing game online with his teammates from clan. I’ve tried almost everything I can to solve this problem: al least 5 versions of driver for graphic card, underclocked the Quad-Core CPU, underclocked the graphic card, changing options how graphic driver should “handle” the game, trying every single solution I’ve found on internet…. nothing helped… Other games were working perfect, neither one problem with more than 20 other installed games. Then I’ve tried to lower graphic resolution and graphic details in BF3 to the lowest possible and experimenting if maybe resolution or one of the graphic options is causing problem resulting the game freezes. After a few days of experiments with resolutions and graphic details I’ve found a solution: game freezes only if two graphics option are set to Medium or above. It was few months ago, now I have new Radeon graphic card and I can’t remember exactly which options were causin a problems with older GF 8800GT but on this link: http://benchmark3d.com/battlefield-3-beta-performance-preview …you can see picture of BF3 settings of graphic details (picture below: Game settings): try lowering all of these options to Low: Texture Quality; Mesh Quality; Terrain Quality …and then start the game to findout if the game still freezes after some time. If not then try to set one of those options to Medium and again play game for some time to be sure if the game is working OK. If BF3 is working OK try seting next of above options to Medium and then again play…etc. I think I’ve done a screenshot of my previous BF3 graphic settings (one that worked stable) when i had GF 8800GT just in case if I ever need it again, I that would help you I can find that screenshot and post a link here if you want.

    • Robson Carvalho

      Luciano. Try removing your driver with this program. http://phyxion.net/item/driver-sweeper.html (Driver Sweeper). I have 2 x 6970 and I have no problem at all in a good BF3 monitor or 3 monitors (Eyefinity) in multiplayer. It can be a problem with dirt previous driver.

  • drewsky

    Yeah.. its the game itself..

    Had an nvidia card, same thing happened. I have yet to experience it with my new 7970 though.

    FWIW, it ALWAYS happened when I was on skype.

  • drewsky

    and i DO have a realtek sound card, but tried it without one and it still happened.

    its the game itself, doesnt like whatever hardware configs people have. I spent hours and hours buying new components and returning them to no avail.

    its the reason i stopped playing bf3 so much.

  • Luciano Neves

    Thanks for the input guys! I have 8 gb RAM! I’ll give it shot with the pagefile and then try lowering graphics, if that doesn’t work. I’ll let you know.

  • Luciano Neves

    Lowering graphics or the pagefile didn’t work :/

    • Igor Precep

      Try this, just to eliminate one more option: disable in CCC one of the 6990 GPU-s before starting BF3. Even one GPU from 6990 is powerful enough to run the game in 1920×1080 on Ultra settings. I assume you have powerful enough PSU for 6990 and the rest of your gaming rig, but maybe PSU get weaker bu time.

    • Igor Precep

      @ Luciano Neves
      Try this also, just to eliminate one more option that could cause problems in BF3 with some Radeon HD 6990 graphic cards: in AMD CCC disable one GPU before starting BF3 (to reduce power consumption and heat). One GPU from 6990 is powerful enough to run BF3 in 1920×1080 on Ultra graphic details with high framerate. I asume you have powerful enough PSU for that gaming rig with 6990 in it, maybe PSU got weaker by the time.

  • Kamil

    Catylast Control Center (or AMD VISION Engine Control Center) don’t work with 12.4 Beta 8.96 15 March drivers. What I must do?

    • Robson Carvalho

      remove everything and install from scratch

  • Guts

    For those with Battlefield 3 crashes of any type:

    In my case I experienced two types of crashes back then. One was a blue screen and the other was a grey or sometimes green screen with vertical stripes (I think there was a sound loop in both cases).
    In my experience the first one is related to the CPU or motherboard which may include my Realtek On-board Sound. My CPU was overclocked from 3.2 to 3.8 Ghz and I had to lower the clock to 3.6 or 3.7 to avoid the BSOD.
    The second error was related to the GPU. My overcocked Sapphire 6950 was not getting enough juice. I raised the volts with Sapphire Trixx and noticed that I was able to play for longer periods until I found the voltage which gave me a stable GPU. Until then no other game crashed because of this and in that manner, although later I experienced it playing dead island a few times. Disabling FSAA anti-aliasing and setting textures to high may help because then RAM and VRAM are not going to need as much voltage.

    Also (not necessarily in that order):

    Update you Windows version.
    Run CCleaner to clean your registry and clean with DriverSweeper (or something comparable) while in Windows “Safe-Mode” after deinstalling your catalyst drivers.

    Lower/Change the graphics settings especially textures and maybe shadows, disable FSAA, enable VerticalSync (or if enabled, disable). You could even try to force VSync in your catalyst control (VSync will synchronize your fps and display frequency which will most likely be 60Hz, equals 60 fps) to enure there are no voltage spikes.

    Install the newest Realtek drivers from their site.

    Try different catalysts and/or fiddle with some option like “alternative display mode”
    etc.

    Update your motherboards bios (if Intel, try to disable hyper-threading).

    Defragment your Windows partition and your Origin/Battlefield 3 directory and do a repair installation.

    Underclock/Decrease the clocks of your GPU or/and CPU (read above).

    Google intelligently for the latest threads concerning your problem.

    Thats all that comes to mind at the moment.
    Have a nice day.