ATI kicking NVidia's rear in driver department

ATI just had their best driver release in a long time. For both XP and Vista the CCC now loads about 3x faster than before. It’s much more responsive. OpenGL performance in Vista is much better, and they reduced resource usage.

Nvidia’s latest driver release added WHQL and that’s about it. It’s still terrible in Vista.

I don’t get how NVidia could be so unprepared for Vista with having a supposed DX10 card “ready for Vista”. I was all ready to switch to NVidia for my next VC because of the insane ATI power requirements for their upcoming DX10 Vista card… but if NVidia can’t match ATI’s driver support, I guess I’ll stay with ATI.

As someone who has to deal with both - don’t base this on one driver release. ATi drivers historically suck compared with nVidia. I won’t qualify a machine in this lab with an ATi anymore- far too many headaches.

I haven’t had an Nvidia card since the Geforce 4xxx days. Of course that was ages ago, and drivers have become far more picky and saavy in the interim, but I’ve never had an issue with their products. (I actually can’t recall the reason I switched…I think the new breed of '02 Radeon’s were so highly reviewed that it was hard to ignore)

I love Ati and have stuck with them since, but I’ve also dealt with two separate RMA’s and several driver niggles. The performance is generally spectacular, but the card’s just don’t seem to last. I will say that Vista compatability has been superb with my Radeon X850, no complaints yet.

When did the new drivers launch? I updated 2 weeks ago when I installed vista, are there newer ones up?

Historically is right – ATI’s drivers have been solid for years now.

The hell they have. ATI drivers have still been shit-tastic in the past few years. Four friends and I just recently switched back to NVidia stuff, namely because the drivers for ATI sucked so bad.

Maybe right now ATI’s drivers for vista are better, but I would not bet on them keeping that lead for long.

Anecdotal evidence is just that.

Evidence?

Yes, evidence. People throw out these subjective claims and the only evidence they have to support such opinions is their own anecdotal experiences.

I couldn’t make any claims between ATI drivers and NVidia drivers and I really don’t think anyone could unless they’ve run the tests to compare after every new release for years. In my opinion, I’ve seen no big difference between NVidia and ATI drivers and I’ve been alternating cards for a long time. The only thing that stands out to me is that ATI releases drivers in rapid succession (not claiming that’s better, just that it’s done) and NVidia tends to lag (and that lag is severe now). Of course, NVidia did say they were going to a monthly release, but I’ve not seen anything from them yet. When are they supposed to do this, anyway?

100.65 WHQL Vista drivers came out two days ago. Apparently Xfire doesn’t like them in conjunction with WoW, as it has caught exceptions and made WoW crash and burn several times.

I haven’t had the chance to download the new drivers yet, but until ATI resolves the aspect ratio/centered timings issue, I will continue to have some reservations about my recent switch to the X1950 Pro. My video card record is 3 Nvidia, 2 ATI, and 2 3dfx. Overall, I’ve had much fewer problems with Nvidia drivers than I have with ATI. During my time with the 9800 Pro, it seemed as if I had to run a different version of Catalyst for every game I had. I’m exaggerating, of course, but running the 6800GT that replaced it was a much simpler affair.

Ah, but the ATI Linux drivers still suck ;).

Ok, here is my Anecdotal evidence:
I’ll look in the handy dandy driver folder here…hrm…
22 driver changes in the ATI line- and we only update drivers when we need to for our product.Most used cards in this time was the AiW 9600 and above.
10 for Nvidia in the same ammount of time,including 2 now for Vista. Anything from the 4000 line through the new 8800.
The only downside for us and Nvidia is laptop drivers, which they have some ass deal with Dell that only dell can release them or some bull…

www.omegadrivers.com has alternative ATI drivers which I found superior to the ones ATI released. Note that I haven’t had an ATI card in about two years though.

Lorini

The responsiveness and load time didn’t really bother me, but it’s really nice that the new control panel shows you much better examples of what the differences between the settings are.

I suspect the problem is that nVidia took the opportunity of the new driver model to do some serious housecleaning of their codebase for the Vista drivers. This is resulting in some short-term shakedown pain, but it’ll probably serve them well down the road.

Wrong address, Lorini: you want www.omegadrivers.net.

http://www.laptopvideo2go.com/
I got their link from this forum somewhere, recently, too.

I hate the new control panel they’ve adopted since the 90 series. It’s even worse in the Vista series, since it’s missing more than half of the already very short list of options.

They’ve had MONTHS (years if you consider internally MS resources) to do housecleaning. ATI did the same thing and they cleaned up their codebase. If ATI Could have doen it with a tiny driver team (compared to NVidia) - there’s really no excuse for NVidia.

Over the past 20 years I’ve had 4 S3 cards, 3 3dfx cards, 9 Nvidia cards, and 4 ATI cards. The ATI drivers have been more stable (in the past 2 years) than any other card I’ve had. I buy almost every game that comes out, and I have zero that have trouble running.

But I do have a concern about the longevity of the current batch of ATI cards (heat and power use is scary), but that’s a hardware issue… not a driver one. And this thread is about drivers.

BDGE - the new ATI drivers came out yesterday. I started this thread because I was caught off-guard by the new release’s massive improvements.