Crossfire, Eyefinity and You.


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Recently, I upgraded my computers video card from a GTX275 to dual 5870’s to, hopefully, increase the framerate and overall enjoyment of having 3 monitors.

Prior, I was using SoftTH for 3×1 gaming.  While the software was extremely flexible and, personally, a more preferred method of Mult-monitor gaming as it allowed far more customization.  The 5xxx cards are MADE for multi-monitor gaming thru Eyefinity.  Sure, it sounds like just a gimmick, given that SoftTH proved just about anything could do it.  But, the Radeon 5xxx line was designed with this in mind, with the ability to hook up 3 displays to one card, and a hefty amount of streaming units to help keep those higher resolutions running smooth.  Going from SoftTH to the built in Eyefinity setup, I gained anywhere from 20fps to 50fps.  Some of the negatives of Eyefinity are few, but substantial.

First, in order to use bezel compensation, the ability to “increase the screen size past the bezel around the viewing screen.” so you get a more seamless, window like view is only allowed when you have 3 of the same monitor.  Second, all monitors must be pointing the same direction when using 3 in a portrait fashion.  May not sound like a problem, but not all monitors are symmetrical.  some have larger bezels at the bottom, or even curved, non-uniform bezel bottoms near the base, making it impossible to get a clean, gapless look between the monitors unless you swivel one of the end screens the opposite direction.  but this isn’t something you can do with Eyefinity, you could with SoftTH.

And the single biggest issue I am having right now with Eyefinity actually has to do with Crossfiring 2 cards together.  Not too long ago, Crossfire simply didn’t work at all with Eyefinity.  When Eyefinity was enabled, Crossfire was ignored.  Until the 5970 was released (2 5870’s on one board.) with that, ATI released the 9.12hotfix drivers that allowed for Crossfire+Eyefinity (Cross-finity)  But this had issues, and to this day, it is still far from spectacular… lets face it, it’s just about useless.

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Rage on PC is a good word to describe RAGE on the PC

I just wanted to give a quick timeline of what I have been dealing with on Rage for the PC.  I understand that Rage on the console is a different beast and has been getting pretty above average reviews and I can’t comment on those personally as I have not played the console version.  I’m basing this all from a PC users perspective.

 

With that out of the way it’s been way more trouble than I’ve had with a PC game in ages.  While Deux Ex: Human Revolution had it’s issues, all those were cleared up within an hour by updating my DirectX runtimes, and updating my video drivers.  Problems solved.  Rage was simply a train wreck on it’s PC launch, and still isn’t up to the same standard of it’s console brethren.  Here is a rundown of what I can remember;

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N4L: Ramifications of gaming in the future.

I may go a little crazy into the wild here.  But stay with me.

 

Imagine for a second how far gaming has come in the last 30 years.  from crude, simple lines on a screen that bounced a “ball” (Not even a ball, as it wasn’t possible to render anything more than a square.) back and forth until someone missed.  resulting in an ear deafening tone to signify that you scored a point.  A machine that stood 7 feet tall and weighed 800 pounds and was only capable of displaying black and white.

Now boot up your PS3 or Xbox360, or even a computer game.  A system that can be carried with one hand with relative ease.  What do you see?  Graphics that almost rival real life in terms of lighting, wrinkles in the skin.  blades of grass that sway and move independently from the blade next to it as the wind blows.  Sound that has the ability to play sounds from 8 speakers.  To manifest footsteps and the subtlety of fabric moving against fabric as you’re being approached and then breathing so life like that you physically turn around to see if it’s really your speakers or if someone slipped into the room while you where playing.

 

Now, imagine what games will be like in 30 years

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What If The Horror Genre Never Existed?

I’m about to tell you a tale so twisted, so horrifying, that it isn’t for the squeamish or the weak of heart. Now switch off the lights, lock the door, and get real close to your computer screen. Yeah, just like that. Now imagine it’s Halloween and you’re in the mood for something a little scary. Maybe you’ve watched and re-watched your selection of horror flicks enough times that you’re a little tired of them, but you’re not quite willing to leave the house to satiate your hunger for horror. There’s another option available though: video games.

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The Nintendo 180

Growing up I first fell in love with gaming thanks to Nintendo. While not my first experience with gaming, it was the first time I can say I knew this was something I would always want to do.  I remember a friend of my brothers bringing over the original NES and playing the original Mario and some other games.  Before that I had only played on old PC’s, Intellivision’s, and various Atari systems that barely worked.  The Nintendo put them all to shame; intense graphics, sound, easy of use and complex but simple controls.  Since then, I’ve owned nearly every system and played every genre I can, whittling it down to genres I follow very closely.  Nintendo was always in the forefront of this “hobby” (word comfortably interchangeable with addiction.), holding a special place in my heart, as I’m sure many others do as well.  And like many of you, probably followed them into their future endeavors with the SNES, N64, and other systems. Even the disappointing ones like the Virtual Boy and Gamecube.  Whether they were Nintendo’s fault or the industry at the time is here nor there.

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