AMD Catalyst 13.8 Beta Frame Pacing CrossFire Driver

Has stuttering with CrossFire been getting you down? Today may make many AMD CrossFire owners happy. Catalyst 13.8 Beta includes Frame Pacing technology to create a more fluid CrossFire experience. At least up to 2560x1600 resolution, for now. Does it really do the job? We investigate this and tell you what the gameplay experience is like.

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Frame Pacing Framerate Performance

Remember, in Phase 1, with Catalyst 13.8 Beta, we are limited to 2560x1600 resolution as the max resolution supported for Frame Pacing. Therefore, we can only test the Radeon HD 7990 on a single-display at up to 2560x1600. We are going to use 2560x1600 to make it more GPU demanding for the card.

On this page we are going to look strictly at traditional framerates. That is the framerate as reported by FRAPS. Raw framerates, as we all know, and as we have been telling your for nearly a decade, can be very misleading. Framerate does NOT relate consistency and the feel of the game well. All framerate relates is raw performance.

This data is all about seeing if turning on Frame Pacing decreases overall framerate performance, which is not the end all be all when it comes to consistency and fluidity of the game.


Crysis 3

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Right off the bat we see similar performance with Frame Pacing Off versus On in Crysis 3. There are no large deviations in performance. Technically there is only a .9% difference in the average framerate, miniscule by comparison.

Far Cry 3

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Far Cry 3 shows more of the same, there is absolutely no performance difference with Frame Pacing turned on.

Hitman: Absolution

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Out of all the games we tested, Hitman: Absolution shows the largest deviation. There is a larger average framerate drop in this game. However, by larger, we are still only talking about a 6% performance difference, which is not noticeable while gaming. This is in-line with what AMD predicted the highest difference could be in GPU demanding games.

Metro: Last Light

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There is no performance difference in Metro: Last Light.

Tomb Raider

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There is no performance in Tomb Raider, and we have the very demanding TressFX enabled.

Summary

In four out of five games, there was no difference at all in the raw performance enabling AMD Frame Pacing. In only one game was there a 6% reduction in performance. Though 6% is a rather small sacrifice to make in order to gain consistency and a fluid gameplay experience. At 6% you aren't going to feel that framerate loss, but you will feel the improvement made by Frame Pacing, which we will talk about further. Our summary here is, turning on Frame Pacing doesn't affect overall gaming performance in a negative way. So that is surely a good place for AMD to start!